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Prime minister says ‘social consensus necessary’ to raise distancing rules to Level 3

Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun (Yonhap)
Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun (Yonhap)
With growing interest in whether social distancing rules will be raised to Level 3 after the daily average number of confirmed cases in Korea surpassed 900 this week, Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun said Friday social consensus should be achieved sufficiently before moving to stricter rules.

The government would “make a bold decision” when it deemed it necessary, he added.

“We are collecting opinions from related ministries, local governments and experts as we need to quickly decide on raising the distancing level depending on the circumstances,” Chung said at a meeting of the Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasures Headquarters, which was presided over by the Seoul Metropolitan Government.

He expressed concern that, “If the distancing rule is raised to Level 3, about 2 million businesses sites and facilities will be closed or restricted from operating.”

Chung said the government would prepare carefully, but make a bold decision when deemed necessary.

Chung called for proper implementation of the current distancing rules, adding the government is now concentrating all administrative power on social distancing rules.

He pointed out that there were increasing attempts to change businesses type simply to avoid government quarantine measures, and asked the authorities and local governments to strictly apply the law on illegal activities.

By Shin Ji-hye (shinjh@heraldcorp.com)
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