Amid the rapid global spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19, the government has tightened measures for New Year celebrations and gatherings, State Minister for Media Affairs Faisal Shboul said on Thursday.

As per the new measures, people will be required to present a proof of two doses of a COVID vaccine with a period of no more than six months since receiving the second shot in addition to presenting a negative PCR test taken within 48 hours to attend celebrations and gatherings, Shboul said during a meeting with heads of official media institutions and editors-in-chief of a number of newspapers.

Shboul, who is also the government spokesperson, said that a representative from the Ministry of Interior will be assigned to each and every celebration and gathering site, including hotels, tourist resorts and private farms, to ensure adherence to the adopted health protocol.

The spokesperson said that Jordan received the first shipment of test kits that can detect the Omicron variant on Wednesday.

A total of 14 omicron cases were recorded on Thursday, he said, noting that seven cases were reported in the past, out of which two recovered.

In relation to the formation of a committee to modernise the public sector, he said that the move is meant to improve and establish digital government services, as well as to address all challenges facing the public sector.

He also highlighted the government’s efforts to support the media sector, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.

On the five agreements signed earlier this week between Aqaba Development Corporation and the Abu Dhabi Ports Group, Shboul said that the new memos are part of an agreement signed in 2007 to implement the Marsa Zayed project, which was launched in 2009, but was suspended a year later due to lack of funding and regional events.

The Marsa Zayed project, with an estimated cost of $10 billion, to be implemented in three phases, is meant to improve the port city’s tourism and economic sectors.

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