Pakistan is set to ease the country-wide lockdown this weekend – despite the fact that increased testing highlighted that new coronavirus cases rose.

Prime Minister Imran Khan cited the state of the country’s economy as being in “havoc” when he declared the intended measures.

Prime Minister Khan called on Pakistanis to continue to follow social distancing measures as businesses began phased re-opening.

He did, however, say that a lockdown would be re-deployed is another lockdown was to be declared.

In a televised address declaring the easing of the lockdown, PM Khan said: “We have to discipline ourselves. We can’t send the police to make raids. That just doesn’t happen in an independent society.

Schools in the country will remain closed until mid-July. There are no plans yet to restart public transport, or domestic flights.

Authorities recently had to relent under overwhelming pressure from religious groups ahead of the holy month of Ramadan and allowed mosques to hold daily prayers and evening gatherings, with clerics promising to instruct religious leaders to keep the facilities clean and tidy.

The level of infections had been rising as testing increased.

In a population of 220,223,844, the amount of fatalities due to coronavirus, according to government figures, was 564.