The Osaka Prefectural Government will consider charging foreign tourists staying in the prefecture an “entry fee” to combat overtourism, Gov. Hirofumi Yoshimura said Wednesday.

The planned levy is separate from the lodging tax already in place for both domestic and international tourists, and will be used to fund measures against overtourism and keep the streets clean.

If introduced, it would be the first levy of its kind nationwide. The goal is to introduce it in time for the Osaka-Kansai Japan Expo that starts in April 2025, Yoshimura said.

According to the Internal Affairs and Communication Ministry, there is no taxation program operated by local governments in Japan that specifically targets foreign nationals, and such a program would need approval from the internal affairs minister.

In light of a recent surge in the number of inbound tourists, “the coexistence of foreign tourists enjoying Osaka and local residents will become an important issue in the future,“ Yoshimura told reporters at the prefectural office.

An expert panel will finalize the details of the proposed fee in April, he said.

Osaka currently imposes an accommodation tax of ¥100 ($0.70) to ¥300 on domestic and international guests staying at lodgings costing ¥7,000 or more per night. The governor indicated that the proposed fee was expected to be around the same amount.

Yoshimura said that with plans for a casino resort on artificial island Yumeshima, set to open around the fall of 2030, Osaka must implement measures to address the potential impact of overtourism. This artificial island in Osaka Bay is also set to host the 2025 expo.

Many countries are considering collecting fees to counter overtourism, including Thailand, though the country postponed its plan last year. In February, Indonesia’s Bali Island started imposing a fee of 150,000 rupiah ($9.60) per person for foreign tourists visiting the island.

Information from Kyodo added