Ecuador: Streets come alive as Guayaquil eases lockdown and enters ‘yellow’ phase

Locals took to the streets of Santiago de Guayaquil on Wednesday, as the city entered the so-called «yellow light» colour code due to its risk level in the coronavirus pandemic. Businesses of La Bahia market and the Terminal Terrestre Shopping Center began to reopen. People by and large could be seen respecting the use of face masks and gloves, but seemed to ignore the physical distance measures... Еще, as they walked amid the crowds around the food market. Business owner Hilda Paez complained about the low income of the local business amid the crisis. «The business is not enough to pay the rents. It's very expensive, because you have to pay 1,200 for one business, « she explained. «What's left for one? Half a plate of food to eat every day. Nothing else,» she said. Passerby Santiago acknowledged that «the Guayaquil authorities, in this case the mayor, had to change the yellow light,» he said. «For the simple reason that we all know, Guayaquil is a country where the economy and trade are working,» he reasoned amid the crowded street. «We have to go out and look for bread, otherwise the Governments are not helping us here at the Bay. They forgot about the Bay,» another passerby said referring to the huge market area. The yellow light represents a mid-level risk, and thus allows for the easing of certain restrictions. For example, the curfew put in place will be from 9 pm until 5 am, rather than 2 pm until 5 am as in red light sectors of the country. Private sector businesses are allowed to reopen with up to 50 per cent of their staff present at the same time, and restrictions on vehicular travel, both public and private, are also further eased. As of Thursday, Ecuador has 34,854 coronavirus cases and 2,888 fatalities, as Johns Hopkins University data shows.

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