The first confirmed COVID-19 case was reported on March 19, 2020. As of June 2, 2021, the total number of COVID-cases is 4,935 (of which 4,747 recoveries, 173 deaths and 15 patients under treatment). After increasing since mid-December 2020and stabilizing at low levels since the beginning of April 2021, the number of new cases started declining in May 2021. The initial surge in December prompted the authorities to temporarily reinstate some of the preventive measures that were relaxed in May 2020. As the number of new COVID cases dropped since mid-January, the authorities decided to relax these measures on January 20, 2021 (mentioned below), on gradual basis and considering the compliance of the remaining preventive measures. The state of medical emergency continues since its extension on October 17, 2020, for six months. Wearing a face mask remains mandatory in public places starting May 7, 2020. For the vaccination against COVID-19, the authorities adopted a national plan which aims to vaccinate about one third of the population in four phases. The first three phases, covered by the COVAX facility, are expected to be completed in 2021.
Reopening of the economy and additional containment measures. On January 20, 2021, the authorities decided to re-open gradually:
(i) travel flights were allowed to resumed from January 14, 2021;
(ii) land borders reopened for authorized missions;
(iii) schools and universities reopened;
(iv) worship places opened for Friday prayers and Sunday masses;
(v) public transportation is allowed;
(vi) markets and shops were allowed to reopen;
(vii) reopening of bars and restaurants for carry out; and
(viii) no limit on gatherings (previously set at 50), however, preventive and social distancing measures remain mandatory. The curfew (9:00 PM to 5:00 AM), which was imposed and renewed (every two weeks) since April 2020, has been discontinued on March 9, 2021.