SOME pandemic restrictions and mask-wearing rules in Wales will be relaxed on Monday, first minister Mark Drakeford is set to announce on Friday.

Chief amongst the rule changes set to come into force on Monday, March 28, is that face coverings will no longer be required by law in shops and on public transport.

However, advice will be to continue to wear them and it will still be a legal requirement to wear masks in health and social care settings.

It will also no longer be a legal requirement to self-isolate, though a £500 payment to support those who choose to self-isolate will remain until June.

The rule requring businesses to carry out coronavirus risk assessments and enact reasonable measures as a result will remain in force.

The rules are continuing to be relaxed despite a recent increase in Covid cases because of the BA.2 sub-type of the omicron variant.


Mr Drakeford said: "We have seen an unwelcome rise in coronavirus cases across Wales, mirroring the position in most of the UK.

"We have carefully considered the very latest scientific and medical evidence and we need to keep some legal protections in place for a little while longer, to help keep Wales safe.

"Throughout the pandemic, we have taken a gradual and cautious approach as we have relaxed protections.

"We are firmly on the path towards leaving the emergency response to the pandemic behind us and learning to live with coronavirus safely."

The next three-week review will be carried out by Thursday, April 14, when the remaining measures will be considered.