Eateries Hit Hard By Extended State Of Emergency

Eateries hit hard by extended state of emergency

The Japanese government's decision to extend the state of emergency over the coronavirus outbreak is putting further pressure on restaurants and other businesses in Japan.

Toyoshima Tadashi, 69, has run a restaurant for over four decades in Chofu City, Tokyo, but decided to close permanently after Prime Minister Abe Shinzo announced the decision at a news conference on Monday.

The restaurant, located inside a city-run complex that includes a concert hall, has been closed since late March. It saw sales plummet after events in the hall were cancelled due to the outbreak. Toyoshima says 450 reservations were cancelled.

He said he'd had high expectations for the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics and that he had never imagined he would be in such a bind.

Chofu City will likely provide Toyoshima with financial support for rent and utility bills for the March through May period.

But he still has trouble keeping his two employees on the payroll, as monthly sales dropped to zero. Before the outbreak, his restaurant racked up millions of yen in sales every month.

Watching Abe's news conference on Monday, he decided not to reopen. Toyoshima, who was a chef for nearly 50 years before the pandemic, says he has not cooked for more than two months and has lost his motivation.

Toyoshima said he doesn't understand why he has to suffer so much because of the coronavirus.