After the federal government declared a state of calamity, Brazil’s most-populated state São Paulo followed suit. According to Governor João Doria, the goal is not to create panic, but to “make it easier for cities and the state to act faster, in a precise and correct way.” Brazilian law allows for a faster procurement process once a state of calamity is declared.
São Paulo is suspending non-essential public services from March 23 to April 30, including the closure of the city’s Ibirapuera Park. Also from March 23, supermarkets and pharmacies must sell hand sanitizer at cost price, and purchases will be limited to two bottles per person. Mr. Doria also said there’s no indication of a shortage, but urged people to only purchase what they need.
“This is Brazil’s worst moment since World War II,” Mr. Doria declared.