Everyone needs to follow prescribed rules but we must also gradually resume our lives
It’s a happy weekend in the UAE as more residents and citizens step out after weeks of social isolation, driven by the optimism of the gradual reopening of Dubai’s economy even as the country embraces the new normal of face masks, hand sanitisers and six-feet distancing.
A whole lot of people will therefore hit the beaches, gather in public parks, throng shopping malls and fill up restaurants this weekend — bringing the familiar buzz back to Dubai and the UAE.
This is great news both for people and the economy.
Virtually every country is in uncharted waters today as there is neither any recent precedent of economic recovery following such a debilitating pandemic nor a definitive guide on what course the virus will chart in the future.
Debates are raging worldwide about how to balance economic stability and a public health hazard — and everyone agrees that there’s no 100% risk-free approach for reopening economies in the absence of a vaccine.
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Proactive and responsible
But the UAE’s relentless efforts in battling the virus and its collateral damage on the economy have given us an opportunity to be proactive and responsible today — and help our communities and the national economy on its way to normality.
One of the hallmarks of the UAE’s strategy to fight the pandemic has been a wide mix of approaches. It eased stringent movement restrictions by imposing strict rules on the wearing of masks, social distancing and other hygienic best practices.
It proceeded to lift restrictions by age group — keeping the most vulnerable sections of the population protected for the longest. It adopted a phased reopening of commercial establishments with capacity limitations in place in the initial days.
All these measures were adopted with a clear view to restore normal life and help businesses and commercial sectors recover from the severe disruption of the past few months.
One of the key lessons from the pandemic is that fear has no place in battling this virus. Of course, everyone needs to follow all prescribed rules — but we must also gradually resume the beloved life that the pandemic threatened to take away from us.
Whether visiting the barber, going to fish markets, shopping at malls, carrying out banking transactions, going back to office or simply enjoying an espresso in a cafe — our regular lives are all possible now, but with new precautions.
Responsibly embracing that new normal will also help safeguard our economy and ultimately fuel a faster recovery than many other countries.
Thanks to its proactive management of the pandemic, the UAE and Dubai governments have successfully managed to reopen the country and bring it back the closest to pre-Covid days.
But now it’s our responsibility to carry this momentum forward and help everyone overcome the challenges brought about by Covid-19 — let’s remember that we are all responsible.