Japan Could Overtake Las Vegas As Gambling HubMay 5, 2013 1:45 pm
Gambling is generally banned in Japan, although exceptions to the rule include horse racing, some motor sports, the lottery, and a a pinball-like slot machine game called Pachinko, which generates $200 billion in revenue each year. Now, however, the world’s third largest economy is seriously considering allowing casino gambling inside the country.
Being in the vicinity of China with its huge population of recreational gamblers would certainly prove a boon to Japan, as it has done with Macau and Singapore. Japan’s initial plan apparently centers around the construction of two huge gambling resorts, in the same vein as Las Vegas.
Nevertheless, key to the success of such a project would be using a model that uses tourism, conventions and entertainment to attract a wide diversity of people to the resorts. After All, in 2010 this multi-faceted, integrated model was implemented in Singapore and proved immediately successful. If Japanese lawmakers approve casino gambling in the wealthy Asian country, it has been estimated that Japan’s gambling revenue would then be worth around $10 billion, second only to Macau in China ($38bn), but ahead of nearest rivals Las Vegas worth $6.2 billion in 2012, and Singapore ($5.9bn).
Meanwhile, Japanese pro-casino group legislators are planning to have submitted a promotional bill to parliament by September and, if approved, casino laws could follow within two years. As gaming expert Paul Bromberg, explains: “One of the projects that would definitely bring investment into the country and create jobs is casino gaming. The issue is whether they can finally get their act together to make it happen.”