What’s reopening? The journey towards normalization while waiting for vaccine.

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Schools are reopening in Vietnam, New Zealand and Germany. Article in VOX.com here. German students test themselves for COVID-19 every 4 days. Tests come back within the same day and the student could then proceed to go to school with a green sticker; there is no need to wear a mask.

In Vietnam, temperature checks are mandatory and only if the students have no fever that they are allowed to attend class. Masks must also be worn at all time when in school. One 11 year old student said this, “I feel safe when I wear a mask and have my temperature checked, I am not afraid of being infected with the virus.”

New Zealand’s schools resumed classes on May 14. However, the Education Ministry provides the flexibility to students and parents to decide on a transitional arrangement with the school if they think the date is still too early. Note though that there is no clear guideline as to how long the transition arrangement could be. Full details, read here: Article in VOX.com here.

Article in cnn.com The Disney theme park will start a phased reopening on 11 July 2020 for its Magic Kingdom and Animal Kongdom parks and 15th July for EPCOT and Hollywood Studios. (This is for the U.S. yeah.) . However, ALL employees and guests will be required to wear face coverings and undergo temperature screenings prior to entry into the parks. More details here in the Article in cnn.com

In Singapore, the Circuit Breaker will end on 1st June but Singaporeans are already able to get a haircut at the barber as well as buy their favourite bread from bakeries since mid May 2020. Of course, there are some conditions. Barbers can only operate by appointment and everyone must wear face masks prior to entry. Small groups of students are allowed back school on 19th May. More details in the article in abcnew.go.com

In Malaysia, we are now in our Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) and malls are now accessible. Someone said that these reopenings will not help the retail tenants because the number of customers are likely to be small. I replied that if we expect to have a situation where we reopen and the situation goes back to normal, then that will happen only after vaccine was found, manufactured and administered.

We have been living with the influenza which is responsible for 290,000 to over half a million deaths around the world every year. Please refer to the details here. This year, with all the lockdowns caused by COVID-19, the number of influenza cases have dropped tremendously. What does this tell us? Living our life a little differently will help both the economy and the dangers of COVID-19 infections. It’s really not possible to just stay at home and do nothing. Soon, there may be nothing left to save if the current COVID-19 slowdown moved into a full fledged financial crisis instead.

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