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Guidance on Brazilian customs practice for release of shipment


PXL/HO/Cir-033/2021-22                                                                                         Date: 06.07.2021



Dear Sir/Madam,


Subject: Guidance on Brazilian customs practice for release of shipment


Pharmexcil is in receipt of communication from Consulate General of India in Sao Paulo, Brazil with reference to release of export consignments from Brazillian customs. In March 2020, Brazilian authorities issued regulations that allow for release of goods by customs on production of digital copy / scanned copy of the Bill of Lading in order to deal with the challenges created by the pandemic.


The legal guidance from COANA (General Coordination of Customs Administration - Coordenação-Geral de Administração Aduaneira) by number 17/2020, issued on March 24th, 2020 is quoted below for your ready reference:


We clarify that the softcopy of the Bill of Lading that is scanned in accordance with the provisions of Decree n° 10.278, of March 18th, 2020, will have the same legal effects as the original document/hardcopy, and its presentation in electronic format to the customs office will be considered as fulfilled with the prevision sustained on subsection IV, article 54, of Normative Instruction SRF n° 680, of October 2nd, 2006. It is worth mentioning that the scanned document must contain all of the obligatory requirements of the original and hardcopy, according to the governing legislation in force.”


Consulate General of India, Sao Paulo in consultation with the stakeholders has been advised with alternatives for Indian exporters not to be subject to the flexibility of Brazilian legislation as below:


  • To release the cargo, it is necessary to present a digital copy of the ORIGINAL Bill of Lading duly signed. Sending a digital copy written “COPY NON NEGOTIABLE” would prevent the release of the cargo at customs terminals.
  • In transactions involving CAD (Cash Against documents) payment, or with "payable" post-shipment instalments only a non-negotiable copy of the Bill of Lading should be sent to the importer.
  • In operations with more expressive amounts, the recommendation would be to use Letters of Credit that guarantees the exporter the payment upon presentation of the shipping documents.


This simple procedure will prevent the removal of cargo from bonded warehouses leading to incurred storage costs, if the importer does not pay the exporter. The same procedure should be adopted in bank charges when the exporter forwards the original documents via the bank.


Member companies are requested to follow the issued guidelines and avoid trade disputes while exporting to Brazil.


With regards


Uday Bhaskar

Director General