The program is set to run from November 28th to December 6th and requires shop owners and mall operators to adhere to strict health guidelines.
By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News
Government ministers in Israel’s Coronavirus Cabinet approved a pilot plan on Wednesday evening to lift restrictions and allow some malls, outdoor markets and museums to reopen at limited capacity.
A statement from the Prime Minister’s Office said the plan was presented to the Cabinet by the Finance Ministry and the Ministry of Economy and Industry.
Fifteen malls throughout Israel, including Malha Mall in Jerusalem and Azrieli Mall in Haifa, are permitted to open on Friday, allowing shop owners to offer customers Black Friday sales.
The program is set to run from November 28th to December 6th and requires shop owners and mall operators to adhere to strict health guidelines, including a limit of one person per seven square meters, vigilant monitoring of the number of people inside via a computerized registry, and strict social distancing.
Eating will be banned in both outdoor markets and malls.
The guidelines are subject to enforcement by Health Ministry officials, and businesses operating in violation of the lengthy list of restrictions could be punished with a 5,000 shekel fine.
The decision to reopen malls on a limited scale comes after a recent rebellion by shop and mall owners, who reopened their businesses in violation of health restrictions last week.
Malls in Israel had been closed, save for essential businesses within them, since the September 18th lockdown over the Jewish High Holidays.
Madatech, the Israel Museum, the Tel Aviv Art Museum and the Eretz Yisrael Museum are permitted to reopen under the plan.
According to the statement, three additional museums will be chosen in a lottery to be held by the Culture and Sports Ministry.
Museum visitors must register in advance, and tour groups will be limited to 10 people. If possible, visitor traffic should flow in one direction.
The Health Ministry reported on Thursday morning that 1,069 new coronavirus infections were recorded on Wednesday.