German company bosses are not counting on a return to unrestricted normality in public life this year.
According to the latest business survey from the Ifo economic institute, firms expect COVID-19 restrictions to last for another 8.5 months, until around April next year.
Companies in the leisure sector are the most pessimistic: they don’t envisage a return to complete normality in public life for another 13 months. They are closely followed by restaurant and catering business owners, as well as the arts, who believe coronavirus restrictions will continue to impact them for further 11 months.
The service, trade, and construction sectors all expect public life in Germany to be restricted for more than eight months, while the manufacturing industry is banking on under eight months.
Germany has had to contend with a resurgence in the virus over the past weeks to daily tallies not seen since May. The number of new cases rose by more than 1,000 a day for the third day in a row on Saturday.
Doctors and public health leaders have warned that coronavirus is still a very present danger and urged people not to become lax and start ignoring social distancing and hygiene rules.
In general, the government’s early shut down of businesses and social life in March meant the death toll from COVID-19 remained at much lower than in Spain, Italy, and the UK. Hospitals began testing early and in large numbers, which also helped them in terms of isolating patients and containing the pandemic.
According to the latest data from Johns Hopkins University, Germany’s death toll from coronavirus stands at 9,200, with 217,288 confirmed cases.
It is now mandatory for travellers from high-risk areas to have a coronavirus test upon arrival in Germany, which are provided free of charge either at the arrival airports or at test centers and medical practices.