A lot of people in Japan are eager to see the legalization and regulation of gambling in their country. June of last year saw some discussion around this issue but then it was prolonged for next year. Then in November it was reported that the gambling legislation would be delayed indefinitely.
A lot of bills have gone nowhere over the years since other issues have been prioritized. In late April another gambling bill was forwarded, this time with members of the ruling party behind it as well. In March it was announced that another bill would try to be passed by the end of the month, but on the eve of this final day they decided to table the action.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has advocated the legalization of casinos as a very important part of his economic plan for the future of Japan. A couple analysts predict that legal gambling could bring in as much as $50 billion per year to the Japanese economy.
The American Gaming Association has taken a front seat in advising the lawmakers of Japan on this issue. Cities like Tokyo and Osaka would probably be the top contenders for integrated resorts which could be built before the start of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
The current gambling business which operates in Japan is not considered actual gambling since Japanese laws view pachinko as an exception to the criminal code. Despite all of this pachinko can still manage to gather sums of up to $20 billion per year in revenue. Only time will tell what the final decision of regulators will be in Japan.