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Nevin Al Sukari - Abu Dhabi - People wear protective face masks, following the outbreak of the coronavirus, at a shopping mall in Dubai. Reuters
Jamil Khan, Senior Reporter
Retailers in the country from malls to running chains have been taking extraordinary measures to maintain the smooth supply of food items across their outlets. In this regard, Union Coop signed contracts worth more than Dhs400 million with suppliers, in preparation for the holy month of Ramadan. The step comes within the framework of its keenness to provide all goods and foodstuff in large quantities to meet the needs of consumers during the Ramadan month.
Dismissing ongoing market rumours, Khalid Humaid Bin Diban Al Falasi, CEO of Union Coop, stressed that “these contracts will ensure sufficient quantities of basic food and non-food consumer goods during the Holy Month of Ramadan, to meet the needs of the community, which further confirms that there is no fear of running ‘out-of-stock’ during the preparation for the holy month. Moreover, we have agreed with the suppliers to ensure 24-hour a day, 7 days a week proactive supply plan, in case of any shortages. Union Coop crew is working day and night tirelessly to ensure smooth operations and provide all necessary products and services to please the consumers.”
He further said, “The Board of Directors and the Executive Management of Union Coop upheld the interest and wellbeing of the citizens and the country as Union Coop is a national institution that contributes to protecting the nation’s economy and interest of the people by refusing to sell commodities stock of food and non-food to other markets for a very high amount of money, pointing to the fact that Union Coop’s stock of goods is vast. We have activated plans to ensure the continuous availability of goods in huge quantities, as it operates according to the system of providing alternatives when necessary, following the proverb that ‘when one door closes, another opens’.”
Al Falasi expressed Union Coop’s keenness to implement the directives of the wise leadership, as he said, “Union Coop is keen to follow and implement the directives of the wise leadership headed by Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the President of the UAE, May God Protect him and H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, May God Bless Him, and H.H. Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, who indicated that medications and food supplies are a red line in the UAE, in addition to the contribution of building a national sustainable stock with firm rules and a solid foundation.”
He added, “Union Coop supports domestic products and commodities since its inception and prioritises them based on its strategic goals and will continue to support them as it deals with more than 500 Emirati brands and 75 Emirati local farms.”
Al Falasi explained that Union Coop has been working round the clock to secure goods, maintain their availability in the market, and its outlets.
From a national perspective and to promote the happiness of the members of society, Al Falasi said: “As of today, Union Coop pledges to deliver any commodity or product needed by the consumer, citizen or resident, to all parts of the country with the aim of supporting preventive measures to reduce the spread of coronavirus and providing modern and safe shopping methods for consumers that meet their requirements and expectations through the Union Coop e-commerce store.”
Al-Falasi called on consumers to prepare for the Holy Month of Ramadan several days in advance to avoid the situation of confusion and crowds at the billing counters in the outlets, and to enjoy the best and finest services in the retail field, stressing that food commodities, especially Ramadan ones, are available in quantities that meet all their needs throughout the Holy month.
Recently, the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority and the General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowments decided to temporarily suspend prayers in all places of worship across the nation, effective from 9 pm local time on the March 16, for a period of four weeks out of concern for public safety.
The decision, taken in coordination with federal and local health and religious authorities, including the UAE Fatwa Council and Ministry of Health and Prevention, comes within the framework of the precautionary measures adopted by the UAE to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus, COVID-19.
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