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trade ministry releases guidelines for business operation ahead of re-Opening of Economy

NAIROBI, Kenya, June 15- As the country gears toward reopening the economy, the Trade Ministry has released a myriad of guidelines for business operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The guidelines largely anchored on the Ministry of Health directives, cover all areas including the Jua Kali sectors to office set up .

Trade Cabinet Secretary Betty Maina on Monday said the guidelines are meant to allow businesses to reopen, while strictly observing social distancing and other containment measures of the disease that has claimed 104 lives since March.

“The guidelines have been developed in consultation with various sector associations and business member associations. Individual businesses,
companies, office premises, etc., are expected to derive Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) from the guidelines for the smooth operation of their enterprises,” she said.

“Each actor is expected to strictly observe the implementation of the SOPs for which they will take responsibility. The guidelines and SOPs will be subject to
regular updates to be issued from time to time by the Ministry of Health.”

For example, all markets and workplaces are supposed to be restructured, to maintain at least 2 metres between traders and customers.

The protocols indicate people having coronavirus like symptoms should be treated humanely by reporting such a case to health officials while employers should give them a paid sick leave in line with the Labour laws.

Other requirements include measuring temperature of employees and customers using infrared thermometers “before entry whenever possible.”

Employers are urged to encourage use of bulk SMS, mass email, notice boards, WhatsApp or video platforms e.g. Zoom, Microsoft Teams etc, to broadcast messages to staff.

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They should also display up-to-date company and Ministry of Health social distancing and health guidelines clearly within the premises mostly on the notice boards.

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