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Italy prolongs lockdown until May 3 but starts to ease restrictions

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Italy prolongs lockdown until May 3 but starts to ease restrictions

April 20, 2020 - 08:39
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The Italian government has prolonged the lockdown and connected measures to stop the spread of the Covid-19 virus in the country until May 3.

However, the newly-issued decree, which was approved on April 10, allows the opening of some commercial activities as of today such as stationery shops, bookstores and children’s clothing stores, as well as some production activities including silviculture and forestry.

“The technical-scientific committee has confirmed to us that the signs from the epidemiological curve are encouraging. There are clear indications that the containment measures adopted so far by the government are bearing fruit, but precisely for this reason we cannot negate the efforts made so far,” the Italian prime minister Giuseppe Conte said in a televised speech.

“As of today, silviculture and forestry are considered essential [sectors], together with paper trading,” Massimo Medugno, director of the association of paper producers, Assocarta, said in a statement.

From an operational point of view, the Italian waste management association Unirima continues to highlight disruptions in the transport of materials.

As for paper production, the majority of Italy’s paper mills are not reporting production disruptions. According to Italian media, Lecta temporarily halted production at its Riva del Garda coated woodfree and specialty paper mill. The company did not respond to a request for comment.

On the printing side, many commercial printers have either stopped or significantly reduced production because of a lack of orders from the retail segment. Companies operating in the corrugated sector also reported some temporary closures needed for the disinfection of production sites or a reduction of shifts due to a lack of demand.