IR experts' committee finishes its report

On Monday, the eight-member Experts’ Committee advising the Abe government on its forthcoming IR Implementation Bill held its tenth and final regular meeting, wrapping up a stage of the process that began in March.

The Experts’ Committee report will soon be forwarded to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and it is expected to form the basis of the forthcoming IR Implementation Bill.

Later in August, the public comment period is expected to begin, and sometime during the autumn Extraordinary Diet Session it is anticipated that the legislation will be submitted for parliamentary consideration.

Actual passage into law is thought likely to occur next year, after a separate bill is enacted to combat gambling addiction, which has emerged as a major public concern in relation to IRs.

The Experts’ Committee report includes the strict casino entry policies that have been reported earlier, including the requirement that Japan residents must present a “MyNumber Card” (the unpopular new personal ID cards) and limitations on the number of times individuals can enter.

Under the current plan, ATMs will not be available within the casino area, and only foreign visitors will be allowed to use credit cards. The advisory panel also proposed a limit on casino floor space.

One crucial new point of information is that the issuance of only two or three IR licenses is said to be contemplated at this time, not the four licenses foreseen by some industry analysts.

The proposed regulations however, have been met with backlash from casino executives and industry players, according to a report from Reuters.

Casino executives said the 15,000-square-metre limit could hit foreign investment and neutralise the economic impact of resorts.

"The current plans risk missing the mark on achieving public policy objectives," said one casino executive to bureaucrats. "It's serious enough to halve the maximum investment we're willing to make."

"Gaming companies are very rational: they'll calculate how much revenue they can generate with a 15,000-square-metre casino floor, and they will only invest as appropriate for that, which certainly won't be $10 billion," said Seth Sulkin, chair of a task force at the American Chamber of Commerce Japan.


More news from this jurisdiction

JapanSunday, Mar 18, 2018

According to a local media report, the Tomakomai municipal authorities have compiled their interim report on the IR they hope to build, projecting a US$2-3 billion investment by the time the facility’s doors open.

JapanFriday, Mar 16, 2018

The IR implementation bill won’t be submitted to the legislation this month, as had been planned, throwing doubt over the timetable for the bill.

JapanWednesday, Mar 14, 2018

Six local medical and children’s organizations have presented a petition to the local government opposing any IR bid from within the prefecture.

JapanTuesday, Mar 13, 2018

A Wakayama prefectural official says they are ready to launch an RFC process with IR operators very quickly after the IR Implementation Bill is enacted by the National Diet.

JapanSunday, Mar 11, 2018

Universal Entertainment Corporation said it expects to record a significant jump in net income for the fiscal year ended Dec. 2018 as a result of the $2.4 billion settlement from Wynn Resorts.

JapanWednesday, Mar 07, 2018

The ruling coalition Komeito party are of the view that the proposed terms of IR regulation are not strict enough.

JapanTuesday, Mar 06, 2018

A latest poll shows that the legalization of casino gambling remains deeply unpopular with the public at large.