Jakarta Delays Full Exit From Partial Lockdown as Virus Spreads

Indonesia’s capital extended a transition period to exit from a partial lockdown by two weeks as the city continued to report hundreds of new coronavirus cases a day.

Authorities will step up surveillance and enforcement of social distancing rules in 300 traditional markets and public transport services to stem the spread of the virus, Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan said on Wednesday. Schools, movie theaters and other public entertainment spots will continue to remain shut in the city of more than 10 million people, he said.

The capital reported 217 new cases over the past 24 hours, the highest among 34 provinces in the country, data released by the health ministry showed. While cumulative cases reached 11,637 since the first cases were reported in the city in early March, the death toll stood at 632, accounting for more than a fifth of the nation’s total.

In June, Jakarta became the first large city in the country to ease mobility restrictions by allowing retail stores, restaurants, shopping malls and places of worship to operate at limited capacity as part of efforts to jump-start Southeast Asia’s biggest economy. The one-month transition period was meant to test the preparedness of the city before authorities lifted the remaining restrictions.

Indonesia, which has the highest number of cases and fatalities in Southeast Asia, reported 1,385 new infections Wednesday, taking the total to 57,770. The fatalities jumped to 2,934, official data showed.

Jakarta will reassess the virus situation in two weeks before deciding whether to continue the curbs, Baswedan said, urging people to adhere to the health protocols to minimize the risk of infection.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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