Yokohama citizens oppose IR

Yokohama citizens oppose IR

A recent survey showed Yokohama citizens oppose a potential IR despite the government’s push to develop a venue in the future.

Japan.- A Yokohama integrated resort (IR) may soon arrive in the area as the industry’s regulation moves forward. However, a recent survey may post a hurdle for the government’s aspirations.

Kanagawa Shimbun and JX PRESS conducted an inquiry among Yokohama citizens regarding an IR bid. The results were absolutely negative: 63.85% of the population opposes the bid. Moreover, 72.48% thinks that the government should hold a referendum on the matter.

48.8% strongly opposes the Yokohama IR bid, while 15.05% were doubtful but opposed it as well. Only 9.78% said they strongly approve and 15.92% are OK with it.

The push

Japan has drawn major interest from international operators, even as its future was uncertain. However, after Yokohama decided to go after an IR bid, many parties have already set their course for the city.

Mayor Fumiko Hayashi, who had said she was a “blank slate” on a potential IR, has changed her mind. Not only she favours a bid, but she says she feels “a sense of crisis” for its development.

“I’ve decided upon an IR bid due to my sense of crisis about Yokohama’s future,” she said on Tuesday. “It’s a big national project which could become a driving force for tourism and the regional economy in Yokohama.”

The revised budget submitted to the city council includes a €2.22 million provision for IR expenses.

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