CASINO

Regulatory issues for Japan IRs raised

TAGs: integrated resort, Japan

The advisory panel for Japan’s Integrated Resorts (IR) Implementation law has raised the main issues that implementing rules are to address.

GGRAsia reported that the national government also intends to get input from the public through an online forum sometime early next year. The discussions will be the basis for the Japanese Cabinet’s resolutions to guide the industry.

Regulatory issues for Japan IRs raisedAmong the concerns to be further tackled in regulations, is anti-money laundering compliance by casinos, who are yet to be chosen. According to the IR legislation passed last July, a maximum of three large-scale gaming venues are to be constructed, with municipalities to vie for hosting them.

Proposed in the panel meeting last Monday, the first such meeting in six months, was the drafting of a criminal code pertaining specifically to the casino business, which would provide for the conditions in which a casino license could be revoked, as well as penalties for violation of the code.

Also discussed was the banning of casino-related advertisements outside the casino floor, and whether exceptions will be made for it. Another measure to be studied is the banning of specific people from entering the gaming venues, and how to enforce such a ban.

The panel mulled on what the IRs are to look like specifically, and the relation of the resorts to boosting Japanese tourism. One of the limitations to casinos, as provided for in the law, is the floor area for gaming, which has been set at a maximum of 3% of a resort’s total area.

Numerous operators have already expressed an interest in obtaining the limited number of licenses, among them the Genting Group, Melco International, Japan-based gaming firm Sega Sammy, MGM, and Las Vegas Sands. Whichever operator is awarded the licenses will have to pay a 30% tax on gaming revenue.

The licenses are not expected to be issued earlier than 2020, and the casinos themselves are projected to open in 2025 or so.

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