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Dubai allows 50% company workforce to return to offices


DUBAI – In a new directive on Tuesday (May 26), the Dubai Economy allowed companies in the emirate to increase their staffing level at 50 percent.

The increased staffing capacity, which was earlier capped at 30 percent, coincides with Dubai’s gradual reopening of businesses starting on Wednesday.

The Dubai Economy said offices in Dubai can resume normal operating hours as well as allow as much as 50 percent of their number of staff to work in the office.

The authority, however, said that social distancing measures and precautionary measures must still be observed amid the coronavirus pandemic.

On Monday, Dubai announced it is easing the curfew starting on May 27 to allow the public to go out from 6am until 11pm.

Dubai is also reopening gyms, cinemas, entertainment centres and other businesses on Wednesday.

New Dubai Metro timings from May 27

Dubai eases curfew, public free to go out from 6am to 11pm from May 27

Dubai reveals reopening plan for malls, offices

On May 12, the Dubai Economy revealed its “reopening” plan for malls and offices after Ramadan.

New rules for offices

50% occupancy

Update as of May 26: Offices must maintain occupancy limit to 50 percent of common areas and within office premises

50% staffing

Update as of May 26: Offices must maintain capacity level of staffing at 50 percent.

Social distancing at elevators

Number of people permitted in elevators should be no more than 30 percent capacity to allow social distancing.

Pantries and utensils

Pantries can be opened for usage by individuals, but strictly for food and drink consumption only. Users must maintain 2-metre social distancing and use disposable utensils.

Coffee stations

All coffee stations should follow 2-metre social distancing guidelines. Queuing should be avoided. Water dispensing machines are not allowed. All stations should be sanitized after every use or once every hour at minimum.

New rules for malls, retail shops

According to the new rules and guidelines, malls, shopping centres and retail outlets will return to “normal operating hours” as long as the curfew is observed.

Shoppers will be required to wear face masks when entering malls and thermal scanning will still be done at all entrances.

Children under the age of 12 and adults over the age of 60 will not be allowed to enter the malls. Stores can also accommodate a maximum of 30 percent of their total customer capacity.

Malls in Dubai during Covid-19: 13 new changes

New rules for malls

Opening hours

Update as of May 26: 6am to 10pm

No overcrowding

Update as of May 26: Malls and shops must maintain a maximum of 70 percent occupancy of common areas.

Staffing capacity limit

Update as of May 26: Shops and establishments must maintain staffing capacity at 70 percent.

Only 70% of mall parking to open

Mall parking will be limited, with 70 percent of mall parking to be opened to the public.

Social distancing at food courts, restaurants and cafes

Food and beverage outlets and food courts must maintain a maximum customer capacity of 30 percent and ensure that social distancing rules are implemented, such as seating arrangements and placing tables two meters apart for all customers or set up separators or screens between tables. Takeaway highly encouraged

Elevators only for special needs

Mall elevators will only be available for people with special needs, and parents with babies in strollers. The elevators must only a carry a maximum of 30 percent of their capacity.

No entry for children, elderly

Children under the age of 12, children of any age group with medical conditions, individuals with medical conditions and elderly people age 60 and above are prohibited from entering malls.

Refund and return policy

Refunds and returns of items will be allowed, provided they are sanitized.

Fitting rooms open

All changing and fitting rooms can open under the following restrictions:
Customers must wear masks all the time
Each customer can try up to 5 items only
Customers to spend a maximum of 10 minutes in the fitting room
Continuous sanitation of fittings rooms
Returned items should not be put back on the shelves or used by other customers. Retailers must sanitize the items and allow 24 hours to pass before putting them back on shelves. ICA/Expat Media

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