Nagasaki prefecture has asked the casino development consortium led by Casinos Austria International Japan Inc to provide within this month a detailed plan of the consortium’s structure, and how it will raise funds.
That is according to reports of topics discussed at the most recent session of the prefectural assembly, which ended on Thursday.
The planned total investment for the projected scheme (pictured in an artist’s rendering) is JPY350 billion (US$3.1 billion), according to previously-released information. That was at the lowest end of the range – i.e., JPY350 billion to JPY460 billion, which the prefecture stated in its integrated resort (IR) basic concept. In Japan, large-scale complexes with a casino and associated tourism and meeting facilities, are known as integrated resorts (IRs).
According to reports, Thursday’s session of the prefectural assembly generated a number of questions from members, expressing concern about the capability of Casinos Austria International Japan to deliver a high-quality consortium, and the necessary funding for the IR scheme.
The prefectural government is scheduled to present to the assembly in November a draft of its district development plan relating to the IR scheme, which is due to be located at Sasebo within the prefecture.
Once the draft district plan is tabled, there will be a period for public comment on it.
Last month, the prefecture said it expected seven out of every 10 visitors to its hoped-for casino resort will be from within Japan, and that the facility will generate annual gross gaming revenue (GGR) of JPY150 billion.
On August 30, Nagasaki stated it had signed what it termed a “master agreement” with Casinos Austria International Japan, for the latter to develop and operate an IR in the prefecture.
Earlier that month, the Casinos Austria group had said it wanted the Nagasaki venue to have 220 gaming tables and 2,200 slot machines.
Nagasaki has said it expects to make its own submission to the national government by spring 2022. Up to three casino resorts will be permitted in Japan, under the liberalisation framework.
One of the spurned suitors as a casino partner for Nagasaki, Hong Kong-listed investment group Oshidori International Holdings Ltd said in its first-half results filed on August 30, its experience of bidding to collaborate with the prefecture on a casino complex had led it to “question whether there have been serious ethical irregularities” in the process.
It was reported in Japanese media that the other rejected contender – Niki Chyau Fwu (Parkview) Group, a Japanese enterprise – had also questioned the integrity of Nagasaki’s selection process.
Nagasaki prefecture has countered that the partner-selection process was conducted fairly and properly.
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