In the light of the global pandemic disease and to protect the people from stepping out of their house during this complete lockdown,Turkey imposed restrictions on March 24 on grocery store opening hours and numbers of shop customers and bus passengers, adding to steps to combat the spread of the coronavirus after the country's death toll from the illness rose to 37.
Ankara has already closed schools, cafes and bars, banned mass prayers and indefinitely postponed matches in its main sports leagues, as well as suspending flights to many countries as it looks to limit the spread of the virus. Health Minister Fahrettin Koca announced the new death toll overnight and said the number of confirmed cases rose by 293 on Monday to 1,529, with a total of more than 24,000 tests carried out on people.
In the latest moves, the Interior Ministry said grocery stores and supermarkets' opening hours will be limited to between 9 am (0600 GMT) and 9 pm (2100 GMT), with a maximum of one customer for every 10 square meters of shop space. Buses within towns and between cities will not be allowed to exceed 50 per cent of the vehicle's capacity, with space to be kept between the passengers, the ministry statement said.
Separately, the Turkish Competition Board said on March 22 night there had been opportunists, excessive food price rises, notably for fruit and vegetable products, and said it would impose severe fines on those found to be responsible. On Monday evening, the health minister said that Turkey will hire 32,000 more medical staff and stop exporting locally made face masks so its own services can use them as the coronavirus spreads across the country.
He said Turkey had ordered rapid testing kits from China, as well as medicine that he said he been used to treating coronavirus patients - though he did not give details on the treatments. Koca told a news channel that the government has activated the rapid test ki where they ordered 50,000 arrived from China. Apart from this in order to combat the disease, they have ordered additional 300,000 additional kits which will arrive on March 26.