MANILA — The 17 mayors of Metro Manila unanimously voted to shorten curfew hours in the capital region in a bid to spur economic activity, an official said on Monday, pointing to the area's improving COVID-19 figures.
The region's coronavirus average daily attack rate, or the total number of new cases divided by the total population, has gone down to 6.76 percent. Meanwhile, the bed occupancy rate also went down to 36.3 percent, said Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) chairperson Benhur Abalos.
This prompted mayors on Sunday to agree to adjusting the curfew hours to 12 AM to 4 AM, starting June 15, said Abalos, who is also the concurrent head of the Metro Manila Council, the policy-making body of the MMDA.
Video courtesy of PTV
"This will give more time sa mga taong kakain sa restaurants, sa mga malls na magbukas may travel time, at siguro makatulong nang husto na sa ating ekonomiya. Ito'y pinasa ng lahat ng alkalde ng Kalakhang Maynila," he said in a televised public briefing.
(This will give more time to people who will eat at restaurants, for malls to open with leeway for travel time, and perhaps really help our economy. This was approved by all mayors of Metro Manila.)
Previous curfew hours started at 10 PM, he noted.
Businesses "can immediately adjust" their operating hours following the curfew adjustment, said Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez.
"By extending by two hours, malaking tulong iyan doon sa mga establisimyento na iyon na makabangon," he said in a press briefing.
(That is a big help for those establishments to recover.)
An urban sprawl of 16 cities and a municipality that are home to some 12 million people, Metro Manila accounts for about two-thirds of the country's gross domestic product.
The region is under general community quarantine "with restrictions" at least until June 15.