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and his cabinet. Following the Liberal Democrat Party’s (LDP) landslide victory in the 2012 general elections, Shinzo Abe replaced Yoshihiko Noda as Prime Minister and has become the only Prime Minister to win the general elections five consecutive times, the last one in October 2017.


In September this year Japan’s LDP will choose its new leader and despite some interest from other players such as Shigeru Ishiba and Shinjiro Koizumi, it is thought that Shinzo Abe will win the leadership contest although this could depend on the continuation of the economic recovery in Japan.


Under his leadership several measures have been introduced to boost Japan’s ailing economy. He comes from a line of family politicians and his grandfather was former Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi whilst his father was foreign minister.


After long gloomy years of stagnation the turnaround for Japan’s economy began at the end of 2012 with the election of Shinzo Abe followed by the appointment of Haruhiko Kuroda as Governor of the Bank of Japan in 2013.


Te leaders played out some controversial moves which appear to have paid off and whilst nominal GDP growth has been impressive, some fear the division between real growth and inflation is however hazy.


Japan has since registered economic growth in seven consecutive quarters, the first time since the mid 1990s.


For Shinzo Abe the ‘Abenomics’ economy revival programme has lost its momentum and the casinos now represent a way to stimulate growth.


Tere are several key locations rumoured as possible sites for the Integrated Resorts which include Tokyo, Yokohama, Okinawa, Hokkaido, Nagasaki, Osaka and Miyazaki. Local governments would need central government approval and although Tokyo is a prime location there is expected to be fierce competition from the other areas who will view the IRs as a great way to promote local economic growth.


Osaka is a clear favourite with Fumeshina, the man made artificial island being the main location idea for the IR. Te Osaka Prefecture established in April 2017 was set up as a specific bureau to work on the IR issue. Te city is located in the Kansai region with a population of 2.7 million in the metropolitan area and 19.3 million in total.


and mountainous and unsuitable for agricultural or residential use so most are located in coastal areas.


Today Japan is considered a great power and has the world’s third largest economy by nominal GDP after the US and China and the world’s fourth largest economy by PPP after the US, China and India. It is also the world’s fourth largest exporter and fourth largest importer.


It has a highly skilled workforce and among the highest educated countries in the world. Its service sector accounts for three quarters of the GDP with a large industrial sector.


Strong policies in the early 1950s led to a strong industrial growth rate and the 1960s to 80s was often described as the Miracle period. Te crash of the Tokyo Stock Exchange in the early 90s however saw a period of low growth rate for 20 odd years after.


Nominal GDP growth rate is now estimated at ¥564.3 trillion for 2018 with a predicted 1.8 per cent growth this year. Tere is low unemployment in Japan currently around three per cent.


Te emperor is a ceremonial figurehead whilst executive power is wielded chiefly by the PM


Tokyo is of course the largest city with 13 million plus population and the two main proposed locations including an area known as the Tokyo Fish Market site. Other areas mentioned include Yokohama’s site on the Tokyo Bay which is an existing dock site whilst Sasebo in Nagasaki in the south is closest to South Korea with a strong tourist reach. Te proposed site is near Huis Ten Bosch, a theme park which replicates a Dutch village from the 1600s.


Wakayama Marina City is also in the running. Tis is an artificial resort island near Osaka which currently accommodates hotel, hot spring


NEWSWIRE / INTERACTIVE /MARKET DATA P111


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