LEISURE & ENTERTAINMENT | Staff Reporter, Singapore

What are the chances of Genting Singapore winning a Japan casino license?

International operators may be limited to JVs with Japanese partners.

Japan has done it -- of finally legalizes casinos, with proponents hoping to pass further legislation next year that would enable the first casino to open in the early 2020s.

Would Genting Singapore take this opportunity as it continues suffer declining market share in its own turf?

According to OCBC Investment Research, the participation by international gambling operators will be limited to joint ventures with Japanese partners, given the resistance to the idea of 100% foreign-owned casinos during the parliamentary debates on the matter.

And although Japan has singled out Singapore as role model, potentially paying attention to Genting Singapore, the troubled casino operator may find competition with Las Vegas Sands.

"Nonetheless, GS’s continued decline in market share is a point in favor of Las Vegas Sands should they compete for the same site," it said.

But it furthered, "Possible sites for a casino include Tokyo, Osaka, and Yokohama; GS’s experience with Universal Studios may be more relevant for Yokohama, given Tokyo’s Disneyland and Osaka’s Universal Studios Japan."

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