Operators to save on Brazil border transactions after ASUTIL intervention

By Luke Barras-hill |

ASUTIL Secretary General José Luis Donagaray addressed sections of the media during a press conference on Thursday 26 November.

Consultation fees for retrieving duty free product sales information on Brazil’s land borders are set to lower after Asociación Sudamericana de Tiendas Libres (ASUTIL) successfully negotiated with the company that administers the service.

As reported, ASUTIL had been in discussions with the federal government to seek to lower obligatory payments made by land border operators associated with obtaining duty free transaction data.

The system is administered by Serpro, a firm delivering government IT infrastructure, which uses a database to consult on land border duty free transactions according to customer allowances and applies a fixed rate that is often up to 7% of the average ticket value paid in US dollars.


A successful ‘global negotiation’ between the operators and Serpro resulted in a drop to the percentage fee paid by operators and upgrades to the transaction infrastructure, attendees to the virtual La Frontera Hoy (second edition) meeting of border duty free shops in Latin America (24-25 November) heard this week.

“We had a good meeting with Serpro, the operators and ASUTIL and we managed to change the way the services are paid,” said José Luis Donagaray, Secretary General, ASUTIL. “It will cost less for the operators. The exchange rate is also oscillating a lot. Everyone can [now] sell in Brazilian reals [as opposed to US dollars]. We found a very good attitude from the government to help us.”

The changes are due to come into force in January.

Brazil border shop operators are required to pay a flat fee to Serpro to track shopper spending in line with their allowances, but the service has been expensive in the case of low ticket sales.

Donagaray told TRBusiness: “That service had a percentage (fee) that was complicated. It dropped by a good percentage. What you pay to Serpro will be in Brazilian reals, not in US dollars. That will help a lot as you have to pay at the end of the month.”

Other important developments announced during the second La Frontera Hoy virtual meeting was the arrival of nine more Brazil land border duty free stores – bolstering the 11 already in existence – and the raising of the allowance ceiling for Brazilians from $300-$500.

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