Customs clearance in Brazil
Every product that arrives in Brazil, either permanently or temporarily is subject to the customs clearance for importation process. These procedures aim to verify the accordance between the data reported by the importer on the SISCOMEX (the electronic system of Brazilian customs) through its import license RADAR and his customs broker (Despachante aduaneiro), and the imported goods per se; as well as the accordance with any particularity required by legislation.
The main document to perform a customs clearance operation is the DI (acronym, in Portuguese, for “import declaration”). This document must be registered in the SISCOMEX system as of the arrival of the goods. An extract is to be sent to the importer and the goods will then be submitted to a control procedure called “parameterization” that will appoint the customs clearance channel.
To see how much it will cost you to clear through customs your goods, please have a look at our page on Import Duties Calculation or Request a Quotation.
Import License RADAR requirement
The RADAR (Registro e Rastreamento da Atuação dos Intervenientes Aduaneiros) is an authorization to operate on the SISCOMEX. This License issued by the Receita Federal (Customs and tax authority body) allows the company that owns it to import and export goods in Brazil.
It is necessary to request it before starting any Import-Export activities in Brazil, any legal person must go in a branch of the Receita Federal to get this habilitation. It is important that obtaining a RADAR is only permitted to a Brazilian company. A foreign company cannot obtain one without having a subsidiary on Brazilian territory with a CNPJ corporate register.
Without this, a foreign company must find a Brazilian Importer of Record to do the customs clearance, which will result in a transfer of ownership of the goods.
Custom clearance channels in Brazil
According to the information presented in the DI and information gathered by the private sector or other sources, the goods will follow through one of the four customs clearance channels.
The SISCOMEX algorithm will designate one of the customs clearance channels randomly, which will still take into account the history of the importer and the nature of the products.
Indeed, the more an importer has a trouble-free transaction history, the more likely he will be to escape any verification (green channel).
On the contrary, a company making its first import will have a good chance of going through a more thorough check (yellow or red channel).
Here are the four customs clearance channels in details:
1. Green channel
The automatic custom clearance of the goods is authorized; a proof of import is then emitted and the goods are sent to the importer.
2. Yellow channel
A thorough examination of the importation documents is performed;
3. Red channel
The customs authorities perform examination of the import documents as well as a physical examination of the goods;
4. Grey channel
On top of previous examinations, an analysis of the customs value of the goods is performed. This analysis is performed accordingly to the article VII of the GATT on customs valuation. This process can take up to 120 days in extreme circumstances.
Steps to clear through customs goods
The clearing process of the goods will start at the time the Import Declaration (DI) is registered via SISCOMEX. For this to happen, all of the legal demands and documents required by legislation must have been sent.
The payment of taxes and import duties, ICMS excluded, are made at the time the Import Declaration (DI) is registered.
2. Parameters definition
In this step, SISCOMEX automatically processes the Import Declarations (DI) and defines one of the custom clearance channels:
Green – Automatic custom clearance
Yellow – Examination of the documentation
Red – Examination of the documentation and physical examination of the goods
Grey – Examination of the documentation and analysis of the declared customs value.
3. Dispatch to the customhouse
Once processed by the SISCOMEX, the DI will be dispatched to a tax inspector.
The tax inspector will process to the automatic clearance, examination of documentation, physical examination and analysis of the declared customs value; depending on the defined channel. This process can take between 1 and 15 days, depending on the defined channel.
Once the tax requirements intrinsic to importation have been met, the goods will be available to be collected and handled to the importer.
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O Despachante Aduaneiro (Customs Clearance Agent)
This occupation typically Brazilian means an intermediate (sort of declarant) responsible for conducting the import and release of goods procedures. Therefore all “despachante” has access to SISCOMEX.
In almost all import transactions, importer works with a “despachante aduaneiro” who may be an employee of the importing company or, in most cases, a third party service provider. The “despachantes” are essential intermediaries; their service’s cost is more than worthy, compared to the time and energy that a company spends in this import process.