Premier Imran Khan declared on Tuesday that the coronavirus lock-up would be extended by two weeks. He said that until 30 April would be closed all public areas, transport, schools and universities.
Nonetheless, the government agreed to open selected firms, low-risk industry with safeguard measures in place because it acknowledges the challenges faced by daily wage laborers.
He mentioned that vital industries, such as media, banks, relief organizations, grocery stores, petrol pumps are already operating during the lockdown and their supply chain will continue.
The industries and sectors exempted are listed below:
- Chemical plants
- E-commerce for delivery, etc.
- Software developing firms
- Paper packaging firms
- Cement fertilizer plants
- Laundry etc
- Nursing Plants
- Agriculture machinery
- Agriculture Products
- Glass manufacturing
- Animal hospitals
- Export industries with SOPs
- Books and stationery shops
- Construction industry with SOPs
PM Speech Summary on Lockdown highlights;
– We announced lockdown when there were 26 cases, I want to thank every Pakistani who went into lockdown
– We understand it was difficult for people, specially for the poor people and daily wagers who I was most worried about
– We expected the Coronavirus to spread more, it has only spread 30% to what we thought it would (calculations based on what was going on in the world)
– We expected death rate to be 190, so deaths were 50% lower than our projections, this is much better than what happened in the world, we should be thankful to God for this
– This was the good news, but the bad news is this can spread faster anytime, so we need to keep on taking precautions
– Youngsters need to take extra precautions because we need to save our older people who are more
– If the curve remains on the current trajectory, inshALLAH our hospitals won’t be overwhelmed, but if it spreads we won’t have enough
– We are fighting on two fronts
– We are increasing lockdown for the next two weeks on public places, like schools, cinemas etc.
– However, poverty and unemployment that is spreading specially for small businesses, so that was a big challenge
– We launched Ehsass program to help money and spread money quickly, people can apply by texting 8171
– 2.8 Million households given money and the program will go on
– Despite of this we are still afraid that how we will reach people, this is also thrashing season for wheat, we have removed all the impediments to that
– Construction and other industries will be opened in all cities from today
– This has been done with consensus of all provinces and federation
– Provinces can make their own decisions
– We will bring an ordinance tomorrow for the construction industry, which will result in a great incentive package for the construction industry
– Pakistanis who are stranded we need to do something about them, the problem is disease came from abroad to Pakistan, provinces didn’t want Pakistanis to be brought back, but we want to bring them back with proper quarantine
– Now Ramadan is coming, and all Muslims want to pray etc., taraweh etc, so we have decided that we will talk to all the ulemas and we will sit down with them to work out a way and will give more details before Ramadan
– Pakistan is in danger from two things,
1. Smuggling (wheat prices have gone high in the world), we are afraid this might be smuggled from Pakistan, our Dollars are also smuggled out from here
2. Hoarding, we are bringing out a new ordinance with stricter punishments for both… this is to bring down the artificial inflation during ramadan