Russia became the latest country to formally cancel its participation in the 2025 Osaka Kansai Japan Expo — more bad news for the troubled event, which already faces pavilion construction delays, skyrocketing costs and little public support.

The announcement was made in Paris at the general assembly meeting of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE), which awards the expos, on Tuesday — two days before the first tickets go on sale Thursday. The Russian representative told the assembly that “insufficient communication” with the Osaka Expo organizers led to the decision to withdraw.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno said Wednesday the Japanese government was aware of Russia’s announcement but had not received a formal notice that Moscow was canceling. However, he said Russia's invasion of Ukraine meant their participation had already been in doubt.