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Brazil – Brazil Senate gives eSports green light

By - 4 July 2019

The Brazilian senate has given professional eSports the go ahead meaning that it could now go directly to the chamber of deputies for approval.

The new bill will regulate the eSports sector and could be a crucial step once Brazil begins to grant licences to sports betting operators. However the exact type of eSports that will be allowed will be established by presidential decree.

The Commission of Education, Culture and Sport (CE) approved Senate Bill 383/2017, which proposes the recognition, promotion and regulation of electronic sports (eSports) in Brazil, according to the Senate’s news agency (Agência Senado). As long as an appeal is not submitted for further analyses in the plenary session of the chamber, the text will go directly to Chamber of Deputies.

The project establishes that the professional practice of eSports must adhere to national and international standards accepted by the entities that promote the sport. For the bill’s author, Senator Roberto Rocha, sports competitions in virtual environments are – like traditional sports a means of “socialization, fun and learning.” The legislator argues that their practice can contribute to improving the intellectual capacity and strengthen the reasoning and motor skills of those who take part.

Senator Eduardo Gomes, who defended the project in the commission, recommended approval of the text as it came from the Commission on Science, Technology, Innovation, Communication and Information Technology (CCT), which reformulated the original so that it would be in greater harmony with the provisions of Law 9.615 passed in 1998, which establishes the general rules for sport.

Gomes allowed for two improvements: he excluded the creation of Electronic Sports Day and accepted that all games with violent sexual content should be excluded from the eSports category, as well as those that disseminate messages of hatred, prejudice or discrimination or promote drug use. However, the classification of what is ultimately considered an electronic sport will be established by a presidential decree.

Late last year the National Congress of Brazil approved new gaming legislation that will allow for both online and land based sports betting. The bill, Provisional Measure 846/18, deals mainly with how lottery funds are distributed giving more priority to National Security. Although eSports are not covered in the present draft of the bill the latest ruling could well pave the way for betting on eSports once sports betting is given the go ahead.

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