Fast Retailing, the parent company of UNIQLO announced today that it will temporarily close 98 stores this weekend (April 4th and 5th) in Tokyo and the surrounding prefectures of Kanagawa, Saitama, and Chiba. The temporary weekend closings are in line with the government’s request for people to refrain from nonessential outings to help slow the spread of the coronavirus.
Affected stores include the flagship UNIQLO Ginza store as well as UNIQLO outlets located in shopping malls and other commercial complexes that will be closed in cooperation with the government’s request. The temporarily closed stores represent about 40% of the 240 stores operated by Fast Retailing in the greater Tokyo metro region; and is double the number that were temporarily closed last weekend.
On the weekend of March 28th and 29th about 39 UNIQLO stores were temporarily closed in greater Tokyo. The doubling of store closures this weekend is due to the greater number of large commercial complexes being closed over the weekend in Tokyo and the surrounding prefectures.
It is expected that UNIQLO stores closed this weekend will also be closed next weekend (April 11th and 12th). Some UNIQLO stores will also be operating on shortened hours.
At UNIQLO storefronts that are open for business as usual, hand disinfectant has been placed at the store entrance and all staff members wear face masks to help prevent the spread of the virus.
Source: UNIQLO website announcement (in Japanese), Nikkei newspaper, April 3, 2020 (in Japanese)