According to the Criminal Code of Japan, gambling is illegal. However, there are many exceptions to this law, such as horse racing, motorsports, lottery and other public sports. With the emergence of smartphones, online betting also became a possibility.
The most common way to gamble in Japan is through playing pachinko. Playing pachinko is not considered as gambling because of its cultural reasons.
It is played liked a slot ball machine, but instead of money prizes there are awards like tokens that can be exchanged by cash or used in certain stores.
In this way, players will earn money without the danger of legal sanctions because as long as money is not awarded in the pachinko parlor the law will not be violated
According to the Ministry of Health’s survey last 2017, 3.6% of the adult Japanese are problem gamblers, that is an estimated 3.2 million Japanese, though it should also be noted that a similar survey in 2014 showed that roughly 5% or 5.4 M Japanese adults were addicted to gambling.
This clearly shows that the number of problem gamblers is decreasing. But with the legalization of casinos, these numbers will surely increase as the promise of winning large sums of money will tempt these people to start gambling again.
Airtight Regulations to Monitor Gambling
For their part, the Japanese government are crafting regulations to address this problem by limiting the number of times a Japanese resident may enter a casino facility and by implementing an entrance fee.
However, critics are saying that this is not enough as there is no scientific evidence to prove that these methods will keep the gamblers in check and will avoid other Japanese to become addicted to gambling.