Business establishments under Category III in areas placed under General Community Quarantine (GCQ) and Modified GCQ are now allowed to operate at 75 percent and 100 percent capacity, respectively, as the government relaxes restrictions to further open the struggling economy.
Memorandum Circular No. 20- 57, series of 2020, of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) stated that eight specific economic activities are allowed to increase their operating capacities beginning Nov. 1, 2020.
These activities are:
- Testing, tutorial, and review centers.
- Gym, fitness centers, and sports facilities.
- Internet cafés.
- Dermatological clinics offering aesthetic procedures.
- Full body massage.
- Pet grooming services.
- Drive-in cinemas.
- Travel agencies, tour operators, reservation service, and related activities.
The easing of restrictions for these business establishments is conditioned on their compliance with the minimum public health and safety standards and protocols set by the government, particularly relevant issuances of the Department of Health, Department of Labor and Employment, and DTI, among others.
The minimum health protocols known as the 7 Commandments, include wearing of proper face masks; wearing of face shields; no talking and no eating in public transportation and similar settings like confined areas and crowded places; adequate ventilation (use of exhaust systems, air purifiers or keeping windows partially open); frequent and proper disinfection; symptomatic or COVID-19 positive must be isolated; and appropriate physical distancing.
Owners are also enjoined, whenever applicable, to implement additional control measures to prevent further transmission of the virus.
The DTI, through the Fair Trade Enforcement Bureau and its regional and provincial offices, shall continue its strict compliance monitoring through its post-audit mechanism.
Inspection by the DOLE, DOH and local government unit health office may also be conducted any time. The MC was signed by DTI Secretary Ramon M. Lopez on October 31, 2020.
Food supply, prices stable
The government has assured the public that the price and supply of food and other consumer goods remain stable amid typhoon “Rolly.”
Presidential spokesman Harry Roque, however, cautioned unscrupulous traders against taking advantage of the calamity situation by unreasonably increasing consumer prices.
According to Roque, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is closely monitoring prices of basic and prime goods to ensure these are within the suggested retail price (SRP) table during the onslaught of “Rolly.”
“Ayon sa DTI, generally price and supply of basic necessities and prime commodities remain stable,” Roque said during a televised press briefing at the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) headquarters in Quezon City.
“Ang pakiusap ng Presidente sa panahon ng aberya, sana po bayanihan ‘yung ating nagbebenta ng mga kailangan ng kababayan sana naman po wag pagsamantalahan (The President’s appeal is let us observe bayanihan during this time of calamity. Those selling products needed by the people should not take advantage of the situation),” he said.
Asked if the government will impose a price freeze of basic goods, Roque noted that the suggested retail price would be enforced for the meantime.
“Mayroon tayong in place na suggested retail price. na ang mga lumalabag sa suggested retail price ay mayroon pinapataw ng kaparusahan (We have suggested retail prices in place. Those who violate the suggested retail price will face the appropriate penalty),” he said.