Coronavirus

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BPNG directs FX priority for COVID-19

The Bank of PNG will also make foreign currency available directly to the National Department of Health of urgent COVID-19 relocated purchases abroad.

This is among several monetary policy measure responses by the Central Bank to the impact of COVID-19.

Another key measure is the reduction of the Kina Facility Rate (KFR) from 5 percent to 3 percent which will push interest rates down.

Commercial Banks have been directed by the Central Bank to reduce their respective Indicator Lending rates (ILR).

KPHL backs COVID-19 response

KPHL recently presented K5 million, on top of a K100 million dividend payment for 2020, to the to the National Government to assist with preparedness to combat and contain Coronavirus in the country.

The presentation was made on Friday, March 27th, 2020 by KPHL Managing Director Wapu Sonk.

WHO guidelines help countries maintain essential health services during COVID-19 pandemic

The rapidly increasing demand on health facilities and health care workers threatens to leave some health systems overstretched and unable to operate effectively.

Previous outbreaks have demonstrated that when health systems are overwhelmed, mortality from vaccine-preventable and other treatable conditions can also increase dramatically. During the 2014-2015 Ebola outbreak, the increased number of deaths caused by measles, malaria, HIV/AIDS, and tuberculosis attributable to health system failures exceeded deaths from Ebola [1,2]. 

More interventions in health post-COVID19

He said the Government is now planning on making more investments into tghe health sector post-COVID-19.

“I’m announcing to the country, I’m looking at life beyond coronavirus.

“The coronavirus has given us an opportunity to make good interventions in our health sector, something that we have taken for granted and we have left it to erode over a long period of time,” said the Prime Minister.

He added “I remember when SARS was a global pandemic, we never had proactiveness to respond in ensuring that our health system is prepared with this matter.

UNDP seeking unprecedented COVID-19 support for vulnerable countries

Income losses are expected to exceed $220 billion in developing countries, and nearly half of all jobs in Africa could be lost. With an estimated 55 per cent of the global population having no access to social protection, these losses will reverberate across societies, impacting education, human rights and, in the most severe cases, basic food security and nutrition.

Border Crossers warned

Prime Minister, James Marape, announced that discussions will be held with counterpart Prime Ministers from Australia and Indonesia to tighten border security.

“I’ll be speaking with the President of Indonesia. I’ve also spoken with the Prime Minister of Australia so our joint international borders will be given a step-up protection from our side as well as their side,” said Marape.

The biggest threat to PNG at this time is the Land border shared with Indonesia, which the Prime Minister Marape made special mentioned.

Betel nut bags disposed off

The betel-nut bags were intercepted by police on Sunday, March 29th, when being smuggled into Port Moresby by three boats.

There is currently a ban on the sale and chewing of betel-nut under the current State of Emergency.

Following a tip off, Water Police intercepted three boats smuggling betel-nut into Port Moresby, late on Sunday afternoon.

The confiscation is part of the implementation of the State of Emergency in which the sale and chewing of betel-nut has been banned in the wake of the global COVID-19 pandemic.

Basic protective measures against coronavirus

Why? Washing your hands with soap and water or using alcohol-based hand rub kills viruses that may be on your hands.

Maintain social distancing

Maintain at least 1 metre (3 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.

Why? When someone coughs or sneezes they spray small liquid droplets from their nose or mouth which may contain virus. If you are too close, you can breathe in the droplets, including the COVID-19 virus if the person coughing has the disease.

Are smokers and tobacco users at a huger risk of COVID-19 infection?

Smokers may also already have lung disease or reduced lung capacity which would greatly increase risk of serious illness.

Smoking products such as water pipes often involve the sharing of mouth pieces and hoses, which could facilitate the transmission of COVID-19 in communal and social settings.

Ships turned away by Madang govt: Minister

The move has impacted essential services, and led to three ships carrying critical cargo, like fuel, being turned away at the Madang port.

Minister for Police Bryan Kramer said in today’s COVID-19 media briefing that the Marape-led government is only focused on closing provincial borders.

The security personnel were not able to reach the Governor for Madang to issue a letter regarding the impact of his government’s decision, instead they gave it to the Provincial Administration.