Galaxy Entertainment Group Vice Chairman Francis Lui says the company has already responded to the Requests for Concept (RFC) or Requests for Information (RFI) of eight Japanese prefectures and cities, and is currently preparing a ninth, following news that Osaka is set to launch its Request for Proposal (RFP) process before the end of the year.
Osaka prefecture and city announced their implementation policy draft on Thursday, stipulating the conditions required of operators for an IR in Yumeshima and outlining plans to launch its RFP by December. Japan’s national government also revealed earlier this week that it would accept IR certification applications in early 2021.
In a statement responding to the news, Lui said that Galaxy “remains fully supportive of the Japanese Government’s goals to introduce a globally renowned IR and MICE industry to Japan.
“In support of this, we have been conducting a careful evaluation of multiple locations, and have been an active and willing partner with many cities, prefectures and government agencies, in sharing information, ideas and our experience, to assist them in thoroughly evaluating the opportunities that IR’s can create for Japan.
To date, we have responded to eight cities and prefectures for requests for information or requests for concepts including most recently in Osaka and we are now preparing for Yokohama. And we look forward to continuing with this process to ensure the best possible IR will be developed for Japan.
“We are encouraged to see news this week of the Japanese Government’s timeline relating to IR certification applications which will take place in the first half of 2021, signaling the beginning of the formal bidding process for selected sites, which is scheduled to take place in 2020.
“With extensive experience in developing world-class IRs and considerable financial strength including a strong balance sheet, Galaxy is well positioned to assist in developing a uniquely Japanese IR experience, attracting in-bound travelers from around the world and arranging for tourists to visit locations throughout the country.”
Galaxy has made no secret of its willingness to bid for multiple IR locations in Japan and is said to be one of three remaining contenders for an IR in Osaka, alongside MGM Resorts and Genting Singapore.
Lui’s statement is notable for the fact that Galaxy’s Japan strategy is markedly different from the “Osaka First” policy adopted by MGM, or the similar “Yokohama First” policy recently announced by Melco Resorts & Entertainment.