According to the circular issued by the Federation of Saudi Chambers, shops and other commercial establishments can remain open during prayer times in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The federation also said in its directive that the commercial and economic activities can also continue throughout the working hours, including the prayer times. The federation explained that this decision is part of the precautionary measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus, as well as to ensure the health and safety of workers and customers.
Why is this decision taken?
According to the federation,
To avoid crowding, gathering, waiting for long, in line with the precautionary measures against the coronavirus and to protect shoppers’ health, we call on owners of stores and commercial activities to continue open during prayer timings.
It also aims at avoiding crowding, gatherings near shops when they remain closed during prayer times and to improve the shopping experience and raising the level of services provided to shoppers and clients.
Statement by the federation in the circular to shops and commercial establishments
The federation said,
We hope you will continue to keep shops open and pursue commercial and economic activities throughout working hours, receiving shoppers and customers.
Urge to take appropriate measures
The federation also urged operators of commercial activities to take “appropriate measures” to organize work, provide services and workers’ rotation in a way that does not hamper them as well as customers from performing prayers.
A vote on a recommendation to not oblige the stores to close during prayer timings
Last month, the Saudi advisory Shura Council put off a vote on a recommendation that commercial establishments should not be obliged anymore to close down during prayer timings in the kingdom during the daily prayer timings except for the congregation Friday prayers. No explanation for the vote delay was given.
The Saudi federation announced that stores and other businesses should not be closed during the regular prayer times. As closing them results in increasing gathering and crowds. This decision was made to ensure the safety of the workers and the customers. For more, visit Saudi expat news. Stay tuned.