Tokyo, Dec. 4 (Jiji Press) — Japan’s House of Representatives on Tuesday passed a bill to penalize the resale of tickets for sports and concert events at higher prices, including on the Internet.
The Lower House approved the bill to ban the unfair ticket reselling practice at a plenary session by a unanimous vote.
The bill was sent to the House of Councillors, the upper chamber of parliament, on the same day, and is expected to be enacted during the ongoing extraordinary session of parliament, scheduled to end on Monday.
Once enacted, the law will come into force six months after its promulgation to allow time to inform the public.
Aimed at addressing the resale problem ahead of the start of ticket sales for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics next spring, the bill was drawn up by a suprapartisan group of lawmakers, including members of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, its junior coalition partner, Komeito, and the main opposition Constitutional Democratic Party.
The bill seeks to ban the reselling of tickets for profit, or selling tickets at a price higher than their regular price.
Offenders will be punished with a maximum prison term of one year or a fine of up to one million yen, or both.
The bill would not only prohibit ticket reselling at high prices around event venues, but also ban similar practices on the Internet in order to prevent resale businesses from buying up tickets.
At present, many prefectures in Japan have their own ordinances banning ticket reselling, mainly around event venues, but they do not include online resale.