Japan IR advocates question opinion polls

Japan irs

MGM is one of the potential operators of Japanese casinos. Credits: lonelyplanet.com

According to IR advocates, opinion polls are deliberately aimed to make it look like people are against casino developments.

Japan.- The integrated resorts (IR) debate in Japan is probably the top concern in the Asian market and the industry remains expectant on what may happen. However, the Implementation Bill still faces some hurdles such as – according to IR advocates – opinion polls, which are deliberately aimed to make it look like the population is against gaming developments.

The most recent poll was published by The Asahi Shimbum newspaper and asked: “The government aims to enact in the current Diet session rules on entry fees and other matters for casinos, where gambling will be permitted. With the enactment of this bill, casinos will actually be established within the nation. Do you believe that this bill should be enacted in this Diet session, or do you believe that it is not necessary?”

Only 22 per cent of the respondents favoured the bill, while 71 per cent considered it unnecessary and seven per cent was unsure.

IR supporters claim that telephone polls aren’t a reliable source since respondents are mainly female and elderly, which are predominantly against gambling legalisation. In addition, they claim that the use of the term “casino” is aimed to have people thinking that gambling is all that’s being proposed. Instead, advocates promote the term “integrated project”, which includes other entertainment options that will be included.

Japanese brokerage Nomura has said that Japan will likely pass its Integrated Resorts Implementation Bill during the second half of this year or the first half of 2019.

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