13-10-2020

Slovak Cinemas Close Due To Pandemic

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BRATISLAVA: Cinemas will be closed in Slovakia as of 15 October 2020 due to a significant increase in the number of new COVID-19 infections. The stricter measures, which were taken on 11 October, decree that all mass events, including public cultural events, visits to cinemas, theatres, and other art performances, are prohibited.

A state of emergency was declared by the Slovak prime minister on 1 October. In that initial move, 50 participants at cultural or sports events were allowed. However, due to the deteriorating situation, the government has decided to prevent more than six people from meeting.

According to the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic, an exception from the mass events ban is made for online broadcasts and rehearsals of artistic performances.

„As long as we don't have a vaccine, only restrictions on travel, mobility and social contacts will effectively reduce the spread of COVID-19,“ the Culture Minister Natália Milanová said in statement.

Masks will be mandatory to be worn outdoors, with the exception of performers and actors in the production of feature and documentary films. The number of customers in the facilities will be limited to 1 person per 15 square meters, this rule also applies to galleries, museums, and libraries.

"Unfortunately, we didn't expect this. It is sad that what is easiest today is closing cinemas. In cinemas, theatres, or at sports events, all the prescribed instructions are followed, whether it is a matter of spacing or disinfection. This situation is very frustrating, but we believe that the state will start to really help and solve our situation because it is already starting to be critical, "Continental Film CEO and co-owner of Cinemax Michal Drobny told FNE.

On 9 October 2020 the Ministry of Culture  published an online form to map the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on workers in the cultural and creative industries. In November, a new law currently in Parliament will allow the Ministry of Culture to provide financial assistance in the form of subsidies during an emergency such as a pandemic.

National borders remain open, but the number of high-risk countries is increasing.