January 31, 2023

Trade Sec. Ramon Lopez said they would let the local government units decide on the timing of the opening of Internet cafes and gyms in their areas.
 “We leave it to the LGUs as to the timing because some will need more preparations, including the opening of gyms,” Lopez said in a television interview on Wednesday.
 He said some LGUs have to identify which computer shops could be allowed to operate as they worry that these Internet cafes could be a venue for the transmission of the Covid-19. 
Lopez said LGUs could also add more health measures on top of the general guidelines and specific health protocols stated in Department of Trade and Industry Memorandum Circular 20-44.
 “They can add their own guidelines on (the) opening of doors, putting air purifiers to make sure there’s good air circulation in the area,” Lopez said.
On Tuesday, the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases allowed the reopening of gyms, fitness centers, sports facilities, testing and tutorial centers, review centers, computer shops, personal care services, pet grooming services, and drive-in cinema in Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal that were placed under modified enhanced community quarantine from Aug. 4 to 18.
As mega Manila transitioned from MECQ to general community quarantine, the IATF postponed the reopening of these sectors until Sept. 1.
Lopez earlier said 94 percent of economic sectors are allowed to open under GCQ.
The government hopes the return of more economic activities would help the economy to recover, Lopez said, adding that health protocols should be strictly implemented to avoid the further spread of Covid-19. – PNA

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