IATF Announces Plans to Reopen Several Industries in MECQ Areas
The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) plans to reopen more industries in areas under modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ).
IATF-MEID announced on Monday, May 10, that the reopening of more industries will help address the financial struggles faced by workers and businesses in the Philippines caused by prolonged lockdowns.
Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles expressed the need to balance public and economic health in the country, especially in areas still under MECQ restrictions.
At present, cities under MECQ are those categorized under the NCR Plus Bubble (National Capital Region, Bulacan, Cavite, Rizal, and Laguna), Quirino, Abra, Ifugao, Santiago City in Isabela, and Zamboanga City.
Nograles stated, “In June, we will make adjustments depending on the qualification. If we are classified as MECQ, then we have to look for other industries that we can further open safely so more people can work and more members of the labor force can be hired.”
He added, “Of course, if the NCR Plus is downgraded to GCQ (general community quarantine), so much more the better so more people can work.”
Nograles noted that the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) would determine which industries can reopen in MECQ areas.
Nograles also pointed out that restaurant dine-ins are allowed under MECQ, given that only 10% of the establishment is occupied. Beauty salons and barbershops have also resumed operations under MECQ.
A complete list of establishments allowed to operate under MECQ can be found on DTI’s website.