Today, December 6th, Brazil’s Senate will vote on the possible legalization of sports betting and igaming through Bill 3,626/23. However, there is speculation that this vote may be delayed once again. The initial vote was scheduled for November 29th, but was postponed until December due to the addition of over 100 amendments to the bill.
The current schedule has the Senate plenary’s vote set for 2pm local time, although there are reports indicating that the vote will be delayed by six days to December 12th. It is alleged that the minimum number of Senators required for the vote will not be met, potentially jeopardizing the bill’s approval.
If this vote is delayed once more, there could be significant consequences. The National Congress of Brazil, which includes the Federal Senate and Chamber of Deputies, goes on recess on December 22nd, with the recess lasting until February 2nd, 2024. This leaves a very narrow window for the bill’s amendments to be approved and included in the 2024 budget.
Despite the potential for a delay, Luiz Felipe Maia of Maia Yoshiyasu Advogados is optimistic about the regulation of sports betting. He believes that Brazil is moving closer to regulation, citing the government’s support as a critical factor in the bill’s approval. Maia also emphasizes that players will benefit the most from the regulation, even more so than the government and sports.
To understand how the bill reached this point, it is important to look back at its history. The CAE approved Bill 3,626 last month, amending the tax rate from 18% to 12% and retaining online gaming in the bill. The bill has undergone numerous transformations, from the signing of Provisional Measure No. 1,182 by President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva to the publishing of general conditions for sports betting licenses by the Ministry of Finance.
The long and convoluted path to legalized sports betting in Brazil has undoubtedly been challenging for the industry. However, there is optimism that the Senate will vote in favor of the bill and pave the way for the regulation of sports betting and igaming in the country. Despite potential delays, the industry remains hopeful for a positive outcome.