Patrick Bruha

Patrick Bruha

Staff Writer
The Brazil Business


Types of Customs Clearance In Brazil

Patrick Bruha

Patrick Bruha

Staff Writer
The Brazil Business


When trading goods to and from Brazil, exporters and importers must be aware of administrative processes at Brazilian customs. In this article, we will outline the types of customs clearance when importing to Brazil.

Brazilian customs clearance

In Brazil, it is Receita Federal do Brasil, which is Portuguese for Federal Revenue Service, that are responsible for checking all the information given by the importer related to the import process of the goods coming from abroad. A list of all documents related to the import of goods to Brazil is described in this article.

With these in hand, the Federal Revenue Service will know which treatment should be given to the imported goods, as well as which taxes will apply to the goods.

Types of customs clearance

There are two different types of customs clearance in Brazil:

  • Despacho aduaneiro a título definitivo, which is Portuguese for Definitive Customs Clearance
  • Despacho aduaneiro a título não definitivo, which is Portuguese for Non-Definitive Customs Clearance

Definitive Customs Clearance

The Definitive Customs Clearance, also known as clearance for consumption of the goods, occurs when any foreign goods enter Brazil owned by a company that is located in Brazil. Thus, as the foreign goods enter Brazilian territory, they are already considered as a new asset of the importer.

It is important to state that Definitive Customs Clearance is not done in order to nationalize the goods, since the foreign goods must have already been nationalized in order for them to be cleared from customs. Their clearance is necessary so that all legal procedures are made before the goods are handed to the importer.

Foreign goods subject to Definitive Customs Clearance include goods:

Non-Definitive Customs Clearance

The Non-Definitive Customs Clearance, also known as Temporary Customs Clearance, occurs when the imported goods remain an asset of the exporting country. Thus, these goods are not necessarily an asset of the importer, entering Brazilian territory under suspended conditions, in Portuguese título suspensivo. Upon their arrival, a set deadline is given for these goods to be re-exported.

The main feature of this type of customs clearance is the tax exemption granted to the foreign goods entering Brazil. It is also important to mention that these taxes will only be suspended while the goods remain under the special temporary admission regime’s set deadline.

Technically, the main difference between the two types of Customs Clearance is for purposes of completing information on the Declaração de Importação, which is Portuguese for Import Declaration, the most important import document.

Also, there are no fees charged on the Non Definitive Customs Clearance type. The only exception for this happens in cases of temporary admission for goods that will participate in any activities that generate revenue. In these cases, customs duties will be applied in proportion to the length of stay of the goods.

Customs Clearance In Advance

Although it is not exactly a different type of customs clearance but more like a different customs clearance modality, Despacho Aduaneiro Antecipado, which is Portuguese for Customs Clearance In Advance, must be mentioned here.

The Customs Clearance In Advance occurs when there is special need for the goods to be cleared as quickly as possible and then be forwarded to the importer. In this customs clearance modality, all document verification is done prior to the product’s arrival in Brazil. Normally, this procedure is adopted for the import of perishable products.

Other cases where the Customs Clearance In Advance is adopted are:

  • Goods carried in bulk, whose offloading should be performed directly for oil terminals, silos, special warehouses or special vehicles
  • Flammable, corrosive, radioactive goods or any other goods that may be hazardous
  • Printing paper for books, newspapers and periodicals
  • Public entities
  • Goods transported by land, river or lake

In this case, the imported goods and the importer will be subject to the legislation valid at the date of arrival of the goods in Brazilian territory.