More contact professions reopen in Belgium

Following hair salons, other contact professions in Belgium like beauticians, barbers and tattoo parlors were allowed to reopen from Monday.

This measure was decided by the Consultation Committee after it convened on Feb. 5 to plan the country’s exit strategy. Strict protective measures will be imposed to ensure the safety of both customers and professionals.

The country’s non-medical contact professions sector comprises roughly 30,000 self-employed people. Hairdressers were able to reopen as of Feb. 13.

As of March 1, the new curfew hours in Flanders and Wallonia will be from midnight to 5 a.m., while in Brussels, the 10 p.m to 6 a.m. curfew remains in place for now.

Belgium has so far recorded a total of 771,511 COVID-19 infections and 22,077 deaths.

As the world is struggling to contain the pandemic, vaccination is underway in Belgium and some other countries with the already-authorized coronavirus vaccines.

As of Feb. 27, 493,548 people in Belgium have received a first dose of the vaccine. Of these, 306,482 have already received a second dose, the Sciensano Public Health Institute said on Monday.

Meanwhile, 256 candidate vaccines are still being developed worldwide — 74 of them in clinical trials — in countries including Germany, China, Russia, Britain, and the United States, according to information released by the World Health Organization on Feb. 26.