After lifting coronavirus curfew, UAE increases mall, restaurant capacity to 60 pct

A woman wearing a protective face mask and gloves holds a sign at Mall of the Emirates, following the outbreak of the coronavirus in Dubai, UAE, May 5, 2020. (Reuters)

The UAE increased on Thursday the maximum capacity for customers in malls and restaurants to 60 percent.

The announcement came after the country lifted the curfew and all movement restrictions previously imposed as part of the government’s efforts to contain the spread of the coronavirus.

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The Ministry of Health and the National Emergency, Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NCEMA) stressed in a joint statement that all establishments must still adhere to all COVID-19 precautionary measures, state news agency WAM reported.

“No more than four people are allowed at each table, with dining tables to be distanced 2 meters apart,” according to the statement.

“Waiting areas should remain closed and outlets must only serve food and beverages using disposable utensils and cutlery, and hand sanitizer dispensers must be available. Wearing masks and gloves is a must and should be replaced regularly.”

“All staff’s temperature should be regularly checked to ensure no symptoms of COVID-19,” the statement added.

The two government entities highlighted that they have already allowed children under the age of 12 and seniors who are not over 70 years of age back into all commercial centers and restaurants, given that they adhere to all the health precautions.

Children aged four years old and above must wear a mask and their temperatures will be checked upon entry to malls and restaurants.

Early in May, the UAE banned the entry of children under the age of 12 and seniors above the age of 60 to malls, retail shops and supermarkets, as they were considered among the high-risk groups who are susceptible to coronavirus infection.

Gradual reopening

The UAE’s has gradually easing coronavirus-related restrictions.

The country announced on Wednesday, lifting the coronavirus-curfew that was previously imposed from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. and the completion of the national disinfection program which it had launched in March and involved sterilizing utilities, public transport, streets, among other areas nationwide.

The UAE also said that it will start allowing residents and citizens to travel to some “low risk” countries from June 23, after the country had suspended in March all passenger travel in and out of it.

The country’s Ministry of Education is also studying the possibility of allowing students to return back to schools and universities in for the upcoming academic year. The authorities had shut down all educational institutions early in March and initiated a distance learning program online.

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Last Update: Friday, 26 June 2020 KSA 23:40 - GMT 20:40
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