Brazil will eliminate tariffs on imports of corn, soybeans and rice

The Brazilian government reported that it will temporarily eliminate tariffs on imports of corn, soybeans and rice outside Mercosur.

Brazilian rice imports totaled $ 245 million in 2019, with external suppliers such as Paraguay, Uruguay, Argentina and Italy.

Meanwhile, foreign purchases of corn from Brazil totaled 199 million dollars that same year, with Paraguay, Argentina and the United States as the main sources of supply.

Finally, soy imports from Brazil were for 45 million dollars, with Paraguay and Uruguay as its main sellers.

According to the daily Valor Economico, the secretary of Agricultural Policy of the Ministry of Agriculture, Cesar Halum, said on Wednesday that the government will temporarily eliminate tariffs on imports of these three products to combat impacts on inflation.

The price of the three products reached a record in the domestic market.

Brazilian imports

“We are going to eliminate the import tax on these three items. It is a clear sign that the government is attentive to prices, not to allow prices to rise and pressure inflation in the country, ”said Halum.

The main concern of the government is rice and the impacts on the final consumer, since the bag was sold for over 100 reais in some places. “It is a staple food. If there are people who have rice, speculating to raise prices, it can generate, otherwise Brazil will import rice and balance the market ”, warned the secretary.

Halum noted that the increase in prices is also due to strong international demand and the devaluation of the real against the dollar.

Last week, the rice processing industry filed a lawsuit with the Ministry of Agriculture to withdraw the Common External Tariff (TEC) of Mercosur, currently at 12%, until February 2021. The tax applies to the purchase of products from countries outside the South American Common Market. For soybeans and corn, the TEC rate is now 8 percent.

The secretary did not say how long the exemption would run. The change in the rate must be voted on by the Executive Management Committee (Gecex) of the Chamber of Foreign Commerce (Camex), which meets today.