In Japan and the government for Wakayama Prefecture has reportedly announced that Suncity Holdings Japan Company Limited has pulled out of the race to be named as the operator for the jurisdiction’s envisioned integrated casino resort.
According to a Thursday report from GGRAsia, the small Honshu authority is currently going through the request for proposal (RFP) stage of its hunt for a suitable firm to run the proposed Las Vegas-style facility and had been considering a pitch from the subordinate of Hong Kong-based real estate giant Suncity Group Holdings Limited since April of last year.
However, the source reported that the exit means that there is now only one runner left in the contest to be named as the preferred operator for Wakayama Prefecture’s planned integrated casino resort, the Clairvest Neem Ventures subsidiary of Canadian private equity management firm Clairvest Group Incorporated. This entity now purportedly looks certain to be put forward as the jurisdiction’s chosen candidate to run the envisioned gambling-friendly venue being planned for a 50.7-acre plot of privately-owned land on the Marina City artificial island.
Home to approximately 945,000 people, Wakayama Prefecture released the official implementation policy for its ambitious resort casino campaign in January and reportedly still hopes to have selected a preferred partner by ‘the spring’. The community purportedly then plans to submit its completed application for one of the nation’s coming trio of 40-year gambling licenses to a panel of federal selectors in hopes of receiving the green light to premiere such a gambling-friendly facility before the conclusion of 2026.
In eschewing the RFP process in Wakayama Prefecture and the billionaire boss of Suncity Group Holdings Limited, Alvin Chau Cheok Wa, reportedly declared that his firm is suffering due to the ‘enormous impact’ of the coronavirus pandemic and that this ‘uncertainty’ is likely to remain as a considerable factor ‘for a long time’. He purportedly stated that his firm had decided to pull out after ‘careful consideration’ because the jurisdiction was also taking ‘much longer than expected’ in order to pick its preferred operating partner.
Although most casino gambling is currently illegal in Japan, the coalition government of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe passed legislation in July of 2018 that is to see the nation of some 126 million people offer up a trio of casino licenses. In order to be selected as a host for one of these coming facilities, candidate communities are being required to partner with an experienced foreign operator before submitting their final plans to selectors in Tokyo ahead of an April of 2022 deadline.