(Photo by Phearum/Xinhua)

Melco Resorts to offer MOP1,000 and paid leave to employees who get vaccinated

Gaming operator Melco Resorts & Entertainment Limited has announced it will advance with a MOP16 million’ vaccination encouragement programme’ aimed at incentivising employees to be inoculated against Covid-19.

According to the incentive plan, employees who complete their vaccination – the two required doses – will receive MOP1,000 (US$125).

Also, when the company’s vaccination rate reaches its desired target six vaccinated employees will be able to receive MOP1 million each via a lucky draw.

The group will also cooperate with health authorities to organize vaccination seminars for staff while arranging shuttle buses to take employees to vaccination appointments and provide two days of paid ‘vaccination leave’.

According to promotional material sent by the company, only employees who have been fully vaccinated and who are actively employed at the time of the draw will be eligible.

Upon reaching 3,350 vaccinated employees one MOP1 million prize will be provided, upon reaching 6,700 vaccinations two MOP1 million prizes will be granted and the remaining three MOP1 million prizes will be granted upon reaching 10,050 vaccinated staff.

As of the end of last year, Melco employed almost 14,500 people in the Macau SAR, according to its annual report.

“With immunity now established as a key Company objective, Melco is supporting the government’s efforts towards this,” the group announced.

Despite offering free vaccination, with Sinopharm and BioNTech vaccines available, for months, local authorities have struggled to convince local residents to accept being inoculated.

As of today, a total of 90,267 people in Macau have been vaccinated with at least a dose of either Sinopharm or BioNTech vaccines, of which only 52,918 received the required two doses, about 7.7 per cent of the total local population.

Health Bureau Director Alvin Lo noted this week that the vaccination rate in Macau is still at a low level and has made the general work of pandemic prevention harder for health authorities.

Local authorities have initiated several community outreach programmes aimed at boosting the vaccination rate, with vaccination centres opened at local universities and a walk-in vaccination centre set at Macao Forum with the capacity for administering 2,000 vaccine doses daily.

Gaming operators MGM China and Sands China will also hold outreach vaccination services next week and in early June, respectively.