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Adelson says IR bill won’t allow “best” kind of IR

Las Vegas Sands CEO Sheldon Adelson has criticized Japan’s planned IR legislation and warned the bill in its current form will mean a lower level of investment from his company should it win a license.

On Friday afternoon, Adelson visited the Osaka Prefectural Office and held a private meeting with Osaka Governor Ichiro Matsui and Osaka Mayor Hirofumi Yoshimura. This follows a similar meeting with the Osaka Governor by Sands’ COO Robert Goldstein on June 21.

After the meeting, Adelson briefly took questions from the assembled Japanese news media, which referred to him in their print stories as “the Casino Emperor.”

Adelson criticized the Experts’ Committee draft for regulation of IRs which has been proposed at the central government level, declaring that it wouldn’t allow construction of “the best kind of IR.” According to Adelson, under the current regulation proposals, Sands’ investment would be capped at about US$4-5 billion, but if the regulations were revised in a favorable direction, a $10 billion investment would be possible.

The proposed upper limits on casino floor space are apparently the aspect of the regulatory proposals that concern Adelson most.

Osaka Governor Matsui would likely be fully in agreement with Adelson, as he has been making similar criticisms of the central government plan, but it remains unclear if Tokyo will be accommodating so long as the general public remains overwhelmingly opposed to the construction of IRs.

Las Vegas Sands is considered a leading candidate to partner with Osaka in its IR bid, although several other major operators are expected to contest this location fiercely.

More news from this jurisdiction

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Nagasaki Governor Hodo Nakamura faces an electoral challenge from a candidate affiliated with the Japan Communist Party as he seeks a third term.

JapanFriday, Jan 12, 2018

In a piecemeal fashion, Japan is beginning to strengthen its anti-addiction infrastructure in anticipation of the opening of its first IRs in the next decade. The latest step is the establishment of the Hyogo Kobe Addiction Countermeasures Center, which will include a hotline for telephone consultation.

JapanThursday, Jan 11, 2018

TransAct Technologies said it has teamed up with AIGC Co., a new consulting agency focused on the potential casino gaming market in Japan, to promote its products.

JapanWednesday, Jan 10, 2018

Hideo Sawada, the founder of H.I.S., one of Japan’s largest travel agencies, who is also president of Huis Ten Bosch, the theme park in Sasebo city has sketched out a grand vision of an undersea casino in Nagasaki.

JapanThursday, Jan 04, 2018

The Japan Racing Association (JRA) began implementing third-party gambling addiction exclusions at the end of December, heralding a new direction in Japanese policy expected to apply not only to current forms of gambling, but also to the IRs likely to open in the mid-2020s.

JapanMonday, Dec 18, 2017

With four separate municipal governments now considering IR licensing bids within her prefecture, Hokkaido Governor Harumi Takahashi made comments last Thursday indicating that she will maintain a neutral and largely passive policy posture.

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With an event in Tokyo on the 7th and another in Nagasaki on the 14th, the RFI process is now underway for the Huis Ten Bosch theme park site in the prefecture’s Sasebo city.