Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Covid 16, Philippines having the strictest lockdown policies in the world

The Philippines has the strictest lockdown policies perhaps in the whole world. And this is the main reason for the terribly limping economy.

I got data from Google Covid-19 Community Mobility Reports as of July 21, 2020. The report covers six areas measuring the degree of restrictions from the baseline day, the median value from the 5week period Jan 3 Feb 6, 2020. These areas are Retail and Recretation (R&R), Grocery and pharmacy, Parks, Transit stations, Workplaces, and Residential. For brevity purposes, I use the figures in only three – R&R that covers restaurants, malls, libraries, museums, movie theaters; Transit that covers public transportation like buses, trains, taxi, jeepneys; and Workplaces for obvious reason.

GDP growth and contraction (negative change) data are added to show economic trend of countries. I arranged the countries on four blocks of major economies by region: ASEAN-6, rest of Asia-Pacific, North and South America, and Europe. Comparing the Philippines with these countries, the result is interesting, or depressing (see the table).

Sources: (1) Restrictions, https://www.google.com/covid19/mobility/; (2) GDP growth, IMF WEO 2019;  Trading Economics.

Google likely does not trust China figures so it did not show restrictions data for that country.

For GDP growth decline from either full year or fourth quarter 2019 to first quarter 2020, the Philippines is second to China in having the steepest decline.

Many countries and governments imposed less restrictions, gave more freedom for their people while they manage the spread of the virus. In the process they have not unnecessarily choked their economies.

The results so far in Europe show that heavy lockdown countries and no-lockdown Sweden have similar flattening of death curves through time. If we keep that in mind, we should realize that we need to relax these strict and hysteric lockdowns. 

Meanwhile, a good article,

Open up the economy, wide and clear.

See also:
Covid 13, Hard lockdown and hysteria caused the 17.7% unemployment rate, June 09, 2020 
Covid 14, Selected articles by Mahar Mangahas on the pandemic, July 05, 2020 
Covid 15, False positives and Sweden success in "flattening the curve", July 18, 2020.

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