Politics

Bahrain Fighting Covid

Published: 1. 1. 2021
Author: Tomáš Syrový
Photo: Photo Shutterstock.com
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The coronavirus pandemic knows no borders, it is spreading all over the world. And every country is doing its best to fight it. The situation is no different in the Kingdom of Bahrain.

Bahrain set up a special national task force to combat the spread of the virus right away in the first wave and took steps ensuring there are testing and quarantine facilities established. Their fight against covid - not only through diagnosis, care and treatment, but also through the provision of vaccines - is based on the belief that it is essential to protect the health and safety of its citizens. That is why His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa announced during the presidency at a meeting of the government's executive committee that a safe vaccine will be provided free of charge to all. The Ministry of Health then confirmed the massive participation of the people of Bahrain in the vaccination, right from the start of the entire campaign.


Recognition and awards

According to Our World in Data, the Kingdom of Bahrain ranked third in the total number of vaccinated doses per 100 inhabitants (after Israel and the United Arab Emirates). At the same time, the Bahraini Ministry of Health announced that it had achieved the goal of recruiting 6,000 volunteers for covid-19 phase III clinical trial within six weeks. Bahrain was also the first Arab country to join the solidarity process in the search for the active ingredient against the virus. The kingdom thus has one of the highest ratios of tested per capita in the world and has received recognition from the World Health Organization for its agile response. Some more of the recognition was also an award, by Startup Genome, in report "The New Normal for the Global Start-up Economy and the Impact of covid-19" praising the impact and success of the stimulus programme in response to the pandemic.


Helping both citizens and companies

As part of the assistance, Bahrain provides its citizens with free treatment, mobile medical units examining people at home and also sets up volunteer working groups with more than 30,000 individuals. It also stays on the top of the economic aid and supports individuals and companies through a comprehensive package worth $ 11.4 billion. The country serves its citizens, for example, with expanding the Bahraini Liquidity Fund's initiative, reducing interest rates, restructuring loans and supporting wages, reducing rents and providing grants and relief to businesses.


Targeted help

Among other things, during last year's first wave, Bahrain introduced automatic payment by the country funds for electricity and water for individuals and businesses for three months, up to the costs incurred during the same period in 2019. Since April 2020 it’s also exempted all businesses from rental fees on state-owned industrial land for three months and in July announced the suspension of rent collection from state-owned industrial land occupied by producers who export at least 30% of their goods. In June, the cabinet also agreed to pay 50% of wages to Bahraini in the private sector in the most affected areas for a period of three months. In September, the government announced that it would extend this measure until the end of the year. What is more, in order to minimize the impact of the pandemic on the population and businesses, it exempted the entire tourism industry from fees.

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