Qatar's praiseworthy initiatives taken amid the COVID-19 situation
As relevant authorities in Qatar continue to take the highest level of precautions and implement preventive measures against the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the interest of the public’s health and wellbeing, some entities have introduced initiatives that are worthy of applause.
Here’s a look at some of the great initiatives implemented in Qatar as it fights one of the biggest global health challenges of current times.
- Free sanitizing service with car wash
Woqod has introduced Super Concentrated Quad based hard surface sanitizer in its vacuum bay area. Once the car wash is complete, at the station, this high-quality, safe material will be sprayed on the car door handles, steering wheel and gear knobs to make sure vehicles are disinfected.
- Rent exemptions
WOQOD has introduced a rent exemption for all its tenants. This will be effective for three months: April, May and June, the company announced on its Twitter page.
- Free WOQOD Etags
WOQOD is offering free-of-cost WOQODe tags to all individual customers in a bid to avoid the use of cash and card transactions between the customer and the fuel attendant.
The tags are prepaid microchip fixed near the fuel tank opening, according to The Peninsula.
The company said a valid copy of the Qatari ID and the Istimarah will be required from individuals who wish to use the service. The free tags will be available from March 17, 2020, until 17 June 2020.
- FAHES in coordination with Traffic Department - All vehicles exempted from technical inspection
All vehicles that are due for Istimarah (registration) renewal will be exempt from reporting to a FAHES center for technical inspection from Sunday, March 22 until further notice.
According to FAHES, the registration for vehicle inspection and the payments can be done using the WOQOD Mobile App without going to the inspection centers. The app is available on android and iOS platforms.
Hassad Food Company - 6-month rent exemptions for tenants
Hassad Food Company said it will exempt tenants at Sailiya and Al Wakrah central markets from rental fees for six months. This will be effective from April 2020 to September 2020, The Peninsula reported.
Qatar Foundation (QF) - rental payments waived off for retail tenants
According to a tweet on Qatar Foundation's official Twitter page, the organization has waived off rental payments for its external SME retail tenants for six months.
"Unprecedented times and challenges such as those the world is currently facing call for resilience, togetherness, and decisive action," said Machaille Al-Naimi, President of Community Development, QF.
Al Meera - new temporary branch set up within 48 hours
Al Meera opened a new temporary branch in the Mukaynis area to provide groceries and other products to workers in the area.
The new branch that was established in 48 hours comes in line with the country's precautionary steps against the novel coronavirus.
Katara – all investors, restaurant and café owners exempted from rent and other fees
Katara announced that all investors, owners of restaurants and cafes will be exempted from paying rent and other fees such as electricity and water.
This went into effect on March 15, 2020, and will remain so until further notice.
Qatari Diar Real Estate
Qatari Diar Real Estate Company said it will exempt all tenants in its Lusail Marina restaurants and cafes, in addition to the shops that continue to operate in Barwa Commercial Avenue (Abu Hamour) from rent for three months. This will be effective from April 2020.
The decision comes in line with the directives of the wise leadership, and the commitment of Qatari Diar to its social responsibility.
Barwa Real Estate – postpones rent payments for commercial units
Barwa Real Estate said all rent payments for its commercial units will be postponed by three months, effective from April.
"Due to current circumstances, Barwa Real Estate announces postponement of rents for its commercial units (stores, workshops, showrooms & offices) in its projects for a period of 3 months starting from April 2020," the company announced on Twitter.
Msheireb Properties exempts rent for commercial outlets
In the wake of the current COVID-19 challenge, Msheireb Properties said it has exempted all retailers, food and beverage outlets at Msheireb Downtown Doha from rental costs and other service bills.
This went into effect on March 15 and will remain so until further notice.
Ministry of Education and Higher Education - Students to get full marks in three remaining subjects
During a Qatar TV program, the Assistant Under-Secretary for Educational Affairs at the Ministry of Education and Higher Education, Fawzia Al Khater, said that school students will be given full marks in three subjects whose exams were not conducted in the wake of the COVID-19 situation and the temporary closure of schools.
“The students will not undergo supplementary exams for the remaining subjects when they return to school after the vacation of the middle of the second semester,” she is quoted to have said by The Peninsula.
She underlined that the Ministry has several plans in place to ensure there is no disruption in the educational process of students. In this light, the Ministry will support virtual education and home education.
Ministry of Administrative Development, Labor and Social Affairs - Social security cards of citizens to be renewed automatically
According to the Ministry of Administrative Development, Labor and Social Affairs (MADLSA), under Qatar’s precautionary measures to contain the coronavirus, it has decided to extend the validity of social security cards of citizens until further notice.
“Accordingly, the Ministry will implement the procedures for renewing social security cards automatically without the need for the beneficiary to visit the department concerned for renewal,” the Ministry tweeted yesterday evening.
Qatar National Library - borrowed items to be automatically renewed until further notice
As Qatar National Library (QNL) has temporarily shut its doors to the public under precautionary measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the library announced that all borrowed items will be automatically renewed until further notice and no fines or penalties will apply during this time, the library has said.
"While you are not obligated to return items, you can still use the drive-through book drop on the road outside the library 24/7 and the automatic return station inside the library’s main entrance. Thin books, DVDs and CDs can be returned at an additional dedicated returns bin at the library’s main entrance. Our Online Resources remain accessible 24/7 wherever you are," the library added on its website.
Ooredoo - #StayHomeWithOoredoo campaign
Ooredoo has rolled out its #StayHomeWithOoredoo campaign that features several offers encouraging the public to stay home to ensure their safety and good health.
Recognizing the need that people will now be needing more data and faster, more reliable Internet, like online education, work from home practices take shape, Ooredoo is offering its customers extra data, faster Internet speeds, and free Mobile Money remittances.
The company is giving extra data, free-of-charge to its prepaid and postpaid customers, while those with Ooredoo home Internet can expect faster speeds at no extra cost.
Mobile Money customers can also send remittances home for free.
New and existing Qatarna 5G, Shahry 5G and Data SIM 5G customers will get double their data, with the free data being given automatically.
Prepaid customers recharging with Hala Data and Flexi will get double their data when using the Ooredoo App to recharge.
Customers with Ooredoo ONE connections will get double their Internet speed at no extra cost.
They will also have free access to the Kids/Family package on Ooredoo TV to make sure the kids stay entertained.
According to the company, all free data, faster Internet and free entertainment offers will be effective from March 15 until April 15, 2020.
Taking the necessary precautions to ensure the safety of its customers, Vodafone said it is now offering delivery of all its services to your doorstep.
You can stay connected wherever you are. Visit http://vf.qa/delivery to find our more on unlimited plans, Mobile Wi-Fi plans, Prepaid and other services.
Mall of Qatar – rent exemptions for all retailers
In light of the current COVID-19 situation, all retailers at Mall of Qatar will be exempted from rental obligations for three months: March, April and May 2020.
In a tweet on its official Twitter page, the mall said, “We remain committed to provide support that helps our partners tackle any financial consequences at this stage and unite efforts to overcome the current challenges.”
Do you know of any other commendable initiatives? Let us know in the comments below and we will add them to this list.
Here's everything you need to know about COVID-19, including ways to protect yourself.
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