Dec. 13, 2017
The Confederation of Agriculture and Livestock of Brazil (CNA) has mobilized to prevent the increase in the import tax rates of some agricultural pesticides, which are in the List of Exceptions to the Common External Tariff (Letec).
Representatives of the Brazilian industry for agricultural pesticides requested the exclusion of six formulated products from the common tariff: Chlorpyrifos, Fipronil, Imidacloprid, Methomyl, Carbendazim and Tebuthiuron. The request to increase the import tax was forwarded to the Foreign Trade Chamber (Camex) and was deliberated in the meeting of the Executive Management Committee of Camex (Gecex), scheduled for December 5.
These formulated products are registered and used for the control of plagues on vegetables, soybean, corn, cotton, coffee, sugarcane, citrus and kidney beans. CNA has opposed the return of the 8% import tax rate and requested that the products be maintained at Letec, because it would increase the production cost of these crops. Today, the tax on importing these pesticides is 0%.
During the 2015-16 period, for instance, the cost of agricultural pesticides was on an average 32% of the operational costs for soybean growers in Sorriso, state of Mato Grosso. For coffee, the increase in the rate for products such as Chlorpyrifos and Imidacloprid will generate phytosanitary losses, because the elevation of these prices can create difficulties in plague controls, such as the Coffee Borer.
“These products are widely used by the Brazilian producers and other countries. We understand the request of the industries, but raising the costs of rural producers in a moment of difficulty is not the best strategy to increase the competitiveness of Brazilian agriculture,” affirmed Natália Fernandes, Agricultural Production Coordinator at CNA.
Another worry is in relation to the capacity of the industries to meet the national demand for these pesticides. In case of incidence of plagues and disease, the demand will increase and the supply will not meet the short and mid-term necessity, increasing the cost of the product and production for the farmer.
CNA has made the necessary efforts, in collaboration with the representatives of the companies that produce agricultural pesticides, to modernize and give more transparency to the procedure for the registration of these products in Brazil, which will contribute to improving the competitiveness of the industry and the rural producers.
The Ministry of Agriculture has supported the request of the CNA and opposed the increase in the rate of import tax for the referred inputs. Since the end of last year, the entity has been acting to guarantee these agricultural pesticides remain in the Letec. Besides sending a note to the Ministry of Agriculture, Blairo Maggi, forwarded the technical arguments and request for support from the Ministry of Foreign Relations, and the Ministry of Industry, Foreign Trade and Services.
CNA has also joined with Marcelo Carvalho, Executive Director of Camex, to explain the demand of the agricultural sector to speak about the difficulties that the sector faces owing to the long process of registration and the worry about the possible increase in the prices of formulated products.
“We have submitted technical information and placed our arguments this whole year to sustain the litigation of the rural producers. We expect the Camex decision taking into account the importance of the agricultural sector for the country,” declared Fernandes.