The Department of Trade and Industry will further increase the capacity of dine-in restaurants and fast-food establishments in general community quarantine (GCQ) and modified community quarantine (MGCQ) areas effective July 21.
DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said dine-in services will be allowed to open up to 50 percent in GCQ areas and up to 75 percent in MGCQ areas.
At present, dine-in is only allowed up to 30 percent in GCQ areas and up to 50 percent in MGCQ areas.
“This is subject to strict social distancing, frequent sanitation of hands, wearing of mask when not eating, and (a) better exhaust system for air-conditioned restaurants,” Lopez said.
He said that while the capacity of dine-in services will expand, implementing health protocols should be stricter and customers need to be extra careful.
Health experts said there is a higher risk of transmission of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) especially in closed spaces, like restaurants.
A new memorandum circular expanding dine-in capacity will be issued this week, Lopez said.
The DTI earlier issued an MC that expands the services offered by barbershops and salons, as well as their capacity from 30 percent to 50 percent in GCQ areas, and from 50 percent to 75 percent in MGCQ areas effective July 16.
“We just have to manage and live with the virus. It will be here to stay. We need to balance health and economy and time to restart the economy. We provide more livelihoods at this time,” Lopez said.
He added that treatments are getting better with more recoveries.*PNA