The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism will conduct a survey of prefectural and municipal governments across the country this month to confirm their intentions and opening schedules for IR facilities.
The government is promoting early IR development to achieve a goal of 60 million visitors to Japan in 2030. This nationwide survey will be the second to take place, with the first held in September last year, however this time the results will be publicly announced.
There is a particular focus on the answers from locations like Tokyo who have not yet made their stance toward an IR clear. The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism intends to determine the certification seeking period based on the results, and will complete screening by 2021 or 2022.
The ministry has established various certification criteria for IR development such as the Transportation Infrastructure Development plan in the Basic Policy Draft. On the other hand, it has passed over clarification of the application period for local municipalities seeking certification, thus the need for a nationwide survey in order to determine the period and gain an understanding of the schedules of municipalities who are considering opening a facility.
The survey will cover all prefecture and city governments, including Yokohama, Osaka, Nagasaki and Wakayama – areas that have made their desire to develop an IR clear – as well as the Tokyo metropolitan area and Hokkaido, who are still considering the prospect.
An official at the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism stated, “If there are multiple municipalities with the same customer draw, a faster opening schedule is advantageous in certification. We would like the facility to open as far before 2030 as possible.”
Therefore, based on the assumption that construction of the facilities will take approximately three years, the certification applications deadline will be around 2021 to 2022 and the certification at a maximum of three locations will be completed by 2022 to 2023, encouraging local municipalities and operators to open quickly.
The ministry is currently taking public feedback on the Basic Policy draft. Based on this nationwide survey, a full version of the Basic Policy will be published in November after which more opinions will be sought.
Following that, it is expected that the Basic Policy will be redrafted at the beginning of next year after discussion at each of the ministry levels and consideration by the casino management committee.