Any plans to introduce sports betting in Brazil are off for the foreseeable future according to Alexandre Manoel, secretary of the country’s Economy, Energy and Lottery Department at the Ministry of Finance. Speaking at last week’s Juegos Miami event, he described a project to look at the possibility of introducing sports betting in Brazil as “mothballed”.

Addressing delegates at the Miami Biltmore on Wednesday, he explained that the government had looked at how sports betting works and, while it represents an attractive sector of business for Brazil, the current legislation is not “appropriate to support it”.

For now, said Manoel, the Brazilian government would be focusing on finalising the process of finding a new concessionaire for the country’s state-owned Lotex lottery which, he added, will be up and running by the beginning of next year. But until then, sports betting in Brazil remains a work in progress.

The secretary’s comments were aired as news broke of a visit last week by Las Vegas Sands CEO Sheldon Adelson to Sao Paulo. While the exact details of his trip have not been revealed, he did hint to press that he was there to consider the possibility of investing in one or more integrated casino resorts.