Japanese home-sharing-related companies surged in Tokyo trading after a report that the government is considering a full deregulation of Airbnb-style rentals.
Next Co., which is currently trialing a home-sharing reservation service, had the biggest gain in more than two months, rising 9.9 percent to 1,280 yen at the close in Tokyo, while Ambition Corp., which announced a home-sharing tie-up this month, closed 8.4 percent higher. Investors Cloud Co., a provider of smart-key services, had the biggest gain in more than two weeks. Relo Holding Inc., which offers maintenance and management services for homes, climbed 6.2 percent to 15,580 yen, while Starts Corp., a property manager, rose 5.4 percent to 2,371 yen.
A surge in overseas tourists has created a shortage of hotels, putting pressure on the government to revisit regulations that were written in 1948 and haven’t kept up with the flexibility required with the increasing popularity of Airbnb-style home sharing. A deregulation plan for home sharing — called minpaku in Japanese — is set to be approved by Cabinet at the end of May and the bill may be submitted to the Diet next year, according to a report by Nikkei earlier.
A record 2 million tourists visited Japan in March after foreign visitors surged 47 percent in 2015 from a year earlier, according to the Japan National Tourism Organization. The recent increase pushed occupancy rates higher in major destination cities in the country. The hotel occupancy rate has risen to 70 percent, the highest level since the Japan Tourism Agency started to gather the data in 2010. The rate for hotels in Tokyo and Osaka reached 84 percent and 90 percent, respectively.
Airbnb Inc. has said Japan is one of its fastest-growing markets, as it seeks to increase the number of short-stay listings in the country.
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This article was written by Kathleen Chu from Bloomberg and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.