New Wave of Responsible Gambling Proposals in Japan Limits Casino Visits to 10 Per Month

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New Wave of Responsible Gambling Proposals in Japan Limits Casino Visits to 10 Per Month

Japanese lawmakers tabled on Thursday a proposal that aims to limit the number of casino visits allowed to ten per month, local news outlet Japan Times reports. The measure is intended to curb gambling addiction issues that could arise from the planned opening of casinos across the nation.

The plan was presented to the ruling Liberal Party and its coalition partner Komeito earlier today. It is understood that it has already drawn opposition from a number of lawmakers as they perceive it too strict of a limitation.

Under the proposal, Japanese nationals and foreigners residing in Japan would be allowed three casino visits within seven consecutive days and ten casino visits within 28 consecutive days. Their visits to the country’s casinos would be tracked via Japan’s My Number system.

Introduced in 2015, the system issues a 12-digit ID number to Japanese citizens and foreign residents of the country that is used for various purposes, including social security, taxation, and disaster response.

It is understood that lawmakers from the ruling parties have expressed doubts over the use of the ID cards as an effective means to track people’s visits to casinos as just 10% of Japan’s population have had these issued so far.

What’s Next for Japan’s Casino Legalization Process?

The Japanese Diet approved a bill that legalized casino gambling in late 2016. Under that legislative piece, casino venues could only be built in Japan as part of larger integrated (MICE) resorts. Lawmakers now have to approve a separate bill that would set the rules under which the gambling facilities would be operated and where these would be built.

It is believed that the second piece of casino gambling legislation could be introduced by March. It was previously hoped that the bill could be crafted, introduced, and voted by the end of 2017, but political turmoil in the country delayed the process.

The second bill would also include responsible gambling measures that would be focused on limiting the negative impact of the future casinos on a nation that has already been engulfed in concerns regarding growing problem gambling rates.

A recent study by the Kurihama Medical and Addiction Center at the National Hospital Organization found that 3.2 million Japanese have suffered from milder or heavier forms of problem gambling behavior.

Under previously tabled responsible gambling proposals, the area casinos would occupy should not exceed 15,000 square meters and should account for no more than 3% of the total area of the integrated resorts they would be part of. An admission fee for Japanese citizens and foreign residents is also planned to be added to the list of measures included in the second casino bill.

The legislative piece would also determine the number of casinos that would be allowed to be built in the country as well as their preferred locations. The gambling venues together with the rest of the facilities at the integrated resorts would aim to boost Japan’s tourism product just as the nation has begun to regain its economic mojo.

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