Citation(s) from the GunPolicy.org literature library
Karp, Aaron. 2005 ‘The Count Continues: Stockpiles: North-East Asia: The world's largest regional small arms stockpiles?.’ Small Arms Survey 2005: Weapons at War; Box 3.2, p. 80. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 1 July
Civilian small arms in Japan
Under the Firearms and Swords Control Law. Japanese citizens must obtain a licence from the Public Safety Commission to own a firearm.
There are no limits on the numbers of weapons any one individual can stock. As of December 2003, for instance, 192,820 citizens were licensed to possess hunting rifles and shotguns. This might suggest that Japanese firearms owners stock more than one small arm, but numbers of licensed citizens also include those licensed to own air rifles.
This may distort assumptions about firearm ownership. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs was unable to provide information on unlicensed or unregistered firearms in civilian hands.