French Prime Minister announces Covid mass test trial after Christmas


Prime Minister Jean Castex has announced that a “massive” testing campaign will be put in place after the end of year celebrations in France. “Or maybe before. We are working on it, ”he said.
Talk on the news channel BFMTV-RMC this morning (December 2) he said: “The idea would be to work on a trial basis, which has been done in other countries, by carrying out tests massively in densely populated urban areas.

“This will allow us to better understand this disease, which neighborhoods are most affected, which groups are most affected and what types of spaces are most affected. We will be able to find curative and preventive information. ”

The prime minister said testing will be carried out in three phases, although the areas to be tested have yet to be chosen. “Maybe the north, maybe Normandy, maybe the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region,” he says.

Border controls to prevent skiers from going abroad

Mr Castex also announced that measures would be imposed to prevent French people traveling abroad from skiing this winter, including random border checks, Covid tests and seven-day quarantines.

Ski resorts in France are currently closed for health reasons. The Prime Minister said it was important that people in France did not use this as a reason to “go contaminate themselves” in other European countries where ski resorts are open during the holiday season. “I want to protect people,” he said.

President Macron also said on Tuesday that “restrictive and dissuasive measures” would be taken to prevent the French from going skiing in Switzerland at Christmas.

Read more: Petition for the opening of French ski resorts at Christmas

Other key points of the interview

Travel exemption forms

Mr Castex said travel exemption forms will no longer be needed for day trips from December 15. From that date, curfew measures will begin and travel exemption forms will be required to leave the house at night.

Places of worship

Places of worship will be able to open with a maximum of 30 worshipers allowed inside at any time, with a protective space of 6m2 around each person.

The prime minister said exceptions could be made for Christmas masses.


The authorization of a Covid vaccine in France is expected towards the end of December, according to the PM, who added that “an authorization is necessary from the American and then European authorities” before the vaccine arrives in France.

He said: “Thanks to the European system, we have pre-ordered enough to vaccinate 100 million people. It is essential that as many people as possible in France agree to be vaccinated.

Read more: Anti-vax sentiment of Covid exceeds 50% in France

Sports stadiums

The public will not be able to attend sports matches in the stadiums “before December 15, that’s for sure”, according to the Prime Minister. He said no amateur team sports could resume before that date and did not indicate a date when they could resume.

The national football competition for the Coupe de France will not take place this year.

Sports centers

As for sports centers and gyms, Mr. Castex said he “could not imagine reopening them until January 20.”

Related stories

France targets massive Covid vaccine campaign from April

France’s rail and air services to increase over Christmas


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here