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Greece Planning to Re-open Shops and Restaurants

Monastiraki market, Athens. Photo Source: ESEE

Monastiraki market, Athens. Photo Source: ESEE

Greek authorities are planning to gradually lift Covid-19 restrictions and allow retail shops to reopen from March 22 or March 29.

Speaking on Parapolitika 90.1 radio on Tuesday, Development and Investments Minister Adonis Georgiadis clarified that when shops re-open, they will not be obliged operate with the “click away” method that saw consumers making online or phone orders and picking up their purchases outside of stores. Instead, consumers will be allowed to physically enter shops to make purchases but only after having previously sent an SMS to the five-digit mobile phone service 13033. According to the minister, consumers must do their shopping within a specific time limit that will be announced.

With regard to businesses of the food and beverages (F&B) sector, the minister said their re-opening will most likely take place at a later date – possibly as of April 15 – depending on the course of vaccinations.

Georgiadis clarified that the government will initially open only cafes and restaurants that offer outdoor seating areas.

It is reminded that businesses of both sectors have suffered a severe shock after remaining closed for several months due to the Covid-19 lockdown measures.

Secondary education next to open

Photo source: Ministry of Education

According to Greek health experts, after the retail sector re-opens, schools (middle and high schools) should be the next to open their doors.

Speaking on SKAI TV, Dimosthenis Sarigiannis, professor of environmental engineering at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, said the coronavirus pandemic is reaching its climax with the number of cases expected to begin to drop as of this weekend.

He agreed that that Greek economy could reopen from March 22 and that middle and high schools should follow, but not elementary schools.

“We expect the Covid-19 variants to continue spreading in the community and elementary schools could play a multiplying role. It is better to wait,” he said, adding that older students are believed follow safety measures more carefully.

Greece on Monday reported 3,215 new coronavirus cases – its highest daily count – and 46 deaths.

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  1. Antony Reply

    Dear Annette, please fill out this form This is for citizen without AMKA but a valid ΑΦΜ. Good luck and stay safe…

  2. Carol Gladman Reply

    A big mistake to be in such a hurry to re-open shops and restaurants, also schools. Greece had reported its highest daily count, numbers have to improve before the floodgates are opened.

  3. annette haddleton Reply

    I live on a remote Greek island but am not eligible for the vaccine because I do not have amka. I will not be able to travel because I cannot have the vaccine certificate. I was trying to get permanent residency but cannot without Amka. Catch 22!

    • Bryn Archer Reply

      Do you have a good Greek speaking friend who can go with you. If you have a beige or blue residency card go to your local IKA and book an appointment. I tried for months to get one. I have a beige card. We had an appt for two days later. I had to provide passport and my beige card a Greek phone number and a copy of my tax number and a copy of a legal lease. I needed amkas for myself and my wife. I went in at 8am and I was walking out with amka’s at 8.35. Now I’m waiting for my age group to be released as I’m 65.

    • Pete Reply

      I have successfully applyed for a 5 year residency on the island of crete.and in the meantime, ,
      now requiring a temporary amka to quality for my covid
      Vaccination, I see no reason why you are unable to do so

      Good luck,

    • Adele Corry Reply

      Hello, I have read in the media that the Greek Government is working on providing a temporary AMKA for foreigners who don’t have one. Apparently once finalized info will be available on the vaccination website.

    • Tzuridis Reply

      You have to be a full time citizen go get AMKA, as in making it your primary address for taxes etc. That or be born in Greece.

      It is illegal to bar entry for you in the EU if you are a citizen of said EU country. You can go there to get the vaccine, or try with private insurance when they get the vaccine likely after May

    • Vivi Robinson Reply

      You can reply for a temporary AMKA. There is a form to fill out on the government website.

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