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Tokyo governor says casinos not top priority; urges debate


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More like $40 billion swindled out of the pocketbooks of households across Japan!

6 ( +7 / -1 )

What do we need casinos for?

We already have pachinko!

6 ( +8 / -2 )


Because there's a massive market that wouldn't be seen dead in a pachinko parlour. Casinos have bars, restaurants and theatres. It's a totally different kettle of fish. I know tonnes of people in Japan that fly over to places like Korea and Macau just for the casinos. That's not to say I condone it - I personally don't enjoy casinos, but that's the reality of the situation...

2 ( +5 / -3 )

It's interesting that the government allows pachinko parlors to operate but not casinos. What is clear is pachinko is a huge drain on the lower income bracket and the ones who frequent the parlors are the ones who can least afford to lose their money. The casinos will devote a large amount of floor space to pachinko machines as they would be crazy not too. And lets be honest, with the aging population and the lack of funding available for social programs which is ever growing Japan certainly doesn't need money flowing out of households into the like of Vegas and Macau-like operations.

I know tonnes of people in Japan that fly over to places like Korea and Macau just for the casinos.

And those people who can't afford to fly overseas probably shouldn't be gambling in the first place.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

@Bertie: Because pachinko parlors do not buy back balls but give out prizes, they are not considered gambling. The casinos proposed will have high rise hotels that has no 1eth floor. Just more than 20th floors, I don;t know if there will not be 4th and.or 9th floor, though *Shi and Ku) in Japan. Tourists will be main targets of gamblers. Vegas casino organizations which proposing are not interested in locals. They are hoping ship tycoons and billionaires and multi millionaires from Northern China who go to Macau etc with private juts.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

What do we need casinos for? We already have pachinko! LOL im not a big fan of Casinos, but they multitiude of games that they offer make pachinko look boring, games like Blackjack and Craps also offer better odds at winning than anything Pachinko has to offer. although Blackjack will require a fair amount of skill.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

There definitely needs to be more debate about this. It's a controversial subject and it has both benefits and a shady side to it.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Let me provide you with this picture.

When the new Vegas first started to boom in the late 80s and 90s (not the downtown Vegas), the entire Las Vegas and surrounding cities in Clark County had about 200,000 in population.

Now Casinos directly and indirectly supports about 600,000 in population and growing. That's 3 folds in 25 years.

Sure, gambling can be detrimental to the core family value but it also generates tremendous jobs and growth potentials.

Choosing the right city or region to develop will be key. Kinda like creating a new spot for tourism and entertainment.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Pro-casino lawmakers are aiming to kick off debate about a casino bill in the lower house of parliament next week, and seek its passage in an extraordinary session in the fall.

...and Tokyo Gov says Casinos Not Top Priority?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

They are hoping ship tycoons and billionaires and multi millionaires from Northern China who go to Macau etc with private juts.

I find it hard to believe that whatever casino-like resort they come up with will be of enough size, offer the equivalent quality of players or provide the luxuries that are offered in places like Macau, Vegas, Atlantic City, Monte Carlo or Nassau, Bahamas. These cities have been at it for quite a while and gambling is the major attraction for nearly all these locations. Japan will find it nearly impossible to locate an area that will have the expansion capabilities and not be located several hours from any major metropolis or international airport. The big boys who travel outside their countries to gamble will expect a little more than an Odaiba-like experience and will not be satisfied with anything less than 5-star amenities and services which unfortunately Japan is lacking.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Simple experiment the government should do first:

Put undercover tax agents in 100 randomly selected pachinko parlors across the country for 1 week with hidden cameras.

Observe all transactions. Document them afterwards.

Then go to those parlors' tax records and examine their DECLARED income for those periods.

I think that would quickly kill the idea that gambling institutes pay anywhere near the amount of tax they're supposed to.

But even if they are honest about their earnings that doesn't guarantee companies pay anywhere near the amount of tax they're supposed to. Starbucks paid an effective 0% tax in the U.K. for 3 years, despite billions of pounds in turnover.

First fix the tax laws, a flat rate equal to what individuals pay.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

HIghball, how's the crime rate in LV these days? The last thing Japan needs is another past time where people can sit like robots and waste money.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Mr Yoichi Masuzoe you are a wise man! Social issue should be the number one priority.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

What is with the in loco parentis? Why not just let people decide how they wish to spend their money? Certainly better than pachinko! If one exists why not the other?

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Casino promoters have eyes on Odaiba. However, Governor opposes. So, Osaka will be next choice. Mitsui has a plan to build casino-hotels. Now foreign billionaires corporation vs Japanese trillionaires corporations

1 ( +1 / -0 )

They are hoping ship tycoons and billionaires and multi millionaires from Northern China who go to Macau etc with private jets.>

So this plan MAY work as long as there is no competing casino in northern china? What happens if a new casino opens in China or Korea ?

Will it be a repeat of the electronics/auto industry situation?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Share prices of most U.S. based casino operators declined during the trading session on Jun 3, 2014 with Macau gaming revenues for the month of May falling short of analyst expectations.

The Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau announced that gross gaming revenues for Macau increased only 9.3% to $4.1 billion in May. The May growth rate was lower than gross gaming revenue increase of 10.6% in the month of April and the lowest since February. Moreover, the number fell short of analysts’ expectation of 13.0% to 15.0% growth, according to media reports.

Wynn Resorts Ltd. (WYNN), Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS), MGM Resorts International (MGM) and Melco Crown Entertainment Limited (MPEL), declined following the release of the data. A few Hong Kong listed companies that experienced a major decline were Galaxy Entertainment, SJM Holdings Ltd. and Sands China Ltd.

I think Governor meant Reverse Money Laundrling as Casino revenues are not from criminal activities revenue but he may have some kind of info from Yakuza illegal operation income toward legitimate business.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Maybe he has a few pachinko buddies who he wants to protect. The pachinko industry (with revenue of 20-30 trillion yen a year) brings in more than double that of all gambling in the US and therefore pays massive amounts of tax to the government.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

@gyroman: China already have top casino areas in its territory.

Macau, also spelled Macao, is one of the two Special Administrative Regions of the People's Republic of China, the other being Hong Kong. Macau lies on the western side of the Pearl River Delta across from Hong Kong to the east, which is about 64 kilometers, also bordered by Guangdong Provi

S Korea and Russia have plans to create casinos in their country but unlike Vegas casinos which has been trying to create their branches in Japan, nobody proposed. Russia wanted in Siberia. S Korea wants in somewhere in S Korea. But so far nothing. Both countries wasnt Northern Chinese customers.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If the casinos are 100% nonsmoking inside, that would be a big plus, and a major distinction from what I gather is the lower-class pachinko crowd. Pretty sure casinos are coming to Japan.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@Patricia: If Vegas based organizations get license: more likely no smoking. And minimum 21 years old in gambling areas. There will be slots and video poker machines. Video poker, you can compute probability of winning of each machines but pachinko is maybe-machine. The Governor wanted to discuss more and that is a very good idea. Smoking policy, drinking policy, and many issues will be discussed. Then Gaming Control Board creation. What to do with pachinko parlors.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

PACHINKO IS GOOD ENOUGH FOR JAPAN!! i dont go gamble in pachinko.

0 ( +0 / -0 )


To answer your question,

Crime rate is very low in Las Vegas. I headed a few projects there and had going back and forth between Vegas and LA for over a couple of years. The company provided me with a very nice house/mansion in Summerlin, which is the best area in Vegas.

But if you go to the Charleston Reservation or near the Nellis Military Airport, or McCarran Airport , then its not so nice. Its like most metro, there are good areas and bad areas. But mostly, LV is pretty safe. The City and Casinos have good incentives to keep the city relatively safe.

So long as you're in Spring Valley, Henderson, Green Valley, Enterprise, anywhere near the strip, and of course Summerlin, there's not much to worry about. That's the majority of Vegas.

Before the "new Vegas", there was only Downtown and near strip and airport area that's developed. The places I mentioned are all growth expansion from the Gambling and entertainment development.

Once you have a theme that's profitable, it will create other opportunities and jobs that need to support the basic fundamental of a city. The Food and restaurant industry, beverage industry, construction, engineering, loans and finance, healthcare, insurance..etc. are booming. Its not just about gambling even though the casinos are the ones driving everything else.

I will give you the example of Chiba, its mainly manufacturing in Chiba which drives the entire prefecture. Or Logistics and Sake that drives Kobe. But that leads to other development that expand the city and as time goes by, it will develop other industries that will reduce the dependency of a singular entity. That's normally how a city gets put on the map and flourish.

Gambling sounds seedy and shady but if its legalize, then its just like any other business. People says it ruins lives, but so does cigarettes and alcoholic beverages. You just need to put it in perspective of the business and potential growth.

Hope this help.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Very low? Funny, everyone I know from the area complains about it all the time. Care to comment on the robot comment? The last thing this country needs to casinos.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

@tmarie: I believe highball commented about current Clark County as it is quite different than when Tony the Ant and Lefty dominated Vegas casinos business quite a while ago. He just did not compare old scenes and current Tokyo. Unlike Boston, Mew York or Miami, crime news that moderators are excited here are usually purse snatchers in shopping centers got beaten up by victims. Of cause there are gun related crimes just like other cities as guns are all over in USA. Crime rate is quite lower comparing other 49 states. Just like we can not compare B24 burned Tokyo and current Tokyo, we don't compare current Clark County and Mafioso era Clark County, .

0 ( +1 / -1 )


Sure, gambling can be detrimental to the core family value but it also generates tremendous jobs and growth potentials.

You need to get your priorities straight.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

If Japan will legalize gambling, it needs strong Gaming Control Board that will not be influenced by politicians. You can watch movie "Casino" to see why it needs strong Gaming Board. Whether token (chips) are too high to Japanese people or not, there will be Japanese people who come to gamble at table games spending their family savings, Well, video pokers are better in pay off than pachinko and pachinko addicted people may switch to video poker but already pachinko addicts exist. People who switch yakuzas; illegal gambling area to casinos, they are not low income people so I wouldn't worry about them but low income people's family we have to worry. This is Tokyo Odaiba area so I am not going to write how and who contributed to get rid of Mafia peacefully in Vegas but since Highball 7 mentioned, about change in Summerlin, read Howard Hughes in Wikipedia to learn partial info of changes in area. Since Govt is not prohibiting legitimate corporations in Japan to get casino license, I don't think Tokyo will be like old old Vegas.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

More debate is needed...in Japanese politics?

Decision and action are needed. Casinos bring in jobs, and tourism, and more money. Japan already has anti-laundering laws on the books, and the means to enforce them.

Establish a strong gaming board, with a thorough vetting system to weed out criminal syndicates (and those connected to them), and the casinos should prove a welcome addition to Japan.

Besides, with the huge number of pachinko parlors, Masuzoe's concerns come off as hypocritical and self-serving.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Casino opposition leader Koga wants to discuss more with Casino supporter. Japanese politicians love to debate, often forgetting why they are debating, so there will be no conclusion this coming week, it seems. As for Gaming Control Board, No one is proposing strong dictatorship Board. It will create Gaming Control Board that will be modeled current Nevada GCB. However, officials are studying Singapore's ID and 24 hour levy or 1 year levy so that locals with low income will not stray in casinos. Mitsui, LV Sands, MGM and Caesars, Wynn, then Melco. Too expensive to create high tower casino hotels. These Vegas based casinos are not interested in locals. How much cost to stay in a top floors in these casinos in Vegas? 40,000 dollars one night. Usually party of Hollywood stars use. My guess is Mitsui /fudosan is the top winner to get casino license. Maybe 3 or 4 more casinos in Odaiba.

Yakuzas will lose their underground gambling arena customers to casinos.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

James Dean,

Alcohol is detrimental to core family value. So is cigarettes, Soapy massage parlor, seedy comics, and the exploitation of children in "modelling" and "entertainment" businesses.

Why is it okay for those industries to flourish in Japan and not be question by law on the detrimental affects on family value? Pachinko industry is run by the yakusa and that's ok but casino is run by legitimate businesses and publicly traded companies and that's not?

Who's the one doesn't have their priority straight?


You clearly didn't read my comment. Huh Robots? What are you talking about? You do have a brain and upper and lower extremities. YOU CAN MOVE AROUND AND PLAY DIFFERENT GAMES. Or go catch a show. Or go chill by the pool. No one is forcing you to sit like a robot but yourself.

It clear you don't have any idea about the current make up of Las Vegas and Clark County. IF you haven't done your research or have experience in actually living as a residence instead of a tourist in greater Las Vegas and Clark County, what credentials do you have on debating on this subject matter? Watching movies and TV shows don't make you any knowledgeable about the crime rate or make up of Las Vegas and the effects of the gambling industry.

Being a tourist or a transient only gives you a glimpse of the sighting. You won't get the whole picture behind it.

And no, I won't comment further about your robot comment. Its rather ridiculous, no offense.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

The casino bills may not be discussed next week but when Mitsui is one of promoters, If not in this session, it might pass in Winter session, Addiction worry. Why to worry wealthy addicts who have been using Yakuzas' underground gambling places? I doubt casinos will use pachinkos in their properties. In Tokyo, Odaiba will be Casino areas. Probably Sumiyoshi Ikka, Kyokuto Gumi, Anegasaki Ikka will concentrate on their sokai-ya business as they will not be able to get Casino license and they can not afford. Probably areas close to Odaiba will have real estate booms. More oversea tourists, Tokyo might make prostitute type business illegal as prostitutes are illegal in Clark County for a long time, though, some girls from east tries, get arrested by undercover METRO cops right away on Strip area streets. Japan will create Nevada type Gaming Control Board. So, Tokyo will have safer and less yakuza influenced city I hope. These LV based casino hotels, too too expensive. Local people prefer $8 all you can eat buffets than $350 buffets. So, just stay away Casinos if you don't like, Forget about wealthy addicts who will switch from Yakuza customer to Casinos.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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