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Trump Reportedly Asked Abe for LVS Preferential Treatment

U.S. President Donald Trump may be more prescient than his usual public speeches may suggest. Rumors have been swirling for the past week or so, that Mr. Trump have offered Japanese Prime Minister to grant the U.S. President a special consideration for the Sand brand in the future integrated resort in Japan. An official has denied.

Investing in the Long-Term

According to reports, U.S. President Donald Trump has used his position to influence the prospects of the Las Vegas Sands (LVS) casino operator owned by Mr. Trump’s friend Sheldon Adelson and include it into the upcoming integrate resort (IR) project that Japan has given the greenlight to.

According to inside sources, Mr. Trump has asked Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe whether he would give the LVS company a special consideration and make it part of the planned development project. A Japanese official has denied that the meeting between the two leaders has ever taken such a turn of events.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga spoke to reporters on Thursday and said that such rumors lacked credibility. However, knowing the nature of Mr. Trump, it’s not unlikely to imagine the 45th President asking for exemption from common procedure.
Meanwhile, this can reflect poorly on Mr. Abe and his project which has drawn opposition from locals, although reported 40 municipalities have already requested a to be considered in the IR project.

While the rumors have been piling on, the LVS company has issued a special statement saying that the company is more than likely to receive a license from the Japanese government when licenses finally start to be issued.

Mr. Adelson is also known for his generosity towards the Republican party and often flights to largesse allocating significant funds around election time. On top of that he has been talking about taking the branded US casinos to Japan for a long while, too.

Japan, the Promised Land for Casino Action

While nothing suggests that Japan is on the cusp of a gambling boon, Japan seems to inch closer to that future. Going through the legal side of matters would take the country over 5 years, experts estimate.

This means that municipalities in the country won’t see the IR arrive before 2024 or around that time in any event. Building for the future is a clever idea, as exemplified by Mr. Adelson’s determination to open a property in Japan.

If Mr. Trump has hinted, or more likely, openly request favoritism, this wouldn’t be surprising either. However, Mr. Abe has been trying to avoid any more controversy over the IR bill.

Previously, a member of Mr. Abe’s party has been accused of taking bribes, as part of his fund raiser event, from another established casino brand Caesars. While these allegations have been vehemently denied since, the incident has been a clear indicator how humors can quickly sour in Japan over suspected cronyism.

Playing friends at this point of Japan’s still burgeoning IR project may quickly turn sour for all interested parties. We will continue to follow the subject and keep you posted.

Rachael Price

Rachael is a veteran gaming journalist with over 9 years of writing experience but has only just started within the gambling industry. She has built a keen interest within the iGaming sector over the years from exposure at events.