UAE suspends entry of valid residence visa holders abroad over coronavirus concerns

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United Arab Emirates will suspend entry of valid residence visa holders who are still abroad starting at noon on Thursday for two weeks and pausing issuance of new work permits and visas on arrival, over coronavirus concerns, state news agency WAM said on early Thursday.

The UAE has recorded 113 cases on the flu-like disease.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia, reporting 67 new infections to bring its total to 238, suspended most private sector activities and cut its state budget by nearly 5%, as the outbreak and low oil prices threaten growth.

Kuwait recorded 12 more cases, pushing total infections in the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) over 1,200.

The steering committee of countries participating in Expo 2020, a world fair starting in October that the UAE hopes will boost its economy, met virtually and said it would reassess the situation in coming weeks.

The central bank encouraged residents to bank online and said the sector had not seen “significant pressure”.

Saudi Arabia and Kuwait are on virtual lockdown after suspending international flights last week and closing most public venues.

Qatar, with 10 new cases taking its total to 452, the highest in the GCC, has banned entry of foreigners and said 80% of government employees would telecommute.

Oman, which registered six more infections bringing its total to 39, has also prevented foreigners from entering and citizens from going abroad. On Wednesday, it suspended most public transportation

Read more via Reuters

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