Even large business now hurting after 1 year of lockdowns: Management group

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 30 2021 03:57 PM

Even large business now hurting after 1 year of lockdowns: Management group 1
Police officers screen passing vehicles and pedestrians at a checkpoint bordering San Mateo, Rizal and Batasan Hills, Quezon City on March 29, 2021, as "NCR plus" is placed under enhanced community quarantine from March 29 until April 4. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA - One of the country's most influential business groups on Tuesday said it hopes the government will not extend the strict quarantine measures imposed over Metro Manila and nearby provinces because of its impact on businesses. 

The Management Association of the Philippines said that "after a year of lockdowns, even large businesses are hurting and many smaller ones are on the verge of closing or have closed." 

"We understand that this is contingent on containing the rapid rise in cases. However, we hope the government also takes appropriate measures to avoid further collapse of the economy, such as providing support for businesses to help them mitigate the impact of the pandemic," MAP said in a statement. 

The business group said that the current lockdown and any further extensions should be used to quickly augment the country's healthcare capacity and infrastructure. 

This includes massive testing in areas with high case counts, MAP said. 

MAP echoed the sentiments of the country's largest business group, which on Monday said that a "lockdown is not the answer."

The group meanwhile said it welcomes President Rodrigo Duterte's announcement that the government will allow private sector procurement of vaccines. 

MAP said it hopes the legal issues surrounding this can be addressed immediately. 

The Employers Confederation of the Philippines earlier said the government should release guidelines to expedite the private sector's procurement of COVID-19 vaccines.

The Financial Executives Institute of the Philippines meanwhile called on the government to fast-track the acquisition and rollout of vaccines. 
 
Fitch Solutions and Moody's Investors Service have warned that the country's economic recovery is likely to be delayed by the spike in COVID-19 infections, the lockdowns imposed to control this, and the slow rollout of vaccination. 

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