Ministers firm: cafe terraces will remain closed until June 1

No customers at this beach bar on the island of Schiermonnikoog. Photo:

Cafe owners may not open their terraces before June 1 at the earliest, despite the forecast good weather over the coming weekend, justice minister Ferd Grapperhaus confirmed on Monday evening.

The cabinet has been coming under increasing pressure from cafe owners to allow them to take advantage of the holiday weekend and open up earlier.

‘The current rules last until the new rules coming into effect. And they state very clearly that cafes, bars and restaurants are closed, apart from for take-aways,’ Grapperhaus said.

The hard line follows a meeting of the 25 Dutch public safety regions on Monday, in which mayors called on the government not to relax the rules early because they fear they will not be able to police them properly.

And according to RTL Nieuws, cafes will not be able to open until midday on June 1, to stop late night parties to celebrate the easing of the coronavirus rules.

Ministers are meeting the Outbreak Management Team experts on Tuesday and prime minister Mark Rutte will hold a news conference at around 7pm to announce what, if any, decisions have been taken.

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