Stores in the Medrano garment zone in Guadalajara remain closed. Stores in the Medrano garment zone in Guadalajara remain closed.

Confusion surrounds economic reopening in Jalisco

Businesses expecting to reopen were instructed not to do so

It’s been a rocky economic restart for some businesses in Jalisco that were hoping to get back to work this week.

Governor Enrique Alfaro had announced that on June 1 some nonessential businesses that had obtained a state government health certification could reopen. 

However, several such businesses expecting to open were asked to remain closed by municipal authorities, especially in areas of Guadalajara that are likely to draw large crowds such as the Medrano garment zone, the Obregón district where the San Juan de Dios market is located and the city’s historic center. 

And in neighboring Zapopan, one of the wealthiest cities in Mexico, businesses were allowed to reopen whether they had the government health certification or not. 

The resumption of nonessential economic activities is occurring despite the fact that the number of coronavirus cases in the state is on the rise, a trend that Alfaro says will continue at least for the next month. The state is still deemed to be at maximum risk by the federal government, much to Alfaro’s dissatisfaction. 

In a statement posted to the state government’s website on Saturday, Alfaro claimed Jalisco had only 1.4% of the country’s deaths due to the coronavirus, despite being the third most populous state in Mexico. 

We said that first it was health and then the economy, and we fully complied with this principle, but our state cannot remain paralyzed,” Alfaro said. “Thousands of people lost their jobs and their source of income. Hundreds of businesses had to close or dramatically reduce their operating capacity. The blow has been brutal.”

Citizens need to get back to work and learn to live with the risk of infections, he added. 

Nonessential businesses eligible for reopening include lumber yards, flower shops, furniture stores and beauty salons, although their status depends on approval from municipal authorities. 

Schools, spas, movie theaters, nightclubs, casinos, gyms and shopping malls will have to wait, and social distancing measures are still in force. If people do not comply and the outbreak worsens in the future, the economy may have to be shut down again, Alfaro warned. 

As of Monday, Jalisco had 1,802 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and had recorded 151 deaths.

Source: Milenio (sp), El Economista (sp)

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