Metro Manila mayors are recommending that the National Capital Region (NCR) be placed under a “flexible” modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) to help check the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
Metropolitan Manila Development Authority Chairman Benhur Abalos said on Wednesday that said a flexible MECQ is the “middle ground” between MECQ and the less strict general community quarantine (GCQ), which will still entail strict border control with health protocols and measures still be in place. Also, more business activities, such as construction, will be permitted.
“There are fears of health experts that opening up the economy will increase infections. On the other hand, the economic experts also said there’s now hunger and so much work displacement,” he said.
Abalos also said Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez will release the list of industries that will be opened should the flexible MECQ is approved.
Initially, Metro Manila mayors agreed to shorten curfew hours previous 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. to 4 a.m., Abalos said, to allow some business to recover.
Lopez has been pushing for the gradual reopening of the economy, saying that about 1 million workers have been sidelined during the ongoing MECQ in Metro Manila and the provinces of Bulacan, Rizal, Cavite and Laguna. SOVEREIGNPH