If there isn’t a big spike in coronavirus infections in Metro Manila and its surrounding areas in the Philippines in the next few days, local casinos will be able to get back on their feet. Metro Manila is under modified extended quarantine (MECQ), which was reduced only earlier this month. The quarantine period in the region lasted until August 18, but the change in the status of quarantine is not caused by an improvement in the indicators of patients. Instead, it comes down to a clean economy. Manila will not be able to survive if the large-scale quarantine continues.
COVID-19 is still spreading in Metro Manila: 140,000 cases of the disease were detected, 6598 last Monday alone. The latest figure is a new record for the Philippines, but the economic consequences of everything being blocked have now proved more dangerous than the virus itself. MECQ plans to collapse to make way for the General community quarantine (GCQ), but this should not be seen as a sign that recovery is coming soon.
Under GCQ, many businesses, including casinos, will still face restrictions or modified operating procedures similar to those seen elsewhere:
significantly reduced capacity,
reducing offers and so on.
The sale of alcohol will still be prohibited, as will large gatherings and face-to-face classes.
Harry Roque, a spokesman for President Rodrigo Duterte, explained to the press that the government would prefer to extend the MECQ, but the economic situation does not allow it.
Anything is possible, but extremely unlikely. The bottom line is that we no longer have the resources to help. We may not be as successful, but I can assure you that everyone is working to find a solution to the problem. If our efforts are not enough, we apologize. But you can’t accuse the government of inaction.
The inter-Agency task force on the management of new infectious diseases (IATF-EID) will have the final say on the continuation of the work of MECQ. This decision may be facilitated by the recent agreement concluded between Duterte and Russian President Vladimir Putin. Russia claims that it has developed the first successful coronavirus vaccine, and the President of the Philippines has said that he plans to get it.
It is reported that the vaccine will not be ready until December, but Rodrigo Duterte said: