Japan might ease some of the present curbs imposed due to the coronavirus or COVID-19 outbreak on economic activity by allowing places like the parks and museums to reopen, provided that the proper preventive measures are in place, economy minister Yasutoshi Nishimura stated on Saturday.
The comments come a day ahead of the government's announcement of an extension of the state emergency after grappling to contain the spread of the deadly novel virus that has infected more than 15,589 people and claimed the lives of over 530 in the nation.
Japan to relax some curbs imposed due to Coronavirus outbreak
"As long as the proper preventive measures are in place, it could be possible to ease some of the current restrictions on economic activities," Nishimura said at a news conference held on Sunday morning. Places like parks, museums, art galleries, and libraries could reopen even in the 13 prefectures where the coronavirus has spread rapidly if they take steps to disinfect their premises and ensure visitors maintain their distance, he added.
Further details on how restrictions might be eased would be discussed at an expert's meeting on Monday, Nishimura said. The government-issued state of emergency in Japan is set to expire on Wednesday, the last day of a week-long national holiday. The government is preparing to extend the state of emergency for another month. Under the state of emergency, the government has asked people to stay at home, avoid unnecessary outings, and refrain from going to crowded areas.
(With agency inputs)