Osaka could scoop 2025 World Expo after Paris exit

    French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe is understood to have withdrawn Paris’s candidacy to host the 2025 World Expo, according to a report from French newspaper Le Journal du Dimanche on Sunday.

    Osaka, which is one of the bidders to the event along with Baku, Azerbaijan, and Ekaterinburg, Russia, reacted cautiously to the news.

    “Even if the report is true, all it means is that the number of countries bidding has decreased from four to three. Osaka will continue to make strong efforts to win the Expo,” Gov. Ichiro Matsui tweeted on Sunday night.

    According to the newspaper, Philippe decided to withdraw from the bid over doubts whether the project would be economically viable.

    Paris has been the main rival to Osaka’s 2025 World Expo bid, and if they are indeed out of the picture, Osaka’s plan to host the expo in Yumeshima may become a reality.

    The news would also be welcomed for those backing the building of an IR in Osaka.

    saka Mayor Hirofumi Yoshimura previously said that the city hopes to have a casino built on Yumeshima before the 2025 Expo.