South Korea relaxes COVID-19 rules

Culture events are getting closer to a full reopening in South Korea after the government announced a further relaxation of COVID-19 rules.

Concert goers can now sit together with one friend or family member with two empty seats on either side. Previously, all audience members had to be separated by 2 seats in every direction.

The current strict rules has meant hardly any events have taken place, since they significantly reduced capacity.

Now, a number of major concerts and shows have been announced. Musical Wicked will start at run at the Blue Square Theatre; The Count of Monte Cristo will extend its run at the LG Arts Center in order to take advantage of the new seating arrangements; and a number of productions will return to the Seoul Arts Center.

“We took people’s fatigue into consideration,” said prime minister Chung Sye-kyun in a press conference. “We are also relaxing the rules for small businesses and self-employed.”

In addition, nightclubs, bars and other late-night entertainment venues can reopen. However, patrons will have to wear masks and the venues must close at 10pm.

There has been an average of 70 daily cases across South Korea over the last week, with numbers steadily declining over the last month.