COVID19: Cypriots back lockdown but fear it will last months

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Nine out of ten Cypriots agree with social distancing measures imposed by the government in its efforts to stem the spread of the coronavirus, but they fear what the future holds for them.

According to a survey conducted by RetailZoom on behalf of Politis newspaper, 92% of citizens said that they agree with the measures taken with 57% of the 1753 people polled arguing that the government should have acted sooner.

Some 41% of people said that measures were taken in a timely manner.

A majority 76% said they do not have any issues complying with the restrictions on free movement, while 24% said that they felt some unease with the lockdown.

Despite stating that their religious beliefs have not been shaken, 85% agreed with the ban on church services.

The vast majority of people believe that 2020 will be a complete write-off, as 86% said the Cyprus economy will take at least 9 months to recover from the shock brought on by the coronavirus and lockdown measures.

Although 60% believe that economic recovery will take even longer.

Most Cypriots are pessimistic about the future of the economy and of their own financial wellbeing.

Some 90% believe the coronavirus crisis is a threat to their livelihood, as they feel this will have an impact on their jobs, with 65% expecting to see serious impacts.

The percentage of people worried about losing their jobs is higher in the older age groups, with 70% in the age group 45-54 and 74% of those aged 55-64 are “extremely concerned”.

Overall, 73% of people asked said that they were either afraid or very afraid of what the future holds.

Cypriots have high regard for the efforts made by frontline health professionals.

Nine out of ten expressed their gratitude to medical staff.

There was concern over hospital readiness, as only 57% believe that they will receive good treatment if they get sick.

And 29% believe that the treatment they receive will be mediocre and another 14% believe they will receive bad treatment.

The survey also reveals that Cypriots have increased their use of communication apps such as Skype and social media.

Some 79% said that they have increased their time spent on communication applications. Interestingly, 75% above 65 also said that they are using social media and other networks more compared to before the health crisis.

The majority are not optimistic the coronavirus pandemic will be over any time soon as only 7% feel that Cyprus will be virus free in April.

Another 21% feel the outbreak will be over sometime in May, while 35% believe this will happen in the first two months of the summer, 21% see Cyprus still being affected after July.