Osaka Governor Hirofumi Yoshimura said on July 18, 2023 that the integrated resort and casino facility on Yumeshima Island will be difficult to launch by 2029. The impatiently expected Osaka Resort, which will be the first and only facility of this kind in the country, reportedly took too much time to get all the necessary government approvals to achieve the desired milestone still in 2029.
Shared Understanding of Delays:
According to Reuters and IAG, Yoshimura said that the resort may be opened later than originally planned and that such an assumption represents a “shared understanding of the people involved.” The Governor reportedly added: “Until now I have only mentioned the possibility of delays.” However, the Osaka Governor’s statement may be understood as the re-affirmation of the similar announcements made by MGM Resorts CEO and President Bill Hornbuckle earlier this year that the Osaka Integrated Resort may reportedly be expected to open in the second quarter of 2030.
Opening Likely in 2030:
“We are looking to break ground either late this year or first quarter next year and it’s between a four-and-a-half to five-year build,” Hornbuckle reportedly said in May. “It is probably going to open in the first or second quarter of 2030, so we’ve got some time to go. There is obviously a lot of work to be done and it is a man-made island in terms of borings, so that’s the general timing around it.”
But the MGM Resorts executive’s statement indicating four-and-a-half to five-year build certainly allowed some additional time for contingencies that are mostly likely to occur within the given period. However, as IAG reports, there were announcements that the facility may anyway launch still in 2029. One may assume that major works wwill have been finished by the end of 2029 and avail of a six-month period for fine tuning and launch of the facility in the second quarter of 2030, as indicated by the MGM executive.
Stakeholders Looking for Early Opening:
The $10 billion resort to be developed at a 490,000 square meter plot in north Yumeshima by MGM Resorts and Orix is reportedly expected to attract around 20 million visits and generate around $3.6 billion in revenues each year. For this reason, stakeholders are impatient to take advantage of the resort at the earliest opportunity.
The shortage of work force has been a significant concern for the partners to the Osaka Resort deal, but the paper work seems even more challenging. According to IAG, the Osaka government has recently extended the deadline for MGM and Orix to sign the respective implementation agreement until late September 2023. This move will reportedly extend the period for the formal termination of the original agreement signed between the operating partners and Osaka authorities in 2022.
Therefore the launch of the first and only resort in Osaka does not seem feasible in 2029. But the second quarter of 2030 may likely see the casino development opening its doors for players and visitors from around the world.