Pros and cons of casinos and gambling in Japan

Addiction to gambling has become a prevalent social issue all over the world. Such compulsion carries with it a public stigma that can have crippling financial and social effects on the persons concerned and their family. Japan is not of course exempted from this widespread gambling effect. According to a government survey published in 2017, around 3.2 million Japanese suffer from gambling problems.


The Criminal Code in Japan used to impose a general ban on gambling with some exceptions such as bets on horse racing, pachinko or a pinball-like slot machine game and certain motor sports. However, Japan apparently intends to expand these exceptions by putting an end to its ban on casino gambling when the Integrated Resorts Promotion Law was enacted in July of last year. Despite the strong dissent and objections expressed by opposition parties, the government of Japan proceeded with the lifting of the ban. Japan aspires to increase foreign tourism and uplift regional economies through the Integrated Resorts Promotion Law which covers the establishment of hotels, casinos, conference facilities and more shopping areas around the middle of 2020.


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To temper the effects of casino gambling, the cabinet aims to limit the access of patrons to betting establishments, restrict the value of online bets and to prohibit cash machines in said facilities. These are just some of the few precautionary measures considered by the government prior to the opening of a number of casinos in order to suppress the possibility of a surge in gambling addiction among Japanese. The government also intends to issue a public warning about the negative impacts of gambling addiction through newspapers, magazines and TV commercials.


In line with the national government’s primary objective, the different prefectures in Japan are also expected to formulate their own specific measures to curtail possible gambling issues. The Japanese government also promised to support private groups which assist recovery programs for gambling addiction.



Japan looks to fight gambling addiction ahead of casino openings

An estimated 3.2 million Japanese addicted to gambling


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