The Ministry of Commerce is considering the safe return to business for hairdressers and barber Shops in Viti Levu.
Permanent Secretary, Shaheen Ali says while they remain high-risk, the Ministry, in consultation with the Ministry of Health has developed protocols for safe operations of hairdressing services to allow their continuity.
Ali adds these protocols will also apply to hairdressers and barber shops operating in Vanua Levu and Maritime Islands.
Those based in Viti Levu will need to apply to the Ministry for a permit to operate and operators all over Fiji must work in accordance with the protocols.
The PS adds this move takes into consideration the socio-economic imperative to allow more Fijian businesses to resume safe operations and earn a living, even in containment areas, with health and safety being paramount.
The Protocols include infection control, such as sanitisation of equipment, including scissors, combs, brushes, chairs and hair wash basin between clients.
Employees and customers must wear masks at all times.
The operations can only be on an appointment basis, staggered throughout the day with no crowding outside shops, and no walk-in customers.
The store must operate at a maximum capacity of 50 percent.
The Ministry, together with the Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission and the Fiji Police Force, will continue monitoring for compliance.
Continued breach of Protocols can lead to the closure of businesses.
Non-compliance could lead to a fine of up to $10,000 and/or imprisonment of up to 5 years.