Quebec, one of Canada's worst-hit provinces, started gradually reopening its economy on May 4 amid Coronavirus outbreak, allowing stores and other retail establishments to open. Francois Legault, Premier of Quebec said that it is the right time to start lifting lockdown restrictions and to gradually reopen the economy while Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and health experts stressed that any reopening efforts must be carried out carefully to avoid a second wave of the virus.
As per reports, schools in Quebec will be allowed to reopen from this month. The recent announcement of the lifting of curbs in Quebec does not apply to its most-populous city Montreal, which is also Canada’s second-largest city, where retail establishments must wait till May 18 to reopen. The construction and manufacturing sectors will reopen as scheduled, on May 11.
According to reports, Quebec with 24% of the Canadian population has 54% of overall cases and 60% of deaths. Quebec reportedly has 32,623 confirmed cases and 2,280 deaths as of May 4 while 7,578 in the province has been treated successfully. According to worldometer, Canada has recorded over 60,000 infections so far, of which 3,854 people have lost their lives. The recovery rate in Canada stands at 87%, which is relatively better than its neighbour in the south with 73%.
Other provinces such as Ontario and Alberta also allowed few businesses to reopen, including garden centres with curbside pickups, beef-processing plants, lawn care, and landscaping companies, and automatic car washes, among others. In Manitoba, museums, libraries, and retail businesses were allowed to reopen at half capacity with pubs and restaurants resuming work after two weeks of severe lockdown. According to reports, more than 6 million of the 37 million Canadians have applied for government help after businesses shut down in mid-March and people were asked to stay at home as a precautionary measure to prevent the spread of the virus.
(Image Credit: AP)