Don’t expect significant easing of coronavirus measures, Frank Vandenbroucke warns

No significant easing of restrictions should be expected to come out of next Friday’s Consultative Committee meeting, Federal Health Minister Frank Vandenbroucke warned on Sunday.

“Within three weeks, the British variant of the coronavirus will be dominant in Belgium and we will be able to assess how contagious it is,” he told VTM.

However, Vandenbroucke said that new variants should not be feared, if we continue to follow the rules. “We have built a solid dike,” he said. “The problem arises if there are holes in the dike.”

“In other words, we can only consider relaxing the rules when we have a better picture of the spread of the British variant in Belgium,” he explained.

Friday’s Consultative Committee will be important, however, to harmonise the different governments, to make choices about what is a priority. “We must also agree to strictly enforce the obligation to be tested when entering Belgium,” he added.

As for the strict ban on non-essential travel across national borders, it will be difficult to extend it further, for example until the Easter holidays, in view of the European recommendations, Vandenbroucke said.

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