June 13, 2018 / 7:40 AM / a year ago

Japan's home-sharing listings grow ten-fold on month to 1,000 ahead of new law

FILE PHOTO: A sign communicating the ban on using the apartment building as Airbnb service by the building management is attached to the building's front door in Tokyo, Japan March 12, 2018. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon/File Photo

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan’s home-sharing listings have crossed the 1,000-mark, the nation’s tourist agency said on Wednesday, ahead of a new law regulating the practice comes into effect on Friday.

The count is 10 times higher from a month ago, but still lags 62,000 listings the market leader Airbnb Inc had by earlier this year.

Japan will enact the private temporary lodging, or “minpaku,” law, on June 15. The law requires hosts to register with the government apart from imposing other rules and restrictions.

Japan has received 2,707 applications nationwide as of June 8, of which 1,134 were approved, according to the Japan Tourism Agency. As of May 11, the government had approved 152 of 724 applications.

The new law limits home-sharing to 180 days a year, a cap hosts say makes it difficult to turn a profit and leaves final decision-making to local governments, some of which have imposed even stricter rules to protect security.

Reporting by Junko Fujita; editing by Malcolm Foster and Vyas Mohan

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