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Anxious casino operators seek clarity as Japan opens public debate

Casino heavyweights are now anxiously watching how the public debate on casinos in Japan as they seek clarity in a multi-billion dollar prospect that is now muddled by evolving gambling regulations.

Anxious casino operators seek clarity as Japan opens public debateAnalysts have been warning for months that the Japanese government is already nipping the casino industry’s full potential in the bud as it toys with the idea of imposing curbs.

Bloomberg reported that many operators are now following the developments in the public debate on Japan’s effort to allow casinos since as they take cue whether or not the multi-billion dollar prospect in the developed island nation will turn into a dud.

“Our common goal is to see the introduction of world-class integrated resorts in Japan that drive economic, tourism and employment growth,” Steven Tight, president of international development at Caesars Entertainment, told the news agency.

“The government policy makers should ensure that the legislative framework doesn’t inadvertently hinder these aims.”

During the public debate, the Japanese parliament will deliberate anything that concerns the casinos – from casino floor space and taxes to be imposed on operators. Casino operators, however, are keen on knowing whether the locals will be allowed to gamble in casinos or not.

Many Japanese are cool to the idea of having a casino in their country, especially when most of the residents associate gambling with organized crime and addiction.

In a study conducted by news service Jiji last month, most of the respondents cited disruption to public order and the negative influence on youth as the top reasons why they opposed casinos in Japan.

Then there’s also the issue on where to put these integrated resorts in Japan. The clear favorite cities so far are Osaka, Yokohama and Tokyo.

“I don’t think there’s any need to establish a facility so dangerous that it needs this much regulation,” Takeo Shibata, a professor at Seigakuin University in Tokyo, said at the hearing, according to the report. “We can be a tourist destination without casinos and with a clean image that will be reassuring for visiting families.”

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