John Briceno, Prime Minister of Belize:“We are slowly, gradually, cautiously reopening the country and we’re going step by step, we need to get people back to work. We have COVID under control and let’s pray that we keep it that way, but people have to go back to work and so the casinos employ hundreds of people. And so, we felt as a cabinet that it is time to be able to allow them to open under strict safety guidelines and standards: social distancing, mask wearing and everything that goes along with that. So we have done that. As to opening of the borders it’s not only about opening up borders but we also have to see what is happening on the other side of the border. Mexico continues to have a challenge with COVID, they have not taken it on as seriously as we have in Belize and also Guatemala also has its problems. Fortunately we have put in the necessary attention and taken the drastic decisions to be able to try to control COVID and we have succeeded and we’re seeing the results. So we are monitoring it, we are monitoring and hopefully in the not too distant future we maybe can decide as to how we’d open up the border, under what conditions and what would be expected when people are coming back after their visits across the border.”
Casinos are set to reopen today and the curfew hours will see an adjustment tomorrow night.Recent months have seen several relaxations with the Covid-19 restrictions including the reopening of the Corozal Free Zone, the reinstitution of street side vending, among others.Another consideration that the Government may be looking at soon is the reopening of the borders.Prime Minister John Briceno spoke on this issue yesterday.