Japan encourages telework to bring down COVID-19 cases
The Japanese government has urged workers to telework in hopes of bringing down the number of commuters to work daily as the country tackles a sharp surge in COVID-19 cases.
“Telework is an effective countermeasure. It may be difficult for some businesses to implement, but I ask for cooperation,” said Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga in a meeting with Masakazu Tokura, chairman of the Japan Business Federation, otherwise known as Keidanren.
“We must act to prevent infection with a much stronger sense of crisis,” said Tokura, adding that he will notify business members of the request.
Last week, the government extended its state of emergency in Tokyo and other regions, and announced new measures that covered seven more prefectures.
The last state of emergency was due to expire on August 31 but will now last until September 12. For the fourth consecutive day, Tokyo has been reporting over 5,000 cases. On Saturday, the city registered 5,074 new COVID-19 cases.
Experts at a metropolitan government meeting on the COVID-19 situation said that medical care systems in the city would collapse should infections continue to spiral out of control.