JIRA Says Interest in Japan Integrated Resort Remains Strong

A survey conducted in July by the Japan Integrated Resort Association (JIRA) outlined that 66.7% of the operators are still willing to invest in a Japan Integrated Resort (IR).

Japan IR Keeps the Interest of Casino Operators

Casino operators’ interest towards Japan integrated resort (IR) bid remains strong, says a recent survey by the Japan Integrated Resort Association (JIRA). Some 132 professionals involved in IR in Japan and abroad responded. The survey which was conducted in July showed that 66.7% of the responders have not changed their interest and willingness to invest when compared to the COVID-19 period and before. Furthermore, some 12% of the responders said that their interest is higher than the period before COVID-19. And some 21.3% of the responders showed less interest than before.

According to the survey, 89.4% of the responders’ work activities related to the Japan IR were impacted by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). On the other hand, 10.6% of responders said their activities weren’t impacted by the virus.

Over the last few months, the Japan IR bid project has seen quite a few hurdles. Back in May, Las Vegas Sands pulled out of the bid. The company was planning a $10 billion investment in either Tokyo or Yokohama. Two other industry giants – Caesars Entertainment and Wynn Resorts have also withdrawn from participation in the project. But back in June Hard Rock International announced that it is staying in the race for IR bid in Japan.

Potential Challenges, Priorities and Factors That May Impact the Japan IR

The survey conducted by JIRA outlined the potential challenges related to Japan IR due to COVID-19. Some 40.9% of the responders found the cost of infectious disease control as a potential business challenge. Another 59.1% of the responders said that a potential challenge could be the difficulty of forecasting demand. Some 61.4% of the responders said that the difficulties of international travel could be a potential challenge.

When the responders were asked how long the challenges will continue, some 27.5% said that the effect will be permanent. According to 16.8% of the responders, the challenges impact will last about a year. On the other hand, 26.7% said that the challenges impact will last for one year but less than two years. Some 20.6% of the recorded responders said that the challenges will last more than 2 years.

The responders were also asked about legal and regulatory priorities. Some 60.5% of the responders said that taxation as a key priority. On the other hand, some 58.1% found the licensing system as a key priority. According to 38.0% of the responders, gaming regulation is a key priority while some 28.7% mentioned responsible gaming.

The participants in the survey were also asked about factors due to COVID-19 which will most likely impact the future success of an IR in Japan. The future of international economics and related factors was the response of some 60.3% of the responders. Another key factor according to 56.5% of the responders is the existing legal and regulatory requirements for an IR in Japan. According to 53.4% of the responders, the future of domestic inbound demand is a factor that can impact the future success of IR in Japan.

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