The Japanese government has officially revised its schedule for opening the nation’s first integrated resorts to the second half of the decade.
The later date, pushed back from a previous target of 2025, was announced at a joint sub-committee meeting that included the Liberal Democratic Party’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport. It follows the recent postponement of the application period for local governments, originally intended to start in January 2021, by nine months to October 2021.
The number of inbound visitors to Japan has decreased substantially since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Local governments are also busy combatting the virus, while ongoing restrictions to global travel ultimately led the Japan Tourism Agency to issue a revised Basic Policy draft in October that included the addition of increased safety, health and hygiene measures; heightened problem gambling requirements for prefectures; and new contact rules for national and prefectural staff in their dealings with operators.
The government is expected to make a cabinet decision on the Basic Policy by the end of this year.
Four regions have announced their intention to bid for one of the three IR licenses on offer: Yokohama city, Osaka prefecture/city, Wakayama prefecture and Nagasaki prefecture.