Foto: Jefferson Rudy/Agência Senado

Caixa Econômica Federal resumes the operation of the Exclusive Instant Lottery (Lotex), popularly known as scratch card, with the distribution of bets expected to begin in March, as informed by the Ministry of Finance.

The recovery process

After the suspension of the modality in 2015 and subsequent authorization through a decree in August, Caixa, which returned to operating Lotex, is scheduled to start distributing scratch cards in March.

In December last year, the government authorized an emergency operation until bidding for interested companies is carried out and finalized.

Caixa’s project for resuming national distribution must be delivered to the Ministry of Finance by the end of January. So, the expectation is that scratch cards will be available in lotteries from March onwards.

Emergency operation and future bidding

Francisco Manssur, special advisor to the Ministry of Finance, clarified: “Five years ago, only Caixa had a sufficient distribution network for Lotex. As the previous government had given the notice for Caixa to do so, it could not participate.”

“We are going to launch the bidding notice for other companies, but we have already released the emergency (notice), with Lotex operating by Caixa for 24 months. Caixa has to start operating the scratch cards in March and put the products on the street,” he said to the Globe.

Now, an emergency notice has been released, allowing Caixa to operate Lotex for 24 months while tenders for other companies are prepared.

Furthermore, the future Prizes and Betting Secretariat of the Ministry of Finance will have the responsibility of supervising the games operated by Caixa Econômica Federal.

Scratch card history

Created in 1990, the “scratch card” was a ticket purchased at lottery outlets, in which players scratched off specific fields. There they would instantly find out if they had won cash prizes.

In 2015, the Ministry of Finance ordered the suspension of the game, and in 2018, Lotex instituted a redefinition of the game model.

The regulation of the law that established the Instant Lottery only occurred in 2018, allowing bets through physical or virtual tickets, subject to approval by the Ministry of Finance.

Despite two attempts during Jair Bolsonaro’s government to transfer Loteria Instantânea to the private sector, both were unsuccessful, leaving the operation under the responsibility of Caixa Econômica Federal.