Malacañang on Tuesday announced new guidelines for the general community quarantine (GCQ) set to take effect May 1 in areas where there is no high risk Covid-19 transmission.

Palace spokesman Harry Roque stressed that the stricter enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) would remain in effect until May 15 over Metro Manila, Central Luzon or Region 3 except Aurora, Calabarzon or Region 4-A, Pangasinan, Benguet including Baguio City, Iloilo, Cebu Province including Cebu City, and Davao City.

“Ang ibang mga lugar na hindi po kasama … sila po ay mapapasailalim sa general community quarantine (All other areas or provinces not mentioned will be under general community quarantine),” Roque said in a virtual press briefing.

The GCQ will take effect May 1 to 15, and will be removed thereafter for “low-risk” areas and may be extended for “moderate-risk” areas.

Roque said certain industries would be allowed to operate in GCQ areas, but not in ECQ areas. These are manufacturing activities of beverages (non-alcoholic and alcoholic drinks), cement and steel, electrical machinery, wood products and furniture, non-metallic products, textiles and wearing apparels, tobacco products, paper and paper products, rubber and plastic products, coke and refined petroleum products, other non-metallic mineral products, computer including electronic and optical products, electrical equipment, machinery and equipment, motor vehicles including trailers and semi-trailers, and other transport equipment.

Also allowed to operate in GCQ areas are malls and commercial centers, (which will include hardware stores, clothing and accessories, and non-leisure stores, apart from the establishments that are allowed to operate under ECQ); barber shops, salon, spas, and other personal care industries (subject to strict health standards); wholesale and retail trade and repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles; construction and build build build; forestry and logging; publishing activities; motion picture, video and television program production, sound recording and music publishing activities; and advertising and market research;

Real estate activities (except for real estate buying and selling); office administrative, office support and other business activities; legal and accounting; insurance, reinsurance, and pension funding, except compulsory social security; architecture and engineering activities, including technical testing and analysis; scientific and research development; other professional, scientific, and technical activities; social work activities without accommodation; and all government offices.

Roque said the guidelines were approved on Monday by the Interagency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases, which met with President Rodrigo Duterte.

In a television address Monday evening, Duterte said “we might open partially, construction workers and things like that,” under a “modified” quarantine.

“So we will allow sectors of the society that is not — hindi talaga nagdidikit-dikitan. Ang problema nito kung — kaya modified muna e. Kasi kung magsiksikan kayo diyan sa LRT (light rail transit) na naman, wala ng katapusan ang problema natin. It will never end and it will bring us down and down.” (