To enter a restaurant, museum or cinema in the Netherlands, you must show a sanitary pass. The changes are effective from Saturday. Over 40 percent of restaurateurs do not intend to enforce the new obligation. For breaking the law, there is a fine of 2.5-10 thousand euros, and even the premises will be closed.
Although the obligation to maintain a 1.5-meter social distance was abolished from September 25, local authorities are to check a certificate called the coronavirus pass. This is a certificate of vaccination against Covid-19 or a negative test for the virus.
Some large municipalities, incl. Amsterdam, Rotterdam and The Hague have announced that they will only do so randomly. Meanwhile, the government has announced that it will penalize landlords with high fines if they fail to comply with the new obligation.
New rules for gastronomy in the Netherlands
Justice Minister Ferd Grapperhaus said in an interview with the “Algemeen Dagblad” newspaper that landlords who do not respect the law must take into account that their premises will be closed.
As agreed by the government with local authorities, no action will be taken this weekend against entrepreneurs who do not respect the new rules. However, as of Monday, they risk a ticket or closure.
Restaurateurs are dissatisfied with the introduction of the new restrictions. As much as 41 percent. of them announces that it will not enforce the new obligation, according to research by the trade organization Koninklijke Horeca Nederland (KHN).
Dutch politicians argue over the new rules
“The Netherlands is opening up and the government is closing the catering industry, it makes no sense,” KHN said in a statement. The organization emphasizes that the catering sector has suffered a lot due to the coronavirus pandemic and the government should help it and not introduce new obstacles.
Meanwhile, Christian Democrat secretary of state in the ministry of economy Mona Keijzer said in an interview with the daily “De Telegraaf” that the introduction of a sanitary certificate was difficult to explain.
– The decision has been made, but it is difficult to explain to people why it is needed in one place and not in another – says the minister. Keijzer points out that it is possible to take part in the marathon without any problems, but before entering the restaurant, you must present a “crown pass”.
Thunder rained down on the minister. On Saturday, it was unanimously criticized by politicians from other coalition parties. “Very strange words. After all, you are a member of the government” – wrote MP Jan Paternotte from the social-liberal D66 on Twitter.
The opposition is not that unanimous. Labor MP Attje Kuiken (PvdA) told Algemeen Dagblad that it was strange that a government member criticized his cabinet’s policies in the newspaper.
On the other hand, MP Wybren van Haga (independent) praised Minister Keijzer. “Fortunately, there is someone with common sense in this government,” wrote on Twitter a deputy who recently left the right-wing populist Forum for Democracy (FvD).
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