“We are just after bringing back jobs, but the strict mobility will still be there,” Labor Sec Lopez said Thursday.
Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez has recommended a flexible modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) in the NCR Plus to gradually reopen labor-intensive sectors.
In a radio interview Thursday, Lopez said the agency is eyeing to reopen personal care services with a limited capacity of 20 to 30 percent as well as dine-in services in food establishments by 10 to 20 percent.
“Ni-recommend ho kasi naming ‘yong MECQ with flexibility. We are just after sa pagbabalik ng trabaho, pero yung higpit naman ng mobility ay nandoon pa rin. Ang importante lang ay itong trabaho. We’re talking about opening the sectors na sarado pa rin (We recommended the MECQ with flexibility. We are just after bringing back jobs, but the strict mobility will still be there. What’s important is the jobs. We’re talking about opening the sectors that are still closed),” he said.
He added that the gradual reopening of the personal care and dine-in services was “partially discussed” with the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF).
“Iko-confirm na lang mamaya sa IATF kung ilang porsyento (The IATF will confirm later the percentage [of capacity]),” Lopez said.
An estimated 200,000 workers in personal care services and 1 million fast-food and restaurant crews were affected by stricter community quarantine measures in National Capital Region, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal. Meanwhile, about PHP60 billion worth of wages were lost during the two-week MECQ, Lopez said.
The current MECQ also dropped PHP120 billion in the gross domestic product, on top of the PHP180-billion economic losses during the two-week ECQ.
—(Source: Philippine News Agency)