Yokohama IR faces opposition

An anti-gambling group is pushing against a Yokohama IR and sent a letter to Mayor Fumiko Hayashi warning about the opposition such a project will face.

Japan.- The casino industry will soon land in Japan and Yokohama may want to host an IR. However, anti-gambling groups are gathering forces to push against a potential venue and warned the city Mayor.

Yokohama Mayor Fumiko Hayashi received a letter by anti-casino groups criticising the potential casino. The Yokohama Harbor Transport Association and the Yokohama Harbor Resort Association sent the document. Chairman Yukio Fujiki leads both groups and stated their firm opposition to an IR bid.

“Operating an IR casino over the objections of an unpersuaded public is totally unacceptable,” the letter says.

According to the groups, an international convention centre without a casino could attract 20 million visitors annually. They also forecasted an overall economic impact of about €16 billion. Furthermore, they warned family-aimed companies like Disney wouldn’t want Yokohama to host an IR close to them.

Costly endeavour

Yokohama recently found out that an IR may cost up to €10.7 billion.

The information surged through a request for information (RFI) process, but it’s unknown who gave such an answer. Other entities – from 12 contributors – said it may cost as low as €5 billion.

An estimated €2.8 billion to €7.1 billion revenue could come from a Yokohama casino, the RFI revealed. The estimate for annual EBITDA may range from €652 million to €1.7 billion.

Wynn targets Yokohama

Wynn Resorts had already announced it will open an office in Japan but further details have been revealed. According to Wynn Resorts Development Japan (an affiliate company for the operator in the country) president Chris Gordon, they want to build the largest integrated resort (IR) in the world either in the capital city, in Yokohama or in Osaka.

“The current projections are that it would be the largest Integrated Resort in the world,” Gordon said, as quoted by AGBrief. He also explained that the initial investment for such a development would be between €7 billion and €8 billion, with annual operating expenses as high as €1.2 billion.

The official further detailed that Wynn Resorts is seeking to land a partnership deal with at least one major local company to gain additional credibility, and announced the project would employ between 11,000 and 16,700 people.

In this article:
Casinos Japan