Poland to Reopen Hotels and Shopping Malls on May 4

April 29, 2020Updated: April 29, 2020

Polish hotels and shopping malls will reopen on May 4 and pre-schools will have the option to open on May 6, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on April 29, part of efforts to ease restrictions imposed to curb the spread of the CCP virus.

Poland, the largest economy in the European Union’s eastern wing, started relaxing some of its curbs on public life earlier in April, alongside other countries keen to prop up industry damaged by the pandemic.

Morawiecki also reaffirmed the government’s plan to hold a presidential election as scheduled on May 10, or with a delay of a couple of weeks at most, despite calls from opposition parties and others for a much longer delay.

A woman holding yellow tulips stands in front of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising memorial to mark the 77th anniversary of the doomed rebellion by Jewish partisans against Nazi Germany during the Holocaust, in Warsaw, Poland, on April 19, 2020. (Janek Skarzynski/AFP via Getty Images)

Further steps to unfreeze the economy, including a reopening of restaurants, will be announced at a later date, Morawiecki said. Poles are still required to wear masks in public and schools will remain closed until May 24.

The government has also not given any indication when it might re-open the country’s borders.

Poland, which has a population of 38 million, had reported 12,415 cases of the new CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus and 606 deaths as of Wednesday.

A doctor and a nurse wear protective, suits, masks, goggles and gloves as they turn up side down an unconscious COVID-19 patient in order to improve the respiratory system inside the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) for COVID -19 patients of Krakow’s University Hospital in Krakow, Poland, on April 18, 2020. (Omar Marques/Getty Images)

On the plans for the presidential election, Morawiecki urged the Senate, the upper chamber of parliament, to speed up its discussions on a legislative proposal to allow postal voting instead of polling booths.

Morawiecki’s nationalist Law and Justice party (PiS) says it would be safe to hold a postal vote at this time, but a final decision on whether election rules are changed to allow it rests with the legislature.

Although PiS and its allies have a majority in the lower house Sejm, the opposition controls the Senate.

The election has become a highly divisive issue in Poland, with the opposition and human rights groups accusing PiS of putting political gain ahead of public health in its insistence the vote takes place on time.

Opinion polls show the incumbent Andrzej Duda, a PiS ally, is likely to win the vote.

By Agnieszka Barteczko, Anna Koper and Joanna Plucinska

Epoch Times staff contributed to this report.