MGM Resorts International could be building a casino on the former site of the Tsukiji fish market.
Although casinos are illegal in Japan, the Liberal Democratic Party submitted a legalization bill at the end of last year. It went onto deliberation in June and backers say it could help revitalize tourism in Japan.
Hong Kong based investment bank, CLSA, reported that casino will create about 40 billion dollar of market per year to Japan. The industry predicts if this law is passed, Japan could become Asia’s second-largest market in Macau.
Tokyo, Osaka, Nagasaki, Hokkaido, Okinawa and others, many municipalities are interested.
CEO of MGM, James Mullen, visited and explored the Tsukiji market in March to assess the potential of the location. There are rumors of plans for an integrated resort, including casinos, in the construction.
An interior view of the former market at 4 a.m. when the fish was distributed amongst vendors.
According to senior research analyst at CLSA, Jay Defibaugh, land price of Tsukiji is higher than Odaiba, but it can be expect more visitors because of its convenient location. He said “Casino management skill will feel very attractive cost, even if it took”.
Vice President of town development promotion at Urban Development Bureau of the capital, Tadashi Sato mentioned the site use of the Tsukiji market site is still uncertain.
Tsukiji market was the site of Japan’s largest fish market since 1935. In 2001, it was decided the market had to be moved to the Toyosu district due to the aging facilities and to help streamline production. At present, the new location is still under construction set to be complete in 2015.
Odaiba is still regarded as the strongest candidate for the site so far.
Featured image: An aerial view of the former site of Tsukiji Market and perhaps the new site of an MGM Casino.