Qatar Prohibits Dining in Restaurants and Cafes

The Ministry of Commerce and Industry recently issued a circular prohibiting ordering of food in restaurants and cafes all over the country, until further notice. It is also prohibited to gather outside or inside the establishment. This ordinance took effect last March 16, 2020.

The ordinance was implemented to limit the transmission of COVID-19 to the people in Qatar. This is still in line with preventive measures regarding the Coronavirus pandemic.

Takeaways and Deliveries Are Allowed

Since March 16, 2020, cafes and restaurants are no longer allowed to serve food in their establishments. This arrangement will continue until further notice. The announcement, entitled “Circular Regarding the Serving of Food in Restaurants and Cafes” from the Ministry of Commerce and Investment states that:

“This decision is being circulated in the context of the preventive and precautionary measures being undertaken by the State of Qatar to limit the transmission of the coronavirus COVID-19, and to ensure the safety of all citizens and residents.

Until further notice, it is prohibited to order food and beverages in all restaurants and cafes anywhere in the country. The presence and seating of customers and their gathering inside and outside of such premises, is also prohibited, with the exception of the service of external requests for delivery, and the delivery of takeaway requests inside the store.

Everyone is required to abide by the above decision. All violations will be subject to applicable legal proceedings.

This decision is effective from Monday 16 March 2020.”

Notice to Street Vendors

The precautionary measures implemented by the Ministry also apply to food establishments located in the street. A tweet from them states that:

“The Ministry of Commerce and Industry notifies street vendors of its decision to halt sales, as well as the provision of all services, in a bid to ensure public safety in light of the current health circumstances across the country.

Any licensed street vendor who violates the decision will be held accountable and will be subject to legal proceedings.”

Those food businesses refer to vendors who have pull carts, bikes and using tables with size 100 x 120. Their businesses are temporarily suspended until further notice.

The Ministry of Commerce and Industry oversees the commercial and industrial activities for the state of Qatar. It is also mandated to take necessary measures to protect consumers, combat commercial fraud, safeguard competition, prevent monopoly, and protect intellectual property rights of businesses.

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