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Bars, restaurants and hotels in Benidorm on Spain’s Costa Blanca can keep their terraces open for an extra two hours from today, Friday, May 22.

THE town hall has authorised the extension of the opening hours until 1am – establishments have had to close at 11pm in Phase 1 until now, with police making regular patrols to ensure licensees and customers are complying.

The move was agreed after a meeting between the Department of Commerce and professional associations Abreca-Cobreca.

Members “verified the excellent performance by companies and residents with regards to the schedules and regulations that have been observed in these first two weeks in Phase 1, after initial adjustments on the way to the new reality.”

But essentially, the agreement and the extension of opening times was driven by the decision of the Generalitat Valenciana not to apply for passage on to Phase 2, which had been planned by the hospitality sector.

Mayor of Benidorm, Toni Perez demanded answers and clarity after the Minister of Health, Ana Barcelo announced none of the municipalities or health districts would be going through at this stage. He asked for data or indicators to back up the decision.

In the meantime, the Department of Commerce encourages businesses and the public to “maintain compliance with the measures of self-protection and continue with the civic behaviour of employers and neighbours to complete the transition of this phase.”