Alert Level 3 to cost P3B per week
The move to heighten quarantine restrictions to alert level 3 amid a surge in COVID-19 cases will cost the economy about P3 billion in output losses per week, President Duterte’s economic managers said on Friday.
The estimated weekly loss is expected to come in gross value added with production expected to slow down in Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal where restrictions were tightened until Jan. 15, the interagency Development Budget Coordination Committee (DBCC) said in a statement.
“While this may delay our goal of shifting to alert level 1, we believe that this is a temporary setback and is a necessary adjustment in view of the new COVID-19 variant,” the DBCC said, referring to the Omicron strain.
“[But] we are in a better position to manage possible spikes—we have enough vaccines and funding for booster shots; we have increased hospital capacity; we now resort to granular lockdowns; and, from all indications, the Omicron variant results in less severe cases, especially to those who are fully vaccinated,” the DBCC said.The DBCC said about 51.1 million Filipinos had already been fully vaccinated with 110.9 million doses having been administered as of Jan. 5.
“With the recent signing of the fiscal year 2022 General Appropriations Act (GAA) … we expect to accelerate government spending and help the economy bounce back,” the DBCC said, referring to this year’s record P5.02-trillion budget.
The DBCC said it was relying on pump-priming activities to keep the economy going.
“The approved 2022 national budget and the extension of the 2021 GAA will help strengthen the country’s resilience against the emergence of new variants and future economic shocks,” the DBCC said.
The Inquirer Foundation supports our healthcare frontliners and is still accepting cash donations to be deposited at Banco de Oro (BDO) current account #007960018860 or donate through PayMaya using this link .
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.