The Japanese government was set to end its nationwide state of emergency by lifting the order for Tokyo, its surrounding areas and Hokkaido on Monday, allowing more parts of the economy to re-open as new coronavirus cases tail off.
Economy Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said the government’s advisory panel had approved the plan, setting off a process to lift the measure later Monday for the areas still under the decree, a week ahead of schedule.
“There is no longer a need for a state of emergency in any part of the country,” Nishimura said at the opening of the panel’s meeting. He added afterward that the government would seek to guard against the infection while re-opening the economy.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is set to give a news conference on the government’s virus policy at 6 p.m.
Tokyo reported 14 new coronavirus cases Sunday, the highest since May 16, after just two cases were confirmed on Saturday. The total for the past seven days is 50, below the threshold of 70, or 0.5 people per 100,000, which the government has outlined as being needed to lift the emergency.
BDST: 1600 HRS, MAY 25, 2020