The reopening of businesses in the Philippines should depend on which of the local government units (LGU) have already rolled their vaccination programs, a lawmaker told the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) on Thursday.
Muntinlupa City Rep. Ruffy Biazon said if the reopening of the businesses is "localized" it will ensure that the customers of businesses will be safe as the country continues to handle the coronavirus pandemic.
“The reopening of businesses should be staggered and based on which LGUs have already implemented their respective Covid-19 vaccine plans,” Biazon said in a statement.
He added, “this way, we can ensure that the patrons going to these businesses will not be at risk for infection to the coronavirus and become unknowing vectors."
Moreover, Biazon said as the COVID-19 vaccine plan is carrying out in that specific sector, the IATF should synchronize the opening of sectors in the economy with it.
“We should identify sectors in the economy to open up, and the reopening should be tied in with a vaccination plan for that sector. This will help boost not just immunity, but more importantly, the confidence of consumers to actually patronize those businesses,” Biazon said.
“If we open the businesses without a confidence-building measure such as a vaccination program, the consumer response may not be enough to sustain the overhead cost, as well as lead into another surge of infections,” he added.
To recall, under the general community quarantine (GCQ), including Metro Manila, the IATF allowed the reopening of more businesses like cinemas, museums, and tourist attractions such as theme parks in those areas.
Amid the continuing concerns over Covid-19 in the region, the mayors of Metro Manila, have opted to defer the reopening of cinemas.
Malacanang has rescheduled the reopening of cinemas in GCQ areas for March 1.