AMMAN - Minister of Media Affairs Amjad Adaileh said on Wednesday that His Majesty King Abdullah is constantly following up on the government’s measures and “always directs the Cabinet to take necessary steps to ensure citizens’ safety”.

During a joint press briefing with Industry Minister Tareq Hammouri, Energy Minister Hala Zawati and Finance Minister Mohamad Al-Ississ at the National Centre for Security and Crisis Management, Adaileh praised the public’s adherence to the government’s instructions, stressing that these precautionary measures aim at maintaining citizens’ health and safety, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.

He also expressed appreciation for all community initiatives that responded to the coronavirus pandemic, notably the companies that provided donations to fight the outbreak in the Kingdom.

He also reiterated that the Kingdom’s food reserve is “safe”, noting that food supply to distribution centres is ongoing and that there is no need to store excess food.

Government teams have held several meetings chaired by Prime Minister Omar Razzaz to discuss measures to protect the national economy and alleviate financial burdens on citizens, he added, pointing out that the government has already begun taking decisions in this regard.

He noted that, as part of its efforts to protect consumers, the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Supply is monitoring markets and grocery stores, warning that some businesses may abuse the situation and increase the prices of certain commodities or engage in monopolistic activities.

He stressed that all necessary legal measures will be taken against violators, including closing facilities that sell commodities at higher prices or monopolise them, Petra reported.

For his part, Hammouri said that businesses that violate price ceilings for commodities will face “harsh penalties”.

Also during the briefing, Zawati affirmed that gas stations are operating as usual, stressing that the Kingdom has a sufficient fuel reserve.

She noted that, to enhance the strategic reserve of national fuel, the government has decided to make Madouneh’s fuel storage area available for private-sector companies to store fuel derivatives for free for three months.

To alleviate citizens’ burdens, she announced that electricity bills for sectors affected by the coronavirus pandemic and government measures to combat it can be paid in instalments, pledging that no service suspension for late fees will take place until June.

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