Now, though, the project is set to begin construction and to be finally completed by a 2030-set deadline. Osaka governor Hirofumi Yoshimura feels confident that there is nothing that would disrupt this progress or makee it harder for the project to succeed in the future.
Osaka Is Confident in Project’s Success Come What May
Of course, the new deadline for the project’s completion is already a far cry from what was hoped to be the original opening date set for 2025, when the Osaka-Kansai Expo will be taking place.
That time window was of course rendered unrealistic by a number of factors, among which the withdrawal of bidders, the shutdown of the global economy due to COVID-19 and not least, internal rifts and accusations of bribery and influence-peddling in Japan.
Yoshimura is confident that it has all been for the better, as he hailed the cultural significance of the prefecture and the area in general. Speaking to the public and quoted by Yahoo News, the governor said:
Kansai is an area very deep in history. Traditional Japanese culture is something you don’t get in Macau, Singapore, or South Korea. And those unique points are what we will promote from the resort.
Osaka governor Hirofumi Yoshimura
The future project will be built as a partnership between MGM Resorts International, a US casino giant, and Orix Corp, which is the local Japanese partner for the company. The estimated cost of the resort is not quite yet pinpointed but it will run into the neighborhood of $10 billion. The initial cost needed to be invested to start construction on Yumeshima, an artificial island in Osaka Bay, is put at almost $8 billion.
Opportunity for an Economic Boom
Japan has been keen to see this project through as it largely sees it as an economic boon waiting to happen. According to CLSA analyst Jay Defibaugh, the upcoming resort will have a significant impact on tourism and the economy, as similar projects had in places like Singapore.
Of course, not everyone is convinced that would be the case, with all but a few companies pulling completely out of the race and considering other opportunities. MGM Resorts International is pressing on with its own plans, however, and it will be a weathervane for the success of this undertaking. Should it prove successful, however, the race for the second license for an IR will be cut-throat.