The Philippines on Friday logged 2,232 new COVID-19 cases as countries like Japan moved to ease restrctions for students and business travelers after two years of lockdown.
Active cases stood at 65,796. The Department of Health reported 3,010 new recoveries and 79 deaths,
Overall, a total of 3,648,925 COVID-19 cases have been reported since the pandemic began in March 2020, of which 3,527,720 have recovered and 55,409 died.
Alert Level 2 in Metro Manila is extended until the end of February. Alert Level 1, the lowest set of restrictions, could be declared once certain indicators are met.
Starting March, Japan will allow entry for students and businesspeople. Japanese government slightly loosened travel restrictions last November, but reversed the plan weeks later once omicron was detected.
Tourists are still banned from entering Japan.
Other countries, mostly located in Europe, have started or announced plans to drop wearing of face masks and physical distancing as they seek to return to normal like after two years under a pandemic. Spain will allow 100% capacity for sports grounds, provided that fans wear masks at all times.
Vietnam also eased travel restrictions and will welcome fully vaccinated tourists in March, the first time in two years.
With report from Agence France Presse.