The 10pm-5am curfew, which has been in effect across Italy since November, will be pushed back to 11pm effective immediately from May 18th.
The curfew – intended to discourage social gatherings that could risk new coronavirus infections – will then be pushed back to midnight on June 7, and eliminated entirely on June 21 in the so-called ‘yellow’ zones where it is in effect, a government official confirmed.
Meanwhile in-restaurant dining will be allowed until 6pm from June 1st under new rules.
Italy began its long awaited reopening late last month, allowing restaurants and bars to operate outside and doing away with interregional travel restrictions in most of the country.
Italy has been divided into different coloured zones indicating the level of coronavirus restrictions they must follow based on health data, with ‘red’ being the highest-risk zones, followed by orange and yellow. Most of Italy is currently considered yellow.
Monday’s measures also saw six different regions being made minimal-risk ‘white’ zones, where only mask-wearing and social distancing applies: Friuli-Venezia-Giulia, Molise and Sardinia, as of June 1, and Abruzzo, Veneto and Liguria a week later.
The new measures come amid encouraging health data in recent weeks while the pace of vaccinations has picked up.
Sunday’s 93 Covid-19-related deaths was the lowest figure seen since October. The health ministry recorded 140 deaths on Monday.
Prime Minister Mario Draghi has faced pressure in recent weeks from the far-right, which has been pushing for the country to open up more quickly, including getting rid of the curfew entirely.
Beaches officially opened at the weekend, and European Union tourists were allowed entry into the country on Sunday without the need to quarantine for five days.