Approved in the Chamber of Deputies, Legal Framework for the Games is stalled in the Senate
Photo: Roque de Sá/Agência Senado

The bill that provides for the Legal Framework for Games in Brazil was approved earlier this year in the Chamber of Deputies. However, the proposal is stalled in the Federal Senate and there is not even a formalized rapporteur.

According to a report by ‘O Globo‘, the text is considered controversial in the Senate and even the president of the house, Rodrigo Pacheco (PSD-MG) showed resistance to the Legal Framework for Gambling in the way it was approved in the Chamber.

However, the rapporteur of the proposal in the Chamber, Felipe Carreras (PSB-PE), highlighted that he had recently met with Pacheco to talk about the project. According to Carreras, the president of the Senate has pledged not to abandon the issue. The article published on the website of ‘O Globo’ addresses in detail the current situation of the project that defines the Legal Framework for Gambling in the country. Check out!

Passed in the House, the Gambling Legislation stops in Senate

Project that had the commitment of the president of the Chamber, Arthur Lira (PP-AL), the release of the games is stopped by the Senate. Three months after the plenary of the Chamber of Deputies approved the proposal, there is not even a defined rapporteur. Centrão is pressing for the project to be approved in June, before recess and elections.

The proposal is seen as controversial in the Senate. Behind the scenes, President Rodrigo Pacheco (PSD-MG) showed resistance to the way in which it was approved in the Chamber. Senator Flávio Bolsonaro (PL-RJ), the president’s son, advocates legalization, but does not publicly defend it. In 2020, Flávio went to the USA on a trip to study and deal with the subject.

The rapporteur of the project in the Chamber, Felipe Carreras (PSB-PE), said he had talked with the president of the Senate about the proposal 15 days ago. According to him, Pacheco promised not to shelve the project:

“I was happy about it. Even Saudi Arabia authorized, about a month in a half, the games. We see the online betting market growing in Brazil and the country is lagging behind.

In February, pressured by the evangelical bench, President Jair Bolsonaro said he would veto the legalization of games if it passed the Senate and regretted the approval of the text by the Chamber. Government officials, however, worked in favor of the project in the Chamber, as did the Centrão. There is a division on the matter in Bolsonaro’s support base.

The government leader in the Chamber, Ricardo Barros (PP-PR), admits that the project could be a source of revenue. “We thought about approving the game project, to regularize the games, which are already there, and legalize the situation of the 400,000 employees who are working without social rights,” Barros said in the Chamber’s tribune, in May, during the discussion on a salary floor for the nursing category. — The games project already allocates 4% of the resources obtained to health, but this amount needs to reach 12% in the Senate to contribute to the financing of the increase in nursing.

Other gaming proposals are also stuck in the Senate. The project by Senator Roberto Rocha (PSDB-MA) that legalizes gambling in resorts has been stalled at the Regional Development and Tourism Commission, awaiting a public hearing for over a year.

There is also a project releasing all games, including the animal game, bingo and online betting, ready for consideration in plenary since 2020. The text is by Senator Ciro Nogueira (PP-PI), now Minister of the Civil House .

The text approved in February in the Chamber grants permanent or temporary licenses to explore the activity. Each economic group would have the right to operate one casino per state, with the exception of Minas Gerais, Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, which would have the right to two, two and three establishments, respectively.

In a note, Rodrigo Pacheco said he committed to a “detailed assessment” of the project, but avoided taking a stand on the merits. “For now, there are opposing and favorable manifestations in the Senate. Thus, it is essential to know it in detail and, eventually, move the discussion forward”, says the president of the Senate.

Senator Ângelo Coronel (PSD-BA), one of the defenders of legalization, recognizes that the proposal coming from the Chamber is stalled. He says that the matter has become a “Fla-Flu” and estimates that the federal government loses BRL 50 billion a year in revenue from the ban on games. “I don’t know how a government can be against taxing something that already exists. Many are afraid of the reaction of the evangelical sector — says Coronel.

Senator Eduardo Girão (Podemos-CE) leads the resistance against the bill, and in April created a Front Against Gambling in the Senate. Senators such as Luiz do Carmo (MDB-GO) and Carlos Viana (PL-MG) have also taken a contrary position.

The project creates a tax, the Cide-jogo, to collect 17% of the entrepreneurs’ gross income. The funds will be allocated to areas such as tourism, environment, culture, public safety and natural disasters. The Income Tax levied on award-winning individuals will be 20% of the net gain.

Points of the project approved by the Chamber

Liberation of Gambling

The text regulates the activities of sports betting, casinos, bingo and animal games. Tourist areas would be privileged. Each economic group would only be entitled to operate one casino per state.

Collection and taxes

Supporters of the measure point out that the country fails to raise up to R$ 50 billion annually with the ban. The project creates a tax of 17% of the gross revenue to be collected from entrepreneurs who explore the activities. Prize winners would pay 20% in income tax.