Concerned with a recession that is forecast to be historic, Brazil The reopening began on Monday in several of the regions most hit by the coronavirus, including Sao Paulo, its economic engine, despite the fact that the pandemic continues to expand.
The country, second in the world in number of cases (514 thousand 849) and a fourth in deceased (29 thousand 314), it tests a staggered reopening of non-essential activities, although the statistics still reflect an exponential growth of the disease.
In the last week the deceased daily by COVID-19 They exceeded a thousand four times and the peak is only expected between this month and the next.
The economic reopening inaugurated today in the state Sao Paulo, responsible for a third of the Brazilian Gross Domestic Product (GDP), was repeated in other cities in the states of Ceará (northeast), Pará and Amazonas (north).
On the other hand, the city of Rio de Janeiro also announced a relaxation of social distancing measures starting this Tuesday.
The five are the states hardest hit by the crisis of the coronavirus from a list of 27 that Sao Paulo leads, with 7 thousand 615 deaths and 109 thousand 698 infections.
Likewise, other states in the south of the country began weeks ago their particular reopening, vehemently defended by the president. Jair Bolsonaro, one of the few world leaders to deny the danger of COVID-19, and hasty in the opinion of health specialists.
Governors thus begin to align themselves with the postulates of the president regarding the gloomy stage that is looming, with a fall of 6.25 percent of the economy forecast for this 2020, according to the financial market; a public deficit close to 10 percent of GDP, and an unemployment rate of 12.6 percent and on the rise.
The economic heart of Brazil starts slowly
Reopening in Sao Paulo, the most industrialized and wealthy state in the country, with some 46 million inhabitants, only materialized, however, in the interior regions.
In the São Paulo capital and its Metropolitan area nothing has changed; non-essential stores have been closed since the end of March.
In the street “March 25”, one of the most important commercial points In Sao Paulo, the vast majority of businesses were still closed, although there was a considerable movement of people, according to Efe.
Despite having the green light, the mayor of Sao PauloBruno Covas extended the quarantine until June 15, during which time the economic sectors interested in reopening must present a series of health and safety protocols.
The governor of Sao Paulo, Joao Doria, defended the de-escalation, planned today, according to what he said, based on science, and specified that each municipality will have to adopt the schedule in a “conscious” way.
“For this they must rigorously follow the five stages” established by the authorities, he stated at a press conference.
Doria also took the opportunity to criticize the horse ride of Bolsonaro at a demonstration in Brasilia held the day before against confinement and in which the “closure” of Congress and the Supreme Court was again requested.
“The President rides a horse, while the pandemic gallops “across the country, he denounced.
In the northeast and in the north also the reopening begins
Ceará, the third Brazilian state most affected by the coronavirus, with 3,010 deaths and almost 50 thousand infected, released the return to activities to more than a dozen economic sectors, including non-essential trade, construction and transformation industries.
On the other hand, the state of Amazon, which has 2,052 deaths and 41,378 cases, and which temporarily had its collapsed health and funeral services, also began its cycle de-escalation in its capital Manaus today.
Isolation measures were also relaxed in For, one of the few that decreed total lockdown in some of their cities and that registered until Sunday 2 thousand 923 deaths and 37 thousand 961 infected.
Scientists warn: pandemic is not controlled
Brazil has already exceeded half a million infections by the new coronavirus, less than one hundred days after the first case registered on February 26.
The data could be even much higher due to the enormous underreporting still existing in this country of 210 million inhabitants.
Further, Brazil “Taking global leadership” in relation to daily deaths, above United States, indicating that the pandemic “continues to accelerate,” warns Marcelo Urbano, professor at the Institute of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Sao Paulo (USP).
“It is quite reckless to relax the social distancing measures in the boom of the transmission curve ”, warned this researcher from the Fundación de Amparo a la Pesquisa in the state of São Paulo (Fapesp).