The Cabinet has extended for two weeks from Thursday the precautionary measures against the novel coronavirus disease (Covid-19). A re-evaluation will be held during the period to take the appropriate decision.

The regular Cabinet meeting on Wednesday was chaired by HE the Prime Minister and Interior Minister Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa bin Abdulaziz al-Thani through video conference.

Following the meeting, HE the Minister of Justice and Acting Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs Dr Issa bin Saad al-Jafali al-Nuaimi issued a statement giving the details.

The precautionary measures being extended are the following: Limiting the number of employees present at the headquarters of governmental institutions as well as private-sector organisations.

It may be recalled that at the regular Cabinet meeting on April 1, it was decided to extend the decision taken on March 18 to reduce the number of employees present and working at public sector offices.

It was later decided to slash the number of workers present in the private sector to 20% of the total in each organisation, and allow 80% of the rest of the workers work remotely from their homes.

Wednesday’s Cabinet meeting reaffirmed that public and private-sector employees will work for six hours a day, from 7am to 1pm. Employees of the public and private sectors present at their work place should hold only remote meetings using modern technology.

Home cleaning services provided by cleaning and hospitality companies will remain suspended. The number of workers transported by bus should be only half the capacity of the vehicle, while adhering to the necessary precautionary measures.

Intensified inspection visits will continue to be made by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry to supermarkets and restaurants to ensure they adhere to the health conditions and precautions, including safe distancing measures between shoppers.

The exemptions approved by the Cabinet were also extended. As per the decisions of the Cabinet meeting on April 1, the sectors exempted from the restrictions are the following: military, security, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and diplomatic missions, health, oil and gas, employees of government agencies whose nature of work requires their presence, according to what is decided by the head of the competent authority, and workers in major State projects.

At the beginning of the meeting, the Cabinet was briefed by HE the Minister of Public Health on the latest developments of efforts to contain Covid-19.

The Cabinet approved a draft policy for water security and water strategy in Qatar, and a draft cabinet decision to amend exemptions to some documents stated in the Electronic Transactions and Commerce Law issued in decree law No. 16 of 2010. The draft decision comes in the framework of enhancing electronic services and activating the E-cheque service.

The Cabinet also approved a draft Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in the field of youth and sports between Qatar and Spain, and a draft MoU between the Ministry of Municipality and Environment of Qatar and the Ministry of Agriculture in Kazakhstan on co-operation in the agricultural field.

The Cabinet reviewed the following two subjects and took the appropriate decision regarding them: Report (45) on the work of the Qatari National Committee for the Prohibition of Weapons (NCPW) from September 1 to December 31, 2019; the outcomes of the extraordinary meeting of GCC commerce ministers.