Brazilian Federal Deputy Pompeo de Mattos believes that by taxing regulated games of chance, the country will be in a position to generate the necessary finances to fight the ongoing threat of the COVID-19 crisis.

The large number of gambling and betting bills in Brazil only need the political will of the Executive Branch and the tourism sector to pass the chambers in the coming weeks, he argued. This would create a new legal fund for the recovery of the economy in the country, which would contribute to health and education programs.

“It’s a perfectly possible, viable and necessary alternative to rebuild the economy after the coronavirus crisis,” he said. “The Chamber is willing to approve the project, all that we need is that President Jair Bolsonaro and the Tourism Minister Marcelo Álvaro Antônio give the green light.”

The deputy highlighted in an interview with local radio Spaço that the best project would be one that allows casinos, bingos and Jogo do Bicho. He also gave assurances that the project could be included in the Deputies’ agenda within 10 days, and that the approval could be immediate given the proposal has been subject to multiple debates.

“It’s possible that this happens after the pandemic because gambling in the country would help increase, improve and give oxygen. It would also generate taxes, income for the government and it would help us recover the economy, it would create jobs,” he added.

Matos has defended the legalization of the industry in the Chamber of Deputies in recent years, and also authored Bill 6405/2009 to establish a municipal lottery based on the Jogo do Bicho, a highly popular game that still operates outside the legal framework.