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Legislation - 30.03.2020 klo 15.01

Restaurants to close until the end of May – takeout and staff cafeterias allowed

Photo: Gettyimages

Restaurants in Finland will close to customers until the end of May to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

This Monday, 30 March, the Finnish Government approved a proposal on the closure of restaurants, which will close all restaurants to customers.  On Tuesday 31 March the Finnish Government confirmed an amendment by which restaurant operations will be restricted in the whole country.  According to the  Government all restaurants must be closed starting from Saturday 4 April 2020. The restrictions will remain in force until the end of May.

The Government submitted the decree to Parliament for an ex post examination. Parliament is scheduled to decide on the validity of the decree on Friday. Parliament may not change the content of the decree.

Restaurants and cafes cannot serve their products to customers on their premises. By the amendment all restaurants, nightclubs, bars and cafes will close to customers. This provision also pertains to spaces connected to these establishment, such as beer gardens and other outside seating. 

The restrictions apply to all restaurant operations except for preparing food for take away and for delivery by food couriers. The restrictions do not apply to canteens or restaurants that are essential for food supply such as canteens in schools, hospitals and similar establishments, or personnel restaurants that serve in-house personnel only.

The Finnish restaurant industry employs more than 50,000 workers at more than 10,300 establishments.

The news has been updated on 30 March and 31 March.