Those in support of Yokohama’s IR bid have jumped into action in recent weeks.
The Nikkei has reported that the Yokohama Chamber of Commerce (Takashi Ueno) submitted a request to the Kanagawa prefectural governor, Yuji Kuroiwa, relating to the prefectural governance in 2020. The chamber requested measures for building a vibrant region and revitalization of local business amidst the declining and aging population. It also called for development of tourism support and support of IR development that Yokohama city formally announced on 22 August.
Strategic requests include the realization of a Yokohama IR bid. Vice-president, Morihiko Kawamoto, expressed his view that, “The prefecture wants support for economic revitalization.”
The chamber also sought revitalization through promotion of sporting events and disaster measures. Regarding an IR bid, Kuroiwa said, “I want to show my support for Yokohama city’s decision. I understand that there are many opinions regarding this, but I look forward to building a consensus.”
After submitting the request, Kawamoto emphasized that there was still a lack of fundamental understanding about IR among residents. As other public forms of gambling in Japan are unbridled, he expressed hope that, “[an IR bid] will be a good opportunity for measures that showcase Yokohama’s strengths,” and hinted that his stance is to improve momentum, such as establishing a promotion council.