LVS survey shows Japan public can be won over

George Tanasijevich, managing director of global development at Las Vegas Sands, recently presented a survey in central Tokyo, which for the first time, indicated that a majority of the Japanese public supports the establishment of IRs in their nation—at least when the question is asked in a particularly leading manner.

The survey, conducted by the Nippon Research Center, found result of 55.8 percent of the public are in favor of “the development of an Integrated Resort similar to Singapore’s Marina Bay Sands in Japan,” and only 44.2 percent opposed. Tanasijevich is also CEO of the Singapore property.

The survey result is considerably less surprising when its peculiar methodology is factored in. Before answering the key question on support for an IR in Japan, the respondents were made to read three information cards highlighting Marina Bay Sands’ economic contributions to Singapore and its measures to combat problem gambling. Then a video was shown highlighting Sands’ rich entertainment offerings. Only then were the respondents asked if they would like to see something like that in Japan as well.

While the Nippon Research Center survey cannot be regarded as a fair assessment of where the Japanese public actually stands on the “casino issue” (as the Japanese newspapers frame the matter), it does suggest—as Sands points out—that Japanese public opinion is apt to become more favorable toward IRs when “educated” about them in a certain way.

Tanasijevich commented, “In Marina Bay Sands it is less than 2 percent of our space that is the casino, but the vast majority of it is not gaming space that is frequented by people from all across Asia. I think as the public gains a greater and greater understanding what an Integrated Resort is and how you manage risk which is sometimes associated with the casino piece of it, I believe that the support level will increase even further.”

Also part of the discussion was Noriko Tanaka, President of the Society Concerned about Gambling Addiction. She stated that her main concern was not to oppose or to support the development of IRs in Japan, but rather to utilize the current opportunity to strengthen the nation’s gambling anti-addiction policies as a whole, including measures to cope with the existing social ills associated with pachinko and other legalized forms of betting.

More news from this jurisdiction

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.

JapanFriday, Mar 02, 2018

Hokkaido Governor Harumi Takahashi emerged this week as a strong advocate of hosting an IR, encouraging the central government to grant four or five licenses around the nation.