The United Arab Emirates suspended issuing all types of work permits starting Thursday until further notice as a precautionary measure against coronavirus spread, according to state news agency (WAM).
“The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation has suspended the issuance of all types of labour permits, including for drivers and domestic workers, effective Thursday, March 19th until further notice,” read a statement carried by WAM.
The statement added that the measure excludes internal transportation permits and employment permits for Expo 2020.
The Ministry said the move has been taken in coordination with the National Emergency and Crisis and Disasters Management Authority as part of the precautionary measures taken by the UAE to curb the spread of coronavirus pandemic.
Earlier on Wednesday, WAM reported that anyone traveling to the UAE from abroad should commit to a home quarantine period of 14 days and follow the instructions of relevant authorities.
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The UAE has temporarily banned its citizens from traveling outside the country starting Wednesday and until further notice, amid coronavirus pandemic fears, according to the foreign ministry.
Earlier the same day, several embassies in the UAE announced that Abu Dhabi will temporarily suspend issuing all visas on arrival, with the exception of diplomatic passports holders, from March 19.
However, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan said the UAE was “infinitely” prepared to cope with the coronavirus outbreak.
“I’d like to reassure every citizen and resident of the #UAE that our Country is infinitely able to supply everyone with all the food and medicine they could ever need," says Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh @MohamedBinZayed Al Nahyan.#coronavirushttps://t.co/T2gzOB3EgE pic.twitter.com/HDck8wctw1— Al Arabiya English (@AlArabiya_Eng) March 18, 2020
The UAE has moved to combat the spread of coronavirus by shutting down many public and private spaces.
Dubai has closed all hotel bars, pubs and lounges on Monday, in addition to previous suspensions of all theme parks, entertainment and wedding destinations, including night clubs, cinemas and concerts and all gyms, gaming centers, and spring camps. On Tuesday, restaurants were directed to close all open buffets and screen diners for flu-like symptoms.