Sun International shuts casinos and hotels in coronavirus lockdown

(Supplied)
(Supplied)

Sun International, the operator of Sun City, says all of its hotels and casinos will close on Tuesday in preparation for a nationwide lockdown announced by government to prevent the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

Some other notable casino and leisure destinations owned by the group include the Boardwalk in Port Elizabeth, Grand West Sibaya in Durban, Carnival City and Meropa.

"Sun International will be closing all of its hotels and casinos at various times today until the end of the lockdown period," the company said.

The national lockdown announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa on Monday night would come into effect from 26 March until 16 April. In his address, Ramaphosa said only companies that are essential to the production and transportation of food, basic goods and medical supplies, as well as security and supporting services, will remain open.

Banks will also remain open during the period.

The group said it had engaged with unions, employees, suppliers, service providers and concessionaires on the matter and "significant action is being taken to reduce costs during the lockdown."

The full financial impact of the virus-induced shutdown on the company will only be determined once the lockdown has been lifted, according to the company.

Last week, the group announced that it had shut down its Latin American (Latam) operations until 29 March, as part of official interventions to curb coronavirus infections.

Companies in the mining sector have also announced plans to halt operations during the lockdown, in what is an unprecedented move in South Africa's post apartheid era.

The number of coronavirus infections in the country stood 554 as of Tuesday, with two people said to be in ICU. No deaths have been reported locally so far.

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