The central government bureaucracy has launched its first major initiative since the July passage of the IR Implementation Act by beginning surveys on the IR bid intentions of all 47 prefectures and 20 designated cities.
This initiative was taken without public announcement in the latter part of September.
The central government is gathering information from the local municipalities as part of its own preparation for the launch, on July 1, 2019, of the approximately 95-member Casino Management Board and, at around the same time, the publication of the basic national policies and standards for IR bidding.
It is thought that the government is acting with a degree of urgency in part to help Osaka to reach its goal of opening its Yumeshima IR in 2024, ahead of the anticipated 2025 World Expo.
Nearly forty municipalities sent tourism-related officials to a Cabinet Office “IR Explanation Meeting” in early August, but in the current central government initiative even those prefectures and major cities that have openly dismissed IR bids or have remained entirely passive will also be targets of the survey.