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Jacinda Ardern says battle with Covid-19 not over once significantly lighter Level 1 rules come into force

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today outlined the rules for Alert Level 1, with restrictions on businesses and services "essentially" lifted. 

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The PM has outlined what life will look like when we move into Level 1. Source: 1 NEWS

Ms Ardern said next week would show if the loosening of rules on bars and gatherings had an impact on any Covid-19 infections.

"If it hasn't, we should be in a good position to move."

NZ hasn't had a new case in 12 days. 

Border measures, public health, cough etiquette and contact tracing would be the "wall of defence" at Level 1 against Covid-19.

"All current rules and restrictions on businesses and services are essentially lifted."

That meant all hospitality rules, such as having a single server, is lifted. There are no physical distancing requirements in the workplace or public places and gathering limits are lifted, but the Government is working with ticketing and large scale event organisers on a 'Covid code'. 

Ms Ardern said this was intended be a voluntary industry code. 

Churches would return to full services, sports and concert stadiums can be sold out. Community sport can return. 

Physical distancing will no longer be required, including on public transport and planes. 

"Once we move to Level 1, it will mean all that good work and sacrifice at Alert Level 4, 3 and 2 by all New Zealanders has paid off. It means lives have been saved," Ms Ardern said. 

"However, it does not mean the battle with the virus is over. Covid is still in the world."

"While these restrictions can end when we're in the situation of moving to Alert Level 1, we do need new behaviours to start."

Ms Ardern said it was critical contact tracing remains in the event Covid-19 was to break out again. 

"We do want to see ongoing use of digital diaries."

She also outlined the 'golden rules' that will be in place during Alert Level 1. 

Those rules were to stay home if sick, get tested if suffering with cold or flu-like symptoms, wash hands, sneeze into elbows and regularly disinfect surfaces, self isolated if told by health authorities, work with your GP if you have underlying health conditions, keep track of where you have been or who you have seen and businesses should display the Ministry of Health's QR code.

According to the Covid-19 website, New Zealand is at Level 1 when the disease is contained here, uncontrolled overseas and that there could be isolated household transmission happening.