Italy to end covid state of emergency on 31 March

Super Green Pass system to be scaled back from 1 March.

The Italian government will not extend the covid state of emergency when it expires on 31 March, premier Mario Draghi confirmed on Wednesday, pledging: "Our aim is to reopen everything, as soon as possible."

The emergency legislation has granted authorities sweeping powers to tackle the covid pandemic swiftly, and has been extended several times since it was introduced on 31 January 2020.

Draghi said the government would gradually phase out the so-called "Super" Green Pass system, beginning with outdoor activities including fairs, sports, parties and shows.

The prime minister also said the colour-coded system of covid restrictions would be scrapped along with school quarantines and the obligation to wear FFP2 masks in class, promising: "Schools will always remain open for everyone."

Amid an improving covid situation in Italy, Draghi hailed the "success of the vaccination campaign", adding that authorities would "continue to monitor the pandemic situation carefully, ready to intervene in the event of a resurgence." 

Cover photo Piazza di Spagna, 19 February 2022. Photo Wanted in Rome.