It seems that the Japanese parliament have changed their minds on the possibility of casino resorts in the country being only open to overseas tourists. In a report from Reuters the news agency is now quoting that the Integrated Resorts Promotion Bill will now allow Japanese nationals to gamble.
With the new bill expected to become law in early 2015 there were fears that the government and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was considering to ban locals from gambling within the casinos to appease opposition parties to get the bill through parliament.
However with Japan only attracting some 10 million tourists per year in a country that has 128 million residents many foreign casino operators would not have been interested investing had that law been brought in.
Indeed with Macau the world’s largest gambling hub seeing nearly 30 million visitors per year the prospect then of operators investing the $10 billion or more building the casino resorts in Japan was more unlikely.
If that were to be the case, it would be a “tremendous missed opportunity,” said Jim Murren, chief executive of MGM Resorts International earlier this year.
It now seems that the law allowing for casino resorts to be built before the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will allow local gamblers along with foreign visitors.