Severity: Critical Alert
Entry/Exit: Jordanian authorities extend suspension of public sector work until the end of Ramadan May 23; public transportation to resume April 29.
This alert affects Jordan
This alert began 27 Apr 2020 02:30 GMT and is scheduled to expire 24 May 2020 23:59 GMT.
- Event: Restrictions
- Location(s): Nationwide (map)
- Time Frame: Indefinite
- Impact: Business and travel disruptions
Jordanian authorities extended the suspension of nonessential government ministries and institutions until the end of Ramadan May 23. Essential service providers in the public and private sectors, such as those relating to healthcare, energy, and banking, will continue to operate but with reduced staff numbers. The measures are intended to stem the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Authorities also announced that public transportation would partially resume nationwide April 29.
Additionally, the government eased curfew restrictions in Mafraq Governorate, April 26. Officials previously eased restrictions related to COVID-19 in Karak, Tafilah, Ma'an, Irbid and Aqaba governorates. Commercial facilities and businesses in these governorates are permitted to resume daily operations between 0800-1800. Residents will be allowed to travel freely on foot and in vehicles (except Irbid) during these hours.
Excluding the aforementioned governorates, a nationwide indefinite curfew remains in effect from 0700 March 21. Residents aged 16-60 years are permitted to shop for necessities at local stores, including groceries, bakeries, and pharmacies, from 1000-1800. Residents are permitted to travel on foot only. The Jordanian army has deployed at entrances and exits of main cities to enforce the restrictions. Select businesses nationwide were permitted to resume work between 1000-1800 from April 20. These businesses included those selling electronics, construction services, furniture, clothes, and books. These businesses reopened at 30 percent capacity for facilities with over 10 employees. Only three employees are permitted to work in facilities with fewer than 10 total workers.
Jordan's borders and airports remain closed until at least the end of the month of Ramadan (April 23 - May 23). The closure, which originally went into effect March 17, affects all inbound and outbound international passenger flights, as well as land and sea borders. The measure does not apply to cargo flights or ground freight transport. Universities, schools, places of worship, and gyms remain closed nationwide through at least the end of April. Travel between governorates is banned. Gatherings of more than 10 people are prohibited.
Background and Analysis
Jordan's travel restrictions and preventive measures are stricter than actions other governments are taking globally in response to the spread of COVID-19. COVID-19 is a viral respiratory disease caused by infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus (previously known as 2019-nCoV). Symptoms occur 1-14 days following exposure (average of 3-7 days). These symptoms include fever, fatigue, cough, difficulty breathing, sometimes worsening to pneumonia and kidney failure - especially in those with underlying medical conditions. On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic.
Follow all official instructions. Abide by national health and safety measures. Reconfirm all travel arrangements. Consider delaying traveling if experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19, as they may prompt increased scrutiny and delays. Liaise with trusted contacts for further updates and guidance. Maintain contact with your diplomatic representation. Ensure contingency plans account for further disruptive measures or extensions of current restrictions.
Exercise basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.