According to Brunei's Ministry of Health, the country's tally of cases stands at 136 since the first case was detected in the sultanate on March 9. At the same time, four more patients have recovered and the total number of recovered cases rises to 112.
Meanwhile, two more cases of the 11 relapse cases were discharged on Friday after follow-up laboratory tests gave negative results for COVID-19. However, as a precautionary measure, they will undergo another 14 days of self-quarantine at home. This means that only seven cases are still undergoing further examinations and tests.
At present, there are still 23 active cases being treated at the National Isolation Centre, where two patients are in critical condition and both require Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) and respiratory assistance. The rest are in a stable condition.
The ministry added that so far 76 individuals are still undergoing quarantine and 2,407 people have completed the quarantine period. Some 11,089 laboratory tests for Covid-19 have been conducted.
In another development, somewhat from 9.3% in 2017, the latest labour force survey in brunei showed that the unemployment rate hit 8.7% in 2018, which was still the highest unemployment rate in South-East Asia, the Asia Development Bank (ADB) said.
According to local daily the Borneo Bulletin on Thursday, ADB in its latest Asian Development Outlook 2020 annual report said that Brunei's unemployment rate among youth aged 15-24 increased from 28.8%in 2017 to 29.9% in 2018.
By educational attainment, 40% of the unemployed have tertiary education, or technical and vocational education and technical training, which indicates a mismatch between the skills and qualifications possessed by the local labor force and those demanded in the labour market.
The report added that in recognising this, the Brunei government recently initiated several programmes to develop better vocational training and education and Manpower and Industry Steering Committee to strengthen collaboration and engagement with industries. - Xinhua/Asian News Network
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