PHILIPSBURG (DCOMM):--- The Prime Minister of Sint Maarten hereby announces that, after consultation with French counterparts, it was agreed to synchronize measures as much as possible in order to contain the spread of the coronavirus COVID-19.
Therefore, the following measures have been implemented in relation to business closures, which will go into effect on Monday, March 23, 2020.
Businesses that are allowed to remain open to the public:
The attachment to the Ministerial Regulation entitled ‘Regeling opening en sluitingstijden dienstverlenende bedrijven ter bestrijding van het coronavirus’ has been adjusted to allow only the following types of businesses to be open to the public until further notice.
These businesses are:
o Hotels and guest houses, including on-site amenities;
o Yachting agents;
o Emergency, Paramedic & Medical laboratory services;
o Medical practitioners & Dental clinics (for emergencies services);
o Pharmacies & Pharmaceutical suppliers.
o Gas stations and Suppliers of fuel (ULG, Diesel etc.) & LPG Distributors (cooking gas);
o Insurance companies, limited to back office administration and online/ mobile services;
o Hardware stores;
o Shipping & Cargo companies;
o Grocery stores;
o Restaurants and food vendors (take-out and delivery services only);
o Bakeries (take-out and delivery services only);
o Essential Gov’t services, incl. telecommunication, judicial, utilities and postal services.
o Notarial services
o Funeral services
o Media outlets
o Cleaning services and garbage collection
o Laundry services
o Public transportation operators;
o Construction of Social Projects may also continue
All other businesses must be closed to the public but may offer online/mobile ordering and delivery services to clients.
Business closing hours:
Contrary to what was announced earlier this weekend, stricter measures have now been enforced. Businesses that are allowed to open in connection with the aforementioned published Ministerial Regulation may only do so until 6.00 pm daily.
The Ministerial Regulation, which will be published on Monday provides the following clarity:
1. All businesses must be closed on Sundays and holidays, with the exception of pharmacies, retailers of cooking gas, gas stations and hotels/ guesthouses, incl. on-site amenities catered to guests only.
2. Businesses that are allowed to open, must be closed by 6.00 pm on all other days (Mon-Sat), with the exception of hotels/ guesthouses, which may maintain their regular operating hours.
The above-mentioned operating hours also applies to businesses with permits to open for extended hours or 24 hours.
The above measures are in reference to businesses opening to the public! Work that has to be performed beyond closing hours may continue. This includes but is not limited to night-time employees of news outlets, emergency service operators, SMMC personnel and Cargo workers.
Restocking of supplies after closing is also permissible as long as the business is not open to the public.
Beaches will remain open and accessible to the public; however, no beach parties/ gatherings are allowed. Beach parties/ gatherings are considered gatherings of more than five (5) persons in one group. Furthermore, the renting of chairs, umbrellas, water sports equipment and the provision of other beach activities is prohibited until further notice.
For more information on this and other measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus on Sint Maarten, please visit www.sintmaartengov.org.