RIYADH: The time has come for Saudi Arabia to open businesses and restart commercial activity, the minister of human resources and social development said on Tuesday.
Ahmed Al-Rajhi’s comments come as the Kingdom announced several steps to reduce the lockdown implemented to stop the spread of coronavirus.
“I feel proud of our sons and daughters working in various sectors, who have responded to this pandemic with strength, steadfastness and sincerity,” Al-Rajhi said on state TV.
“During the past months, the state apparatus, through their harmonious and integrated work, have proven their worth in managing the crisis caused by this pandemic.
“Now, after stopping for a period of two and a half months, it is time for businesses to return and open activities, as it is an essential component in pushing the economic wheel.”
The minister said it was important to maintain a balance between health protection and the needs of the economy.
He said reopening businesses did not mean measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 had been lifted.
Businesses must familiarize themselves with the measures specified by the health ministry for each sector, Al-Rajhi said.
He said getting activity going again while controlling the spread of the virus “will preserve labor market gains in employing male and female citizens, and expand to creating new future jobs.”
Al-Rajhi praised public sector workers for managing to work remotely during the lockdown and keep services going.