The future of IRs in Japan looks uncertain as pandemic complications plague proceedings
Japan's Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, Akaba Kazuyoshi has stated that a decision will be made regarding the Japan IR application schedule. Japan's much-anticipated Integrated Resorts hang in the balance as difficulties suggest the application process may have to be postponed. The original timeframe for the IR application is January to July 2021 but based on the impact of the COVID-19 virus and the status of various local governments, it may now be subject to change.
Akaba Kazuyoshi said in a press conference on Friday: "Some IR operators that cooperate with local governments are experiencing difficulties due to the impact of the epidemic, and there are also opinions that there are uncertainties in the future. We will confirm the situation with the local government before we will take action. "
As of now, Yokohama, Osaka, Nagasaki, and Wakayama, the four cities where the potential IR location in Japan, have all announced the postponement of their request of proposal due to the impact of the epidemic and uncertainty about when the Japan central government’s basic IR policy will be launched.
Akaba Kazuyoshi said in June of this year: "Although the COVID-19 pandemic is still spreading, we have already started contacting our local governments who are interested in participating in the competition, and are conforming whether to set the application period from January to July 2011."