UAE sets new Covid-19 rules for visitors to government buildings

From August 1 visitors must be fully vaccinated or have a negative PCR test

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Visitors to government buildings across the country will, from August 1, have to present a negative PCR test received within 48 hours or be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 to be allowed entry, authorities have said.

The Federal Authority for Government Human Resources said on Thursday the directive would cover the headquarters of ministries and federal bodies, as well as their customer service centres.

The ruling is in line with efforts to safeguard public health amid the pandemic.

"As of Sunday, August 1, customers, visitors, employees of outsourcing or service companies, or any person other than employees of the entity will not be allowed to enter the headquarters of ministries, federal entities and their customer service centres," the authority said.

Those who present a negative PCR test or have received both doses of a Covid-19 vaccine will be exempt from the safety measures, as will those under the age of 16.

Authorities are stepping up efforts to limit the spread of the virus by encouraging people to get vaccinated.

From August 20, only those who have had both doses of a vaccine will be allowed to enter some public places in Abu Dhabi.

These include shopping centres, restaurants, cafes and all other retail outlets, including those not within a shopping centre, "except supermarkets and pharmacies", the Abu Dhabi Emergency, Crisis and Disasters Committee said.

Also included are gyms, recreational facilities and sporting activities, health clubs, resorts, museums, cultural centres and theme parks, as well as universities, institutes, public and private schools and nurseries.

Health officials in Abu Dhabi also approved the use of special scanners to detect Covid-19.

The move follows a trial of the technology in Ghantoot, Yas Island and Mussaffah.

The Abu Dhabi Emergency, Crisis and Disasters Committee began to install them at specific shopping malls, some residential areas and all land and air entry points from June 28.

Almost 75 per cent of the public have received at least one dose of a vaccine, while about 65 per cent are fully vaccinated.

Updated: July 08, 2021, 11:04 AM