Tokyo, the Japanese government believes it is possible to lift the state of emergency in many of the prefectures where it is currently in effect because of the coronavirus pandemic, Health Minister Tamura Norihisa said on Sunday.
At the moment, the state of emergency is active in 19 out of 47 Japanese prefectures, including Tokyo, Hokkaido, Hiroshima, Osaka, Kyoto, Okinawa and others.
“We see that the number of new cases continues decreasing. In this situation, we could lift the emergency state at the end of September, I think,” the Japanese health minister said, as broadcast by NHK.
The minister noted that there might still be new risks, such as the fifth wave of the coronavirus.
“Even if you are fully vaccinated, there’s always a risk of getting infected. Because of this, I think there must be certain behavioral tests to soften existing restrictions,” the minister said.
The Japanese government is expected to make the final decision on the emergency state of September 28.
Japan has administered about 157,000,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines so far, with 56 per cent of the country’s population having been fully vaccinated.