What can and cannot be bought this weekend in Latvia

The Latvian government decided Tuesday that the range of products that can be purchased at weekends will be limited. The stated reason is "in order to reduce congestion in indoor and outdoor outlets" and thus reduce the spread of COVID-19.

This has caused confusion and a number of misunderstandings in society, and indeed continues to do so. The Economics Ministry attempted to clarify the issue December 3 at a press conference, and updated it later December 4 after identifying multiple shortcomings, as reported elsewhere by LSM.

Here is a summary in an attempt to avoid frustration and inconvenience at the checkouts.

On Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays only these groups of products may be sold and purchased:

1) All types of products sold at pharmacies and veterinary pharmacies;

2) Fuel and all types of products at gas stations, except cigarettes, tobacco products and alcohol;

3) Stores may sell the following: food products, pet food, printed press, public transportation tickets, and hygiene products as follows:

  • shampoos,
  • toothbrushes, toothpaste, floss,
  • soap,
  • disinfection liquids,
  • wipes and tissues,
  • towels,
  • tablecloths and napkins,
  • hair brushes and other brushes for body care,
  • feminine hygiene products,
  • diapers and other childcare hygiene products,
  • razors.

A list of hygiene products that may be traded is published on the website of the Ministry of Economics along with frequently asked questions by traders.

Pharmacies and veterinary pharmacies are allowed to open and sell their usual range of items.

The limitations apply also to markets and open-air sales. Fairs and Christmas markets may not take place at all.

On the other hand, distance trade and e-commerce are not restricted. The purchase of all goods with home delivery or to parcel terminals is allowed.

 

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