Dubai Economy Measures on the Prevention of COVID-19

Written By - Mostafa Shawky, Associate
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The battle against the Coronavirus “COVID-19” continues and the UAE government is always trying to protect the society and the public health to keep the UAE safe and secure. The Department of Economic Development (“DED”) had taken some decisions to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus and to protect the public health of the UAE.

Here is a summary of these decisions:

-On 15th March 2020, DED issued a decision halting some entertainment activities i.e. cinemas, amusement parks, fitness clubs, spas etc. DED also decided on 18th March 2020 to temporarily pause the issuance of all business events’ permits (conferences, exhibitions, meetings).

-On 21st March 2020, DED directed all retail & business outlets in Dubai to apply the terms of social distancing with a minimum distance of 1.5 meters between all individuals by placing clear signage on the floor for the payment queues and reception areas. Noting that all establishments will be subject to inspection to verify their compliance effective by Sunday 22nd March 2020.

-Furthermore, on 22nd March 2020, DED provided business owners with the freedom to choose between continuing work as usual or temporarily closing commercial establishments for a period of 14 days starting from 22nd March 2020, unless there is a prior agreement with the landlord regarding working hours.

-On 24th March 2020, DED amended the decision issued on 15/3/2020 and directed to halt from Wednesday, 25th of March to Wednesday, 8th of April 2020:

Shopping Malls, Commercial Centres, Commercial shops (excluding bakeries, car workshops, workshops, laundries,  technical and electrical services providers), Open Fish, Meat and Vegetable Markets (excluding the wholesale fish, meat and vegetables markets supplying supermarkets), restaurants, cafes, cafeterias, coffee shops, food and shisha services establishments (excluding restaurants and cafes at hotels and hotel apartments serving guests only and food delivery services, pick-up food and transportation), Bodybuilding and fitness gyms, shisha cafes and coffee shops to stop serving shisha, Amusement games and electronic games centres, Theme Parks, Spring Camps, Cinemas, and Spas.

This decision excluded Pharmacies, Cooperative Societies, Supermarkets, and Groceries stores.

DED stressed that this decision will be enforced on the date of its issuance and it also cancels all previous decisions or  circulars which contradict or conflict with it.

-On 25th March 2020, DED directed all the private sector companies and commercial establishments excluding pharmacies, cooperative societies, grocery stores and supermarkets to adhere to implementing remote work system for 80% of their employees from 25th of March 2020 until 9th of April 2020.

-On the same day, DED issued a clarification to the decision issued on 25th March excluding critical sectors like:

Health Sector, Logistics and Delivery Services, Pharmaceutical Sector, Food Retail Outlets (including animal feed), Supply Chain, Workshops, Industrial and Manufacturing, Cleaning Services, Construction, Contracting and Building Materials, Cash Transport, Security Services and Banking Sectors from this decision.

Provided that these excluded sectors must adhere to the guidelines on sensation and social distancing, the following are the excluded sector.

-DED also closed the governmental centres for the completion of governmental transactions for the same period of time, provided that such centres can finish the governmental transaction online.

From Levari’s family to yours, please keep yourself and your families safe and abide by the state’s preventive and precautionary measures to curb the outbreak of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).