Osaka Mayor Ichiro Matsui has said that the city and Osaka prefecture have been asked to submit documents explaining how and when the local authorities would resolve issues related to their proposal to host an integrated resort with a casino. Matsui’s comments implied that the national authorities’ assessment of Osaka’s IR District Development Plan was related to the request for such documents.
The mayor of Osaka said to the media on Monday that the local authorities have been asked to explain how and when they would resolve issues related to their proposal to host an integrated resort with a casino.
The mayor implied that the request for such documents was linked to the national authorities assessment of Osaka’s IR District Development Plan. The plan was submitted to the central government on April 26.
According to information gathered by GGRAsia’s Japan correspondent, based on what the mayor said and what the Japan Tourism Agency has separately disclosed, an expert panel set up by the national government has ended its examination of the initial Osaka plan. Nagasaki is competing for the right to host a casino resort.
The Osaka City Council approved the metropolis’ IR plan in March. Five people who were once members of the Osaka city council argued that it was illegal for the city to set aside JPY79. billion (about US$563 million at current exchange rates) for the cost of soil-improvement measures at the planned construction site for the IR at Yum.
Lobbyists have questioned the use of public funds for an environmental assessment relating to the site.
In July, it was reported that an attorney was going to file a lawsuit after some anti-casino citizens in Osaka were told the city’s audit committee wouldn’t investigate the land lease deal for the Osaka casino scheme.
The Japanese national authorities might make a decision on Osaka’s tilt by this autumn, according to MGM Resorts International, Osaka’s private-sector partner. The feasibility of that timetable was called into question last month by an Osaka MP.
An attempt by anti-casino lobbyists to have a local referendum on the IR policy was rejected by the prefectural assembly in July.