Government should "provide certainty" for May, June and July with roadmap for summer, says Harris 2 weeks ago

Government should "provide certainty" for May, June and July with roadmap for summer, says Harris

Harris said that Ireland is in a "better position" to start easing restrictions than it has been in many months.

Minister for Higher Education Simon Harris has given a hopeful update on reopening businesses across Ireland from May onwards.

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Speaking at Government buildings on Monday, he said that he is optimistic that the Government will be able to provide a roadmap for the entire summer when they meet to discuss the easing of restrictions.

"I should just say when the cabinet meets, and I presume the cabinet will meet next Tuesday to talk about restrictions and easing of restrictions in the month of May, I think it needs to do a couple of things, I think it needs to provide a roadmap that goes beyond May," he said.

"I think we need to provide people with as much certainty as is possible in the middle of a global pandemic. When I meet business owners, they understand the virus, they understand it very well, they've been living with it like us all for the last year, but they just want an indication of when they may be able to reopen so they can have as much certainty as they possibly can."

"I think we should be able to provide certainty on what May, June, and July should look like, that is certainly my preference.

"I'm not going to do what I criticise others for, I'm not going to overly speculate on what that means for each sector. What I would say to all business owners is that I think there is ownership on the Government to provide you with as much certainty as possible next week."

Harris added that thanks to a recent fall in case numbers, Ireland is now in a better place to begin reopening businesses in the coming months.

"If this week, touch wood, continues the way the last couple have, we will be able to meet as a cabinet next week, with a better position on Covid than we have been in many, many months," he continued.

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"It is actually quite extraordinary the progress we have made in the past few weeks and when I say we, I mean we the people of this country. Yesterday saw the lowest case numbers in a long time."