In 2018, Brazilian lawmakers decided to bring legal sports betting services to the country but the new form of gambling has still not been launched although the expectations to see it bring additional tax proceeds to state coffers. Furthermore, casino gambling has still not been legalized in the country, even though 2021 saw an extensive effort of local lawmakers to do so.
The supporters of the country’s gambling expansion claim that the new additions to the Brazilian legal gambling sector may create hundreds of thousands of new workplaces for local people and bring annual tax proceeds estimated at about R$20 billion.
About a week ago, in an interview for Poder360, Federal Deputy Herculano Passos, who is one of the proponents of the proposed gambling expansion of Brazil, said there could be a significant economic benefit for the country as a result of legal gambling. He believes that the official addition of more legal forms of gambling could bring 650,000 jobs to the country’s domestic market. According to Mr. Passos, that benefit would be helpful for the country, especially considering the fact that Brazil faced a fiscal deficit of R$100 billion in 2021.
A 30% Gambling Tax Could Bring about R$20 Billion Every Year, Brazilian Gambling Expansion Proponents Say
In his interview for Poder360, Federal Deputy Passos shared his expectations that the legalization of casino gambling, bingo and animal gambling would probably create hundreds of thousands of new workplaces for local people, while the introduction of so-called integrated resorts would result in an overall increase in business for states that host such venues.
According to calculations provided by Mr. Passos, a gambling tax of approximately 30% would bring an annual tax income of R$20 billion, with the proceeds set to bring additional funding to health and culture in Brazil, and some more money to municipalities across the country. The legalization of gambling would also help the Government reduce the share of the black market, not to mention that it would boost the local economy.
So far, previous efforts seeking the legalization of gambling in Brazil have failed. According to Mr. Passos, the main opponent of the proposed measure is still the country’s President Jair Bolsonaro, who previously said that he would impose a veto on gambling laws, as well as what he called the “evangelical bench”. As the Federal Deputy explained, one way to get past the presidential veto powers is first taking the gambling expansion issue to the Chamber and then to the Senate for a vote. He believes that voting in such a way would eventually annul President Bolsonaro’s veto.
Even if gambling expansion proponents manage to overturn the stiff opposition of Brazil’s President, the proposed measure would have to find a way to pass through evangelical leaders, who believe that the addition of new forms of legal gambling would lead to an increase in gambling addiction rates across the country. However, Federal Deputy Passos highlighted the fact that not legalizing gambling has only brought losses to Brazil, with the country losing precious revenue for over 70 years.