New Norway coronavirus measures could be decided by Tuesday

New Norway coronavirus measures could be decided by Tuesday
File photo: Tobias SCHWARZ / AFP
Prime Minister Erna Solberg has said that Norway is not yet finished with strict coronavirus restrictions and that parliament will be informed of new measures on Tuesday.

In a speech on Sunday, Solberg noted that it was now a year since the first coronavirus-related cancellation of a major event, last year’s Holmenkollen Ski Festival.

“It has taken longer than we expected” to get through the pandemic, she said, adding that another “mountain top” was still ahead on the route out of the epidemic in Norway.

“Infections are increasing, the British variant (B117, ed.) is becoming the dominant form. That’s why we are not yet finished with strict restrictions. There is a mountain top ahead which we must get over,” she said.

New, stricter national restrictions are likely to be put in place before lifting eventually removing restrictions, she also said.

Health minister Bent Høie has already confirmed new national measures will be implemented this week in response to rising case numbers.

READ ALSO: Norway signals new national Covid-19 measures next week

“I have planned to orientate the Storting [parliament, ed.] on Tuesday morning,” Solberg told newspaper VG in regards to the expected announcement of new restrictions.

The PM also said the specific restrictions were still being “assessed” in comments to the newspaper.

“One of the biggest decisions and assessments now is the question of how much we can strengthen local measures. Many parts of the country have low infections and it is quite demanding for us to have equal restrictions across the country,” she said.

Solberg did not answer a question as to whether schools will be closed nationally, VG writes.

On Friday, Assistant Director Espen Rostrup Nakstad of the Norwegian Directorate of Health said that the health directorate was working with the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH) on national and regional measures “that can be necessary to turn around the increasing infection trend” in Norway.

The agencies would send recommendations to the government “within a relatively short space of time,” Nakstad said.

Last week, NIPH reported that the reproduction number, also known as R-number, for the virus is currently at 1.3. As such, 10 people infected with the virus are currently infecting 13 others, causing the epidemic to spread.


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