Dubai imposes now COVID restrictions amid surging cases

Abu Dhabi: In wake of the surging COVID-19 cases, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) government has imposed new COVID-19 norms for people to follow. The latest regulations, which came into effect from February 7, state that the 70% employees of the government and semi-government entities can work from home, among other things. 

Under the new rules, senior employees aged above 60 and those with chronic diseases and weak immunity have also been asked to work from home. Restrictions have also been imposed on the number of visitors in malls, which can function only up to 70% of their capacities. Cinemas, pubs and bars have also been temporarily shut, while restaurants and cafes will have to close by 1 a.m. 

Moreover, these public spaces will also not be permitted to organise any entertainment activities in their premises, said various media reports. Authorities of malls have also been asked to carry temperature checks at the entrances through thermal scanners and undertake deep cleaning and disinfection of public spaces continue throughout the day to ensure the safety and well-being of customers.

Tourists will have to obtain a negative RT-PCR test report before travel as well if they want to visit Dubai. The number of COVID-19 cases in the UAE were at 1,292 on November 6 (per day), and it dropped to 1,153 on December 6 (per day). The last month of 2020 also registered low numbers, with only 944 new cases being reported on December 27 (per day).

However, the new year celebrations led to an increase in numbers, and the daily reported figures since then exploded in 1,856 people getting infected on January 1, and the number reaching 2,988 on January 7.  The numbers have been howering around or have been higher than 3,000 cases per day since January 12.

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