People wearing protective face masks push shopping trollies inside a Carrefour hypermarket, amid concerns over the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in the Cairo suburb of Maadi, Egypt May 15, 2020. (Photo: Reuters)
The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Egypt is predicted to reach 20,000 next week, Egypt’s higher education minister Khaled Abdel Ghaffar said on Thursday.
The figure, around 40% up from the current confirmed 14,229 cases, is expected to be recorded on 27-28 May, the minister said in a televised conference attended by President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi.
From 15 April to 20 May, the average rate of the daily increase in new infections in Egypt stood at 5 -5.6%, down from 8-10% in the first two weeks of April, the minister said.
He sought to reassure the public that authorities are still able to contain the virus.
“The daily growth rate [in cases] remain within safe ranges,” the minister said, adding that it would be worrying if the rate of the daily rise in cases reaches 15-20%.
Each person infected with coronavirus in Egypt is passing the disease on to an estimated 1.4 people, as opposed to three people on average at current transmission rates in some countries, Abdel Ghaffar said.
When the number is below 1 percent, then the pandemic can be considered receding, he added.