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GOJ hoping to revise laws to combat COVID-19 more effectively

  • January 13, 2021
  • , All national papers
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All national papers reported that the GOJ presented to the ruling coalition yesterday the legal provisions that it is hoping to add to the special measures act that governs public authorities’ response to the novel coronavirus. One of the provisions calls for the establishment of “precautionary measures” that the prime minister would be able to implement to head off extensive outbreaks. Prefectural governors would be authorized to “order” local shop owners to close or shorten their operating hours even ahead of the issuance of a state of emergency. The GOJ reportedly envisages that those who refuse to comply with orders could be fined up to 500,000 yen. The GOJ is also reportedly considering amending a separate statute that classifies COVID-19 as a “designated infectious disease.” Since the current classification is only valid for up to two years, the GOJ is aiming to revise the Infectious Disease Prevention Law to add a new category called “infectious diseases such as new types of influenza,” which would include the novel coronavirus, so a broad range of infection prevention measures can continue to be taken next year and beyond.  

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