Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro

  • Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro has signed into law to privatize the legal sports betting market which has led to conflict.
  • Senator Jaques Wagner has submitted a request to the Ministry of Economy to justify privatized sports betting.
  • Many officials opposed the president’s decree.

BRASILIA, Brazil – There is tension in the legal sports betting market in Brazil following a senator’s request to hear the benefits of sports betting in the National Privatization Program (PND).

Senator Jaquess Wagner submitted the request to the Ministry of Economy and in the request, went to great lengths detailing the negatives that would come with removing sports betting from the Caixa Econômica Federal and transferring it to the private sector.

Decree 10,467 was signed into law by Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro in August. The decree allows for the National Bank for Economy and Social Development (BNDES) as well as the Ministry of Economy to manage the privatization of sports betting.

Privatized Sports Betting

The reason behind Senator Wagner’s opposition to legal sports betting in Brazil being privatized is due to social programs losing the help currently gained from the added sports betting revenue.

Once sports betting is transferred to the PND, then no standard practice would be in place to curate sports betting revenue to fund important benefits such as the Brazilian Paralympic Committee, the National Culture Fund, the Brazilian Olympic Committee, the National Public Security Fund, or the National Penitentiary Fund.

Senator Wagner’s request was for the government to explain what benefits does the country gain that would offset the many benefits the country will lose.

“Such an initiative is based on the erroneous premise that the transfer to the private sector of activities carried out by the State is always and in any circumstances beneficial to society,” said Wagner in his argument. “It is the demonstration that in reality the alienation of certain services is detrimental to the well-being of Brazilians, because in addition to giving up a surplus activity, it brings a concrete risk of cannibalization in the collection of federal lotteries. We will have a consequent shrinkage of the installments due to its legal beneficiaries, who are already so lacking in resources. They are Social Security, the National Culture Fund, the National Penitentiary Fund, the National Public Security Fund, the Brazilian Olympic Committee and the Brazilian Paralympic Committee.”

Wagner is not alone, as many other officials have also added their frustrations with the decree. For now, however, the legal sports betting market in Brazil is still on pace to become privatized.

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