However, Covid checkpoints at gateways leading to HCMC would be still maintained, Tran Hoang Ngan, director of the HCMC Institute for Development Studies, and also a member of the prime minister’s advisory group, said at an online meeting on Saturday about the city’s economic recovery plan in the “new normalcy” period.
“We would remove barriers installed in the inner area by September 30 to enter the new normalcy period from October 1 while Covid checkpoints would be installed at gateways to ensure the safety of the entire southern economic zone,” Ngan said, adding that top city leaders have agreed on this issue at a meeting on Friday.
“This would be a positive sign,” Ngan said.
Bui Ta Hoang Vu, head of the city’s Department of Trade, said in the coming time the city plans to check people’s departure and destination points, instead of inspecting travel documents on the road as previously.
Road barriers would be removed; instead, functional forces would carry out random rapid testing on streets, Vu added.
Many businesses proposed the city should soon remove barriers that separate between wards and districts as well as barricades inside small alleys of residential areas and scrap travel permits as the city has been preparing plans to reopen its economy to ‘live with the virus.”
Over the past months as HCMC grappled with its most challenging coronavirus wave, over 900 barriers were put up along streets within the city where police officers and military forces have been ond duty 24/24 to check people’s travel documents. Inside small alleys, barriers have been put up to protect ‘green zones’.
Many businesses and residents complained these barriers caused inconvenience to people’s daily lives and threatened to disrupt supply chains.
The epicenter of Vietnam;s fourth coronavirus wave, HCMC has mandated social distancing of various intensities since late May.
The most stringent, since July 9, required everyone to stay indoors and only go out for “essential purposes.”
Between Aug. 23 and Sept. 15 people were instructed to “stay put wherever you are.”
They are required to stay at home until Sept. 30.
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