The central bank of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) announced a 100bn dirhams ($27bn) economic stimulus plan on Saturday aimed at containing the impact of the coronavirus outbreak, which has so far infected 85 people in the Gulf state.
The move is aimed at supporting banks and businesses in the country, where the outbreak is impacting vital economic sectors including tourism and transportation. Attractions including the Louvre Abu Dhabi museum and the Ferrari World theme park will be closed from 15-31 March, the Abu Dhabi Government Media Office said, while the country’s civil aviation authority indefinitely suspended flights to and from Lebanon, Turkey, Syria and Iraq from 17 March, according to Reuters
The UAE on Saturday also temporarily suspended the issuance of all entry visas except for those holders of diplomatic passports. This will be effective as of 17 March. The decision does not apply to persons who have already got visas before the effective date, the Gulf News reported.
The authority added that the decision will be effective until countries of departure activate a mechanism for medical screening of passengers as an additional measure.
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The central bank said it will provide 50bn dirhams through collateralised loans at zero cost to all banks operating in the UAE, while an additional 50bn dirhams will be freed up from lenders’ capital