Japan: Its Concerns for Allowing Casinos in Their Country

Japan will be holding anti-casino meetings in the month of August. The meetings will give an opportunity for residents and businesses to tell the government of Japan why they feel that allowing casinos in their area will have negative impacts. These meetings will be open to the public and will be held in nine different cities throughout Japan. The hearings will be held in cities that include Tokyo, Hiroshima, and Takamatsu and will be held from August 17 through August 29.

Some of the concerns residents and even the government have are the threat of organized crime within the casinos and adding on to the already existent gambling issue in their country.

There are big plans already being discussed that should help prevent these issues from becoming a problem. There will be major restrictions on how many times a resident can visit a casino and a possible entrance fee. The method they will use to keep track of the number of times a resident has been to any casino is by requiring them to obtain a My Number card. Not many residents have obtained this card so far, but it may become a regulation after these public hearings are over. The entrance fee will also deter residents from visiting too many times and it would be wiser for them to pay once, gamble, and come back again another time instead of several times a day.

They are also considering restrictions for the owners of these casinos. Basically, they will be a part of an IR and before they can build their casino there needs to be approval from the Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Ministry after an initial screening. Every IR is restricted to one casino in their area and they need to have other infrastructures such as a convention center, hotels, a theatre, and a recreation facility to be approved. There will also be taxes charged on each IR from profits made at their casinos. Taxes will be distributed between the government and tourism promotion.

They will also require licenses for every casino and these licenses will need to be renewed every so often. They are also discussing random inspections of the casinos to make sure they are following all regulations. If they are found to break any regulations, they can run the risk of being shut down.

These are some of the many regulations in the works in Japan to ease the residents and government fears of the possible problems casinos can create. There are many benefits to having casinos among all the risks. One of the benefits is how it can provide economic growth for Japan. Hearings are public and local residents are encouraged to attend.