Osaka’s bid to host the World Expo 2025 has been given a boost with the British government announcing it will vote for the Japanese city when member nations convene in Paris on 23 November.
The UK’s decision has Osaka officials hopeful that other European nations will follow suit, with a number having previously thrown their support behind France, which withdrew its candidacy in January. The Russian city of Ekaterinburg and Baku in Azerbaijan are Osaka’s remaining rivals to host the Expo.
News that Britain’s vote is headed its way comes as Osaka Governor Ichiro Matsui – who is also President of the 2025 Japan World Expo Committee – revealed he would visit Malaysia and Pakistan this week specifically to lobby for votes.
Matsui will spend four days, starting Tuesday 30 October, discussing Japan’s bid with government officials in the capital cities of Kuala Lumpur and Islamabad.
Osaka’s bid for the 2025 World Expo, which would be held on the man-made Yumeshima Island, has been closely linked with its plans for an integrated resort – to be constructed on the same site should the city win one of three IR licenses to issued nation-wide by the national government’s IR committee.
It has been suggested that an IR could provide a range of complementary and supporting facilities for the Expo, including accommodation, and potentially reduce some costs for both Expo organizers and IR operators