UAE retail chain provides 3-month rent relief to tenants whose business has been hit by coronavirus - GulfToday

UAE retail chain provides 3-month rent relief to tenants whose business has been hit by coronavirus


Photo has been used for illustrative purposes.

Jamil Khan, Senior Reporter

In the wake of ongoing efforts to control the COVID-19 pandemic, the managements of malls across the country are taking a number of measures to provide maximum relief to the shoppers and residents. The efforts to provide relief to the customers and retailers range from relief in paying rent to reducing timings of mall operations.

In this regard, Al-Futtaim Group announced that it will be making a substantial contribution to ease the financial burden of its retail tenants by offering a fund of Dhs100 million. This would help retailers affected by business disruption and slowdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The fund would cover up to three months’ rent relief for eligible tenants across its malls in an effort to aid the recovery of their businesses in the UAE. 

Over the last week, a task force has been established to examine how Al-Futtaim could support its retail tenants as COVID-19 forced most residents of the UAE to spend more time at home. The team was tasked with quickly developing effective measures to help the affected tenants.

Timothy Earnest, Group Director, Al-Futtaim Malls commented: “In these unprecedented times, we understand the difficulties faced by the businesses and the impact this current situation is having on our economy. As a business deeply attached to the wellbeing of the UAE, we have a role to play and have committed ourselves to finding ways to support while the malls remain open. We hope this contribution will help pave way for business continuity in this difficult environment.”

He added, “Our tenants are of utmost importance to us always, but even more so in this challenging time. It is our duty to provide guidance and assistance to them in this time of need. All tenants will be contacted in the coming days by dedicated mall teams to discuss their individual requirements and process for relief.”

Al-Futtaim Group’s mall portfolio in the UAE comprises Dubai Festival City Mall and the newly opened Festival Plaza mall.

However, Dubai Outlet Mall has been taking various precautionary measures and steps since January such as awareness communication, regular sanitisation, sterilisation and disinfection protocol to limit, contain and curtail the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

Vishal Mahajan, Director, Dubai Outlet Mall, said, “We understand we have an important role towards the health, safety and well-being of our tenants, staff members and customers/visitors. We are continuously monitoring the ever-changing circumstances surrounding the novel coronavirus and are working closely as per the guidelines and advice given by international and local authorities to limit the spread. In these testing times, we wish that everyone stays safe and uses this time in the best positive manner in all aspects. We look forward to welcoming you as per regular timings soon.”

After a careful consideration of all aspects, Dubai Outlet Mall has decided to temporarily reduce mall timings with effect from Thursday, 19th March until further notice. The revised timings are Thursdays & Fridays – noon to 10pm and Saturdays to Wednesdays – noon to 8pm.

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