The Rio de Janeiro State Lottery (Loterj) has become the first state lottery in Brazil to issue a tender for sports betting.

Awarded to São Paulo-based Rede Loto, the five-year tender permits the operator to offer online sports wagering in the country.

Loterj said that the new tender is worth R$5.0m (£819,520/€952,405/US$1.0m).

“Since I took over the management in July last year, I had the objective of publishing the accreditation notice for sports betting; we achieved more than that,” municipality president Hazenclever Lopes Cançado said.

“We have the first company accredited and ready to operate in our country. I appreciate the unconditional support of the governor, Cláudio Castro, and the secretary of the civil house, Nicola Miccione, who believed in the project.”

Loterj added that the approval should encourage that other interested parties to register and also gain accreditation for sports betting.

Provisional measure

The tender comes ahead of the expected federal regulation of sports betting in Brazil.

Last month, Brazil’s government launched a provisional measure for sports betting, in a move that marked the end of a 20-year wait period for the country.

The provisional measure was adopted by Brazil’s president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, and signed by the ministries of finance, planning, management, health, tourism and sports.

Once signed by President Lula, the measure will be published by Brazil’s government and will be enacted for an initial maximum period of 60 days, before it can be extended for another 60 days.

Key measures include a 16% tax on gross gaming revenue, payable by licensed operators. Percentages of this will be distributed to public health initiatives and anti-match-fixing initiatives.

Players will be subject to 30% income tax on winnings, capped at R$2,112, while Brazil’s ministry of finance will be responsible for regulating sports betting.

Those under the age of 18, people with ties to sports organisations – including athletes – and bookmaker employees will not be allowed to place bets.

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