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Shift to MECQ Likely to Restore 500,000 Jobs, Says Trade Chief

Saving the economy.
by Arianne Merez
Apr 15, 2021
Photo/s: Jerome Ascano

The easing of lockdowns in Metro Manila and surrounding provinces to MECQ could restore around 500,000 jobs, the Department of Trade and Industry said Thursday.

More than a third of some 1.5 million jobs lost during the two-week enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in Metro Manila, Bulacan, Laguna, Cavite, and Rizal could be restored with the shift to modified enhanced community quarantine or MECQ, Trade Sec. Ramon Lopez said.

"Ang estimate po namin sa DTI,  kung nawalan tayo ng 1.5 million na trabaho dahil sa ECQ, nung nag MECQ may mga 500,000 po na estimate natin na makakabalik sa trabaho," Lopez told President Rodrigo Duterte during a meeting.

More industries were allowed to operate this week with the transition to MECQ which is set to last until April 30. Restrictions were mostly limited to businesses that offer leisure services.


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Among businesses that were allowed to operate, Lopez said around 80% to 100% were compliant with minimum health standards such as the proper wearing of face masks and face shields.

Compliance however was lower when it comes to restrictions on talking in shuttles and confined areas in the workplace at 42% to 80%, Lopez said.

The trade chief assured the public that the DTI continues to monitor the compliance of businesses to COVID-19 protocols in light of the quick shifts in community quarantines.


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