Ten businesses told to cease operations after remaining open during COVID-19 'circuit-breaker' period

Ten businesses told to cease operations after remaining open during COVID-19 'circuit-breaker' period

FILE PHOTO: Spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Singapore
An office worker wearing a face mask in Singapore on Apr 7, 2020. (Photo: Reuters/Edgar Su)

SINGAPORE: Ten business outlets which had remained open - despite providing "non-essential services" - have been instructed to cease operations, said Enterprise Singapore (ESG) and the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) on Wednesday (Apr 8).

In a joint media statement, ESG and STB said the 10 outlets included TCM retail establishments, stores selling wellness and beauty products, money changers, mobile phone retail shops, consumer electronics retailers, as well as kitchenware and stationery stores.

Verbal warnings were issued to the errant stores and the two agencies said if these stores continue to flout the rules, they will be fined and their operations suspended.

Together, ESG and STB conducted enforcement checks on about 10,700 businesses across Singapore on Tuesday, when the month-long "circuit-breaker" measures took effect.

READ: 8 stores given warnings for not complying with COVID-19 safe distancing measures

More than 200 safe distancing ambassadors and staff members were deployed. ESG conducted checks on over 9,750 F&B and retail outlets in 67 shopping malls, while the tourism board inspected more than 970 tourism-related establishments.

Most of these businesses complied with the elevated safe distancing measures.

"Common infractions found included a lack of queue markings and poor crowd management, especially during meal times," said ESG and STB.

The statutory boards said they would continue to step up enforcement efforts during the "circuit-breaker" period from Apr 7 to May 4.

"We take a serious view of any infringement of safe distancing measures and will not hesitate to take actions against non-compliant businesses," they warned.

Under the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) Bill that was passed in Parliament on Tuesday, first-time offenders will face a fine of up to S$10,000, be jailed up to six months, or both.

The punishment will be doubled for subsequent offenders.

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Source: CNA/nh(ac)

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