On December 19th Secretary General Ruy Nogueira and State Secretary Torgeir Larsen signed a Custom Agreement between the two countries. The signing took place during Secretary general Nogueira’s visit to Oslo ; a visit which also included important political and economic talks.
The main purpose of the new agreement is to regulate and facilitate information exchange between the two countries. Existing national custom tariffs and regulations are not affected by the agreement.
However, the business community has now been given the possibility to file any complaints they might have of incorrect tariffs applied or of inconsistent practices and individual interpretation by custom officials (which has been a concern for Norwegian importers of oil and gas equipment).
In Norway, questions and complaints should be addressed to Toll og Avgiftsdirektoratet, which then will raise the issue – if considered a legitimate concern – with their counterpart in the Brazilian administration, the Receita Fededral, who will make a federal decision. If another Brazilian ministry or agency than the Ministry of Finance is the responsible authority, the agreement says that the case shall be passed on to the appropriate entity.
While the new agreement does not directly affect the level of import duties or the tariff structure, we believe the agreement will ease some of the time-delaying import processes we have seen – and as such is a step in the implementation of the Brazil Strategy of Norway.