The Japanese government has revealed it will postpone until February publication of the Basic Policy that will set the final criteria for selection of the nation’s IR operators. The Basic Policy had until now been planned for this month.
The delay is primarily in response to the recent 500.com bribery case, with the Diet deciding it needs more time to assess trends in public opinion and deliberations of the case. They will also consider additional rules for contact between IR operators and government officials in the policy.
The government will accept applications for IRs between January and July 2021, once the Basic Policy has been passed. From August 2021, up to three areas will be approved with the first IRs likely to open in the second half of the decade.
Osaka, Yokohama, Nagasaki and Wakayama have all confirmed their intention to develop an IR.
Following news of the 500.com scandal, four opposition parties – the Constitutional Democratic Party, Democratic Party for the People, Japanese Communist Party, and Social Democratic Party – jointly submitted a bill calling for abolition of the IR Promotion Act.