December 6, 2023 2 min read

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Osaka Integrated Resort Project Begins Construction

Workers will have to solidify the land above before construction can begin

Japan’s first casino is finally becoming a reality. A few months after the Japanese government greenlit a revised implementation agreement for Osaka’s integrated resort project, construction of the property has finally begun.

The property is a joint venture of the international casino juggernaut MGM Resorts International and Orix Corporation. The formal agreement was signed in late September, greenlighting the next phase of the project.

First of all, workers will have to solidify the land above to make sure that it can support the complex. Preparation works should cost roughly $173 million. The property owners will have to cover these costs now, although the local government has promised to return the money once the project is finished.

The Osaka integrated resort’s development will cost $8.6 billion, as per the September agreement. The 52-acre property is set to be built on Yumeshima, a 700-acre artificial island in Osaka Bay.

The completed resort will have three hotels from three different brands offering a total of 2,500 rooms for guests. The entire complex is expected to provide a huge boost to local tourism, which is why the property will feature a 730,000-square-foot convention space. The casino itself will only take 3% of the resort’s total indoor space.

Unless further delays impede the project, the resort should welcome its first guests in 2030.

Gaming Is Coming to Japan

The resort is de facto owned by the Osaka IR Corporation, in which MGM Resorts and Orix have a 42.5% stake each. The remaining stake is in the hands of various other investors.

Construction of the new resort was made possible by a new law Japan passed in 2018. Seeking to emulate the success of other tourism hubs in Asia, the country toned down its harsh stance on gambling.

While the new law got many companies excited, many of them were eventually disappointed by the country’s long legislative processes and the COVID-related delays. However, MGM Resorts opted to continue despite the setbacks and its bid is finally paying off.

While the Osaka IR Corporation is the only one actually working on an integrated resort project, there is another contender seeking to penetrate the local market. Casinos Austria is also looking to tap into Japan’s potential as a tourism and entertainment destination and is seeking to build a $3 billion resort in Nagasaki.

Journalist

Although Fiona doesn't have a long-spanning background within the gambling industry, she is an incredibly skilled journalist who has built a strong interest in the constantly growing iGaming network. The team at GamblingNews.com is glad to have her on our roster to help deliver the best stories as soon as they hit. Aside from writing, she loves to dabble in online casino games such as slots and roulette, both for her own enjoyment and also as research to better improve her understanding of the industry.

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