Wednesday, 21 December 2016 12:54
Thousands of new jobs are expected to be created over the next few months as the $2.4-billion Okada Manila resort and casino complex—the newest entrant in Pagcor’s Entertainment City complex —opens for a “preview” today.
According to company officials, the expected 8,000 personnel to be hired by the massive venture would also include positions at the gaming firm’s sister firm, slot machine maker Aruze.
Led by Japanese gaming tycoon Kazuo Okada, the integrated resort is expected to become the biggest casino resort in the country occupying a gaming space of 26,410.77 square meters and housing more than 500 table games and 3,000 electronic gaming machines.
The third integrated resort to rise at the Entertainment City will also have a Y-shaped hotel designed with a gleaming gold exterior, envisioned to be an iconic structure on the Manila Bay horizon. It will have two wings comprising 15 floors each and housing a total of 993 rooms ranging from 60-sqm deluxe rooms to luxurious 1,400-sqm villas.
To support the resort’s gaming needs, the $35-million facility of Aruze Philippines Manufacturing Inc. in Sto. Tomas, Batangas, currently employs more than 800 workers—99 percent of whom are Filipinos. The factory is a subsidiary of Universal Entertainment Corp., which is also owned by the Japanese billionaire, who moved its operations to the Philippines from Japan in 2009.
According to the group, Okada’s twin investments were aimed at contributing to the government’s target of reducing unemployment rate to 4 percent by 2022 through the creation of sufficient and better quality jobs.
According to Aruze metal fabrication supervisor and planner Lito Garcia, this foreign investment was creating employment opportunities for Filipinos at the Batangas plant, which produces slot machines for international markets such as the US, Australia, Macau and South Africa.
Garcia, who was a pioneer at Aruze’s Philippine plant, started as a technician in charge of setting up tools and metal parts needed to assemble gaming machines. In his seven years with the company, he rose from the ranks to become team leader, then supervisor and now also as a planner for his department.