The government approved Tuesday the bid by Osaka Prefecture to host the 2025 World Exposition.
The western Japanese city will be pitted against Paris, while Russia is also seen as moving to announce its candidacy to host the world’s fair. Osaka previously hosted the expo in 1970, an event that symbolized Japan’s rapid economic growth after World War II along with the 1964 Tokyo Olympics.
The host will be decided through a vote by member countries of the expo’s governing body, the Bureau International des Expositions, at its general meeting in November 2018.
Osaka Gov. Ichiro Matsui will file the candidacy as early as April 24 at the BIE headquarters in Paris. Sadayuki Sakakibara, the chief of the Japan Business Federation, heads the bidding committee and will accompany Matsui.
Osaka has proposed to hold the event on the artificial island of Yumeshima over a period of 185 days between May and November 2025, with estimates that it could benefit the economy by 1.9 trillion yen ($17 billion), while 28 million to 30 million people are expected to visit the fair.
“It will bring significant economic impact to our country,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a press conference after the Cabinet approved Osaka’s bid.
The 1970 Osaka Expo was visited by around 64 million people. Japan also hosted the expo in 2005 in Aichi Prefecture.
Construction costs for the latest attempt are estimated at 125 billion yen. The central government, the Osaka prefectural and municipal governments as well as the private sector will each shoulder a third of the expenses.
Japan is planning to push its bid at the BIE’s general meetings to be held in June and November. It will also have a similar opportunity when the body visits Osaka for inspection in early 2018 at the earliest.