MANILA - Workers from Nissan and Makati Shangri-La can avail of cash assistance from the government after both companies announced they will shutter operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Department of Labor and Employment said Friday.
Displaced workers are entitled to a one-time cash aid of P5,000 under DOLE's COVID-19 Adjustment Measures Program (CAMP), Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III told Teleradyo.
The program has a P3-billion budget particularly for tourism workers affected by the pandemic, he added.
"We still have budget, especially those working in the hotels," Bello said in Filipino.
The labor chief said the affected companies or its laid off workers may apply for cash assistance with DOLE. Bello said he had yet to receive notice of termination from Nissan and Shangri-La.
On Wednesday, hotel operator Shangri-La announced it would temporarily close its Makati branch starting Feb. 1 due to continued low business levels and an uncertain business environment.
“Despite our best efforts, the prolonged recovery timeline has resulted in increasing financial pressure on the company here in the Philippines,” the company had said.
“As part of the reorganization exercise, we will sadly be parting ways with a number of colleagues and we will be temporarily closing Makati Shangri-La, Manila,” the statement said.
To cushion the impact of the reorganization, Shangri-La said it will provide affected employees with a compensation package that is higher than local guidelines, and extend them healthcare coverage and grocery support until the end of the year.
The hotel operator did not provide details on the number of workers affected by the closure of its Makati branch, but said that the retrenched employees will be given priority in rehiring in case the hotel resort reopens.
A day after, Japanese automaker Nissan announced it will stop its Philippine car assembly operations in Sta. Rosa, Laguna starting in March.
The closure will affect the Almera model, and 133 workers will lose jobs, Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez had said.
“The announcement of Nissan to close their assembly operations in the country is regrettable, as these developments all the more demonstrate the critical situation of the local motor vehicle industry," Lopez said.
Vehicle sales fell more than 40 percent last year as the pandemic confined people to their homes and the economy tanked, an industry group earlier said.