American Gaming AssociationMovement towards introducing land based casinos in Japan has had several set-backs over recent years. There have been many efforts by those backing the legalisation of casino gambling in Japan but despite several attempts to pass the necessary bill in the Japanese Parliament, so far there has been no positive outcome. The Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is attempting to have the bill passed during the present parliamentary session. In order to help the bill to pass, the American Gaming Association has issued a statement saying that the association is willing to support efforts to make gambling legal in Japan.

Unsuccessful attempts to legalise gambling in Japan

It had been hoped that the gambling bill to allow casinos in the country would be passed towards the end of last year, this never happened. The bill was to have been discussed but the parliament was dissolved in November and the bill was not dealt with. At the time the main government party had a majority in the lower house of parliament but in the upper house the Prime Minister’s Liberal Democratic Party shares power with the Komeito Party. Some in the Komeito Party don’t approve of the introduction of casinos to Japan because of the social problems that may be linked to gambling. The current parliamentary session finishes on the 24th of June so time is running out to pass the gambling bill.

US casino experience offered to Japan

The American Gaming Association which was set up in 1995 has offered the Japanese any help that it can to help make casinos legal. The American Gaming Association is a leading trade group for the casino industry in the United States. The association’s membership includes casino operators, their suppliers, financial groups dealing with casinos and manufacturers of gaming equipment from many states. The American Gaming Association’s president has offered Japan support in the form of its own casino experience and information. He said that American casino operators would be an asset to the Japanese casino groups if the partnered with them due to their experience in the United States’ industry which is valued at 240 billion dollars. Some analysts have forecast income of around 40 billion dollars per year if casinos were to be legalised in Japan.

However, if the gambling bill is not passed before the end of the current parliament sitting it is thought to be unlikely that any casino resorts given the go ahead by the Japanese authorities would be completed before Japan hosts the Olympic Games in 2020.