Tomakomai city’s hopes of re-entering the Japan IR race have been dashed again as Hokkaido Governor Naomichi Suzuki made clear at a press conference that his earlier rejection of participating in the first round of licensing still stands.
Although the governor made his position clear in November 2019, the Tomakomai city government and other IR advocates have continued to harbour hopes that they could alter that verdict through various lobbying efforts.
Most recently, these hopes have been pinned upon the fact that the national IR development timeline was delayed for nine months, giving more time for environmental impact assessments.
This, in turn, plays upon the fact that when the governor issued his original November 2019 rejection of the initiative, he cited the notion that it would take several years to conduct necessary environmental studies and that there wasn’t enough time to complete them. Tomakomai city officials and their allies had hoped that the nine-month timeline delay might force the governor’s hand.
The governor just shook off these moves, stating that the extra nine months still did not leave sufficient time and, in any case, dealing with the Covid-19 crisis needs to be the prefectural government’s priority at this time.
Source: Asia Gaming Brief