Denmark to let some small businesses reopen on Monday after virus lockdown

COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - Denmark will allow certain small businesses, such as hairdressers, beauty salons and driving schools, to reopen on April 20, the government said on Friday, following a lockdown ordered last month to rein in the coronavirus.

The move comes after the Nordic country, one of Europe’s first to shut down, began reopening day care centres and schools this week in a first step towards gradually easing the lockdown.

“No one wants to keep Denmark closed a day longer than is absolutely necessary,” Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen said on Facebook. “But we must not proceed faster than we can still keep the epidemic under control.”

Denmark will keep its borders shut, however, while curbs on restaurants, bars and gyms remain in place, as does a ban on large public gatherings.

With a tally of 321 virus-related deaths, Denmark has seen a fall this month in such deaths and hospitalisations.

Reporting by Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen; Editing by Clarence Fernandez