France could ease health pass restrictions in large shopping malls – minister

A man shows his COVID-19 health pass in a cafe as France brings in tougher restrictions where a proof of immunity will be required to access most of the public spaces or to travel on an inter-city train in Paris, France, August 9, 2021. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

PARIS, Sept 4 (Reuters) – France could ease health pass restrictions that are hurting the activity of large shopping malls if the COVID-19 epidemic situation keeps improving, Labour Minister Elisabeth Borne said on Saturday.

“The health situation is improving. If this is confirmed, we will be able to ease the rules,” Borne told France Inter radio, adding that this could be decided “in the coming days”.

French retail group Auchan AUCH.PA has said that the introduction in France in early August of a health pass that customers must show in shopping malls with a surface area of more than 20,000 square metres hit its business at the start of the third quarter.

France, where the daily average COVID-19 contagion rate has slowed, is battling a fourth wave of the pandemic, and the government aims to administer a third vaccine shot to some 18 million people by early 2022, a health ministry official said on Tuesday. read more

Reporting by Dominique Vidalon, Elizabeth Pineau; Editing by Angus MacSwan

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