Arrest in Casino Bribery Case Hitting Abe's Growth Strategy

Politics

Tokyo, Dec. 25 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's administration is seen taking a heavy blow from the arrest on Wednesday of a former state minister in charge of its policy on casino-featuring integrated resorts.

In its economic growth strategy, the Abe administration emphasizes the introduction of integrated resorts in the country as early as the mid-2020s as a growth catalyst after the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics.

In the Diet, Japan's parliament, a suprapartisan group of lawmakers was launched in April 2010 to promote the government's integrated resort initiative.

House of Representatives lawmaker Tsukasa Akimoto, 48, of Abe's ruling Liberal Democratic Party, who was apprehended on bribery charges, has been working as a member of the integrated resort promotion group.

Despite concerns about a rise in gambling addictions among the public and possible money laundering attempts through casinos, the Diet enacted an integrated resort promotion law in December 2016, after the legislation cleared a related Lower House committee then chaired by Akimoto. 

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press