The Japanese government reiterates its desire to legalize the Japanese casino market

In Japan, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has reaffirmed his government’s commitment to legalizing the country’s land-based casino market. Local officials have only six weeks left to submit their applications for the construction of a casino-resort in the regions that concern them (Osaka, Nagasaki and Wakayama prefectures are among the applicants).

According to our colleague GGRAsia, the establishment of hotel complexes with integrated casino would allow Japan to overcome the negative financial consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic. In order to do so, the Japanese government wants to increase the number of Western tourists visiting the country every year. We propose you to take stock of the situation in the lines below.

Japan wants three large casino complexes

At a House of Councillors budget meeting this week, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida confirmed that his government supports the establishment of three major casino complexes. Indeed, as Japan seeks solutions to overcome a deficit of about $12.2 trillion, the 64-year-old Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker said bids for hotel-resorts with integrated casinos would be reviewed by a relevant federal commission around early May.

Japan’s Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, Tetsuo Saito, used the same meeting to say that the expert selection body will be tasked with studying the economic impact of each project submitted. The 70-year-old government official also revealed that other criteria would be decisive in the choice of any of the projects such as the financial stability of the companies involved, the funds allocated to development, etc.

Three prefectures have taken position so far: Osaka, Nagasaki and Wakayama

As mentioned above, three prefectures have positioned themselves to host a resort with a world-class casino. The first of these is Nagasaki. Elected officials in this province of some 450,000 people said last week that they hope to obtain a permit for a gambling establishment within the Huis Ten Bosch theme park by the end of 2027. The resort would be managed and operated by Casinos Austria International Japan Incorporated, a subsidiary of Casinos Austria International.

As for the other two candidates, they are the prefecture of Osaka (which wants to open its own Las Vegas-style resort in association with U.S. casino giant MGM Resorts International by 2030, on the artificial island of Yumeshima) and Wakayama (which is planning to build a hotel complex with an integrated casino on the private island of Marina City, in partnership with Clairvest Neem Ventures Company Limited and Caesars Entertainment).

Kayleigh Williams