Sources close to Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic party have said that the government will propose launching tenders for casino licences to six Japanese cities.
The move comes as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe looks to reignite his economic revival programme. Bidders had expected just two Integrated Resort tenders in the big cities, but six licences would mean at least some regional casinos, which could spark big name casino groups intensify their lobbying for their potential projects. A source said: “The biggest haggle is going to be over the number of licences. The LDP is going to come in very aggressively with a proposal for either five or six licences. In the end, I think they will walk away very happy if that is bargained down to three.”
A wider licence plan would more likely see development opportunities in Nagasaki, Tomakomai, a small port city on the northern island of Hokkaido, and Fukuoka, as well as the larger metropolises of Osaka, Yokohama and Tokyo. Caesars Entertainment has already presented its blueprint to build an Integrated Resort in Tomakomai, a small port city in northern Japan, Hokkaido and Osaka.