Kazakhstan Eases COVID-19 Restrictions As Epidemiological Situation Improves

NUR-SULTAN – Kazakhstan’s interdepartmental commission working to prevent the spread of coronavirus infection decided to ease COVID-19 restrictions as the epidemiological situation is stabilizing, reports the Kazakh prime minister’s press service.

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From Aug. 28, all businesses participating in the Ashyq system will be allowed to resume their work on weekends. They will be working until midnight, while so-called Ashyq leaders – businesses with the highest number of check-ins in the system – can work until 2 am provided that employees and visitors have green status (vaccination or negative PCR test) in the system. Similar working hours will begin for weekdays starting Aug. 30.  

Public transportation will be resumed on the weekend as well. 

The ease of restrictions will come into effect one week later in Almaty.

Deputy Prime Minister Yeraly Tugzhanov, who chairs the commission, tasked officials with ensuring that schools are ready for the new academic year that begins Sept. 1. These include completing vaccination of teachers and technical staff, sanitary requirements, the Ashyq system, and completing the repair works in schools.

At a government meeting on Aug. 24, Kazakh Minister of Healthcare Alexei Tsoy said that the epidemiological situation is stabilizing after a more contagious delta variant caused a spike in the number of coronavirus cases. Though vaccination gave everyone new hope, daily infections exceeded 7,000 cases in July, which is higher than the numbers in the summer of 2020.

The unvaccinated population accounts for the majority of cases and is more prone to severe infections than the unvaccinated, he said. 

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