Monday, July 22, 2013

Japan's Election, New Casinos, TPP & JGB Debt

The recent election in Japan on July 21 gives Prime Minister Abe control of both houses in the Japanese parliament. What English language media are not talking about is what it means for new casinos in Japan, and the ability to tax them and pay off Japanese Government Bond Debt. The plan for Japanese casinos will spread across the country connected to airports as the big whale gamblers are expected to be Asian tourists, especially mainland Chinese visitors.

Overseas investors have constantly complained of poor ability of future tax payers to pay for this debt. However, none of these investors seem to be aware of the coming casinos to Japan. These will not be private and therefore not run by the yakuza, or other overseas gangsters. They will pay into the government coffers and may even reduce national tax rates over time. The most likely central Tokyo location is scheduled to be in Odaiba; already in close vicinity to many hotels, and close to Tokyo's Haneda airport. An opening date of the first Japanese Casino is on July 1st, 2015. Due to pre-planning already in place, this is a reasonable soft target.

The Trans Pacific Partnership moves will now gain traction. It will bring more trade and travel to the region, and will certainly be boosted by new casinos in Japan. More visas to Japan are about to be boosted by Chinese tourist groups. This not a surprise to anyone walking around Ginza on any given day. Any observer can now see who is paying for the luxury goods in Japan' luxury stores. It is no longer local Japanese, but Chinese tourists. They feel comfortable buying luxury brands that are never fake, and occasionally even special editions unique to Japan. This all adds more appeal to the traveling tourist from Asia. Ginza stores are the perfect excuse to spend your Japanese Casino winnings in future years.

In the coming weeks and months, more details about these new Japanese casinos will spread in the English media. The connection and financial insight coming from this election into this new trend will impact retail sales, hotel bookings, restaurant reservations and short term travel. All future P/L will change in Japan. 

At TMJ Partners, we know finance, and we try and be in the right place at the time. With our professional market insight, we let our financial clients know where to be before their rivals.

For more Buy-Side and Sell-Side roles in Asia-Pacific, contact our TMJ Partners Japan & Asia Finance team.

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