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The Export Processing Zones - ZPEs are industrial districts with incentives, where companies there located work with tax suspension and exchange freedom (they are not obliged to convert exchange values in exports into Reais) and simplified administrative procedures –with the condition of addressing at least 80% of their production to external market.

The portion of up to 20% of production sold in domestic market fully pays the taxes usually charged on imports.


The ZPEs (or similar mechanisms) are the most used instrument in the world to promote the following objectives at once:

  • To attract foreign investments addressed to exports;
  • To settle national companies in the same conditions as their competitors located in other countries that have similar mechanisms;
  • To create jobs;
  • To increase the added value of exports and strengthen the payment balance;
  • To spread new technologies and more modern practices of management;
  • To correct regional unbalances.


The companies settled in the ZPEs shall have the use of the following incentives in the federal scope (Act 11.508/2007, with the amendments introduced by the Act 11.732/2008):

  • Suspension of taxes and federal contributions (Import Duty, IPI, PIS, COFINS, PIS-Import and COFINS-Import and Additional Charge to Freight for the Renewalof the Merchant Navy). Regarding capital assets, the incentive is for new as well as for used assets;
  • The companies can address the corresponding up to 20% of the amount of gross revenue arising from sale of goods and services for the internal market. These sales shall fall totally, all regular taxes and contributions, on the operation, besides taxes/contributions suspended when importing and acquiring inputs in the internal market;
  • The companies settled in the ZPE located in areas of SUDAM (Superintendency for the Development of the Amazon) or SUDENE (Superintendency for the Development of the Northeast) shall be entitled to 75% reduction of income tax for the period of 10 years;
  • The companies shall have exchange freedom (they may keep 100% of exchange values obtained in their exports abroad);The administrative, exchange and tax treatments above shall be assured for the period up to 20 years; and
  • The companies in the ZPE can further be benefited from ICMS (Tax on Circulation of Goods and Services) exemption on imports and purchases in the internal market.

The regulation of Convênio ICMS 99/1988 by the CONFAZ (National Council of Finance Policy) authorizes the exemption of ICMS (Tax on Circulation of Goods and Services) in outcoming goods addressed to establishments located in ZPEs; in incoming imported from abroad; and in rendering transportation services of goods or assets between the ZPEs and places of departure/ arrival.

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Tel: 55 11 5586-4300 / 5586-4350
Fax: 55 11 5586-4343
E-Mail: marilice@vsantos.com.br
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