Covid-19: Government available to discuss reopening of bars and clubs

Associação Nacional de Discotecas believes that bars and outdoor spaces could reopen their doors in July

The National Association of Discos (AND) revealed this Tuesday that the Government showed its willingness to increase support to the sector and discuss the reopening of night entertainment spaces, closed since March 2020 due to the pandemic.

According to the DNA, these guarantees were given by the Secretary of State for Commerce, Services and Consumer Protection, João Torres, during a meeting in Lisbon with the association about the decontamination plan, within the scope of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Lusa agency tried to get a comment from the Ministry of Economy, but this was not possible.

“We welcome all the ideas that Secretary João Torres presented to us. The door was open for the discussion on reopening with the Directorate-General for Health (DGS) and ADN wants to participate”, said the president of the DNA, José Gouveia, to the Lusa agency.

Despite the tutelage's availability, through the DGS, to discuss, “quickly”, a reopening plan, José Gouveia pointed out that no deadline was advanced.

“From now on, we will be nominated for discussion and what is intended is to be present and to be able to show with real cases what can or cannot be done and what is feasible for this sector to be able to reopen its doors. This sector cannot risk staying another year in these discussions. It is a discussion that has to be done”, he pointed out.

For AND, there are conditions so that bars and outdoor spaces can reopen their doors in July and clubs, with 'indoor' spaces, can do so in August.

“We believe that we cannot be thinking about clubs open in their splendor, until 6:00 am or with dance floors in operation, but we can think about clubs with seating, music and drinks service”, he exemplified.

On the other hand, according to José Gouveia, the Government has pledged to increase support to the sector, namely in the support of rents, which will be done in the coming weeks, and streamlining of candidacies that are waiting to be approved.

“Saying that we are satisfied with the support is not possible because any type of support will always be insufficient, but as one is better than zero, without a doubt,” he added.