Prime Minister gives address on COVID-19 response measures

Society
batchimeg@montsame.gov.mn
2020-05-26 14:29:11

Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/. Prime Minister U.Khurelsukh attended the yesterday’s extended meeting of the State Emergency Commission (SEC), giving orders to the corresponding officials. May 25 marked the 30th anniversary of the establishment of the SEC. 


At the meeting, the PM said “It is of crucial importance firstly, to promote the recently-approved law on COVID-19 prevention well to the public, and secondly, to focus on the capacity building of the health care sector and to ensure preparedness. I agree with the World Health Organization’s position that it is not ‘luxury’ to increase funding for the health care sector. I also would like to commend the proper allocation of human resources and supply of pharmaceutical reserves and test kits during the challenging times.


“It is vital to ensure safety of physicians and health care professionals, who are working at front-line. I am ordering the State Emergency Commission to attach attention on the staffs, who are being isolated together with patients and doing their work, and to study possibility to give monetary incentives to their families.”    


The PM continued “There is also a necessity to make risk assessment on the spread of the pandemic at the national and provincial levels and to elucidate on and implement the plans. Our citizens have to understand that we are on high alert, which have been proven by risk assessments of eight times.”


“The SEC needs to give guidelines to the General Election Commission in directions of preventing from the infection during the parliamentary election. Election campaign will commence from June 2. I am also warning that we have to raise our alert during the meeting of candidates with voters. All government organizations have duties to provide support and participate in the organization of the elections. I am cautioning the candidates to adhere to guidelines provided by the SEC, such as by observing social-distancing rules and wearing face masks when running their campaigns to the public. 


“Furthermore, our citizens abroad need to understand we are facing the necessity to truly estimate our domestic capacity and potential to evacuate our citizens from overseas countries. It is impossible to bring over 10 thousand citizens, who have wishes to return to their home, at once. We are evacuating our citizens on the basis of considering safety of the people and relying upon our potential. Therefore, we will continue evacuating our citizens in stages once the SEC ensures safety very well.”


"Also Mongolia will not reopen its border yet. The border of the country will be reopened once the pandemic had subsided and the current heightened state of readiness will be lifted only when coronavirus vaccine becomes available. I believe that we have to carry on with our efforts to protect the health of our citizens until then. As the Prime Minister, I am thankful for our citizens for supporting the decisions of the Government and the SEC and collaborating with us.”


PM Khurelsukh also ordered to continue the activities to raise public awareness on coronavirus prevention and the public campaign “Let's wear face masks”. 


At the meeting, it was introduced that some 11,275 Mongolians abroad have applied to return home from 46 countries and around 62,510 people have returned home since the government started calling its people travelling abroad to immediately return home. 8,300 of them were brought home in an organized manner on charter planes, railway, and auto road and were put under compulsory isolation. 


Then, it was reported that around MNT 112 billion will be required to ensure preparedness assuming that 1 percent of the population or around 32,760 people in Mongolia would be infected with the virus as a country evaluated by the WHO as a high-risk for spread of the virus. 


The meeting also heard about the government’s most recent measures to stimulate the economy to ease the economic impacts posed by the COVID-19 related restrictions and border closures, including additional child money allowances and other social insurance benefits, exemptions of social insurance contributions and corporate tax of private companies, deferrals of mortgage loan repayment and lowering of central bank rate. Finance Minister then informed that 14 large-scale projects have been approved by the parliament to support the economy, and some measures are being taken to increase mineral exports and release entities from certain customs duties.