Posted on: March 11, 2022, 06:00h.
Last updated on: March 11, 2022, 06:00h.
Nagasaki is firming up its plans for an integrated resort. It now has a good idea when it will open, but is accepting public input as the estimated costs skyrocket to almost $4 billion.
Japan’s initiative to introduce integrated resorts (IR) to the country has taken longer than expected, but the finish line is approaching. Locations, such as Nagasaki, Osaka and others, who expressed an interest in hosting one of the casino resorts are wrapping up the design of their projects.
They will need to submit their plans to the Japan Diet next month, and Nagasaki is putting the final touches on its program. As it enters the last leg, the prefecture will hold public hearings later this month. It’s preparing for the worst, knowing that it will face challenges to the proposed budget.
Nagasaki Finalizing IR Plan
Provided it becomes one of the first three IR locations in Japan, Nagasaki is confident it has a viable plan in place. Japan’s national IR team isn’t likely to make its selections until sometime next year, but Nagasaki believes this won’t change its timeline. It has set a target of the fall of 2027 to have the property operational.
The prefecture is still putting together the financial puzzle for the IR. There are a lot of moving pieces and the costs continue to rise. The latest figures from Nagasaki indicate that the price tag will be around $3.8 billion. This is considerably higher than the $2.99 billion from just over six months ago.
There was already concern when officials presented the initial cost announcement. The development costs will be split between Nagasaki’s casino partner, Casinos Austria, the prefecture and other commercial entities. However,
Casinos Austria has not responded to requests to show how it can cover its share. The only update it provided, which didn’t assuage concerns, is that it hopes to close on the financing next month.
Among the other commercial entities are international brands such as Hyatt, Red Bull, Hotel Sacher and Swarovski. However, the role each will play isn’t specified.
While the costs are high, Nagasaki is confident the IR will quickly begin to earn revenue. By 2031, it says the net profit will be as much as $271 million.
Time for More Public Input
In an email to Casino.org, Masahiko Kunihiro of Nagasaki’s Integrated Resort Promotion Division provided details of two public hearings coming at the end of March. The first will be on March 28 at the Arcas Sasebo convention center in Sasebo.
The conference room for the hearing isn’t large, holding up to only 60 people. There has been some resistance to the prefecture’s IR plans, and more than a few citizens will likely want to voice their opinion once more. However, the size of the venue might limit the public interaction.
The second hearing will facilitate more community involvement. Nagasaki will welcome locals to a conference room at the Dejima Messe Nagasaki convention center in Nagasaki on March 30.
However, this meeting will include remote broadcasts, as well. Six additional locations in various cities in the prefecture will participate. In total, between all the venues, around 140 locals can attend the hearing.
April 28 is the deadline for local IR candidates in Japan to have their presentations ready. After that, they have to deliver them to the national government and then play the waiting game. Selections, if any, should be in place before next summer.