Three of South Korea’s major casino operators have seen their workforce numbers decline in the past two years, coinciding with the Covid-19 pandemic, reports the country’s Yonhap News Agency. All but one of South Korea’s 17 bricks and mortar licensed casinos are for foreigners only.
The one casino that can cater for locals is Kangwon Land (pictured), run by Kangwon Land Inc. Its workforce was 3,858 as of end-December 2021, down 25.0 percent from two years earlier, reported Yonhap.
In February, Kangwon Land Inc reported its annual net loss had narrowed in 2021 relative to the year before, with gaming sales up 72 percent year-on-year.
Foreigner-only operator Grand Korea Leisure Co Ltd saw its payroll reduce by 10.4 percent in the past two years, said Yonhap. Grand Korea is affiliated to the Korea Tourism Organization. The casino-operating entity runs two venues in the South Korean capital, Seoul, and one in Busan, all under the Seven Luck brand.
Another foreigner-only operator, Paradise Co Ltd, had a 5.3 percent cut in its workforce over the two years, stated Yonhap. The firm runs casinos in, respectively, Seoul, Incheon, Busan, and Jeju.
From April 4, Kangwon Land has been keeping its casino open for an hour longer each day, as a slight easing of its operating constraints during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The move came after an April 1 announcement by the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency, regarding slight loosening nationally of social distancing rules, including for restaurants, cafes and bars.
As of April 1, South Korea has permitted eligible travellers who have had either two or three vaccination jabs against Covid-19 to enter the country quarantine-free.
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