Beijing’s municipal government announced plans to lower the highest coronavirus emergency response level from Thursday, removing some quarantine restrictions for new arrivals into the city.

The lowering to level 2 will mean that most domestic arrivals into the city will no longer need to adhere to the 14-day quarantine rule currently in place and those currently under quarantine will, from Thursday, no longer be required to continue.

International arrivals and those coming from Hubei Province, where the virus originated, will still face precautionary isolation measures.

The highest level of emergency response – Level 1 – was introduced on January 24.

Deputy Secretary-General of the Beijing municipal government Chen Bei made the official announcement on Wednesday. Nonetheless, he emphasized that other current protective measures would remain in place, such as the need to prove identity when entering residential areas.

Parks will also be reopened, while museums and libraries will operate via appointment, and more people will be allowed on public transport. Wearing a mask in the city is still a requirement.

The decision comes as Beijing had seen no new confirmed local or imported Covid-19 cases for the previous 13 consecutive days, according to Chen.

Another sign that the country is on its way back to normal is the announcement that parliament will begin its key annual session on May 22.

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