Metro Manila, Cebu City, Laguna under 'modified' ECQ until May 31

Only 3 areas will be placed under "modified" enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) from May 16 to 31 – Metro Manila, Laguna, and Cebu City. 

Malacañang said on Tuesday, May 12, that in areas under modified ECQ, local governments can allow the limited resumption of public transportation, certain industries to operate at half capacity, and persons to leave their houses only for essential goods and work. 

Eight regions will be under general community quarantine (GCQ) while the rest will not be under any quarantine at all but must follow health guidelines.

Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque announced this in a public address aired on Tuesday, May 12, after a meeting of the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) on Monday on the ECQ in Metro Manila and other parts of the country, which will end on May 15.

President Rodrigo Duterte approved the IATF recommendation on the classification of quarantine levels.

Below are the classifications of quarantine after May 15:

Modified ECQ (high risk)

  • Metro Manila
  • Laguna
  • Cebu City

GCQ (moderate risk)

  • Region II - Cagayan Valley (Batanes, Cagayan, Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino, Santiago City)
  • Region III - Central Luzon (Aurora, Bataan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Tarlac, Zambales, Angeles City, Olongapo City)
  • Region IV-A - Calabarzon, except Laguna (Cavite, Quezon, Rizal, Batangas, Lucena City)
  • Cordillera Administrative Region (Abra, Apayao, Benguet, Ifugao, Kalinga, Mountain Province, Baguio City)
  • Region VII - Central Visayas, except Cebu City (Bohol, Cebu, Negros Oriental, Siquijor, Mandaue City, Lapu-Lapu City)
  • Region IX - Zamboanga Peninsula (Zamboanga del Norte, Zamboanga del Sur, Zamboanga Sibugay, Zamboanga City, Isabela City)
  • Region XI - Davao Region (Davao City, Davao de Oro, Davao del Norte, Davao del Sur, Davao Occidental, Davao Oriental)
  • Region XIII - Caraga (Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Dinagat Islands, Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur, Butuan City)

No more quarantine (low risk) 

  • Region I - Ilocos (Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, La Union, Pangasinan, Dagupan City)
  • Region IV-B - Mimaropa (Marinduque, Occidental Mindoro, Oriental Mindoro, Romblon, Palawan, Puerto Princesa City)
  • Region V - Bicol (Albay, Camarines Norte, Camarines Sur, Catanduanes, Masbate, Sorsogon, Legazpi City, Naga City)
  • Region VI - Western Visayas (Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Guimaras, lloilo, Negros Occidental, Iloilo City, Bacolod City)
  • Region VIII - Eastern Visayas (Biliran, Eastern Samar, Leyte, Northern Samar, Southern Leyte, Ormoc City, Tacloban City)
  • Region X - Northern Mindanao (Bukidnon, Camiguin, Lanao del Norte, Misamis Occidental, Misamis Oriental, Cagayan de Oro City)
  • Region XII - Soccsksargen (North Cotabato, South Cotabato, Sarangani, Sultan Kudarat, General Santos City)
  • Bangasamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (Basilan, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, Cotabato City)

What's modified ECQ? Modified ECQ means there will be limited movement of people outside their houses, but just for essential work and obtaining essential goods.

Thus, there will also be limited public transportation just for such activities.

Some manufacturing and processing plants will also be allowed to open, but can only operate at 50% capacity. The specific type of industries will be finalized by the task force on Wednesday, May 13.

Physical school classes will remain suspended under modified ECQ.

But even under this new quarantine classification, areas with coronavirus cases will remain under the ECQ "as we know it," said Roque.

Barangays with any number of coronavirus cases will still be under ECQ as they are considered "critical zones." Those barangays right beside barangays with cases are considered containment zones and will also remain under ECQ.

Status of cases in high-risk areas. Metro Manila continues to have the highest number of coronavirus cases among all regions, with over 7,000 cases. Cebu City, however, became the city with the most cases after reporting 1,571 cases on Sunday, May 10.

On Saturday, Metro Manila mayors recommended that any quarantine measure after May 15 be imposed on the entire region uniformly. Some mayors had voted for the megacity to be downgraded to GCQ. –

Pia Ranada

Pia Ranada covers the Office of the President and Bangsamoro regional issues for Rappler. While helping out with desk duties, she also watches the environment sector and the local government of Quezon City. For tips or story suggestions, you can reach her at