The government is considering putting Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto and Hyogo prefectures under a state of emergency from Sunday to May 11, in an attempt to curb surging COVID-19 infections, a senior official said Thursday.

The government stepped up preparations the same day to declare a COVID-19 state of emergency in the prefectures, with tougher restrictions — such as the closure of department stores and shopping malls — expected to be in place through the Golden Week holidays.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga is set to finalize the decision at a task force meeting Friday, as a resurgence of infections puts pressure on the medical system with just three months until the opening of the Tokyo Olympics.