Nagasaki might consider delaying RFP process: report

Japan’s Nagasaki prefecture might consider delaying the start of its request-for-proposal (RFP) process for a tilt at hosting a casino resort scheme. That is according to media reports.

Nagasaki Shimbun reported that Nagasaki governor Hodo Nakamura mentioned the possibility at an event on Tuesday. The official reportedly added a potential delay was linked to the fact that Japan’s national so-called basic policy on integrated resorts (IRs), as large-scale casino complexes are known in that country, was yet to be published.

It had been previously mentioned in government circles and by investment analysts that the national basic IR policy might be released by July 26. A news report earlier this week, citing a national government-linked source, said that the publication of the final version of the document would be delayed until August or later.

Delay to publication of the national basic policy on IRs could have implications for a key phase in the first half of 2021, when local governments – in concert respectively with their selected private-sector partners – must apply to the national government for the right to host a casino resort.

Up to three such resorts will be permitted in a first phase of market liberalisation in Japan.

In his Tuesday comments, the Nagasaki governor said that if the timeline for local governments to put forward to the national government their casino bids was delayed, that could lead the prefecture to consider delaying the start of its RFP process, scheduled to begin between July and August, according to prior information from the Nagasaki authorities.

Three companies have previously confirmed to GGRAsia their respective intention to participate in Nagasaki’s RFP process. These three suitors are Japan’s Current Corp; a Japan unit of Casinos Austria International Holding GmbH; and Hong Kong-listed Oshidori International Holdings Ltd.

The local government has earmarked land at the Huis Ten Bosch theme park (pictured in a flle photo) in Sasebo city as the probable site for such a project.