By Marco Aquino
LIMA (Reuters) – Peru has exceeded 300,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19, the fifth tallest in the world, on Sunday as the Andean nation of nearly 33 million people is slowly reopening its troubled economy.
The South American producer, who was banned from the virus in March but found it difficult to enforce a nationwide quarantine due to increasing economic difficulties, only follows Brazil in the region in terms of case numbers.
According to Reuters calculations, the death toll from the virus in Peru is now 10,589, the tenth highest in the world.
President Martin Vizcarra's government eased restrictions this month to help revive economic growth, including the major mining sector. Peru is the second largest copper producer in the world.
Coronavirus cases rose by 3,638 to 302,718 on Sunday, despite the fact that daily new cases slowed down from the highs in May and June. However, health experts fear a possible flare-up with more people on the streets if the blockade wears off.
Shopping centers have opened their doors to a limited number of visitors, and the government is preparing biosafety protocols to resume domestic air and land transportation from mid-July.
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