Osaka IR plans could resume this year

The process to select a private partner for Osaka's IR bid was delayed in June.
The process to select a private partner for Osaka's IR bid was delayed in June.

A representative of the Osaka Tourism Bureau said the process would resume when inbound tourism opens in around six months’ time.

Japan.- Hiroshi Mizohata, representative director of the Osaka Tourism Bureau has said that although the tourism and hotel industries in the country were heavily hit by the pandemic, visitors could return sooner than expected.

At a seminar in Kansai and referring to the integrated resorts (IR) bid from Osaka, he estimated that “when inbound visitors return, the IR operators will get going. It should all return to normal in six months to a year.”

The IR process to select a private partner for Osaka to bid on one of Japan’s three licences for IR developments was delayed in June with no specific new deadline set.

The process came to a halt owing to measures against the Covid-19 pandemic and has since suffered several delays.

Mizohata foresees that the Kansai region and Osaka will become popular for inbound visitors again once travel resumes.

According to IAG, he said “tourism appeals to the five senses. Teleworking and online are not natural. Do not dance the dance of the media. What you have all been working on and the services you are providing were correct. Have confidence.”

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