July 22, 2020 / 2:01 AM / in 22 days

Panama announces further economic re-opening from next week

PANAMA CITY, July 21 (Reuters) - Panama will further reopen its economy next week, adding some sectors in the provinces of Los Santos, Herrera and Cocle that have a low number of novel coronavirus cases, a health official said on Tuesday.

The Central American country had already started reopening its economy in May but halted it after the number of cases rose.

Health Minister Luis Sucre told a news conference that private construction and car sales companies would be allowed to resume business activity as would those providing professional and administrative services.

The isthmus nation, separated by its famous shipping canal and sought out for its offshore banking services, implemented strict measures to curb the spread of the pandemic, including closing its borders.

So far, it has registered 55,153 coronavirus cases and 1,159 deaths. (Reporting by Elida Moreno; Writing by Stefanie Eschenbacher; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)

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