The lawyer and legal advisor of the Brazilian Lottery Association (ABLE) and the Brazilian Association of Casinos, Bingos and Similars (Abrabincs), Sear Jasu was the new interviewee of journalist Luiz Carlos Prestes Filho in his special on the regulation process of the gambling market. games in Brazil.
In an interview published on the “Tribuna da Imprensa Livre” portal, lawyer Sear Jasu criticized the idea of releasing only casinos integrated to resorts in Brazil. “Casino Resort is the form of exploration that will least benefit states, municipalities and the local hotel chain. They are mega structures closed within themselves ”.
According to Sear Jasu, urban casinos could meet current demand and help leverage local economies. “Small urban casinos are those that can meet the Brazilian reality,” he said.
Check out the full interview with Sear Jasu
Luiz Carlos Prestes Filho: Has the federal, state and municipal executive contributed to the effort to regulate money betting games managed by the private sector? Is the theme guided from the point of view of these governments for 2021?
Sear Jasu: Due to the legal interpretation that gambling would be the Union’s monopoly, these initiatives have always remained at the federal level. Advances were very slow in relation to the rapid development of the market, especially after the appearance of electronic means of processing.
The Brazilian public power has lived with the Jogo do Bicho for 120 years, without the decision to regulate it. It is present in the 5,500 municipalities in the country, in all neighborhoods in all cities.
In this present time, electronic machines and online games and, finally, sports betting that proliferated in the market with amazing speed. Game sets – bingos, casinos, game rooms – have also been banned from the Brazilian legal permissive.
Prestes Filho: Governors and mayors defend the legalization of games? Would Bingos and Casinos benefit from tax collection?
Sear Jasu: The latest initiatives were the creation of an instant lottery – LOTEX – which, after years of discussion and changes in its format, ended up not becoming unfeasible, run over by a decision by the Supreme Court (STF) that it recognized to the States and District Federal the administrative competence to explore games that are instituted by the Federal Union; and the Regulation of Sports Betting – which have become a worldwide phenomenon, reaching different layers of the market, whether regulated or not, which is in the process of being complemented.
Prestes Filho: In the Chamber of Deputies of Brasilia, in recent years, there was an appreciation of the theme Casino Resort. Does this appreciation open concrete perspectives for States and municipalities?
Sear Jasu: Due to the controversy that the subject represents, the defenses of the states for a regulation of the theme and a sharing of competences were always very cautious, I would even say timid, with the exception of the discussions about Casino-Resort, perhaps in the expectation that a Las Vegas born in their respective states or municipalities
Prestes Filho: What is the order of priorities for installing the regulated game infrastructure in Brazil?
Sear Jasu: Cassino Resort is the form of exploration that will least benefit states, municipalities and the local hotel chain. They are mega structures closed within themselves. For the conversations we have participated with some major international operators, their interest starts in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro and, after that, they would evaluate the feasibility of operations in Santa Catarina, Rio Grande do Sul, Minas Gerais, Brasília and an operation in a state northeastern. This already disqualifies the speech that will bring large waves of tourists. The focus is on the local market.
Las Vegas consolidated itself with the banned game in the rest of the American territory, which made the game aficionados converge on the city. It formed a colossal infrastructure of events, with leisure and business tourism mixing, and resisted the advance of other locations in the American territory with casino operations – today there are about 1,500.
Macau was a similar case: with gambling banned on the Chinese mainland and allowed only on the island of Macau, the emerging local market converged on the city in its pursuit of entertainment and leisure. Brazil is not close to any major virgin market. Americans, Canadians, have the entire American territory, Central America with the Caribbean, northern South America, all with casino operations.
They would not cross all the parallels of the globe to play in casinos in southern Brazil. Other tourist attractions will be needed to motivate such trips. The local market is of great interest. And few groups dividing the market into long-term concessions want it in the form of an oligopoly.
It is a reissue of the legend of the mirrors that our colonizers brought and showed our indigenous people the reflection of sunlight and the vision of their faces from the other side of the mirror. They induced supernatural power. They left us the mirros and took the gold and the wood.
I think that small urban casinos can serve the Brazilian reality and can even be linked to hotels. They would occupy a fraction of the market that was left without formal options, with the closing of the bingos, at the same time that they would place yet another leisure option in the various tourist destinations.
Prestes Filho: Could the regulation of gambling in cash contribute to improving the collection for public coffers?
Sear Jasu: This has always been shown by proponents of gaming regulation. A collection that would not mean a new tax. It is a voluntary tax. In addition to the generation of precious formal jobs, and an entire production chain that moves as a service provider and supplier of materials and equipment to establishments.
Prestes Filho: Which cities in the northeast could benefit directly from regulation? What is the real potential of this region?
Sear Jasu: The presence of casinos would be another attraction in the tourist areas of the northeast, as well as in other regions. They would be an ally of the good climatic conditions in the region.
Prestes Filho: Which international events on the subject have you participated in the last few years?
Sear Jasu: I participated in the annual gaming fairs in London (ICE Totally Gaming), Las Vegas (Global Gaming); congresses and seminars in Miami, São Paulo, Buenos Aires and Bogotá. I always see an environment of integration between governments and companies, with the presence of large global companies and also of several different regulatory authorities, including Brazilians.
Prestes Filho: Is it possible for the Supreme Federal Court (STF) to annul the effects of the Criminal Misdemeanor Law?
Sear Jasu: The STF has throughout history been very cautious about the political repercussions of its judges. It would be to reverse legislation on a topic that the National Congress has been debating for at least 30 years. Remove the ban, release general, without rules, without controls.
It wouldn’t be good for the market, either. This activity deals with public credibility and needs to be guided by criteria of integrity, solvency of the suppliers of gaming products, norms related to money laundering, etc. I don’t think that will happen.
Prestes Filho: Does the federal executive have the structure to carry out the regulation within one year?
Sear Jasu: The federal government has highly qualified technical staff who have been following this movement in the games market for a long time, marking their presence at these events I mentioned above and exchanging information with other regulators.
The resizing of the tables to meet a new reality will be self-financing, since the regulation will bring new revenues that today are not materializing, either due to the high volume of informality, or because they are drained to other countries.