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Brazil – Sheldon Adelson meets Mayor of Rio

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Sheldon Adelson, Chairman of Las Vegas Sands, alongside a number of other businessman and local politicians has met with mayor of Rio de Janeiro Marcelo Crivella to discuss a new government program aimed at driving economic growth.

Governor of the state of Rio de Janeiro Luiz Fernando Pezão was also present at the meeting held the major’s office in the City Palace earlier this week. Lawmakers and businessmen discussed the National Registration and Company Legalisation Simplification Network (RedeSimples) a government programme aimed at reducing bureaucracy and encouraging small and medium-sized businesses so that entrepreneurs and businessmen can register and legalise their companies within five days and create jobs.

According to the Mayor, it is not the first time that Adelson has been to Rio and he said that he hopes to be able to count on him in the future when it comes to the development of the region of Porto Maravilha. Operation Porto Maravilha is a urban renewal project in Rio de Janeiro’s Downtown Port Zone, involving an area of 5 million square meters and aimed at completely changing Rio de Janeiro’s neglected port area. It is the largest urban revitalisation programme in Brazilian history and has the support of both the mayor’s office and the central government. Both have allocated funds to the renewal of the city’s public services and transportation system to be supplemented later by private investors interested in helping renew the port area’s commercial potential.

Crivella commenting on the businessman’s visit to Brazil said: “He is a great real estate investor, with many casino hotels in Las Vegas and the largest of all in Singapore. He came to Rio and is going to Brasilia to talk about tourism. He has an interest in investing in tourism here and can help us in Porto Maravilha by building hotels, squares and recreation areas.”

There are a number of proposals on the table on how casinos could be permitted in Brazil. Legislation which is being considered in the Senate would allow for 35 casinos, with at least one per state while some states would be permitted to have as many as three, depending on the population and the economic outlook in each state. The resorts would only be permitted to use 10 per cent of the available space for gaming while the remaining space would be used for restaurants, shops, theatres, exhibition space, as well as others facilities. In the Chamber of Deputies gaming law, as it is now being discussed would allow for casinos within wider leisure complexes. Meanwhile the Tourism Ministry is pushing for casinos in a handful of large integrated large scale resorts along the lines of Singapore.

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