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Brazil Deputy proposes selective tax on online gambling

By - 10 June 2024

A member of a working group in the Chamber of Deputies wants online gambling among the activities on which a new selective tax could be levied.

Deputy Joaquim Passarinho, one of the members of the working group analyzing the main text of the regulation of tax reform, says that he wants to include gambling games such as the ‘Tigrinho’ game in the Selective Tax, which will levied on products considered harmful to health and the environment.

Unlicensed online slot game the Tigrinho game (“Fortune Tiger”), which is based on the signs of the Chinese zodiac, is one of the most popular online games in Brazil. It is often used in the press and by lawmakers as a term to refer to online gambling overall.  

The lawmaker told press that he had requested a study from the Federal Revenue Service on gambling available on mobile phones and online in order to access the numbers generated by the activity. “I don’t see why we shouldn’t include it in the Selective Tax. We have to include it. ‘Oh, but they are already paying normal taxes.’ But you’re harming society,” he says.

He argued further “there are people who are completely indebted because of this. Of course, it is harmful to people’s mental health. If we are taxing even soda, why not tax these guys? I will propose taxing Tigrinho and these mobile games.”

Brazil’s government submitted proposed rules to Congress to implement a major tax overhaul approved in December 2023. This broad consumption tax reform includes, among other measures, a selective tax targeting products considered harmful to the environment and health.

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