Authorities are considering plans for a “green” integrated resort with a casino.
Japan.- The Hokkaido Tourism Organization (HTO) is considering plans for an integrated resort (IR) featuring a casino in a bid to bolster tourism and the local economy. According to GGRAsia, HTO head Kenji Koganezawa said the island was considering a “green IR”.
Authorities have set an annual target for Hokkaido to attract over 10.4 million tourists. This would surpass the 8.36 million visitors the region received in 2019, before the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Hokkaido decided against bidding to host a casino and IR in 2019, citing environmental concerns. However, Tomakomai City has expressed interest in an IR as part of its regeneration strategy. A public policy plan published in December 2022 promoted a casino-resort policy for 2023-2027.
The only approved casino resort scheme for Japan so far is in Osaka. In September, the Osaka Prefectural Government signed an agreement with a consortium that includes MGM Resorts International and Orix to develop the IR. Nagasaki has bid to host a resort buts its proposal has yet to be approved by central government.