Japan is still choosing the right candidate to build the first IR in this country, thus allowing the first casino on the island that previously had very strict laws about gambling. One of those candidates is Melco Resorts and Entertainment Limited, which is hoping to get chosen by the Government of Japan as the #1 casino operator for this job. They promised that they would create more than 20,000 job opportunities for Japanese and foreigners, should they become the one to build the IR in Japan.
Melco is a company based in Hong Kong, and they are currently very positive about being chosen to build the IR. If they become selected, they will also get a license for operating a casino in a country which is projected by many to have revenue as high as Las Vegas and Macau.
The CEO of Melco, Lawrence Ho, stated in an interview he gave for Nikkei Asian Review that the Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, had helped them with his labor reform package and that Melco would have open positions in 14 industries which include hotels, construction, restaurants, and more. Ho confirmed that the majority of the employed people would be Japanese, but that it was difficult to make estimates as some of the industries still did not exist in Japan.
In fact, Nikkei Asian Review states that Japan will pass a bill which would allow for blue-collar workers to apply for jobs in that country and ask for permanent residency. This is suggested as a way to fill the need of able workers in Japan which faces a serious crisis in this aspect. If the bill is passed, Japan should see as many as 345,150 new residents in the near future.
Melco is just one of several companies that have huge plans for entering the Japanese market. Many have already made a lot of promises, some of which seem pretty interesting, yet a bit unrealistic. If everything goes well, we should see the first IR open by 2025.
Ho added that the planned budget for investing in Japanese IR is $10 billion which is the cost of the construction and acquisition of the land. Once the bidding process begins, Melco will form a consortium, and they have already begun talking with some of the possible local partners.
Finally, Ho stated that Melco targeted two areas in Japan – Osaka and Yokohama, as these seem like the most suitable places to build IRs.
Furthermore, the Government of Osaka also expressed interest in obtaining a license and becoming home to one of the IRs. On the other hand, there was a poll in Yokohama that questioned the sentiment about the IR in this area, and it turned out that 94% of the citizens have quite a negative sentiment towards having a gambling facility near them. However, local businesses are already going on marketing campaigns in order to change public opinion on this issue.
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