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Zeman: Lockdown can be dangerous to Czech economy

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President Miloš Zeman is against the complete lockdown as a measurement of containing the COVID-19 pandemic because it can be dangerous to the economy of the Czech Republic. However, Zeman fully supports the new strict measures introduced by Roman Prymula, the Minister of Health.

Andrej Babiš, the Prime Minister, already stated that if the measures are not closely followed, a total lockdown will be inevitable. Zeman proposes not to lock the country but to enforce stricter punishment for the citizens who don’t wear masks. Zeman explained that fines for refusal to wear a mask should be from 2000 to 3000 Czech crowns. He added that he respects how Germany solves the situation: they write down the names of the restaurant visitors for better tracking. Zeman himself is not afraid of the infection since he’s locked in the Lány castle after his hand injury.

Karel Havlíček, the Minister of Industry, Trade, and Transport stated that there won’t be any extensive economic restrictions in the near future. They hope to keep stores, shops, and restaurants open. However, he agrees that social contacts should be limited. This week, Babiš already presented new rules such as the closing of the cinemas, theaters, galleries, gyms, zoo and others from this Monday. Further measures will depend on the results of the infected people during the weekend.

Alena Schillerová, the Minister of Finance, agreed with the economist Štěpán Jurajda that the new measures will be the “improved form of the spring ones.” If the rules were harsher in September, we would have better control of the current situation, Schillerová stated. She added that companies should transfer employees to the home office regime.

Currently, the Czech Republic has the highest increase in the weekend statistics: 4635 cases. However, it’s four thousand less compared to the Friday numbers. 2085 patients are hospitalized; 408 of them are in serious condition.

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