Government seeks strict casino entry controls

At Tuesday’s meeting of the Experts’ Committee advising the Japanese government on its IR Implementation Bill, a series of measures were proposed to keep a very tight regulatory lid on casino facilities.

Under the proposal, Japan residents would be required to use the new national identity card, MyNumber, in order to gain entry into the casino. Furthermore, there would be a firm limit to the number of times that Japanese would be allowed to enter the casino over the span of a month.

These controls would be overseen by the nationwide Casino Management Board that is expected to be established.

Other measures in the plan include a ban on casino advertisements outside the IR facility, a system for individuals and families to exclude problem gamblers, and various policies meant to combat the influence of organized crime and money laundering. Casino operators would also be obliged to warn the public about the risks of gambling addiction through television and internet campaigns.

The restrictions on foreign guests visiting Japanese casinos would be somewhat more relaxed, though entry would still require the presentation of a passport.

While polls show most of the Japanese public is deeply concerned about the effect of IRs on the nation’s gambling addiction rates, the inclusion of the MyNumber card requirement may prove controversial, as the new ID card system is deeply unpopular within Japan’s privacy-prizing society.