- March 2, 2021
- Posted by: admin
- Category: Daily News
- Further reopening of the economy in the near term will be more likely now with the start of the COVID vaccination program, according to Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III.
- Sought for comment on 1 Mar 21 if the start of the inoculation program for frontline health workers would facilitate the easing of quarantine restrictions at least in Metro Manila by Apr 21, the finance chief replied: “I believe so.”
- Dominguez said the government would also coordinate with the private sector, which may have their own vaccination programs for their employees.
- Dominguez’s remark comes after Duterte previously stated that with the start of the mass vaccination program for the priority population, he would consider transitioning Metro Manila to the most lenient modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).
- Earlier, economic managers had recommended placing the entire Philippines under MGCQ beginning Mar 21 to arrest income and job loss caused by a prolonged lockdown, but Duterte rejected it, saying it could not be done until the vaccination drive starts.
- Meanwhile, cinemas, driving schools, museums and some tourist attractions will be allowed to operate in general community quarantine (GCQ) areas starting 5 Mar 21, as part of the government’s push for further reopening the economy, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) announced on 1 Mar 21.
- Limited social events will be restricted to 30% in GCQ and 50% in MGCQ areas, and must be held at accredited establishments of the DOT.
- However, the news comes as the DOH announced that the more contagious COVID-19 variant first seen in South Africa has reached the Philippines.
- The Philippine Genome Center detected six cases of B.1.351, or the variant that was first seen in South Africa in Dec 20, when it conducted genome sequencing of samples from 350 individuals who tested positive for COVID-19.
- Thirty additional cases of the variant first detected in the United Kingdom were also recorded, bringing to 87 the total number of B.1.1.7 cases in the Philippines.
External Link : https://www.philstar.com/headlines/2021/03/02/2081415/philippines-detects-six-cases-covid-19-variant-first-seen-south-africa
External Link : https://www.philstar.com/headlines/2021/03/02/2081298/dof-chief-sees-further-easing-restrictions