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PM Kariņš says state of emergency in Latvia likely to last

The current situation with COVID-19 and the number of patients in hospitals is not significantly improving, therefore additional restrictions need to be considered, said Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš (“New Unity”) to Latvian Television November 23.

On Monday, at a remote press conference, Kariņš pointed out that the situation was not getting better and that hospitals are already overloaded, and they still need to re-organize their activities to postpone the provision of scheduled services.

There is also an increasing number of sick people, which will start to disrupt the economy over time, the Prime Minister said.

Therefore, he said, “we should look at which restrictions need to be tightened in order to change this situation”.

“The hospitals continue to fill up, the number of sick people continues to grow, so I do not see that the conditions to stop this emergency will be met in the near future,” Kariņš said.

He also said that on Tuesday, 24 November, the government will discuss the necessary clarifications in the support programs for entrepreneurs and employees, so that these programs can be approved by the European Commission.

The leader of the Saeima faction for Development/For! Daniels Pavluts pointed out that any new restrictions need appropriate assistance, and the government should be prepared to offer support measures – support for the economy, schools, teachers, residents, employers.

Justice Minister Jānis Bordāns (New Conservative Party) said that there was a lack of information about the planned restrictions and more detailed information about the aid, so more information would have to be provided.

Bordāns added that the government could decide to provide aid not to companies in particular industries, but to look more broadly, also to assess companies that are indirectly affected. The country has enough information to analyze and provide specific services, said the Minister for Justice.

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