The RFP process has been officially announced in Osaka, Japan. An official announcement declared that they are open to proposals from operators for the much awaited and coveted Integrated Casino License.
The Japanese city plans to have an integrated resort operational before the 2025 World Expo.
However, in a statement to the press, Osaka Governor Hirofumi Yoshimura said that it is not necessary that they need the facility ready by 2025 – it is not an official deadline. He added that however, it was crucial that operators let them know of the time required for the development and ensure that the properties are of the highest quality.
The site allotted is a sprawling 49-hectare piece of land on the artificial island Yumeshima. Operators seeking a license should develop and an integrated resort that has an international conference center with a capacity of over 6,000 guests and also five-star accommodation facilities with a minimum of 3000 rooms.
The RFP deadline for operators is 24 May 2019. It is possible that the application for IR licenses can be tendered in August.
While the national government is yet to formulate its policy and guidelines for the IRs, Osaka is taking the lead to ensure they understand their potential operators better and can have the terms and conditions laid out with better ease of understanding.
Earlier this week Japan revealed its plans to tackle problem gambling ahead of awarding its first integrated resort licenses. The plan includes removal of cash withdrawal machines from pachinko parlors, and all government operated gambling facilities.
The final call for the selection of the operator lies with the central government. Once they formulate their IR policy, Osaka will make a final submission to the central government with the name of their chosen operator.
A total of three integrated resorts will be permitted in Japan to different operators.
Currently, the Japanese IR license is a hot pursuit amongst top global gambling and hospitality giants like Hard Rock, Vegas Sands, MGM Resorts International, and Genting Malaysia.