Horeca Vlaanderen is satisfied with the adjustments, so that the catering industry can open again until 1 am and again up to ten people – within its own bubble – are allowed to sit at the table.
“We thank the governor for the constructive consultation,” said De Caluwe. ‘The virus is a matter for virologists, but following the economy and the rules, we can do that ourselves. The hospitality industry creates many jobs and it is mainly a passion for entrepreneurs to let people enjoy themselves. ‘
In the province of Antwerp, a stricter federal corona rules was in force, meaning that customers could only sit at the table with four or one family and that forced the catering industry to close at 11 pm. Unworkable, many managers found, and a lot of things have therefore (temporarily) closed their doors in recent weeks. On Wednesday, a number of adjustments will be made that will move more towards the federal framework.
‘It was illogical that you could have a barbecue at home with ten, but in a safe catering environment you could only meet with four,’ says De Caluwe. ‘The adjustments ensure that Mother’s Day can soon be celebrated in the catering industry in Antwerp, as is a tradition for many.’
De Caluwe states that most catering operators follow the rules carefully and will continue to do so. “But a small group did not follow the rules after the reopening,” he admits. ‘Let me be clear: we advocate in that area zero tolerance: we don’t want to have to return to the situation of the past weeks. However, the rules apply to everyone: I therefore urge customers to please fill in the registration papers correctly. Let today be a moment of hope. ”