TAOISEACH LEO VARADKAR has outlined three criteria Ireland will need to meet in order for restrictions to be lifted in May.
Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, Varadkar stated that the Government is developing a plan for Ireland's exit strategy in conjunction with the National Public Health Emergency Team.
The aim is to start easing restriction on May 5, but Varadkar has stressed that Ireland must meet three key criteria before they can start implementing the exit strategy.
These include: a continued improvement in the rate of increase of the virus; the capacity of hospitals to deal with those who require treatment if a surge occurs; and adequate testing and tracing systems.
Mr Varadkar refused to go into detail about which restrictions may be lifted come May, or indeed how they're likely to be lifted, though admitted that reviews on lockdown measures will take place every two to three weeks.
"I think everyone understands it won't be done in one go, in one fell swoop, it won't be back to normal on day one" he said.
"What we'll do is set out a whole series of steps that we can take and every two to three weeks we'll review them and see how we're doing and if we're doing well we can move it to the next stage, to more reopening, if not, we'll stay where we are."
The Taoiseach warned that some countries, including Japan and Singapore, have had to reimpose restrictions after a spike in infections once lockdown measures were relaxed, and that he wanted to avoid a similar situation like that in Ireland.
"We want to open up areas of the economy and society but the least risk in public health terms," he added.
"If you were told next week or the week after that it's going to be possible to open your business or your facility in a few weeks, how would you do it with social distancing?
"Everybody needs to be thinking about where they work and how they might be able to adapt to this new norm of social distancing, which could be with us for a very long time."