Brazil finalises first draft of sports betting bill

Following the finalisation of a public consultation, Brazil’s Ministry of Economy is finalising a draft regulatory decree for online and land-based sports betting, which will lay the foundations for “various companies to operate in the market”.

Under the new decree, there would be no limit set on the number of licences that would be awarded by the state. Neil Montgomery, managing partner at Montgomery & Associados, also told SBC that the legislation will be open for public comment later this month.

“The Ministry of Economy received more than 1,800 suggestions, both from Brazilian and foreign entities and individuals, on how to regulate sports betting,” said Montgomery. “There was an overwhelming response to the public consultation opened in July.”

Addressed in the regulations, operators would pay a one-time licence fee of R$3m (£600,000) for a nine-year period, with companies paying an annual tax rate of 1 per cent on turnover.

Operators must also maintain a financial reserve of R$6 million (£1,200,000) to serve as a guarantee of payment to customers.

The decree has reportedly outlined monthly licensing fees which will differ depending on the nature of the operation. Land-based operators will pay R$20,000 (£4,000) per month; online operators will pay R$30,000 (£6,000) per month and omni-channel operators will pay R$45,000 (£9,000) per month.

In comments reported by Brazil’s O Globo newspaper, Alexandre Manoel Angelo da Silva, from the Secretariat of Evaluation, Planning, Energy and Lottery (SECAP), which comes under the Ministry of Economy, said: “We consider this to be the most adequate licensing regime and regulatory framework as it gives flexibility and allows various companies to operate in the market.”

In 2019, the office of outgoing President Michel Temer signed the approval of MP-846 – a bill which paved the way for sports betting to go live in the country.

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