Close to normal: More restrictions eased

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian.
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The ‘2sqm rule’ will be expanded and venue caps will be removed under a major easing of restrictions, as NSW continues to record zero cases of community transmission of COVID-19.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the timing is right to ease restrictions and replace the 4sqm rule with the 2sqm rule, except at gyms and nightclubs.

“We are grateful to the people in NSW for their patience and understanding over what has been an incredibly difficult year,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“The rolling back of restrictions across the State is only possible because of the excellent work of the community who have followed social distancing guidelines and continued to come forward for testing.”

From Monday, stadiums and outdoor theatres will be allowed to have a 100 per cent seated capacity, while 75 per cent capacity will be allowed at indoor venues.

Nightclubs will be able to re-open but only 50 people will be allowed on the dance floor at one time.

Caps will be removed for bookings at hospitality venues, weddings, funerals, agricultural shows, corporate events and religious services.

NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant said despite there being no recent cases of community transmission the community should continue to be COVID-Safe. She urged people to get tested if any COVID symptoms develop.

Deputy Premier John Barilaro said the people of NSW have worked hard to keep COVID-19 under control and deserved this major easing of restrictions.

“Today is a great day for the people of NSW and great timing with Christmas fast approaching, as we will soon see larger crowds at venues and events and the expansion of the 2sqm rule state-wide,” Mr Barilaro said.

Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said under the changes most venues will be able to double their capacity, which will have an immediate and substantial impact on the economy.

“This change will make a big difference to many businesses and will provide a real boost for jobs particularly in the service industry which has been hit hard over the past nine months,” Mr Perrottet said

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