Japan passes IR bill to legalise casinos

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“Integrated resort” openings will be limited to three locations initially.

Japan’s parliament has passed the Integrated Resort (IR) bill which will lead to the opening of the country’s first legal casino.

As per the bill, the casinos will be restricted to three locations in the initial phase.

The passage of bill had controversies and resistance from various groups. But the strong backing of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s ruling coalition and the opposition Japan Innovation Party helped the bill to navigate through the controversies.

Under the new law, integrated resorts, which comprise international conference halls, exhibition facilities and hotels, as well as casinos, will be opened in the country.

Amid concerns about gambling addiction, the new law imposes admission restrictions on Japanese casino guests. They will be allowed to enter casinos up to three days a week and 10 days a month, and charged admission of 6000 yen ($53.4) per day.

Seven years after the location of the nation’s first IR is designated, it will become possible to review the number of locations where IRs can be established.

Some local governments have already expressed a willingness to attract IRs. The locations of the resorts are expected to increase in number in the future. Opening a casino will be subject to consent from a local government hosting the facility.

“My Number” identification cards will be used to check how many times Japanese nationals as well as foreign nationals living in Japan enter casinos.

The Japanese government intends to limit the floor space of casinos to 3 per cent of the resort’s total floor space. Spaces such as aisles and eating and drinking areas will not be included in the casino’s floor space.

People under the age of 20 and gang members will be banned from entering casinos.


Source: nikkei.com