When Yokohama Mayor Fumiko Hayashi announced at a press conference three months ago that she would respect the outcome of any popular referendum on IR development, we took her at her word.
The Kanagawa chapter of the main opposition Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan held an online symposium on Monday opposing IR development in Yokohama and began the process of raising a candidate against Mayor Fumiko Hayashi.
We are coming off a very difficult week in which one of the world’s primary temples of democracy, the US Capitol Building, was stormed by an angry mob, leaving five people dead and much of the world shaken. Does this pose any special concerns for the Asian gaming industry?
A committee of the Yokohama City Council dominated by the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and Komeito quickly moved to quash the IR referendum proposal submitted after two months of signature-gathering activities by local residents, which had gained more than three times the required number of signatures.
Wakayama Prefecture is collecting final documents from the two accepted operator bidders, Suncity Group and Clairvest Neem, with the intention of making its selection of its operator partner this spring.
As Japan sinks into a deeper crisis over the Covid-19 pandemic, it would be natural that it might be overlooked. Indeed, the sensitivity of Japanese policymakers to overseas developments is often tenuous at best. But for the future of Japanese IRs generally—and for Osaka most specifically—stakeholders should be quaking with alarm over the most recent headlines regarding MGM Resorts.
The Yokohama City Council has begun its deliberations on whether or not to hold a popular referendum on IR development. Despite gaining more than three times the needed number of resident signatures, Mayor Fumiko Hayashi has asked that the referendum be rejected.