When the prime minister announced the deflation plan for the coming months to the country, he immediately warned the Portuguese that if “red areas” were exceeded, the reopening of shops, schools and restaurants could decline. In other words, only if Portugal maintains effective control over the pandemic will it be possible to move from one lack of definition to the next.
In this Wednesday’s presentation, one of the main points in the government’s presentation was a slide: a rectangle divided in half by a vertical and a horizontal axis. In the upper half an orange and a red square. At the bottom a green one – marked with an “X” – and another yellowish one on the right. Each square is numbered, with a 120 on the left and a 1 in the middle. At first glance, this hieroglyph might not say much, but the truth is that this rectangle is the key to lack of definition. What it means?
This geometric figure combines two indicators: the first is the average of new cases every 14 days. The ideal number is 120 new cases of infection per 100,000 population. Currently, the country does not exceed this value: According to data published this Thursday, Portugal has recorded 105 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the last two weeks, a value that, according to António Costa, is “well below” the risk line. This average is represented in the rectangle by the vertical axis.
The second epidemiological indicator that makes up this graph is the virus transmissibility index – the already known R
“We are not going to speed up in relation to this calendar. The green zone means that we are in a comfortable situation in relation to the calendar we have defined. If we switch to the yellow zone, it means that we are in a situation that we are in. ” We have to stop this development. When we get to the red zone, we have to go back. “
António Costa, Prime Minister
Now, knowing the indicators at stake, what are the possible scenarios for this lack of definition?
The green zone
“The green zone means that we are in a comfortable situation in relation to the schedule we have set,” António Costa explained first, explaining how deflation is being controlled. According to figures released by the Prime Minister, this “green zone” is where the country is currently, a factor that has enabled the deflationary process to begin.
For Portugal to stay in this safer area, the average number of new cases every 14 days has to stay below 120 (per 100,000 inhabitants) while R
The yellow zone
The potential problem starts in the yellow zone. According to Costa, entering this troubled area means “stopping” the development of deflation, which could seriously undermine the timing of the process.
We can enter this yellow zone of the graph in two ways: First, if the country keeps the R
This red zone is represented by the square in the top right of the figure and results from the simultaneous failure of the two government-defined indicators. This means that if Portugal has a portability index of more than 1 and an average of new cases after 14 days per 100,000 inhabitants of more than 120, Costa will pull the “handbrake” on deflation.
The country’s reopening plan was unveiled this Thursday, a “dropper” process, as the Prime Minister himself said. Get to know the details of the deconefinition plan under this link.