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Japan to make home sharing easier

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Laws likely to ease accommodation shortage 
The Japanese government has proposed sweeping changes to laws governing tourist accommodation that has Airbnb and the home sharing sector feeling upbeat.
Deregulation of Japan’s hotel sector has been a priority for the government, due to the surging number of foreign visitors and shortage of accommodation, particularly in popular urban destinations.
A panel on deregulation earlier proposed allowing private citizens to take in fee-paying lodgers for up to 180 days a year without requiring a hotel operator licence.
Known as minpaku in Japanese, the practice is generally illegal in Japan, but the advent of businesses like Airbnb are challenging such laws.
“We welcome that Japan has made great progress in policy discussion on home sharing,” a spokesman for Airbnb Japan tells TTG Asia.
“Since the details of such rules are still under discussion, I don’t want to speculate. But we look forward to working closely with the Japanese government so more local residents can welcome guests from around the world into their homes.”
Japan’s move is in part motivated by its desire to ensure it gets tax from property owners, while also easing room shortages in the run-up to the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
TTG Asia

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