Gambling addiction concerns Japan ahead of casino vote

By Nicole Gheller

The Japanese lower house is set to vote on a bill that, if passed, will allow three integrated casino resorts to begin construction which is cause for concern around the nation.

In Japan, addiction is considered a serious social issue. With the popularity of the gambling game pachinko, one in ten Japanese is addicted to the game.

In order to tackle the negative feedback on the further impact the bill could have on addiction, it will limit entry to three times a week and ten times in 28 days. It will also charge Japanese customers an $18 entry fee.

Officials say that a system will be available to ban entry to individuals at their family’s request or their own.

Casinos will also be able to lend money to customers, which can increase the amount of debt a player has at the end of the night.

The government is arguing for the positive side saying that the resorts will mostly be visited by foreigners but an estimate made by the Prefecture of Osaka argues that 70-80% of customers will be Japanese nationals.

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