Middle East & Africa

our committees have aggregated from the many sources worldwide. These will be also posted on our website for members as reference material for them to be informed and apply as they deem fit. “Since our industry is part of the leisure entertainment

attractions activities where people come to participate in amusement activities, we need to ensure that the health and safety aspects as well as minimum distance between participants are maintained. “There will be new technology upgrades in facilities

that include reduced human contacts across facilities, theatres, etc. to ensure that the customers face minimum touchpoints.” The leisure and attractions industry has amassed

losses to the tune of millions of dollars while they remain shut down. MENALAC estimates that the leisure tourism industry in the Middle East is losing US$220.76 million (Dh810.21 million) every day or US$6.71 billion (Dh24.64 billion) per month in due to the shutdown of business since the second week of March caused by COVID-19.

International visitor

impact in the Middle East is estimated at US$102 billion (Dh375 billion) in 2019, of which 79 percent, or US$80.58 (Dh295.7 billion) is in the leisure industry, according to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).

Straight from the operators As entertainment operations across the world start opening - from Shanghai to America - all amusement operations will be working on reduced capacities, with increased signage, sanitisation and checks to ensure public safety. MENALAC members have begun implementing new

Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) that ensure health and safety of employees, customers and all stakeholders, the council has reported. These include training staff to meet new requirements, as well as implementing regular cleaning and the availability of hand sanitiser and personal protective equipment (PPE) within facilities to ensure customers remain healthy and free from virus infection as they return to amusement facilities. Sheikha Monira Al Sabah, a board member of

MENALAC, CEO of Kuwait-based Play Enterprises and co-founder of Trampo Extreme, commented: “We will have to increase our cleaning procedure even though it has always been our priority pre-Covid-19 crisis. Hand sanitisers will be placed all over our centres, staff will be wearing masks and gloves. We will also be disinfecting our playground around the hour with limiting guest capacity. She continued: “We have provided our employees with

training on guest health safety and entrance guidelines. We will offer special packages for people in the frontline and their families as rewards for their hard work. We will

JUNE 2020

also have competitive prices to attract our customers.” Andre PA van der Byl, director operations at Saudi

Arabia-based Al Hokair Group (Entertainment), meanwhile, revealed that the company has selected 12 parks for a phase 1 opening. “Currently we are doing all works under a strict curfew. As we are unable to travel between regions and countries our dependence on regional management is critical. The support from head office is key to empowerment and provision of services required. We are investing in the team that include subsistence and strong well-being practice. We are stripping everything down to clean and re-build from scratch to meet the new health and safety requirements.” Mike Rigby,vice-president for business development,

Whitewater West Industries, believes the industry can make processes more automated in order to reduce contact. “Suppliers will need to think about reducing touch or cleaning items, designs that allow for more social distancing and solutions to reduce operational and human interaction before re-opening. Density and capacities of venues will come under scrutiny. It will require smarter design; greater tracking of return on investment of assets. You may have less in your venue so you need to know what performs.” Jean Habre, chief executive officer of Al Othaim

Leisure, said: “We have updated our standard operating procedures in line with the new hazard analysis and World Health Organisation and the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention guidelines to ensure maximum physical distancing to create a safe playing / working atmosphere. We have prepared physical distancing advisories to be printed and placed in every section of the units. Also strict instructions to staff members not to accept more than scheduled [prepared in line with the official guidelines] number of clients at any circumstances. “We have updated precautionary measures and crisis

management to ensure staffs are well prepared for any possible circumstances in coming days. We will decrease the price from reopening stage to a limited period.” With offices and business activities including shopping

malls, retail outlets and cinema halls now opening, leisure operators will need to be armed with a new set of health and social distancing procedures, capacity management, adequate spacing on rides and theatre seating to ensure the safety of all visitors.



Middle East and North Africa Leisure and Attractions Council (MENALAC) is a regional trade council for the leisure entertainment attractions industry in the Middle East and North Africa, providing a platform for the industry to represent itself. It improves operating standards via educational forums and represents the industry to authorities and regulatory bodies in the MENA region. The Council was

established as a platform to promote safe operations, regional development, professional growth and commercial success of the amusement industry and to be an indispensable resource for the Council’s members and an international authority for the attraction industry.

Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64