Japan Looking To Expand Online Lottery Amidst Falling Revenues
According to reports in the Japan News, the Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry of Japan is considering expanding their online lottery ticket options.
Lottery tickets make up a major part of local municipalities’ budgets with 40 percent of total sales being paid to them. This is after expenses are deducted. Currently lottery tickets are available throughout 20 major cities across Japan and are available at distribution outlets either by automated teller machines or by the internet.
Lotto sales have however fallen since their peak in 2005 which was ¥1.1047 trillion. In the fiscal 2016 sales were only ¥845.2 billion. Internet sales have only been available since 2014 and for number-selection type lotteries such as Numbers and Mini Lotto only.
Critics point to the fact that as of fiscal 2016 only 40 percent of all types of lottery tickets were available to be purchased online but online sales only accounted for 3.6% of the value of all tickets sold.
Bodies like the National Autonomous Lottery Council are of the belief that there would be a significant increase in sales if lottery tickets could be purchased via smartphones.
As it stands online lottery tickets are entrusted to five banks, If online lottery lottery tickets were to be expanded this would require a major overhaul of existing operators and a system to prevent data leaks of personal information. If the proposed changes are implemented they are set to take effect from fiscal 2018.