Home Why Japan should legalize gambling

Why Japan should legalize gambling


By Takuma Tanaka    

(© hd3dsh – stock.adobe.com)

If you are a resident of Japan, chances are you know that gambling is not legal in the country. However, the question remains. Should we strive to get gambling legalized in Japan? What would be the pros and cons of doing this? What steps can the government take to ensure that its citizens will be able to get the major entertainment value that gambling can provide?

If you want to find out the answers to these questions, read this article as soon as possible. We will try to give you some of the most pertinent information about gambling in Japan and how it is continually progressing at present.

Gambling in Japan: The History

Officially speaking, gambling in this part of the world is still considered legal and has been considered illegal since 1907. By the end of the Meiji era, many official casinos have popped up in this side of the world. In particular, these casinos reside in Tokyo and outside of the city.

Fast forward to 2016, the Japanese government and prime minister Shinzo Abe has passed a law that could turn the tide and make them illegal in the future. Japanese residents and other tourists who are fond of gambling would have to wait until at least nine years in 2025 before the law takes effect in full.

This year small gambling associations have already started to penetrate the Japanese economy. Some speculate that more Japanese casinos will open before the 2020 Olympics which can accommodate the influx of tourists that will come for the games.

As of press time, there are some legal gambling games that have already started to gain traction in popularity within the country as the integrated resort industry grows. These are as follows:

The Lottery Games

With this particular type of game, you can expect a much greater chance of winning. All you have to do is buy a lottery ticket from any participating store and scratch the surface. When it reveals similar characters in one row or column, you’ll win the prize.


Essentially, this particular type of game works like a slot machine. Instead of waiting for cash prizes, you will get to win gift certificates and vouchers that you can use to get products from participating retail stores around the metro. This is essentially done to circumvent the strict Japanese laws against gambling.

Racing Games

This is one of the most lawful ways to gamble in Japan. Whether you prefer a horse racing event or bicycle and car races, you can place your bets and hope to win any of these contests.  Tourism and tax can promote these games. The good thing about this is that you don’t have to worry about the police getting in your tail because of participation.

All you have to do is place your bet enjoy the game.

Exploring the Online Gambling Industry in Japan

In terms of online gaming, this is where the line blurs. Japanese laws have strict rules against physical gambling institutions. However, online games of any nature are complete and legal in the country. Perhaps this is because the introduction of mobile gaming technology in Japan came in quite late.

The good news is that you don’t even have to leave the comfort of your own home to enjoy them. If you are fond of online gambling, there are many websites that can accommodate players from Japan and other countries as well. You just have to do a little bit of research to find them.

A great examples of online gaming portals that you can visit for entertainment you can find thanks to reviews on bitcoin casino. One advantage you can have with bitcoin casinos is that it is safe and secure to use. You wouldn’t have to think about being hacked once you login and play.

As traveling to Japan can be quite enjoyable, chances are you won’t even want to sit around in front of your computer to play in an online casino anyway. You would want to explore anything and everything that you would like to see in the country before you leave.

The Main Reason for Legalization

Gambling both in physical and online casinos can definitely give players a way to relax and properly enjoy themselves without any inhibitions. It provides entertainment and the diversion of retired professionals who may want to have some time to themselves after a hard day’s work.

Why should we consider legalizing gambling as a whole? Isn’t there another way to pass the time without having to spend too much money? Yes, there is. However, as part of the social and economic freedoms that can be afforded to any citizen by its government, the governing entity shouldn’t dictate how people get to spend their own hard-earned cash.


This is why gambling should already be legalized in Japan as soon as possible. It will not only be good for the people in terms of entertainment, it can also be good for the economy because many tourists will be able to travel to Japan and enjoy themselves while still allowing the Japanese government to make a sizable amount of revenue from any and all casinos that may pop up once gambling becomes legal in the country.

Once the Japanese government realizes the benefits of gambling, they will certainly be able to provide a safe and secure environment for those interested individuals to play in. Fortunately, gambling is already slowly being introduced in Japanese mainstream media. It’s only a matter of time before everything falls into place for legalization.



Have a guest column, letter to the editor, story idea or a news tip? Email editor Chris Graham at [email protected]. Subscribe to AFP podcasts on Apple PodcastsSpotifyPandora and YouTube.

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