Mar 24, 2023 Newsdesk Japan, Latest News, Top of the deck
Osaka is to increase by 140 percent the number of “psychiatric medical institutions” it has available for dealing with “gambling addiction”, prior to the expected opening of an integrated resort (IR) with casino in the Japanese metropolis (pictured). The number of such anti-addiction centres would rise from 25 currently to 60 by the end of financial year 2025.
The information was given in a document made public by the Osaka authorities on Thursday, following a Wednesday meeting that approved what is known as the ‘2nd-term promotion plan of gambling addiction countermeasures’. The plan had been aired in draft form, in December.
The document made public this week also referred to providing a service called “Osaka Addiction Treatment Inclusive Support,” to be known by the acronym “OATIS”, and which would collaborate with an addiction-support centre, and an addiction-treatment and -research centre.
Osaka’s selected casino-operations partner for its gaming resort is MGM Resorts International, the parent of Macau operator MGM China Holdings Ltd.
MGM Resorts and local partners, including Orix Corp, have been selected as preferred private-sector providers for a planned JPY1.08-trillion (US$8.30 billion at current exchange rates) casino resort in Osaka.
In February, on MGM Resorts’ fourth-quarter earnings call, Bill Hornbuckle, the group’s chief executive and president, said the company would be “challenged” in terms of a previously-stated aspiration to open a Japan gaming complex by 2029, “if we don’t hear soon” from the authorities there. The CEO described the project on the call, as a US$10-billion scheme.
Osaka’s so-called IR District Development Plan – a key step in the approval process – was submitted to Japan’s national authorities in April last year, and is still under consideration.
The national government has also tasked applicants with creating robust anti-addiction support at local level for users of casinos at IRs.
Nagasaki prefecture, which also applied to host a casino resort, is also still awaiting news from Japan’s national authorities.
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