The leader of the Italian region worst-hit by the coronavirus is proposing a seven-day workweek to revamp the economy.
Lombardy President Attilio Fontana is suggesting the measures for the northern region encompassing Milan once its lockdown ends, planned for early May, according to The Sun and Italian media.
“Spreading the working week over seven days instead of five with a rotating shift pattern to avoid crowding on public transport will increase productivity,” Fontana reportedly said Thursday.
Lombardy’s residents and economy have been devastated by the virus, which has sickened more than 165,000 and killed more than 22,100 across the country.
Fontana said Lombardy, home to Italy’s wealthy financial capital and stock exchange, lost the equivalent of $1.083 billion during the lockdown last month.
The president added that he discussed the idea with Italy’s Regional Affairs Minister, Francesco Boccia, who told him a “steering committee” would meet this coming weekend to discuss policies for reopening Lombardy
With the third-highest number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the world, Italy was forced last week to extend its strict shelter-in-place orders last week to May 3.
“This is a difficult but necessary decision for which I take all political responsibility,” Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said last week.
Conte has begun allowing certain shops like book stores and laundromats to begin reopening this week as a trial for post-lockdown social distancing.