Posted on: November 17, 2023, 06:56h.
Last updated on: November 17, 2023, 06:56h.
Brazil’s Senate could be ready to make an important step forward in sports betting next week. The chapter has been sitting on a bill the Chamber of Deputies approved months ago.
The Chief Minister of the Secretariat of Institutional Relations, Alexandre Padilha, announced the progress in a statement on Thursday. He said an agreement was signed between the government and the President of the Senate, Rodrigo Pacheco, and other Senate leaders to vote on the bill next week.
At a press conference at Planalto Palace, the President’s primary office, Padilha, revealed that the Senate’s Economic Affairs Committee (EAC) is next in line to vote. Provided there are no surprise obstacles, the Senate plenary will immediately vote for the measure.
About 10 days ago, the chamber’s Sports Committee gave its approval for the language, which has undergone several revisions, before passing it to the EAC. The Chamber of Deputies approved the bill in September before sending it to the Senate.
The agreement to vote next week came after the government agreed to remove the “urgency stamp” from the proposal. That figurative stamp blocked the voting agenda of the Senate plenary since November 11, which prevented the analysis of any other matter.
The bill regulates sports betting online and in commercial establishments. It also defines the taxation regime, putting the tax rate at 18%. This is significantly higher than the bill’s initial version and has been controversial among lawmakers.
The text approved by the Senate Sports Committee allocates 3.5% of the revenue to the Ministry of Tourism. That’s instead of the 4% proposed by the Chamber of Deputies. Embratur, the Brazilian Tourist Board, will receive 0.8%, not 1%, as was originally stipulated.
The Ministry of Health will start receiving 0.5% of the tax revenue. However, this allocation is specifically for developing responsible gambling prevention and treatment programs.
The Ministry of Finance’s expectation is to raise up to BRL12 billion (US$2.46 billion) per year in tax revenue for the state.
Optimistic Economic Goals
Amid the debates around legalized sports betting, one of the biggest discussions is the economic contribution it will bring. Some people within the industry believe that 7,000-12,000 new jobs could emerge in the short and medium term once the regulation is definitively approved.
Insiders cite the emergence of call centers and compliance with the provisions of the regulations as the basis for their projections. Operators must register with Consumidor.gov, a conflict resolution portal. They must also obtain certification of their platforms from international laboratories.
The regulation of sports betting in Brazil, projected to be the largest market in Latin America, will create a huge range of opportunities to grow the market. Generating new jobs will also allow for the creation and training of specialized professionals, which will likely lead to even more possibilities for economic growth.