Germany Chancellor Scholz mulls easing Covid-19 measures

BERLIN: In a speech to the German Bundesrat (upper house of Parliament) on Friday, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz described the federal government's next actions in dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic.

"The scientific forecasts indicate that the wave's peak is approaching," Scholz remarked. "This allows us to take a first step toward opening up next week at the federal-state summit, and then look at following stages in the spring." He did not, however, disclose any other information. "We must remain cautious and defend those who are particularly vulnerable," the Chancellor stated. We don't want to jeopardise our achievements."

In late January, Germany expanded its Covid-19 measures to include contact restrictions, a mask mandate in schools and on public transportation, and the implementation of the so-called 3G rule, which mandates valid proof of immunisation or recovery or a recent negative test in a range of public settings.

Despite the fact that Germany's seven-day Covid-19 incidence rate reached a new all-time high on Friday, the daily number of infections was slightly lower than a week ago, with roughly 240,000 new cases reported, according to the Robert Koch Institute for Infectious Diseases.

"The population is still at a very high risk of infection," the RKI said in its most recent weekly report, emphasising that the current wave had not yet crested. Children aged five to 14 years old continued to have the highest seven-day incidence rate.

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