Legalization of casinos will be voted on after the elections

Senate President Rodrigo Pacheco (PSD/MG) hopes to put to vote the bill that legalizes casinos in Brazil — as well as other types of gambling — shortly after the 2022 elections.

“It is one of the projects [on which] the leaders asked for an evaluation by the presidency. As soon as the elections are over, we will make an assessment about the appreciation in the Senate,” said Pacheco, according to the Agência Senado.

The project, already approved by the Chamber of Deputies in February this year, provides that casinos will only be able to operate in integrated resorts, tourist complexes that bring together concert halls, theaters, hotels, sports gyms, convention centers and shopping.

Most states may only have one casino resorts. However, some places may have more due to the number of inhabitants. Rio de Janeiro and Minas Gerais will be entitled to two casinos since they have over 15 million inhabitants and São Paulo, with more than 35 million, will be entitled to 3 complexes of this type.

The President of the Republic, Jair Bolsonaro, has already stated that he will veto legalization, if the project is also approved in the Senate and proceeds to its sanction.

Regarding the veto, Deputy Bacelar (Podemos/BA), rapporteur of the proposal, states: “Brazil can no longer live with the illegality of games. The country loses a lot from this situation, without collecting taxes and without formalizing thousands of jobs”.

Only Brazil, Saudi Arabia and Indonesia do not allow casino operation

According to Senator Angelo Coronel (PSD/BA), of the 20 largest economies in the world, only Brazil, Saudi Arabia and Indonesia do not allow the operation of casinos.

In Brazil, these establishments were legal until 1946, a time when casinos such as da Urca, Copacabana Palace or Palácio Quitandinha, in Petrópolis, were hugely successful as large venues and restaurants, employing thousands of people and generating even more savings.

The legalization of the sector is directly opposed by the ‘Parliamentary Front for a Brazil without Gambling’. Senator Eduardo Girão (Podemos/CE) is one of its members and commented on the case: “The legalization of gambling will result in costs for society far greater than any benefit. The arguments of those who defend gambling highlight only the positive side and do not take into account the negative effects”.

Debating Girão’s speech, Angelo Coronel argues that Brazil already coexists with illegal gambling in several regions: “We can no longer give up the legalization of games, which are already freely banked, both electronic games and electronic betting platforms. There is no real tax for Brazil. We can no longer live in this modern world without legalizing casinos and games in Brazil”, he emphasizes.