Philippines records daily high of more than 7,100 corona infections

Business | 19 Mar 2021 10:22 pm

The Philippines reported its highest daily jump in coronavirus cases Friday at more than 7,100.

Officials shut down movie houses, video game arcades and cockfighting arenas anew amid an alarming surge in infections.

The cases reported by the Department of Health Friday brings the total number of infections to more than 648,000 and 12,900 confirmed deaths. The totals are the second highest in Southeast Asia after Indonesia.

President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration has been gradually reopening businesses to revive the economy and ease unemployment and hunger but it has started to roll back those actions after infections spiked this month. Manila’s economy has been hit by one of the worst recessions in the region due to more than a year of lockdowns, quarantine restrictions and business shutdowns.

Other businesses and activities being suspended from Friday to April 4 were driving schools, libraries, museums, cultural centers and some tourist attractions in metropolitan Manila and other key cities under a general quarantine.

The government has also decided to temporarily ban the entry of foreigners for a month, except diplomats and authorized officials of international organizations, starting Monday. Officials have blamed the infection spike to the spread into the Philippines of coronavirus strains from other countries and public complacency.

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