Brazil has reduced import taxes and tariffs to zero for products used to combat Covid-19, including syringes and needles classified under codes 9018.31.11, 9018.31.19, 9018.31.90, 9018.32.19, and 9018.39.10 of the Mercosur Common Nomenclature. The products are included in the list of temporary tariff reductions covered by Gecex (Executive Management Committee of the Chamber of Foreign Trade), Resolution 17, from 17 March 2020.
According to the agency, the Committee also decided to suspend the anti-dumping duty in force against Brazilian imports of disposable syringes originating in China. As in the case of tariff reductions, the suspension will be valid until June 30, 2021.
According to the Ministry of Economy, the tax rate for importing needles and syringes was previously 16%. The Brazilian government faces difficulties in acquiring syringes and needles for immunizing the population in combating the Covid-19 pandemic.
Last week, in an electronic auction, the government tried to acquire 331 million syringes but bought only 8 million. The price offered by the Ministry of Health to purchase the material was considered low by a representative of Brazilian manufacturers.
Subsequently, on January 3, the Economy began to require a special export license for needles and syringes, limiting shipments to guarantee the domestic supply during the fight against the pandemic.
With the recent decision of Gecex, the list of products with zero tariff in the scope of the fight against the pandemic of Covid-19 now includes 303 products. The Covid-19 List was validated until June 30, 2021, by Gecex Resolution 133, of December 24, 2020.