* MoCI issues Circular No. 24 of 2020 on 'determining working hours for commercial activities' following Cabinet decision in this regard
* Ministry also specifies activities excluded from this decision
* Earlier decisions on closing retail outlets in malls - with the exception of stores selling food products and pharmacies - and suspending activities of health clubs, barbershops and beauty salons will continue to apply
Commercial and service activities will be allowed from 7am to 8pm (Sunday to Thursday) from Thursday with some exceptions, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MoCI) has said.
The ministry Wednesday issued Circular No. 24 of 2020 on "determining working hours for commercial activities" following a Cabinet decision in this regard.
The circular also specifies that the earlier decisions on closing retail outlets in malls - with the exception of stores selling food products and pharmacies - and suspending the activities of health clubs, barbershops and beauty salons will continue to apply.
Based on the decision of the Council of Ministers "during its 22nd meeting held on 03/06/2020, within the framework of the preventive and precautionary measures taken in Qatar to contain the Covid-19 outbreak and in line with previous decisions and measures, the permitted working hours for commercial and service activities will be from 7am to 8pm (Sunday to Thursday)," the circular states.
The following activities are excluded from this:
* Outlets selling food products
* Consumer goods and subsidised supplies (hypermarkets, supermarkets and groceries) and shops selling fruits and vegetables
* Companies delivering orders through electronic apps
* Petrol stations and car services
* Car maintenance workshops affiliated with agencies
* Companies operating in the hospitality sector
* Telecommunication companies
* Maintenance companies (electricity, plumbing and electronics services)
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* Restaurants, cafeterias and cafes (coffee shops) that are allowed to deliver or hand over orders to customers outside the business place. However, restaurants and cafes located in malls are excluded from this decision and only allowed to process delivery orders. These outlets are prohibited from handing over orders to customers inside the premises.
* Logistics service companies and freight firms operating in ports, airports and Customs services
* Contracting and engineering companies (allowed to operate at construction sites along with affiliated agencies).
The circular states that "the decision to close retail outlets in malls, popular markets and shopping centres remains valid, with the exception of outlets selling food products and pharmacies".
Also, "the decision to suspend the activities of health clubs and centres, barbershops and beauty salons - including those that offer home services - remains applicable".
All companies and retail outlets must comply with the decisions issued by the Ministry of Administrative Development, Labour and Social Affairs and the Ministry of Public Health in this regard, the circular says.
Any violation of this decision's provisions will be subject to legal accountability, it adds.
The decision, which was issued Wednesday, may be subject to amendments and updates according to the latest developments in this regard, the MoCI points out. "The Ministry of Commerce and Industry calls on all citizens and residents to seek information only from official sources, and to consult the ministry's website and social media pages for the latest news and updates."