MPs Ahmed Al- Fadl, Safa’a Al-Hashem, Kalid Al-Shatti, Khalaf Dumaither and Nasser Al-Dousari have submitted a bill on amending the Rent Law, taking into consideration the exceptional circumstances.
The bill defines the phrase ‘exceptional circumstances’ as including natural disasters, war, epidemic and public economic crises.
The bill covers individuals, companies and entities bound by rent contracts with public institutions, independent public entities and companies in which the government owns 51 percent or more of the capital.
The bill stipulates waiving off rent for the first six months of the exceptional circumstances, while the rent for the following six months is reduced by 60 percent.
The rent reduction may continue as long as the crisis remains as per the decision of the government.
According to the bill, in case the tenant paid the rent in advance, he should be compensated within a similar period once the crisis ends.
The bill stipulates establishing a special section at the First Instance Court to take decision on rent reduction requests. The verdict of the First Instance Court can be appealed at the Court of Appeals and Court of Cassation.
The special section will not judge disputes related to beneficiary contracts for State properties. The tenant is not exempted from the commitment to pay the rent until the court responds to his request for a rent reduction.
On the other hand, MP Al-Humaidi Al- Subai’e said the Ministry of Justice approved his proposal to amend Civil Act No. 67/1980.
He proposed adding a paragraph to Article 581 of the aforementioned law to exempt tenants from paying rent starting from March 12, 2020, due to the lockdown enforced by the government as part of efforts to deal with the coronavirus crisis.
He urged the Legislative Affairs Committee to complete its report on the bill as fast as possible in order to include it on the agenda for the session on June 16, 2020.
In addition, Financial and Economic Affairs Committee Chairperson MP Safa’a Al Hashem denied the allegation that the committee refused to include reports about the bills on salary advance and loans of retirees to the agenda of the upcoming session. She clarified Minister of Finance Barrak Al- Shitan told the committee that these reports were excluded because the agenda already consists of many bills on the coronavirus crisis.
SOURCE : ARABTIMES