President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. is set to issue an executive order making voluntary the mask-wearing policy in indoor areas, Tourism Secretary Christina Frasco said on Tuesday,

In a Palace briefing, Frasco said Marcos Jr. wanted the Philippines to be “at par with [its] Asean neighbors who have long liberalized their mask mandates.”

“As a result of the Cabinet meeting this morning, it was agreed and that the president would be issuing an executive order per the IATF recommendation to make indoor mask-wearing also voluntary all over the Philippines with few exceptions,” she said.

Masks will still be required in public transportation, medical transportation and in medical facilities.

Mask-wearing will meanwhile be “highly encouraged” for unvaccinated individuals, persons with co-morbidities, and senior citizens.

“[G]enerally, the direction of the Marcos administration is to lift the remainder of travel restrictions into the Philippines,” Frasco said.

Marcos Jr. made mask-wearing in outdoor areas voluntary in September.

The Philippines has 21,924 active Covid-19 cases as of Oct. 25. John Ezekiel J. Hirro