Deputy supports the release of gambling in Brazil to overcome the crisis
Deputy Felipe Carreras (PSB-PE). Photo: Agência de Notícias da Câmara

Deputy Felipe Carreras (PSB-PE) is the rapporteur of the working group recently created by the president of the Chamber of Deputies, Arthur Lira (PP-AL), to debate the release of gambling in the national territory.

The intention is to proceed with a proposal elaborated in 1991 that foresees the regulation and release of bingos, casinos and other activities in Brazil. However, this type of discussion still faces some resistance in the National Congress.

In an interview published on the Exame website on Tuesday, 21, Carreras reported what is being debated in the group created on the last 9th. The deputy stressed that this is the time to promote the legalization of games with a view to creating jobs and income to overcome the crisis, in addition to stressing that these activities take place in countries in Asia, Europe and the Americas.

Check out the interview:

Deputy defends the legalization of gambling in the country

The president of the Chamber, Arthur Lira (PP-AL), created a working group to discuss the legalization of games of chance, on the last 9th. The idea is to resume a bill presented in 1991 that intends to legalize and regulate the activities of casinos, game of the animal and bingos in the country.

The issue, however, is still the target of resistance. In a conversation with Exame, the rapporteur of the working group, Deputy Felipe Carreras (PSB-PE), detailed what has been discussed among the deputies. See the main ones

Exame: What is the importance of this project that is being taken up by the working group?

Dep. Felipe Carreras: I’ve always been very active in national tourism, and I’ve always talked about resort-integrated casinos, which are robust investments, tourist products that generate employment and income. In the Tourism Commission, this has always been a point made in this legislature. With a group that has always been enthusiastic about these resort casinos, we took the topic to President Arthur Lira and we think that, in this return on international tourism, it is important for Brazil to have this type of investment.

Exame: Do you think it would be a good time, due to the crisis?

Dep. Felipe Carreras: Without a doubt. It needs to generate jobs and opportunities. We have this type of project in the United States, Canada, Mexico. This happens in big nations in Asia, South America, Central, North, Europe. Why will Brazil be left out?

Exame: The idea is to legalize all types of gambling?

Dep. Felipe Carreras: We are focusing on integrated resort casinos and will open discussions about other games. There are 300 online casino gambling sites, and this is not regulated. It is not generating any kind of tax, everything is going out of Brazil. About the Jogo do Bicho: when did it stop? What is the suburbs of Brazil that you don’t see? Is it generating jobs? Could it be that, if regulated and enforced, could it not be an option? Perhaps. We will open a discussion about this.

Exame: The MPF has already manifested itself against the legalization of games of chance, and one of the arguments is that there are no mechanisms foreseen for efficient inspection. How do you intend to solve this problem?

Dep. Felipe Carreras: We will have agendas and conversations with the MPF, with various sectors linked to security, the economy, tourism. Let’s make all these visits and, from the dialogue, establish the pros and cons. We want to understand what the barriers are, why they are, if there is something to be overcome, what are the obstacles to try, from there, to have some direction.

Exame: What would be the foreseen mechanism for inspection, which is one of the concerns of the MPF?

Dep. Felipe Carreras: We are arguing, but I imagine that with technology you can track, follow everything. We are in the world of pix, a world where, with each passing day, things are more digital. Is it better to be the way it is, turning a blind eye, or better to regulate, monitor and inspect?

Exame: Who would be responsible for inspection?

Dep. Felipe Carreras: We still don’t have a ready report, we have been working for 15 days. But the idea is to have an agency that would do this type of monitoring. And there can be several institutions and entities participating. We think that it can be done through a regulatory agency that monitors, has tools, with the participation of the MPF, the PF, security sectors.

Exame: Is there any survey of how much it would be possible to collect from the taxation of gambling?

Dep. Felipe Carreras: I don’t have that number yet, but they say, for example, that Portugal collects, if I’m not mistaken, with six large casinos, in a country of 10 million inhabitants, which does not compare with the attractions and diversity that Brazil has something around 5 billion euros a year. Imagine what Brazil is failing to collect.

Exame: Where would that money go?

Dep. Felipe Carreras: Everything is being discussed. In a game of chance and betting, like Caixa, part of everything that is generated goes to sports, culture and even the Red Cross receives. Why doesn’t some of these taxes go to fund sports, health, education, culture? National security itself, inspection and control bodies.

Exame: Do you believe that President Arthur Lira is willing to address the issue?

Dep. Felipe Carreras: The sign, when installing the work group, is that he wants to guide. Now what has been done is taking the temperature of the Chamber, the leaders, the parliamentarians, to know if the subject will evolve. For example, in the reform of the IR, he went and came back, spent a month to vote. Everything is a seam. He is sympathetic to the idea, so much so that he agreed to install it and already appointed the rapporteur.

Exame: What is the biggest issue?

Dep. Felipe Carreras: The subject deals with numerous sectors, it is very segmented. It’s no use creating a rule, a criterion, and not having the big investors who will generate jobs and income. It’s trying to get a balanced text, which has as its basic premise the issue of security, of control tools.

Exame: Is the government open to the idea? Have you been talking?

Dep. Felipe Carreras: We have signs that the government wants to talk and there are people in the government who are in favor.