BANGKOK — Effective Sunday, March 22, all Bangkok malls and markets must close except shops that sell necessary goods such as supermarkets, pharmacies, and takeaway restaurants.
The move is the city’s measure to slow the spread of the coronavirus which, according to health officials on Saturday, breached the 400 mark after 89 new cases were reported.
“I’d like to ask for everyone’s cooperation in every sector to keep a space of 1-to-2 meters to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spreading,” Bangkok Gov. Aswin Kwanmuang said in a live stream address just after 1pm.
Though the governor stated that he was seeking the “cooperation” of venues and business owners, City Hall also issued a written directive framing it as an order.
“Department stores and markets can open only for supermarkets and zones that sell consumer goods. The public, please don’t panic and hoard food and goods,” Aswin said. “I ensure that all of you will be able to access all consumer goods during this time of crisis. We’re also asking venues where many people hang out to close … If you see that any venue doesn’t close, you can report directly to me or City Hall, and we’ll consider whether the venue should be closed.”
Restaurants and food courts can only offer take-away with no diners allowed to be seated. Hotel restaurants can only serve food to guests. Supermarkets and drugstores in shopping malls may remain open, while salons and beauty clinics must close as well.
Of those infected, 366 are currently being treated, 44 have recovered, and one death in the outbreak.
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