Travel

Brazilian government plans to clear taxes for international flights and aviation fuel

Giving up revenue at this time of fiscal recovery, however, is complicated

Guarulhos Airport, in Brazil.
Brazilian citizens won't be affected by the new measure. Photo: Shutterstock
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  • One possibility is the end of the PIS / Cofins levy, which is seven cents per liter of aviation kerosene, which costs around BRL 3 in the country;
  • A second front of action to lower costs for commercial aviation in Brazil is the end of fees, including the extra fee of about $18 charged to every passenger who leaves the country on international flights.

The Brazilian government is studying two fronts of action to make plane travel cheaper in the country, especially international ones. According to information from the news agency Estadão Conteúdo, the first one aims to reduce the cost of aviation fuel by cutting taxes on this input.

One possibility is the end of the PIS / Cofins levy, which is seven cents per liter of aviation kerosene, which costs around BRL 3. A package of other measures could accompany this waiver of taxes on aviation kerosene, including the introduction of another slightly cheaper and already used fuel in the US, and the end of the Petrobras monopoly over the sale of this kind of fuel.

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Despite having a direct impact on government accounts, tax cuts would be the fastest measure of all.

A second front of action to lower costs for commercial aviation in Brazil is the end of fees, including the extra fee of about $18 charged to every passenger who leaves the country on international flights.

Created in 1999, according to Estadão Conteúdo, this additional charge is made as part of the departure fare of every international flight departing from Brazil. The departure fare varies today from BRL 106,76 to BRL 122,20.

A portion of this additional fee, set annually by the National Civil Aviation Agency (Anac), goes to the civil aviation fund. The rest goes to the company that manages the airport from which the flight departs and serves to compensate this company for the services provided to the terminal’s passengers.

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With the end of this additional charge, passengers would pay only the part due to the companies, not the part of the civil aviation fund.

According to government sources, the departure tax could be halved in the country. But that would also imply loss of revenue for the Union, which in 2018, raised about BRL 700 million with this collection.

However, the latter measure, according to Infrastructure Minister Tarcisio de Freitas, should only be introduced in the government budget forecast of 2021. The additional charge for international flights, therefore, will continue to exist in 2020.