Wakayama prefecture announced on 26 August that it had signed a basic agreement with Clairvest Group, its preferred candidate for an IR project at Wakayama Marina City.
The consortium of Clairvest Neem Ventures Co Ltd and Clairvest Group Inc were named as Wakayama’s preferred partner on 21 July after the only other candidate, Suncity Group, withdrew in the weeks preceding the announcement. This is the first time in Japan that a basic agreement has been signed between a candidate city or prefecture and an IR operator to develop an IR.
The basic agreement confirms that the preferred operator has been selected according to the open recruitment procedure as a private business to implement a Wakayama IR and stipulates the required procedures until approval has been obtained from the Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism for the area development plan.
Specifically there is mention of the cost responsibilities of the preferred candidate (performance guarantee), matters regarding the establishment of the IR operator (a specific purpose company) and procedures relating to integrity (integrity screening for the businesses participating in the consortium).
The prefecture and the preferred candidate will now jointly prepare an area development plan and apply to the national government by the application deadline of 28 April 2022.
Wakayama prefecture said, “Along with requesting further refinements to the proposals and enhancing the project implementation plan, we will seek to build an All-Wakayama Plan in which businesses in the prefecture can participate widely in enhancing the operation plan to ensure that there is contribution through development of the local economy and local employment.
“By holding briefing sessions, dependent on the coronavirus pandemic, we will convey accurate information on IR and the reasons why this prefecture is promoting the IR project to the prefecture residents.”
The Wakayama IR Promotion Office emphasized solidarity in an interview with IAG saying that Wakayama Prefecture is taking the process step by step, and they had now taken another step forward with this procedure.