Amid the bribery allegations against Japanese politicians and the opposition joint effort to abolish the Integrated Casino Promotion Act, the Japanese government decided to postpone the publication of its Basic Policy final set of criteria for selection between the candidates bids, as the Diet needed more time to evaluate public opinion, assess the extent of the damage to the integrity of the political system and further deliberate on the case, including the introduction of additional rules for official contact between policy makers and operators.
The determination the Japanese government shows to prove that this contest will not be decided elsewhere but through the bids, opens the door for further applications from world’s biggest casino, leisure and resorts operators such as Genting Group, who are willing to allocate effort and resources for the IR project through their Singapore subsidiary Genting Singapore.
Genting Group takes the IR project seriously
As proposed to its shareholders in a circular ahead of an Extraordinary General Meeting /EGM/ scheduled to take place on February, 4, with the purpose to gain shareholder approval and authorization for the directors to submit several bids, the company is considering a ceiling of $10bln for its investment, planning to submit bids for several locations but develop a Japanese integrated casino resort in only one, at least for the first 7 years of operation.
“The Company expects the return of the Japan IR project to be commensurate with market expectations and conditions of similar projects in the leisure, hospitality and gaming industry”, Lim Kok Thay, Executive Chairman, Genting Singapore.
Clearly stating their interest in the Tier 1 locations such as Tokyo, Osaka and Yokohama, the company clarified that the full implementation of any bid they submit would depend on other factors among which the passing and implementation of relevant regulations on how these integrated resorts should operate, and the final costs in terms of development, pre-opening and construction.
Who is competing with Genting
Obviously, Genting Group, together with Las Vegas Sands, MGM Resorts and Galaxy Entertainment Group, is considered one of the biggest players regarding the bids for the IR projects in, as it operates 3 resorts in Malaysia, where due to the illegal status of gambling there are no casinos, 2 casino integrated resorts in New York and Las Vegas in the USA, and 1 in Singapore, in the Bahamas and in the UK each.
All candidates will have to submit their bids in the period of January-July 2021, after the Japanese government had passed the Basic Policy, with the actual projects starts in up to three selected locations expected to begin in August, and the first opening of an IR not earlier than the second half of the decade.
Image credit: Resort World Las Vegas