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Montevideo, August 16th 2022 - 04:51 UTC

 

 

Despite Mercosur summit in Paraguay, Bolsonaro keeps cutting tariffs for critical inputs of industry and medicine

Wednesday, July 20th 2022 - 10:55 UTC
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Tariffs were eliminated on drugs containing olaparib, a substance used to treat  cancer, as well as pharmaceuticals containing bronchodilators Tariffs were eliminated on drugs containing olaparib, a substance used to treat cancer, as well as pharmaceuticals containing bronchodilators

Although Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro is not attending the Mercosur summit in Paraguay, his administration continues with its policy of unilaterally reducing the common external tariff. In this case Brazil's Foreign Trade Chamber Executive Committee approved the reduction of import tariffs on thirteen items, including medicines, medical equipment, printing ink and polypropylene resin. Tariffs were cut to zero or reduced to 2%, from 2% and 6,5%.

Among pharmaceutical products, tariffs were eliminated on drugs containing olaparib, a substance used to treat breast, ovarian, and prostate cancer. Similarly with pharmaceuticals containing tiotropium bromide monohydrate and olodaterol hydrochloride – bronchodilators indicated for treating Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). Tariffs for these items stood at 8%, but now are zero

The import rates for one endovascular device used to dissolve and eliminate thrombi was reduced from 16% to 0%. The same goes for another device, a robotic-assisted endovascular surgery tool, involving catheters, and coronary and peripheral vascular stents, among other conditions. Both devices are now also exempt from the Mercosur common external tariff.

The committee also set zero tariff on the purchase of strong strain polyester yarn, hop extract, sunscreen; and a heart valve prosthesis system, in addition to an electrode fixation system in the skull used to treat Parkinson’s Disease. The rates for these products previously ranged from 8% to 18%. Likewise three other items had their tariffs brought down to 2%, including black and color book printing inks and silicone hydrogel contact lenses.

Another measure approved was the inclusion of polypropylene resins – code 3902.10.20 of the Mercosur Common Nomenclature (NCM) – in the list of items exempt from the Mercosur Common External Tariff, taking tariffs down to 6.5%. Polypropylene resin makes items for various industries, including flexible packaging, grain and fertilizer bags, plastic chairs, toys, household appliances, and vehicle parts, among others.

The reasoning for cutting tariffs, according to Brazilian sources is supply uncertainties, because of global production bottlenecks and transport rates, and since they are critical inputs for medicine and industry, to avoid possible shortages.

Categories: Economy, Politics, Brazil, Mercosur.

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