Choose stores with a high vaccination rate, consumers urged

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CONSUMERS should be encouraged to adopt their own sense of “safe bubbles” when visiting food and retail stores where workers are already vaccinated.

The secretary general of the Ministry of Internal Trade and Consumer Affairs, Datuk Seri Hasnol Zam Zam Ahmad, said consumers can ask if these companies have made a point of vaccinating the majority of their workers.

“This will bring confidence back to the retail sector which, along with tourism, is among the most affected by Covid-19,” he said.

Even though they are fully vaccinated, he urged consumers to make a point of staying away from crowded retail stores and only frequenting stores with high vaccination rates, which will prompt operators to make sure their employees are stung.

Hasnol said that from May 13 to August 20, the ministry’s enforcement division carried out checks at 732,893 retail outlets across the country to ensure they were following standard operating procedures.

During this period, 839 outlets received compounds, while 8,410 received warnings and advisories on how to observe SOPs.

He said that overall the compliance rate for the retail industry was 99%.

Hasnol was addressing reporters after accompanying Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow on a recent visit to the Retail Industry Vaccination Center (RiVAC) in the Design Village Outlet Mall, Batu Kawan.

The mall launched its RiVAC program on August 18 and administered 800 doses per day until August 22.

There are nine RiVAC sites nationwide, which have vaccinated 45,960 people working in the retail sector and as of that, 13,500 have taken both doses.

There are two RiVACs in Penang, the other at Gurney Paragon Mall in George Town.

Meanwhile, Chow said the state government is confident to see more than 80% of Penangites fully vaccinated by the end of August.

“If we can receive a total of 917,220 vaccine doses this month as planned, then we are confident that we will achieve the target.”

Also present were Mohd Ridzuan Abdul Ghapar, director of the Ministry of Internal Trade and Consumer Affairs of Penang, Goh Choon Aik, member of the assembly of Bukit Tambun, and Andy Song Chung Boon, director of operations of Design Village.


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