Integrated Casino Resorts’ Request-for-Proposal Phase in Nagasaki Prefecture to Resume in January 2021

Nagasaki prefecture officials revealed that the request-for-proposal (RFP) phase for the selection of a private sector partner for the local Government in the competition for hosting an integrated casino resort is restarting after being temporarily delayed in September.

Representatives of the prefecture published a new timetable, according to which the new request-for-proposal phase is to resume in January 2021.

The new timetable for the RFP was released as part of a public consultation, which Nagasaki officials rolled out on November 25th. The consultation is aimed at collecting public opinions regarding the revised integrated casino resorts implementation policy of the prefecture. As it has recently become clear, the revised draft included guidelines associated mostly with ensuring protection from problem gambling and gambling-related harm for young people, as well as some measures that seek to tackle the risks of spreading infectious diseases, such as the novel coronavirus, inside casinos.

The process of selecting a private-sector partner for the Nagasaki Government is now set to complete between the summer and autumn of 2021, with local officials having shared expectations to have established a plan for an integrated casino resort development with such a partner by the winter of 2021 at the latest. The prefecture is aimed at submitting its IR proposal to the country’s Government in the spring of 2022.

The Phase Was Already Postponed as Japanese Government Delayed the Project

In April 2020, the prefecture published Kuyshi – Nagasaki IR Basic Concept – to explain the basic points of the integrated casino resort project, including its objectives and potential, the facilities that should be included in it and the way they are supposed to function. The basic concept also included some measures aimed at addressing concerns associated with problem gambling.

The Nagasaki prefecture chose to develop an integrated casino resort in an area of 31 hectares of land situated in close proximity to the Huis Ten Bosch theme park. According to the prefecture officials, the strategic location would help the project attract foreign casino patrons apart from the local ones. The population in a radius of 1,500 kilometers of the place is 1 billion people, which means the project has huge potential and would probably attract the eventual private sector company.

In September, Nagasaki officials made an announcement that after receiving information that the Japanese Government was set to delay its integrated casino resorts project for a period between 6 and 12 months, they decided to cease the request-for-proposal phase of the process for an indefinite time. By the time this announcement took place, three major private sector companies had confirmed their interest in operating a potential integrated casino resort in the prefecture – Oshidori International Holdings Ltd, Current Corp and a Japanese division of Casinos Austria International Holding GmbH. Now, a fourth candidate, a consortium led by Pixel Companyz Inc., appeared.

Before releasing the new timetable for the request-for-proposal phase, the Japanese Government delayed the application period given to local governments to apply for hosting one of the three casino resorts that were allowed in the country. The application period is now set to begin in October 2021 and to end in April 2022.

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