The Brazilian gambling market is one of the most challenging but yet one of the most promising in Latin America. As the local lottery news states, three one of four Brazilians have engaged in the games of chance, while 18% of respondents gamble more than once a week.
Once legal, gambling is now forbidden in the country. This year marks the 75th anniversary of the complete ban on casinos.
There are, however, many projects to legislate the games of chance. The general lottery law was passed in December 2018, legalizing national lottery as well as fixed-odds betting. The law has already come into effect, with only 2 years left to set the guidelines for the lottery and fixed-odds wagering regulation.
Experts’ perception of the lottery market in Brazil
A group of experts have provided a legal update on the Brazilian lottery and betting legislation during an online webinar “Gaming Summit Latin America”.
Danilo Gennari, a managing partner at the District Government Relations, has outlined the main challenges that the gambling industry is currently facing, including:
- All regulations have to be ratified by the President, and there is no guarantee that the President will ratify the change.
- At the end of 2023 government has to choose a relevant model for licensing the lottery operators.
- The income tax is based on the payouts, instead of revenue. The taxation model, though, is changing to the GGR-based one.
- Regulation of the other modalities (for instance, casinos) is yet to be set.
As mentioned, there are two existing models for licensing lottery operators. The authorization model provides an unlimited number of licenses, and operators have to meet financial and legal criteria to obtain one. The concession model, on the other hand, grants only about 50 licenses, for which operators have to compete in tenders.
Neil Montgomery, a Partner at Montgomery & Associados, indicates that the authorization model is the only adequate one, as there are more than 500 gambling operators, waiting to enter the market of Brazil.
The gambling expert has also reminded that, as of December 2020, each of 26 Brazilian states can independently regulate lottery, with no regard to the federal government. While the new regulation brings numerous opportunities for foreign operators, the question of whether the licensees will be able to work across the whole country remains.
Fernando Sussesso, the sales manager at an electronic payment processing company Nuvei, has emphasized that having as many as possible payment methods is crucial for the operators, who want to enter the market. The expert has also stressed the importance of PIX payments (instant direct bank transfers) for the development of Brazilian gambling.
Experts have also said that the Brazil-based headquarters will benefit the operators, as Brazilians like to express their complaints in person.
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