Pubs and bars set to the last in line as restrictions unwind

As Australia is recording daily falls in new cases of Covid-19, with three states seeing no new cases at all this week, talk is now about a slow easing of lockdown restrictions.

But authorities have warned that pubs and clubs may be some of the last places to be allowed to open again.

Speaking to The Sun-Herald, Professor Peter Collignon from the Australian National University said the government needed to remain cautious as it eases restrictions.

“Unfortunately I don’t think until September this year at the earliest [before pubs reopen],” he said.

“Winter is coming and that is our next big risk time – for all respiratory viruses, including this one.”

Infectious disease specialist Professor Ben Cowie from the University of Melbourne said that while pubs and clubs were “economically important and socially important” they do

Health Minister Greg Hunt said the government must be cautious about easing restrictions as Australia moves into winter with the possibility of a second wave of the virus.

“Restaurants, cafes and pubs will reopen when the health advice and government deem it safe to do so,” he said.

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