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Osaka plans to increase 2024 budget for IR promotion bureau

February 19, 2024 Japan Industry Updates

The Osaka prefecture of Japan said on Wednesday that it plans to increase the budget for its integrated resort (IR) marketing bureau by about 9% annually to JPY655 million (US$4.4 million) in 2024.

Japan’s first IR with a casino is scheduled to take place in Osaka. The Osaka prefecture and municipal governments established the IR promotion bureau together, contributing 50% of the agency’s costs. It is anticipated that the Osaka International Railway would open in the early 2030s.

The planned budget for Osaka Prefecture’s fiscal year 2024 includes the funding amount. The prefecture’s governor, Hirofumi Yoshimura, firmly supported the IR promotion bureau’s request for funding from the city.

Roughly 83 percent, or JPY546 million, of the new IR marketing bureau’s budget is designated for human expenses, which comprise 49 workers. The remaining seventeen percent, or JPY 110 million, will go toward project expenses.

The initiative will cost JPY73 million, which will include the operation of an IR review committee, monitoring of IR development, and communication with the national government. In addition, JPY33 million will be allocated for the IR project’s public relations campaigns, and JPY900,000 will be saved for initiatives aimed at preventing gambling addiction.

Mayor of Osaka Hideyuki Yokoyama spoke in December about some of the anticipated economic benefits of the Osaka IR, which would be branded as MGM Osaka, including its ability to draw in 20 million foreign visitors annually.

The promoter of the project, Osaka IR KK, is a joint venture between many smaller investors and MGM Resorts International, an American casino operator. Orix Corp. is based in Japan. The parent company of MGM China Holdings Ltd., a concessionaire operating casinos in Macau, is MGM Resorts.

MGM Osaka may open as early as autumn 2030, according to statements made by Osaka authorities in early September. The initial investment cost of JPY1.08 trillion (currently US$7.59 billion) is anticipated to increase by JPY190 billion.

According to a statement released at the time by Osaka city and prefectural authorities, construction work at the site began in early December to prevent soil liquefaction and address other land issues.

The CEO and President of MGM Resorts, Bill Hornbuckle, announced during the company’s fourth-quarter earnings call on February 13 that the MGM Osaka promoters had successfully started liquefaction countermeasures in the fourth quarter, keeping the plan in place to start preliminary construction in 2025 and open in 2030.

Original story by: GGRAsia

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