Brazil has negotiated the purchase of 225,000 tons of rice from the United States, India, and Guyana, which are expected in the country during the second half of October and November.
In an attempt to contain the price increase for consumers, Brazil decided to lower the Common External Tariff (TEC) on rice imports from outside Mercosur to zero.
The measure was approved in early September, when the Executive Management Committee (GECEX) of the Chamber of Foreign Trade (CAMEX) lowered the levy for paddy rice until December 31, following on a proposal from the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Supplies (MAPA). The temporary tariff reduction is restricted to a quota of 400,000 tons of grain.
Brazilian rice production in the 2019/2020 harvest, estimated by the national food supply company CONAB reached 11.2 million tons, and was supposed to be sufficient for an estimated consumption of 10.8 million tons. For 2021, rice production is expected to grow by 7.2% over the previous harvest.
According to a report published by Valor Econômico newspaper, the Brazilian government has not yet given up on the idea of also eliminating tariffs on imports of soy and corn from outside Mercosur because of the persistent rise in grain prices and its impact on supermarket shelves' prices.
The poultry and pork industries concerned with this situation of increasing prices for oil seeds and grains in the Brazilian domestic market have asked the Ministry of Agriculture for the Common External Tariff (TEC) to be zeroed until the next Brazilian grain harvest comes onto the market in January, similar to what was done with rice at the beginning September.