Regulation of the gambling business in Brazil

In short, gambling in Brazil for a long time was banned by law. Moreover, the ban was introduced even in 1946. The initiator of this law was the wife of the 16th president of the country. She was the one who insisted on a complete ban on gambling in all its forms.

Calls for the legalization of casinos and bookmakers have been made repeatedly. In 2001, the government, as an experiment, allowed the opening of gambling houses. From an economic point of view, it was a clear success – annual contributions to the treasury in the form of taxes amounted to 61 million Brazilian reals (about 14 million dollars). However, after the expiry of the permit, in 2004, it was not renewed.

Potential profits

Proponents of the legalization of gambling appeal first of all to economic benefits. At present, according to rough estimates, the volume of the shadow gambling market is about 20 billion reals. This is twice as much as the profit from the state lottery (the only legal type of gambling in Brazil).

The national lottery is represented in the country by 13 thousand offline points. And the underground jog do bishu lottery has 350,000 dots.

Jog does bishu – the national gambling game in Brazil. It was invented in 1892 by the owner of a zoo in Rio de Janeiro. To promote his business, he began to print images of animals (one of 25 kinds) on the entrance tickets. In the center of the zoo, there was a painting covered with a canvas. At the end of the day, the canvas was removed and everyone could see the “animal of the day”. The owners of tickets with this animal could count on bonuses. Soon it turned out that there were a lot of people who did not want to go to the zoo, but who willingly began to bet on the animal of the day. Since then, the lottery has changed considerably, but the general principle has remained the same.

Experts estimate that the full legalization of gambling in the country can give the treasury up to 37 billion reals per year. Also, it will have a positive impact on reducing crime rates. As well as the level of corruption of the police and officials – many servants of the law receive bribes from gamblers.

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The situation with online gambling

The Law on the Prohibition of Gambling does not regulate online resources in any way, so a huge number of sites are completely free to accept payments from residents of Brazil. Sports sweepstakes are popular in the country. Of the about 700 sites, about 70 are in Portuguese and offer to bet on Brazilian sports championships.

The fight against such sites is not conducted only because of the lack of necessary laws. The Brazilian government, as it has repeatedly admitted, simply does not have the resources for such a struggle. As well as the fight against illegal offline casinos and bookmaker’s offices.

Another problem for an online business is that the lack of official licenses does not allow the launch of advertising campaigns on the Internet legal methods. Many businesses would agree to license and tax deductions in exchange for more clear rules of the game in this area.

Fighting for the market

Lobbying for the interests of representatives of the gambling business has become much stronger in recent years. Since about 2014, the Brazilian Senate has annually considered packages of amendments aimed at legalizing gambling. So far, no positive decision on this issue has been taken, but few people doubt that there are only a few years left before the legalization. And when that happens, Brazil may well become one of the world’s largest markets for online casinos and bookmakers.

Every year, more and more politicians are calling for the legalization of gambling. The number of supporters of legalization by the inhabitants of the country is also growing.

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In 2017, at a hearing in Parliament, 262 deputies out of 513 present supported the bill on the legalization of casinos, supported by the current president. But the senators have not yet gained the necessary majority.

The bookmaker’s license

In spring 2019, the Brazilian Senate approved a bill to legalize sports betting. But the law did not come into force immediately. First, the government surveyed the residents of the country, the survey resulted in more than 1200 amendments and comments to the published document.

According to the bill, a 9-year license to accept sports rates will cost R$3 million ($740 thousand). The license seekers will also have to provide financial guarantees in the amount of 6 million reals. The tax is proposed to be set at 1% of the turnover.

As of the end of 2019 – beginning of 2020, the bill is still being finalized and approved. What has not prevented various analytical agencies to calculate the potential size of profits from its implementation?

According to the company H2 Gambling Capital, the gross gambling income of bookmakers in Brazil will increase by 700% for the period from 2018 to 2024. As of 2018, this market is estimated at 74 million dollars, and in 2024 it will grow to 581 million dollars.


There is no doubt that the Latin American market, and Brazil, in particular, is very promising. You can launch and promote online resources for this market now. But if the country finally passes all the necessary laws regarding gambling, it will be much easier to operate on its territory. It remains to follow the news and prepare for the boom of online casinos and bookmakers in Brazil.

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