The Vatican Museums, which were bringing in four hundred thousand euros daily to the Holy See before the pandemic, have just closed for the second time this year due to the Covid-19 epidemic: a new blow to the finances of the micro-state which had already predicted a deficit amounting to 53 million euros for 2020.
The Laocoon and the Apollo of the Belvedere seem resigned to solitude: since November 5, 2020, the twenty-seven thousand daily visitors to the Vatican Museums are no longer allowed in to admire the masterpieces of Antiquity. A situation that should last at least until December 3.
The new closure of the museums, already deprived of their public patrons between March and June, on the occasion of the first wave of Covid-19, will have a huge impact on the Vatican’s balance sheet, which in May had already forecast a decline in income of at least twenty-five percent for 2020.
Now, the drop could reach forty-five percent, if the epidemiological situation does not improve quickly.
Because, when they reopened in June, the Vatican Museums only received a tenth of the number of usual visitors: during the month of July 2019, they numbered seven hundred thousand, but only seventy thousand in July of this year.
Finally, the breakeven point of the various museums housed in Vatican City is between eight and ten thousand visits per day: it is understandable that financial projections are rather pessimistic in the Leonine City.