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Regulated Brazilian gambling has inched a step closer to fruition, as the Ministry of Finance announced the timeline for the sector’s ongoing regulatory process.

The ministry this week published Ordinance SPA/MF nº 561, which sets out the regulatory roadmap for gaming in Brazil.

Sports betting and iGaming will be brought in through a phased roll-out of the regulatory agenda running each month until July, said the ministry.

The Regulatory Policy of the Prizes and Betting Secretariat (SPA), a new ministerial body tasked with overseeing the sector, was established in the ordinance.

This is the government arm that will be responsible for laying the groundwork for sports betting in the four planned phases.

The announcement is the latest development in the drawn-out process to regulate sports betting and iGaming in Brazil.

The process saw multiple twists and turns before sports betting and iGaming were finally signed into law by President Lula in January 2024.

Some observers have voiced concerns about the regulations. In particular, there have been questions around the 15% tax on winnings and whether it could push players towards the unlicensed market.

The ministry said: “This measure’s main objective is to systematically structure the regulatory agenda for fixed-odds betting in the country and represents a considerable advance in the management and supervision of this sector.

“The ordinance offers legal security, guarantees predictability and efficiency to the regulatory process, and thus solidifies the foundations for a stable and reliable betting environment in Brazil.”

Phased regulatory roll-out

The first phase – which is ongoing – will see the ministry this month issue regulations relating to the payment, technical and security requirements expected of operators.

Conditions for operators who wish to apply for a licence will also be published during this phase.

iGaming will be dealt with separately in this phase, with initial rules surrounding live gaming studios, testing requirements and online games issued in February.

The second phase, due to begin in May, will involve the publication of ordinances on money laundering and other crimes.

The SPA will also set out the legal framework for operator and player rights, as well as an ordinance that sets out the certification requirements for online games and live dealer studios.

In June, the SPA will launch phase three, which will see the ministry issue three additional ordinances.

The first will deal with the technical and security requirements for iGaming and the second with rules surrounding the supervision of operators.

The SPA will then publish an additional ordinance which addresses rules around sanctioning operators who breach the law.

The fourth and final phase will begin in July. At this time, the SPA will publish the ordinance relating to responsible gaming, as well as guidelines for monitoring and preventing gambling harms.

The last ordinance of the programme will involve detailing the process for directing funds to the good causes set out in the legislation.

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