R&F Korea (RFKR), promoter of a stalled foreigner-only casino project (pictured in a file photo) at Incheon, South Korea, applied on December 29 to extend for an additional period, the date for opening the property. The firm informed GGRAsia on the same day as the application, in response to our enquiry, clarifying that for now, it sought to leave any new deadline open, pending it finding a new partner for the scheme.
The current construction deadline – the latest in a series, with the others all having been missed – is March 17 this year, as set by South Korea’s Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.
On Tuesday the ministry confirmed to GGRAsia it had received on December 29 RFKR’s application for a deadline extension. The department stated it couldn’t comment further at this stage, nor could it determine when a decision would be made. It could come either “before or after March 17″.
RFKR told GGRAsia that it asked the ministry’s permission for the company to increase its total expenditure on the scheme from the equivalent of US$735 million to US$775 million. RFKR didn’t specify to GGRAsia the reason.
The firm also told GGRAsia it had asked the government to delay pronouncement on any updated construction timetable until such time as RFKR had found a new investment partner.
Its previous casino partner was Caesars Entertainment Corp, which had pulled out of the Incheon project in early 2021, following Caesars being acquired by U.S. regional casino business Eldorado Resorts Inc.
RFKR, an entity connected to the financially-troubled Chinese real estate group Guangzhou R&F Properties Co Ltd, had been required to give the South Korean authorities notice by December 16, if it wished to ask for another deadline extension.
The RFKR scheme is located on Yeongjong Island, near the country’s main air hub, Incheon International Airport.
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