The billion-dollar casino resort Okada Manila said Wednesday it would lay off some 1,000 workers, citing "severe losses" from the coronavirus lockdown that shuttered its operations.
The gaming resort in Pasay City has not generated revenue since the lockdown started in March, and if left unaddressed, "the losses will pile up," it said in a memo to employees.
Notices of retrenchment will be issued starting June 15, Okada Manila said in a statement. Affected employees will receive separation pay in accordance with the law, it said.
"Okada Manila announces with deep regret that it will be reducing its workforce via a retrenchment program. It is a reality that the company could not escape because of the new normal that lies ahead of us," the memo signed by its president Takashi Oya said.
The Okada group's press relations manager, Donna Manio, confirmed the memo.
The entire island of Luzon was placed under lockdown on March 17, where non-essential businesses as well as land, air and sea travel were suspended. Metro Manila remains under modified enhanced community quarantine until May 31.
Employees were informed of the retrenchment program through Facebook Messenger and email, a female Okada staff told ABS-CBN News.
The human resources department did not entertain any questions, said the employee, who requested anonymity for lack of authority to speak to the media.
“We were surprised with what the President said. We are all stressed since its very difficult if you don’t have a job and if you love your job. Prayer is our only hope while waiting for news on June 15,” she said.
Some 2.6 million Filipinos have lost their jobs due to the pandemic, according to government figures.
Unemployment could rise to over five million due to the pandemic, the Department of Labor and Employment said earlier.