The government on Saturday announced the latest list of the most hard-hit sectors by the coronavirus, taking into consideration the latest decisions to continue the Friday comprehensive lockdown until the end of the year, and increasing daily curfew hours due to the rise in number of daily infections.
Minister of Labour and Minister of State for Investment Affairs Maen Qatamin announced the updated list under Defence Order No. 6 for 2020, noting that some sectors have been added to the October list due to the circumstances facing them and to support them to overcome the repercussions of the crisis.
The list is regularly issued by the minister of labour and minister of state for investment, and the minister of industry, trade and supply, approved by the prime minister, Qatamin said.
The list includes the following 32 sectors: Licensed tourism facilities, including Hajj and umra agencies and tourism facilities within the Aqaba Special Economic Zone (ASEZ), recruitment agencies licensed under the Labour Law, domestic workers' recruitment facilities, air, land and maritime cargo shipment facilities, the public transportation sector, facilities for event, festival, conference and exhibition planning, wedding halls and event management facilities, car rental offices, and vocational and technical training academies and centres.
The list includes recreational areas and public parks, cinema houses and theatres, private sector museums, leather and knitting industries, Dead Sea products’ sector, university services’ offices, visa issuance offices, clearance offices and companies except those in ASEZ, facilities working in the pilot training and maintenance fields, publication and distribution facilities, popular restaurants and cafes, carpeting and furniture industries, grocery shops and shops that sell meat, poultry, fish, vegetables, fruits, dairy, cheese and eggs.
It also includes clothing, footwear and accessory shops; bakeries and sweets shops; newspapers; gyms, swimming pools and public baths; health clubs; ride-hailing application companies and yellow taxis; kindergartens and nurseries; education and cultural centres; and driving schools.
In September, the former government removed the clothing sector from the hard-hit sectors, while representatives at the time demanded that the government reconsider its decision to remove it from the list.
The current government has put the sector back on the list of hard-hit sectors.
Former labour minister Nidal Bataineh at the time said that workers in sectors not listed as hard-hit any longer deserve their full pay whether they are working on site or from home, and it is not allowed for employers to send the worker home and cut their pay any longer as well.
On the Labour Ministry’s Facebook page, many people have commented that the list includes almost every sector in the country, wondering what kind of support or measures that entails, to which the ministry replied, “the conditions are directly related to the epidemiological situation, generally, and the damage [to sectors] can be mitigated through benefitting from the government’s programmes that are available or will be issued to the sectors.”
It added that while all sectors are impacted, some have been more damaged than others.
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