In the past month, there have been several labour and employment law developments, chief among them: i) all passengers travelling out of Doha with a return booking must have a confirmed hotel reservation in one of Qatar’s designated quarantine hotels on their return; ii) every citizen and resident in the country is required to register a permanent national address with the official authorities in Qatar; and iii) the government has announced its plan for gradually lifting restrictions imposed in response to Covid-19.
Obligatory Travel Requirements
Circular No. 12 of 2020 mandates that all passengers travelling out of Doha with a return booking must have a confirmed hotel reservation in one of Qatar’s designated quarantine hotels on their return. Passengers are not permitted to depart Doha without having a hotel confirmation in place, and for a mandatory period of 14 days.
Registration of National Address
Law No. 24 of 2017, as amended by Resolution No. 96 of 2019 concerning National Address, requires every citizen and resident in the country to register a permanent national address with the official authorities in Qatar through Metrash2 (the “Metrash2” service enables citizens and residents to use their cell phones to obtain a wide range of Ministry of Interior services, such as Traffic Services, Visit Visa Services for Personal and Corporate Sponsorships, and Resident Permit (RP) Services while) before 26 July 2020. Failure to do so may lead to fines being imposed. However, the Ministry of Interior has stated that anyone stuck outside of Qatar due to the COVID-19 outbreak or for any legitimate reason (such as studying abroad or undergoing medical treatment), who is unable to register their National Address before the deadline, will be dealt with leniently.
Gradually Lifting of COVID-19 Restrictions
The government has announced its plan for gradually lifting the restrictions imposed in response to the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus:
First phase from 15 June 2020
Restricted opening of mosques, restricted parks for outdoor sports to open, selected private healthcare facilities to be permitted a 40% capacity, restricted flights and quarantine requirements, and partial opening of shops in malls.
Second phase from 1 July 2020
Gatherings of 10 or under permitted, boat and yacht rentals for groups of 10 or under, parks, corniche and beaches to open, healthcare facilities to be permitted at 60% capacity, malls, souks, markets, restaurants, museums and libraries to open subject to restricted hours and capacity, and employers to be permitted to allow 50% of their workforce to return to the workplace.
Third phase from 1 August 2020
Gatherings of 40 or under permitted, Friday prayers at 54 mosques, low risk inbound flights to be permitted, driving schools to open, playgrounds and skate parks to open, healthcare facilities to be permitted at 80% capacity, nurseries and childcare facilities to open, malls and shops returning to normal hours, gyms, pools, beauty centres and hairdressers to open with 50% capacity, training centres to open and employers to be permitted to allow 80% of their workforce to return to the workplace.
Fourth phase from 1 September 2020
All gatherings and weddings, mass assemblies, shows, conferences, entertainment, theatres and cinemas to be permitted, inbound flights to be expanded, public transport permitted, summer camps and clubs to open, healthcare facilities to be permitted at 100% capacity, all malls, shops and markets to open as normal, restaurants to gradually open, all beauty services to return to normal and workplaces to return to 100% capacity.
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