Sunday opening hours for pubs and nightclub closing times could be about to change here in Ireland.
Justice Minister Helen McEntee is drawing up a new law which would see the current laws that are over 100 years old abolished – the Sunday Business Post reports.
Currently the laws state that pubs must close at 11.30pm during the week, while nightclubs have to close at 2.30am.
This could mean that when pubs finally do reopen in Ireland that people will be able to enjoy extended hours inside them.
Although Taoiseach Micheal Martin dampened expectations on the hospitality front on Saturday when he said there’ll be no reopening before mid-summer.
Speaking on RTÉ’s Raidió na Gaeltachta, the Taoiseach said: “We don’t foresee that ( reopening pubs etc ) before the middle of the summer … what the public health authorities are saying is that we stick with this until end of April, then we reflect on the situation and make decisions about the months ahead.
“There won’t be much of a change ( after this phase ) because the numbers are still too high … what we intend is to reopen schools gradually … it will be slow, we’ll be cautious, because we have to monitor the effect on the virus. The biggest challenge we face is new variants as they could impact the vaccines. It’s sensible to open slowly, as the vaccines are coming.”
Restaurants Association of Ireland CEO Adrian Cummins warned hospitality businesses will now be “closer to financial ruin and meltdown”.
He said: “The Government now needs to set out clearly what level/percentage of the population that will be required to be vaccinated in order to fully reopen all hospitality businesses.”
Donal O’Keefe, chief executive of the Licensed Vintners Association, told RTE: “It’s very clear that the Taoiseach and the Government do not appreciate the enormous level of stress and uncertainty their mishmash communications are causing to thousands of small businesses and tens of thousands of staff right across the country.”
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President of the Irish Hotels Federation Elaina Fitzgerald Kane told VM News: “The general narrative that casts doubt over summer is really disappointing, it’s soul-destroying. We would like to feel that we’re not deciding at this stage there won’t be a summer.
Source: Dublin News