How to Start Importing from Brazil
The Brazilian market is one of the largest economies in the Americas, with over 202 million inhabitants and an industrial network able to provide goods and services worldwide. If you want to import from Brazil, follow these basic steps to ensure the success of your business transaction.
Define the product: The first major step to import from Brazil is to define the type of product needed. The best option is to identify the tariff position corresponding to the merchandise that you want to import, which can be done by accessing the website of the Latin American Integration Association (ALADI). Another option is to contact a customs agent, a professional who is competent in determining tariff positions. This is the way to know how goods are called for customs purposes.
Know what duties are involved: The next step is to identify what duties you will have to pay in your own country when importing goods from Brazil. Brazil has signed only a few economic integration agreements, so more often than not the tariff applied by the destination country is not preferential. This is an essential point to analyze, because the relatively inexpensive price of the product may be outweighed by high tariffs to import it.
Identify the right suppliers: The third step in the development of Brazilian import transactions involves online research on two official sites. Vitrine Do Exporter is an official source of information on Brazilian companies exporting various products and services. From there, you can conduct searches by tariff position (the recommended option) or by product, company name or trademark. It will be very easy to identify a portfolio of suppliers of the product you are looking for. Another important source of information on Brazilian suppliers is the Official Catalog of Brazilian Exporters. This is a great database that offers easy and free access to information about the exporters from Brazil.
Contact suppliers: The next step is to contact the vendor. It is recommended to make contact with more than one Brazilian exporter, in order to compare the alternatives, and in turn, compare their answers, in order to draw better conclusions. Contact form may be by email, although in some cases telephone communication is the most direct and effective when advice is needed before making a purchase. In this case, keep in mind that the language in Brazil is Portuguese, and although the Spanish language is frequently spoken, it is not always possible to find partners who are fluent in English.
Manage logistics: Once the supplier is identified and the offer received is accepted, the next step is to address the logistical issues. If the shipment is small, Brazil has numerous courier services that are able to reach any destination in the world within hours. If the purchase is not appropriate for dispatch through couriers, there will be air and maritime transport options, although depending on the location of Brazilian suppliers selected, the cost can vary considerably. Remember that Brazil has a land area of 8.5 million square kilometers and has numerous ports and airports. It is convenient in this regard is to contact a freight forwarder, for advice regarding the best logistics options.
Formalize payment: Another important aspect is supplier payment. Because the parties do not necessarily have an established relationship, and perhaps the transaction does not warrant the use of complex payment instruments, precautions should be taken. One option is to ask the bank for references for the foreign supplier, some banks offer this service. Another option is to ask the supplier for references, and contact their overseas customers to verify their compliance. Also, in these cases, a more economical and secure means of payment, such as a credit card, can be used; more complex and expensive options may be merited if the transaction amounts are high, in which case the letter of credit is recommended.
These steps will allow an importer to establish an initial link with a Brazilian exporter but in order to streamline the transaction, the importer must take things to the next level. The importer must visit the market, attend trade shows, meet with their suppliers and establish direct contacts, in order to improve their negotiating power.
The MasterCard Biz Portal aims to be a link between importers and exporters around the world, its team of expert consultants are available to assist you in your business dealings in Brazil, a market with great potential.