Wynn Resorts Limited has reportedly become the third foreign firm to officially announce that it has given up on efforts to win the license for the right to build and operate an integrated casino resort in the Japanese city of Osaka.
According to a report from GGRAsia, the Las Vegas-headquartered operator used an official statement to declare that it is now ‘currently focused’ on securing a license to bring one of the nation’s three upcoming integrated casino resorts to the Kanto region, which is home to the giant metropolises of Tokyo and Yokohama alongside the smaller cities of Chiba and Kawasaki.
Although most gambling is currently illegal in Japan, the coalition government of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe passed legislation in July of last year that is set to see the nation of some 126 million people offer up a trio of ten-year casino licenses. In order to be selected as a host for one of these coming Las Vegas-style facilities, communities are being required to partner with an experienced foreign operator before submitting their final plans to the central government in Tokyo.
There are reportedly up to ten Japanese communities that will be entering the race for one of these three licenses while Osaka is widely considered to be among the frontrunners. The city of over 20 million people purportedly wants to utilize a 121-acre plot of reclaimed land on Yumeshima Island as the site for its envisioned $10 billion integrated casino resort and it hopes to be able to begin welcoming guests in 2024 ahead of the subsequent start of its World Expo 2025 international exhibition.
GGRAsia reported that Wynn Resorts Limited’s decision to abandon its Osaka licensing efforts follows similar moves from American counterpart Las Vegas Sands Corporation and Hong Kong-based rival Melco Resorts and Entertainment Limited. These latter firms have purportedly begun concentrating their endeavors on the city of Yokohama while the race for the possible Osaka license is now thought to be between Galaxy Entertainment Group Limited, MGM Resorts International and Genting Malaysia Berhad.
Reportedly read the statement from Wynn Resorts Limited…
“Wynn Resorts Limited is grateful for the many months of positive dialogue we have enjoyed with the city of Osaka and its citizens and we appreciate the gracious hospitality we have received from them. Although we have decided not to pursue an integrated city resort in Osaka at this time, we wish the city the very best and look forward to following its continued success. Wynn Resorts Limited is currently focused on the Kanto area.”