coronavirus
In this April 3, 2020, photo, an image of the so-called "angel of death" holding a sign that reads "Stay At Home or Stay With Me" is displayed in Barangay Addition Hills in Mandaluyong City to remind people to stay at home as precatutionary measure against the new coronavirus.
The STAR/Michael Varcas
Businesses back 2-week Luzon lockdown extension —survey
Ian Nicolas Cigaral (Philstar.com) - April 6, 2020 - 7:13pm

MANILA, Philippines — With coronavirus infections still on the rise, the Philippine government should extend the month-long enhanced community quarantine in Luzon beyond April 12, a survey of businesses showed.

Results of an “informal” survey released by Go Negosyo, a business advocacy group, on Monday showed 90% of businesses in the country support a two-week extension of the Luzon lockdown scheduled to lapse despite the drastic measure’s economic repercussions “to avoid a possible relapse and ensure a definitive flattening of the curve.”

“Despite the negative economic impact, it seems that we are left with no choice but to ensure that this current lockdown be worthwhile and successful,” said Joey Concepcion, presidential adviser for entrepreneurship and Go Negosyo founder, in a statement.

“Thus, we strongly support the government in its plans of extending the Luzon lockdown for another two weeks to avoid relapse, which may result in more damages,” Concepcion added.

As of Monday afternoon, the Philippines reported 414 new cases of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), bringing the national tally to 3,660. Of those infections,163 died due to complications of the contagious disease.

According to Go Negosyo, a two-week extension of the island's lockdown can be used as opportunity to enforce quarantines at barangay level, a lockdown version earlier floated as a replacement to the national level-imposed quarantine of Luzon. Under such a set-up, mayors and village chiefs will be empowered to implement a lockdown in their affected areas, “while following simple and easy-to-follow guidelines set-up by the National Task Force.”

“Depending on the number and location of the confirmed cases per area, the barangay quarantine can be expanded to become a city/municipality quarantine, and even a provincial quarantine, should a wider scale lockdown be necessary,” Go Negosyo explained.

Earlier, Vice President Leni Robredo voiced out support to an extension of the lockdown, even as authorities said a decision is yet to be made on the matter.

Last week, global investment bank Nomura said a lengthening of the Luzon lockdown would require more state funding for social support and efficient resource distribution to help the poor cope with the shutdown of businesses and work stoppage.

“As imposing lockdowns in a bid to contain the spread of the COVID-19 is highly disruptive to economic activity, it will likely affect this vulnerable sector the most, and targeted assistance will be urgently needed,” the global bank said.

LUZON LOCKDOWN NOVEL CORONAVIRUS
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