Casino Proposals May Hit Investment Levels, Operators Warn

Government proposals presented to the ruling party this week relating to tax rates, entry fees, and casino floor space restrictions have drawn wildly different reviews from the business community and Japanese political parties.

Crown Misconduct Claims Dismissed

Allegations of misconduct made against one of Australia’s largest casino operators have been dropped because the people who made the claims would not reveal their identity.

Opposition Party Calls for Second Locals-Permitted Casino

An opposition party has called on the government to allow the development of a second casino in South Korea that would allow locals to gamble as a means of boosting tourism in North Jeolla province.

MGM Reaffirms Commitment to Osaka IR Bid

MGM Resorts took the opportunity of the local withdrawal of a major rival, Las Vegas Sands, to reaffirm that its IR bid in Japan was clearly focused on Osaka Yumeshima.

Aichi Prefecture Launches Tokoname RFI

The Aichi prefectural government has launched an RFI process for a “City of International Tourism Focused on MICE.” While the call does not explicitly announce that this is part of an IR bid, it is clearly related to the local government’s deliberations about whether or not to seek a casino element for the Chubu Centrair International Airport development project in Tokoname city.

Tanasijevich: Sands Now Betting Against Yokohama and Tokyo

Las Vegas Sands’ Managing Director for Global Development George Tanasijevich has offered the clearest statement yet that his firm is now following MGM Resorts in pursuing an “Osaka First” strategy.

Galaxy Brings Japanese Students to Macau for IR Education

Galaxy Entertainment has announced a new three-week program which will bring students from Toyo University, Kyoto Sangyo University, Fukuoka University, and Okura Nikko Hotel Management to Macau for training about the IR industry.

Japan a Key Focus at MGS Entertainment Show

The annual Macao Gaming Show (MGS Entertainment Show) was held at the Venetian Expo Macau last week. The upcoming Japanese IR market was in focus, with a special presentation and panel dedicated to Japan taking place on Day 2 of the event.

Osaka Urged to Build Huge Conference Center at Yumeshima IR

The ninth meeting of Osaka’s IR Promotion Conference was held on November 14, and it was agreed that the prospective Yumeshima IR should include an international conference center that can host more than 5000 people, which is nearly double the size of largest currently-existing conference center in the city and would be among the largest in Asia.

First Hokkaido IR Showcase to Open at End of November

Organizers have announced that the “First Hokkaido IR Showcase” will be held in Sapporo city on November 30 and December 1 of this year, including participation from all three mayors of the municipalities who are currently angling for the support of the prefectural government in making IR bids.

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Hard Rock to Open Tomakomai Office

Hard Rock Japan is preparing to open an office in Tomakomai, Hokkaido, in August or September, a further signal that the Orlando, Florida, based operator is focusing its IR efforts on this regional city.

Foreign Tourists May Also Face Gambling Profits Tax

Some foreign tourists who win at casino games at Japanese IRs may be hit with an income tax bill before they leave the country, according to a report in the Asahi Shinbun.

House of Councillors to Begin IR Bill Deliberations

The controversial IR Implementation Bill is set to begin its final stage toward enactment on Friday with deliberations launching in a plenary session of the House of Councillors.

Morgan Stanley Releases Bearish Note on Japan IRs

On Friday, the multinational investment bank and financial services company Morgan Stanley released a research note that suggested a degree of disappointment about the financial terms of the IR Implementation Act.

Osaka Governor Matsui Wants to Select IR Operator Within a Year

Just as he did with the IR Implementation Act, Osaka Governor Ichiro Matsui is once again pushing the national government to speed up its deliberations and to move with greater alacrity. He says that Osaka wants to tentatively select its operator partner within a year with an eye to opening the Yumeshima IR by 2024.