Turkey, Latest on coronavirus outbreak

Turkey to support shorter, flexible work hours

Measure to limit time people spend outdoors in wake of coronavirus outbreak

Erdoğan Çağatay Zontur   | 20.03.2020
Turkey to support shorter, flexible work hours

ANKARA

Turkey will support flexible and shorter work hours for employees in order to limit the time they spend outdoors as part of measures to curb the coronavirus outbreak, the country's labor, social services and family minister said Friday.

"We will provide flexibility in certain conditions to make it more beneficial to all sectors," said Zehra Zumrut Selcuk, speaking at Anadolu Agency's Editor's Desk in the capital Ankara.

She added that the basic state pension will also be increased from 1,000 Turkish liras ($154) to 1,500 Turkish liras ($231) in line with the relief package announced on Wednesday.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday unveiled a relief package worth 100 billion Turkish liras ($15.4 billion) to limit the economic fallout from the coronavirus.

The package includes debt payment delays and tax cuts across various sectors.

"Based on the results of an income questionnaire conducted by the Social Assistance Solidarity Foundations, we will distribute 2 billion liras [$308 million] to assist the lowest-income segment," Selcuk said.

"We increased the periodical shares of 1,003 social solidarity foundations in Turkey, so we will have further increased supports to the elders," she added.

- Retirement homes

Selcuk said fever measurements and health scans of elderly people are carried out on a daily basis in all the retirement homes in Turkey. 

She added that the number of healthcare professionals and doctors working at the retirement homes will also be increased. 

Turkey has so far confirmed four deaths from coronavirus and confirmed 359 cases.

The global death toll has exceeded 10,000 as scientists try to develop a vaccine for the virus known as COVID-19, according to figures compiled by John Hopkins University.

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