ILOILO’S ECONOMY NEEDS REHAB: Pandemic losses exceed P22B

first_img* overseas workers and locally stranded individuals “After 156 days of community quarantine, the province must unite and rise from the effects of coronavirus disease 2019,” according to Defensor. * business/trade – P6,936,466,220.55 * agriculture – P119,642,082.25 The public primary health care services of the province must be strengthened and made more accessible, said Defensor. It shall focus on restoring money being withdrawn from the local economy, promoting confidence and safety in people circulation, and fostering their psychosocial welfare. * persons, especially minors and learners, who are experiencing psychosocial difficulties * no more implementation of strict home quarantine except for the remaining restriction on persons 60 years old and above and those below 21 years old from leaving their homes He also called for “employment facilitation and protection”, linking agricultural produce and processed foods to local and export markets, shifting travel tourism to “staycation” (promotion of local tourism and maximizing local tourism), and capacitating displaced overseas workers, among others. * public events and gatherings are now allowed at 50 percent of the seating or venue capacity * information technology – P2,550,000,000 The current modified general community quarantine’s regime of relaxed measures “provides an environment more conducive to the implementation of a plan for the rehabilitation and recovery of the province,” he said. The PLAN RT-PCR is three-pronged. These are the following: * airline industry – P2,389,200,000 ILOILO – Over four months of community quarantine in this province beginning March has resulted to massive economic losses reaching P22,403,041,947.55, according to Gov. Arthur Defensor Jr. To “heal social life and catalyze economic recovery”, he bared a multi-pronged economic rehabilitation plan he wanted to start implementing right away. As of Aug. 17, the province recorded 646 COVID-19 cases (272 were indigenous and 374 were locally stranded individuals, repatriated overseas Filipinos and authorized persons outside of residence). * tourism – P2,692,885,705.20 * transport – P191,799,464.55 The current MGCQ status of Iloilo, according to Defensor, is a good launching pad for the plan as he noted the following currently being observed: The program shall have the following target beneficiaries for support and care:   * lifting of the liquor ban “We need people circulation para mag-circulate man ang economy naton. Kon may tawo nga nagahulag kag nagagwa, may income ang transportation sector naton,” said Defensor. * remittances from overseas workers – P380,700,000 * employment – P6,292,628,475 * resumption of classes in all levels, which now allows face-to-face classes in Higher Education Institutions under regulation of the Commission on Higher Education; implementation of the Basic Education Learning Continuity Plan by the Department of Education; and conduct of Technical-Vocational Education and Training and competency assessment by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority 2. rehabilitation and recovery of the local economy by introducing economic drivers to revive establishments, industries and livelihood sectors, and restore income in business and provide employment Defensor said the “Plan for Rehabilitation and Transformation of the Province of Iloilo to Catalyze Recovery” or PLAN RT-PCR is a “scheme to restore the damage caused by COVID-19, with refocused and adjusted priorities and programs, to bring about economic recovery and heal social life.” He also stressed the importance of enhancing COVID-19 testing teams in the Provincial Health Office and district hospitals. * opening of establishments, industries and livelihood sectors except for those in tourism, leisure, recreation, amusement, fitness, spectator sports, personal care, entertainment, cultural exhibition, and travel, that remain limited to a percentage of their operational capacity To stimulate trade and the services industry, Defensor pushed for, among others, credit access to micro, small and medium enterprises and retuning overseas workers. 3. implementation of “Project Prime” (Program for the Resilience of Iloilo in Mind and Emotion) to address the psychosocial effects of COVID-19 on people, to strengthen their ability to face the new normal, and make them better contributors to the local economy 1. establish a Health Care System reoriented and strengthened for effective response to COVID-19, and aggressively promote minimum public health standards to build confidence to face the new normal For the Project Prime” psychosocial program, Defensor said the goal is to “restore the social functioning, and improve the coping and resilience of persons who have traumatic experiences, difficulty in handling changes, and those who are exposed to various risks.” WHAT’S THE PLAN How massive was Iloilo’s losses from the pandemic? Defensor listed the following sectors and their losses: * frontline workers exposed to stressful demands of work, family, or community./PN This plan was contained in Executive Order No. 183 that Defensor issued on Aug. 17.last_img

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