Taoiseach Micheál Martin is reported to have announced at a Government meeting today that he intends to begin next week with the release of level 5 restrictions.
The intensive locking measures are set to be released in three phases in December, according to the latest reports.
According to reports, people will be allowed to visit another household and in the third phase closer to Christmas people will be allowed to travel outside their own county.
However, it is reported that a final decision on the release of the restrictions will not be made until Friday.
It is envisaged that this will provide advice to the public on how to enjoy Christmas with the family rather than imposing strict rules.
It is expected that people will be warned later in the week about the importance of avoiding physical contact, staying away from people and ventilating rooms where people gather.
There are reports that the Taoiseach told the Government today that he would be proposing the introduction of level 3 restrictions next week.
It is estimated that shops, fitness centers and hairdressers may be allowed to reopen in the first phase of the new restrictions next week.
Restaurants and pubs that serve food may be granted open permission in the second phase of the following week.
The three leaders of the coalition parties met last night and agreed that level 5 restrictions could be lifted at the beginning of the month.
This derogation was discussed at a Government meeting today and once the Government has received the advice from NPHET, a decision will be made on the best approach to managing the derogation.
NPHET ‘brought forward their scheduled meeting on Thursday and it will take place tomorrow.