The government have set out guidelines for people returning to work under a loosening of lockdown restrictions, while the country reported its lowest one-day increase in deaths from the coronavirus since March 23.
Most of us have been confined to home since mid-March with only businesses in sectors deemed strategically important allowed to operate normally.
However, from tomorrow, some other industries such as construction and manufacturing will be allowed to restart, enabling thousands to return to work.
But the eased conditions do not extend to retail stores, business specialising in entertainment and leisure, or to bars and restaurants (except those offering home delivery).
Under guidelines issued by the prime minister’s office, companies returning to work must provide appropriate protective equipment and ensure employees have space to be at least two metres apart.
The move brings Spain back to where it was two weeks ago in terms of economic activity. María José Sierra, the spokesperson for Spain’s Health Emergency Coordination Center, said the government is not expecting to see a new spike in Covid-19 cases as a result.
Amid concerns it may be too early to begin unwinding the lockdown measures, however, Interior Minister Fernando Grande-Marlaska sought to downplay the change in the rules.
At a joint press conference with Health Minister Salvador Illa he said we are still in the confinement phase.
Security forces will distribute 10 million masks at public transport hubs in the coming days, Marlaska said, adding that their use was recommended but not compulsory.
But some politicians criticised the government for failing to provide details of its plans.
Madrid’s transport chief Angel Garrido tweeted ”neither the Madrid region nor any other local transport authority has any information about the distribution of masks.”
The Health Ministry said latest death toll of 510 brought the total number of fatalities up to 16,353. Confirmed cases of the infection climbed to 161,852 from 157,022 a day earlier.