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Taiwan considers end to Level 3 COVID alert

New local infections drop to single figures, end to restrictions more likely after July 26

(Taiwan News, Yuwen Lin image)

(Taiwan News, Yuwen Lin image)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — An end to Level 3 COVID restrictions is more likely after July 26 as new local infections fell to single figures Saturday (July 17), for the first time in more than two months.

The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) reported eight new local cases, four imported cases and one death from COVID-19. When the number of local transmissions ballooned to 180 in mid-May, the government raised the COVID alert to Level 3, banning indoor meetings of five or more people and outdoor gatherings of 10 or more, while restaurants had to abandon indoor dining and switch to takeout only.

Commenting on the latest figures, CECC chief Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) said a lowering of the alert level was highly likely after July 26. Discussions about how to proceed with the easing of restrictions would begin next week, CNA reported.

On July 13, the CECC allowed museums and movie theaters to reopen with social distancing measures in place, though an end to the ban on indoor dining was rejected by all local governments save the island county of Penghu. On the first weekend since the easing, some amusement parks reported brisk business while others, traditionally popular destinations, barely saw any visitors.

While medical staff would not let down their guard, the lower number of new cases meant that follow-up measures and supervision of patients would become more efficient, Chen said. If the current trend persisted, the end of Level 3 restrictions was highly likely on July 26, he added.

Updated : 2021-12-09 13:19 GMT+08:00