So What’s Next? : The Possibility of Easing the Quarantine Restrictions is being Observed

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After coronavirus vaccinations began arrival in the Philippines this month, the acting planning head shared that the quarantine restrictions could be more eased by as early as March.

Metro Manila, where general population quarantine (GCQ) has been in place since the government began to steadily remove prohibitions and aid the economy recover from pandemic shock, is most useful for some relaxation. The city accounts for the majority of economic activity.

To date, there are six other areas under GCQ, including Mountain Province, where the UK strain of coronavirus was first identified. The remainder of the archipelago is under a looser, updated general population quarantine where more corporations are able to open and wider meetings are permitted.

Chua had consistently fought for the lifting of the remaining limits on movement, which he said was crucial for the economy to rebound from the 9.5 percent collapse of last year. Yet attempts to do so have been held back consistently by growing cases and, more recently, the discovery of a more infectious virus mutation.

However, vaccination orders will start arriving this month, and the Philippines is putting its bets on a major inoculation campaign for economic recovery that will see 70 million people immunized. However, aside from a list of target persons to get the jab first, how this will continue has been largely vague, causing observers to be pessimistic about an imminent economic bounce-back.

Consequently, Eric Chiang of Moody’s Analytics, a think tank, has not yet secured adequate vaccines to protect the whole population and faces barriers such as technological difficulties and increasing skepticism about vaccine effectiveness.

Chua was also aware at home of the possibility that even with quarantines at their most comfortable state, young consumers, representing 40% of the population, would not instantly listen to the government’s call to go out, buy, and push economic development.

Morever, with the removal of age limits, a cautious attitude is practiced by many parents. It does not mean that if the market is reopened, individuals would troop to mallsand do what they want.

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