Brazil Senate Delays Progress on Sports Betting Bill

The Brazilian Senate Delays Discussion on Legalizing Sports Betting

In a surprising turn of events, the Brazilian Senate has once again postponed discussions on the legalization and regulation of sports betting in the country. The sudden cancellation of a meeting by the Senate Sports Commission has left the fate of the proposed legislation uncertain, with no indication of when the talks might be rescheduled.

The proposed legislation includes an 18% taxation rate for sports betting companies and online casinos, while the legalization of iGaming remains absent from current considerations. Parliamentarians are reportedly grappling with the issue of tax rates behind closed doors, with some advocating for a reduction in the tax rate for sports betting from 18% to 12%.

The journey toward regulating betting activities in Brazil began in July with the publication of a Provisional Measure, following five years of extensive debates. However, the bill faced a delay in October after a request for a comprehensive review. Despite securing approval from the Chamber of Deputies, the legislation is currently undergoing simultaneous processing by the Economic Affairs Commission (CAE).

Mixed reactions have emerged from within the Senate, with concerns raised about the insufficient time available for a thorough examination of the bill. Senator Romário de Souza Faria, a former soccer player and the Senate’s Sports Commission president, has previously expressed support for the proposition. However, the submission of over 100 proposed amendments to the bill has complicated the legislative process.

The delay in discussions has highlighted the struggle to find significant support for the bill within the Senate, with opposition stemming from politicians who were supporters of former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro. The Senate’s website also features a poll allowing Brazilians to vote on their support for the bill, with the current results showing 1,305 against it and only 19 in favor.

However, it’s important to note that the poll is not a scientific study and may not reflect the same results as other research. A study conducted by Aposta Legal Brasil and OpinionBox in May revealed that 64% of respondents are ready to embrace legalized sports betting.

With the fate of the proposed legislation hanging in the balance, stakeholders and the burgeoning sports betting industry in Brazil anxiously await the outcome of this protracted legislative process.