The Productive Development Ministry said Tuesday that the sale of books online for home delivery purposes is authorised, though it remained forbidden for members of the public to visit bookstores or attend book fairs.
Argentina is the host of the much-anticipated the Buenos Aires International Book Fair, known locally and more colloquially as the “Feria del Libro,” which was supposed to return to the capital in April.
The fair, perhaps the most important and largest annual literary event in the Spanish-speaking world, will be held at its regular home, the La Rural convention centre in Palermo, and runs until middle of May.
More than a million people attend the event each year, making it as one of the most popular literary event in the world, highlighting the country's attachment to reading.
The government said Tuesday that "Administrative Decision 490," which expanded a list of activities and services exempted from social isolation, preventive and mandatory to prevent the spread of Covid-19 could be applied to bookstores but only in terms of the sale of books, bookstore items and computer supplies via the web for home delivery purposes.
The ruling, which expanded the list of commercial activities that are allowed to be in operation during the lockdown, forms part of emergency decree 297/20. It authorised the "sale of bookstore items and computer supplies, exclusively under the modality of home delivery,” stressing that attention to the public in person is not allowed.
The exception only covers "the sale of books over the Internet, although it does not allow the opening of premises on the street of bookstores," said a statement from the Productive Development Ministry.
In order for people related to these activities to make home deliveries, staff must complete and apply for a "Certificado Único Habilitante para Circulación-Emergencia Covid-19." This certificate is personal and non-transferable and must be processed through the "Trámites a Distancia" platform at https://tramitesadistancia.gob.ar.