Jordan Cloth Store Owners Demand 12 am Midnight Curfew to be Abolished

Jordan Cloth Store Owners Demand 12 am Midnight Curfew to be Abolished

A clothing sector representative on Monday demanded allowing shops to fully open and to cancel the curfew imposed at midnight until 6am, as most activity in the market takes place at night.

Asaad Qawasmi, a representative of the clothing, garment and jewellery sector at the Jordan Chamber of Commerce told The Jordan Times that the sector also demands having commercial banks commit to postponing financial dues of citizens during July.

As Eid Al Adha holiday is getting closer, Qawasmi commended the government’s decision to allow people to use fitting rooms, which was previously banned as a measure to combat the spread of the coronavirus, noting that the decision came at a proper time as people shop more for clothes prior to eid.

Merchants in general, and clothing shop owners in particular, have suffered from the repercussion of the pandemic, Qawasmi said, noting that the curfew imposed on shops to close at 11pm “damages the merchants and the commercial sectors”.

The representative at the chamber reiterated demands to pay the salaries of July as soon as possible before it ends in order to increase demand in the clothing market for Eid Al Adha holiday season.

“Markets require liquidity in order to recover from the coronavirus crisis,” he said, noting that the clothing sector was categorised as a hard-hit one.

The postponement of the decision to open clothing shops during Ramadan reflected negatively on the sector, which Qawasmi said had been struggling even before the pandemic started.

President of the Textile and Readymade Clothes Syndicate Munir Deyyeh last week called on the government to issue defence laws to minimise the financial burdens on the industry.

“The industry has been suffering from the COVID-19 nationwide lockdown since mid-March. Shops have introduced a lot of sales on items because they need cash, so we hope the government would issue a new defence law to support the merchants,” Deyyeh said in remarks to The Jordan Times.

The syndicate president called on the government to “waive three months of rent that each merchant had to pay to their landlords”.

In April, the government announced that garment and footwear shops are to reopen with the condition of sales through delivery only, but after complaints from the sector, direct sales were allowed with conditions such as sterilising stores, requiring shoppers and workers to wear masks and gloves and prohibiting the use of fitting rooms.

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