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</p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">AGRIBUSINESS<span style="font-weight: 400;">­</span></h2> <h4><b>Rural Insurance rules</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The government defined the guidelines for the distribution of resources available in the federal budget for the official subsidy to the amount paid by medium and large rural producers for access to Rural Insurance. This subsidy, paid directly to private insurance companies, is planned for three years. The last three-year plan (2019-2021) was approved in last November. The definition of the effective distribution of these federal resources (by productive activity, group of activities and/or locale) was also made last week, setting an allocation of R$ 73 million. The bulk of this subsidy goes to crops of corn, wheat and other winter grains.</span></h5> <h5><b>Other issues to have in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The values to be made available, however, may change according to the potential reallocation and freezing of money available for the Ministry of Agriculture&#8217;s budget. That is, the established amounts will not necessarily be enforced. It will always depend on the so-called &#8220;budgetary availability.&#8221;</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Possible new arrangements in the logic of resource distribution can also happen throughout the year.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Resolution No. 65 of March 11, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Changes to the Rural Credit Handbook</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The Central bank has updated parts of the Rural Credit Handbook which relate to the Proof of Loss report of the Agricultural Activity Guarantee Program (Proagro) and the form for filing appeals to the Special Committee of Resources. However, the specific modifications are unclear. The altered documents (numbered 19 and 25) </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">can be accessed here</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source:</span> <a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Circular Letter No. 3,938 of 8 March 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">AVIATION</h2> <h4><b>Airline complaints</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">Some specific rules were defined for the obligation—already in force since 2016—for airlines to provide feedback within ten days to consumer complaints issued in a system controlled by the National Agency of Civil Aviation (Anac). The difference is that this is now associated with the portal, and establishes that the airline (only passenger airlines, but including foreign companies) registers on the system before beginning operations in the country.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 764, of March 11, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;"><b>CULTURE AND SOCIETY</b></h2> <h4><b>Marriage of minors</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">President Jair Bolsonaro sanctioned a law which precludes, under any circumstances, the marriage of persons under the age of 16. Until now, the Brazilian Civil Code allowed the marriage of children under the age of 16 in the case of pregnancy or as a way to avoid criminal punishment.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Law No. 13,811, of March 12, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>National quota control for TV and cinemas</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Market Analysis Commissioner (SMA) of the National Agency of Cinema (Ancine) is now no longer in charge of monitoring the minimum quota reserved for national productions on cable TV and in cinemas—one of the bastions of the domestic cinema industry. The role is now under the purview of the Oversight Commissioner, and public servants working for the SMA will also be shifted to the new division. Ultimately, the change brought by the resolution is purely internal restructuring.  </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Resolution No. 85 of March 12, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">DEFENSE AND HOMELAND SECURITY</h2> <h4><b>Looser bidding rules for military materials</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The federal government&#8217;s &#8220;industrial organizations&#8221; may use the same financial limits imposed on the hiring of works and engineering services for procurement related to the manufacturing or maintenance of military equipment. It means that for services up to BRL 330,000, they may hold the bidding process by invitation, choosing the companies that will compete. </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">In normal situations, this limit is lower (BRL 176,000). The ordinance published by the Ministry of Defense expands the number of internal units of the armed forces which are now classified as industrial organizations, and that will now work with new limits for bidding processes.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Normative Ordinance No. 15/GM-MD, of March 11, 20</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">EDUCATION</h2> <h4><b>Universities in distress</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">The government has begun eliminating 21,000 commissioned offices and positions of trust. This doesn&#8217;t only affect public offices, but mainly temporary roles which are compensated with extra payments to current civil servants. The largest affected group will be professors from federal universities. </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Last week, 119 management positions in national education institutions were extinguished, which were not clearly defined in the decree (occupants of management positions in universities may choose to receive the full remuneration of this office or 60 percent of the amount added to the salary of the original office). </span><br /> <span style="font-weight: 400;">Another 1,870 course coordination functions were also eliminated. As of July 31, more than 11,000 other paid positions will be scrapped from universities, from Level 4 down (i.e., the three highest pay grades are not affected by this decree).</span></p> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Constitution establishes that offices and functions can only be extinguished by decree, as is the case here, when these posts are vacant. That is, either the government has eliminated already vacant positions or, as part of the decree will only enter into force as of the middle of the year, there will be a significant purge in the sector, mainly in federal universities.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The cut does not affect free appointment offices, the so-called “DAS” positions. Only the bonus relating to positions that must be occupied by permanent servers are included.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">In all, the decree, signed by Jair Bolsonaro and economy minister Paulo Guedes, forecasts annual savings of BRL 195 million to the federal government.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">More than 1,200 temporary bonuses are frozen to public servants occupying functions in various areas of the government&#8217;s &#8220;structuring system&#8221; (including those from the internal control area and document management). An additional 253 will be eliminated as of April 30.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The decree also affects the military, albeit on a smaller scale. All 389 bonuses paid to officers and NCOs of the army that exercise positions of trust in the Anac have been eliminated. Also, 68 representation bonuses will be extinguished (paid to servers performing roles in the cabinet) in the Ministry of Defense. At the office of the Presidency and Vice-Presidency, other 157 representation bonuses will be cut.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Decree No. 9,725, of March 12, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Guidelines without advice</b></h4> <h5><span style="font-weight: 400;"><strong>To the core:</strong> In March 2015, the Higher Education Quality Assurance Department (Capes) had created a group to advise the board in charge of programs and scholarships in the formulation of &#8220;strategic development guidelines&#8221; for postgraduate courses in the country. That same month, the members of this group were appointed for a term of three years (that could be later extended). Now this group has been made extinct.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source:</span><a href=""> <span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 49, of March 1, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Construction of new schools</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">In February of last year, municipalities and states which received resources from the National Fund for the Development of Education (FNDE) for the building of schools or libraries but did not complete the construction works during the term of the agreement with the federal government, were granted authorization so that, by the end of last year, they would settle a new pledge to conclude the work—providing they agree to invest their own resources into the works. FNDE money would be limited to the amount defined in the original term, without new contributions. Now, education minister Ricardo Vélez decided to extend the deadline for municipalities and state governments to settle a renegotiation with the ministry until September 25.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Resolution No. 3 of March 11, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Digital Diploma</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Ministry of Education established the technical specifications for the issuance of digital diplomas by federal universities. The general rules for the issuance of digital diplomas had already been defined last October. The ordinance now deals only with the technical aspects involved. It upheld the two-year deadline for universities to adopt this system.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 554, of March 11, 201</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT</h2> <h4><b>Oil &amp; gas fines</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The National Petroleum Agency (ANP) has updated rules in force since 2010 for the installment of debts that oil companies, petrol stations, and other regulated companies have with the agency (provided they are not registered on the List of Overdue Tax Liability). The main change, which tends to facilitate the granting of installments of debts in up to five years, is that now any decision rests solely with the ANP’s Director-General. </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Before, in the case of debts above BRL 200,000, the installments had to be authorized by the ANP board of directors. Another facilitating mechanism for the debtor companies is that there will be no more fines in the case of delay in paying installments. It also upholds the current rule concerning the cancellation of installment plans if there is a delay of three payments.</span></p> <h5><b>Potential loopholes:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The ANP resolution increases the amount to be paid upfront by the company in case of a request for renegotiating installment plans (i.e., a new installment request after another has been canceled for irregularities such as lack of payment). Before that, the debtor had to pay 10 percent of the total consolidated debt. Now they&#8217;ll have to pay 20 percent. In the case of a second renegotiation of installment plans, it will jump to 40 percent of advance payment (before it was 20 percent). The loophole is that installments requested by the end of April may follow the previous rules. In other words, in the case of redress, the amount to be paid upfront will be half if the request is made in the coming weeks.</span></li> </ul> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">With the new rules, for the installment plan to be granted, it is mandatory that the company ceases from any legal or administrative lawsuits in which the debt is contested. Furthermore, the admission of liability is valid even if the application for an installment plan is rejected.</span></li> </ul> <h6><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Resolution No. 774 of February 28, 2019</span></a></h6> <hr /> <h4><b>Animals of Belo Monte</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The government has terminated the Action Plan (PAN) for endangered species in the lower and middle Xingu region, i.e., the area under the direct influence of the Belo Monte Dam. This national action plan for the conservation of endemic and endangered species was created in February 2012, with no deadline for completion. The reason for repealing the project is unclear. Some examples of the animals that were being protected by the plan include the jaguar, giant otter, and the Amazonian manatee.</span></h5> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Among the actions that the PAN was responsible for were the &#8220;reduction of losses of wild animals due to roadkill/collisions and conflicts by competition for resources with human populations&#8221; and the &#8220;restraint of the trafficking of species.&#8221;</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 99, of March 11, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h5><b>Agricultural (and indigenous) think tank</b></h5> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Committee on Sustainable Development of Agribusiness, controlled by the Ministry of Agriculture, was reformulated. Now there&#8217;s a greater number of representatives and with the function, among others, to &#8220;elaborate guidelines and proposals&#8221; referring to the indigenous question and other social and nature issues (which are among the responsibility of the Ministry). It is also responsible for proposing &#8220;the innovation of public policies aiming to ensure environmental sustainability for agribusiness.&#8221; </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">For this, however, the bulk of the Committee continues to be made up of representatives at the core of the Ministry of Agriculture. The Committee will consist of 13 people: representatives of the minister&#8217;s office and each of the seven ministerial departments—Conab, Embrapa, the Brazilian forestry service, Incra, and Anater. Only one of the 13 members (from the Brazilian Forestry Service) has a clearly environmentalist profile.</span><br /> <span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 34, of March 14, 2019</span></a></p> <h4><b>Transfer of rights auction</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The National Energy Policy Council (CNPE) approved the general rules for conducting a round of auctions for rights to exploit the surplus volume of pre-salt fields upon which Petrobras currently has exclusively. Since 2010, the federal government has granted Petrobras the right to directly exploit certain areas of the pre-salt area, providing all associated costs and the risks of production, up to the limit of 5 billion barrels of oil. </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">This is the so-called &#8220;transfer of rights&#8221; agreement. However, estimates indicate that there are more than 5 billion barrels available in the areas the federal government transferred to Petrobras. This potential surplus will be sold so that other oil companies can try to extract oil from the depths of the Brazilian coast. This will be done on a shared basis, or Petrobras will be allowed to participate in the exploration together with the winning bidders.</span></p> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Petrobras must be compensated for the investments already made in the areas to be auctioned. The rules for the payment of such compensation to which the state shall be entitled shall be defined in an agreement still pending between the Ministry of Mines and Energy and Petrobras. Another point that will have to be included in this agreement is the proportional participation that companies will have in the oil fields. This agreement, therefore, will still have to be approved by the ANP.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">This surplus auction is only valid for the fields of Atapu, Buzios, Itapu and Sépia, all in the Santos basin.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Resolution No. 2 of February 28, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Changes to the National Forest of Tapajós</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">The environment ministry has altered the composition of the National Forest of Tapajós (Flona Tapajós) advisory board, created in 2001. The 527,000-hectare forest is located in Pará, bordering the River Tapajós. The last change in the composition of the board took place in 2014, but still maintained the specific definition of the institutions that were part of the group—including NGOs and other civil society associations. Now, with this ordinance, the existence of the entity itself is no longer guaranteed. </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The definition is generic. On the side of the public authorities, &#8220;public environmental agencies, of the three levels of government,&#8221; &#8220;education, research and extension institutions&#8221; and &#8220;government agencies of related areas from the three levels of government&#8221; will participate. From civil society, &#8220;organizations representing communities of the interior and surroundings of [Flona Tapajós],&#8221; &#8220;organizations that represent the indigenous peoples of [Flona Tapajós],&#8221; and &#8220;non-governmental organizations from outside [Flona Tapajos]&#8221; will take part. </span><br /> <span style="font-weight: 400;">The definition of which and how many entities will be represented, and how many seats each will have will all be set by the current board, but pending approval by the regional coordinator of ICMbio (the ICMbio president ratified amendments in the past).</span><br /> <span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 3 of March 8, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>New energy auction rules</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The Ministry of Mines and Energy (MME) set new registration rules for companies interested in taking part in the auction to purchase electricity from new power generation ventures. The draft ordinance was submitted to a public consultation on the MME website. Interested companies can now request to register their respective projects with the state-owned Energy Research Company (EPE).</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 160, of March 8, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Emergency rules</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The rules regarding what to do in the event of a nuclear accident involving the nuclear fuel plant in Resende, Rio de Janeiro state, have been updated. The changes to the previous rules (of 2012) are very minor, mainly consisting of alterations to wording. In a more objective way, what changes is the inclusion of the Brazilian Environment Protection Agency (Ibama) among the entities that will participate directly in the definition of these procedures, and the exit of the public company Eletronuclear and highway company Nova Dutra.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 19, of March 1, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">HOUSING</h2> <h4><b>Residential financing</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Central Bank of Brazil has allowed banks to apply the mandatory percentage of deposit resource allocation in savings for real estate financing residential units. This &#8220;deviation&#8221; can be done as long as the undertaking has a commercial part that corresponds to a maximum of 20 percent of the total constructed area.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Circular Letter No. 3,939, of March 12, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">IMMIGRATION</h2> <h4><b>Migrant children</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">In a practical stimulus to attract Venezuelan families to Brazil, the Ministry of Justice has defined specific rules for granting residence to &#8220;unaccompanied&#8221; or &#8220;separated&#8221; children and adolescents at border posts. Until now, this possibility was foreseen in the Migration Act of 2017, but had not yet been regulated. Although the rule is general, the context serves, of course, the exodus of Venezuelans in the face of the economic, social and political crisis in the neighboring country. </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The ordinance gives powers to the Public Defender&#8217;s Office to solely define the condition of &#8220;unaccompanied&#8221; or &#8220;separate&#8221; for underage migrants. This means a child or adolescent who is at the border without parents, or who is with an adult who is not his/her legal guardian. With the endorsement of the Public Defender, the requirement of documentation is much more relaxed than normal procedures.</span></p> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Children and adolescents must have a document that proves their identity and nationality, ideally a passport. It is the only concrete requirement of documentation. The alternatives to a passport are birth certificates, marriage certificates, a consular certificate of the country of origin or &#8220;judicial justification.&#8221; A document is also required to prove family affiliation. However, if this information is not available, the requirement of the papers may be replaced by an interview with the Public Defender&#8217;s Office, a judicial decision on custody or a social worker&#8217;s report &#8220;that can prove the applicant&#8217;s affiliation.&#8221; </span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">When requesting residency, even if the documentation is not complete or will be rejected, the child or teenager already receives a provisional visa of 180 days, which may be extended by the Federal Police. He/she will be able to study in public school and use public healthcare services, for example.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">It is not mandatory for there to be a person responsible in Brazil for his/her residence so the migrant can be accepted.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The period of residence is valid until the person is 18 years old. After that, rules already defined in the current legislation will apply: the individual must return to the Federal Police to request permanence, within 180 days.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Ordinance does not specifically address this issue, but leaves a breach so that, after the granting of residence to the child or adolescent, the parents can subsequently request residency in Brazil based on family reunion, provided in the Migration Act. One of the possibilities of granting residency in this criterion is precisely that of having an immigrant child in the country.  </span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 197, of March 6, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">TRADE</h2> <h4><b>Import control</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">Since at least 2003, the Port of Paranaguá (PR)—the third-largest in the country in cargo handling—held random checks of imports subject to simplified declarations (products valued less than USD 3,000, for example). At least 30 percent of the cargo entering the port had to be checked separately. From now on this will be done based on &#8220;risk management criteria.&#8221; There is no more minimum percentage to be respected, and all inspections should be justified. In other words, it will now be up to the revenue auditors in the port to identify imports that may fall under the concept of &#8220;risk.&#8221;  </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 9 of March 8, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>New rules for dry ports</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The installation and operation of dry ports (customs posts, usually in the countryside) have gained some new rules to enforce the changes in the draft of the tender and the general rules of bidding defined in another ordinance of the Federal Revenue Service. This other ordinance, number 490, of March 14, 2019, has not yet been published on the Federal Register. So, it is still not possible to detail what has changed in the rules for bidding on dry ports.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Normative instruction No. 1,878, of March 14, 2019</span></a><br /> <b></b></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Rules for exporting vehicles to Argentina</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">In a technical change, the foreign trade department defined that, for the export of vehicles to Argentina, Brazilian industrial and commercial federations already empowered by the Government for the issuance of certificates should do this in a exclusively digital fashion as of April 8. This eliminates, therefore, the further issuance of paper certificates. It represents more work to be done for federations that do not yet have systems ready for issuing digital certificates (this infrastructure only now becomes mandatory). The use of paper will only be possible in exceptional cases, i.e., technical problems or an express request from the Argentinian government.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 4 of March 8, 201</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">INFRASTRUCTURE AND LOGISTICS</h2> <h4><b>Restructuring powers</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> Bidding processes in the National Department of Transport Infrastructure (Dnit) are highly decentralized, but even after the recommendation from the Federal Accounting Court (TCU), the board of directors ceased to delegate the power to draw up preliminary projects and engineering projects for works with an estimated value of up to BRL 23.1 million. The power to authorize these projects returns to Dnit’s board of directors.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 1,477, of March 1, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Naval industry</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> Relief for the naval industry, which was significantly affected by Operation Car Wash. For the analysis of prioritization of projects seeking funding from the billionaire Merchant Marine Fund, it is now no longer mandatory for shipyards requesting funds from the government fund (which covers up to 100 percent of the cost in some situations) to present pre-contracts signed with the company that orders the services—in cases such as the construction of cargo ships for export or boats for river passenger transport. Before that, this was mandatory. That is, it is now possible for a shipyard to have the guarantee of priority in the fund and go with this &#8220;attestation&#8221; to sell its services to companies, for example.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 407, of March 13, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">INNOVATION AND RESEARCH</h2> <h4><b>Desalinization technology</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The Ministry of Science and Technology will begin desalination technologies for future incorporation into programs focused on Brazil&#8217;s semi-arid region. Foreign technologies may also pass through the tests. A database will be created from these tests, with the list of efficient technologies available in the market, both in Brazil and abroad. </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">As the ordinance says, &#8220;this information base will serve to help the MCTIC to identify all the technological solutions available for desalination and water purification and the best applications of each to, in the future, apply them in the management of public policies related to access to drinking water, food supply and sanitation”. Technologies developed outside Brazil may be subjected to these tests, by registering importers.</span></p> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The equipment will be taken to laboratories located in Campina Grande, Paraíba, the National Institute of the Semi-arid Region and the Federal University of Campina Grande, where they will be tested. Registrations are open already and have no deadline for closure.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The rules are wide open. The main constraint is that only testing equipment that are at least in prototype phase will be accepted.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 888, of March 7, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Extensive research</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">An ANP resolution allowed for less rigorous analysis so that research institutions may be accredited by the ANP as beneficiaries of the required resources of oil tanries. Now, basically any topic of study and analysis linked to the petroleum industry, renewable energies, environment, among others, can be accepted to ensure the receipt, by research institutions, of 0.5 percent of the gross production revenue that petroleum companies should apply in research, development and innovation (PD&amp;I). This counterpart of companies that exploit oil in Brazil is required since 2012. Dozens of specific research lines were defined at the time, classified into by themes and subthemes. The difference now is that the resolution includes the phrase &#8220;other&#8221; in all lists of search lines, which considerably opens up the range of topics to be accepted.</span></h5> <h5><b>Potential loopholes:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Other stricter rules were adopted in relation to the teaching units accredited by the ANP. Before, the rejection of accreditation depended on the &#8220;unsatisfactory service to all requirements&#8221;. Now, the word &#8220;all&#8221; has been removed. This facilitates, in theory, the failure of accreditation of an institution if only part of the requirements is unfulfilled. Another change is that there is no longer a penalty for warning accredited teaching units—only suspension and disqualification. On the other hand, these measures may favor a smaller amount of accredited institutions and, therefore, more concentration of resources for research and development.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Resolution No. 775 of February 28, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Partnerships with NGOs</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">The jurisdiction to establish close partnerships with NGOs and public institutions for the development of digital inclusion actions and for the execution of actions related to the management of public spaces for Internet access was transferred, for a period of four months, to the Coordinator-General of Liaison of the Ministry of Science and Technology. Until now, this was the job of the Coordinator-General of Training, Systems and Infrastructure for Digital inclusion. Both sectors are linked to the Digital inclusion Department.</span></h5> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The reason for the change is a mystery, also because it is only temporary. It may even be a purely bureaucratic move, but it is worth paying attention to some details. The liaison head, appointed at the end of January, is lawyer Samir Nobre Maia. It is a commissioned position, while the head of training is a FCPE post (i.e., exclusively for career servants). Samir has held important positions in the government, including the Director of the Department of Commercial broadcasting at the extinct Ministry of Communications. Daniela Schettino, who temporarily loses the powers related to partnerships with public institutions and NGOs, is a telecommunications engineer (a specialist, therefore) and, until last year she had not occupied positions of leadership in public service.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 222, of February 5, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Surveillance in IT</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> Specific rules have been defined for the monitoring of information and communication technology companies that are obliged—as a counterpart to the benefit of manufactured goods tax breaks on new equipment—to apply 5 percent on the value of sales made within Brazil in research, development and innovation in the sector. Not only will the companies be subject to supervision by the Ministry of Science and Technology, but also the institutions that receive this money paid by the companies and even the audits that atone to the truthfulness of the reports sent to the government by institutions.</span></h5> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">In case of cash and staff available, there are planned in-person inspections.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The companies to be inspected will be chosen from &#8220;probabilistic sampling techniques, according to criteria of relevance and criticality.&#8221; That is, not all will be supervised.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 996, of March 12, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;"><b> </b>MINING</h2> <h4><b>Backtrack on mining</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> An important backtrack from the government. In February, the Ministry of Mines and Energy, by way of the Geology and Mining Department, had signed an ordinance providing for, in practice, an unprecedented intervention by the government in a regulatory agency—in this case, the National Mining Agency. As we reported at the time, the ANM was to remit </span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">all</span></i><span style="font-weight: 400;"> normative acts related to the regulation of the sector to the Department, &#8220;so that they can be evaluated for their suitability, convenience, timeliness and thematic relevance, including for the purposes of the necessary corrections that are required by the Ministry of Mines and Energy.&#8221; </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">This would have to be done even before the public disclosure of the normative measures. In short, the text was very explicit. Now, the ministry has backtracked, claiming that the previous text &#8220;elicits uncontextualized interpretations of its real purpose.&#8221; The new order is for the ANM to send &#8220;the normative acts related to the public policies of the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Mines and Energy&#8221; directly to the Geology and Mining Department. Without any other consideration that could be considered an intervention.</span><br /> <span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 42, of March 1, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">BUSINESS AND INVESTMENTS</h2> <h4><b>Companies for children</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">Minors can now be the owners of individual companies, the so-called limited-liability proprietorships (Eireli), including individuals under 16 years of age (in this case they must be represented by their parents). That is, children and teenagers can have their own companies (before, only those emancipated and over 16 had this opportunity). Although these children and teenagers cannot be CEOs, for legal purposes the company&#8217;s capital is theirs. Another detail is that, to open a Eireli, one must declare a social capital of at least BRL 100,000. </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Normative instruction No. 55, of March 8, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Powers for lawyers and accountants</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">Another debureaucratization measure, this time in the form of a decree. Micro-enterprises (ME), small Businesses (EPP) and limited companies (LTDA) can now have their creation records in the Commerce Registry approved automatically, if there is approval of prior consultation with the name chosen for the company and the proof of viability of the firm&#8217;s location. If these requirements are not met, the acts must be effected within the period already in force since 2007: two working days.</span></h5> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">For bureaucracy purposes, when the lawyer or the accountant representing the company verbally certifies, at the time of service, the authenticity of the document relating to the company he/she is presenting at the Commerce Registry, there will be no need to make an authenticated copy. The declaration of these professionals therefore becomes public faith. It is undoubtedly debureaucratization, but, as in any situation, the lack of control automatically opens loopholes for anyone who intends to circumvent the system for whatever reason.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Provisional measure No. 876 of March 13, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Direct company command from overseas</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> Foreigners with a residence visa in the country will now be able to be a part of boards of companies headquartered in Brazil, even while living in another country. However, it is only possible to be a director or member of a fiscal council if you live in Brazil. Before, the possibility of integrating the board of a company depended on the effective residency in national territory. In any way, the person will need a proxy resident in Brazil to be able to sit on the board of directors in their absence.</span></h5> <h4><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h4> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Any filing of business acts by foreigners will depend on proof of the condition of resident in the country.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The same rules are valid for people who have requested the recognition of refugee status, even if this condition has not yet been officially declared by the government. In this case, it will suffice to submit a refugee status request protocol.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Foreigners with a permanent visa will now be able to open an individual company to be owners or use Brazilian aircraft. Before that was prohibited.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Normative instruction No. 56, of March 12, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">PENSION SYSTEM</h2> <h4><b>Task force</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">While the Government&#8217;s communication on pension reform is still performing poorly, the legal shield to ensure the integrity of the economic team&#8217;s proposal is already being raised. The government has created a &#8220;New Social Security Defense Task Force&#8221;. Coordinated by a representative of the General Counsel of the Federal Government (AGU), the group will, among other responsibilities, prepare studies, provide legal subsidies for the defence of the reform, organize theses for the AGU to defend the proposal in court, and monitor the filing and progress of legal actions in the justice system.</span></h5> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">It is also established that the group members meet with the judges responsible for trialing the cases filed against specific issues of the proposal.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">In addition to the representative from the AGU, the task force will also comprise members of the General Counsel of the Federal Treasury, the Prosecutor General&#8217;s Office, the Federal Prosecution Service, and Litigation Unit.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 180, of March 7, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;"><b>SOCIAL PROGRAMS</b></h2> <h4><b>Compensation for families of Brumadinho</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The government will pay BRL 600 (around USD 160) to the families affected by the Brumadinho dam collapse who are also beneficiaries of the Bolsa Familia welfare assistance program and the Continuous Payment Benefit (senior citizens and people with disabilities who cannot provide for themselves alone). If a family receives the benefits cumulatively, then a payment will be made for each benefit received.</span></h5> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The amounts will come from the budget of the Ministry of Citizenship, but the government will charge reimbursement of these payments of &#8220;those who have caused the calamity&#8221; generated by the disruption of the dam—in this case, mining company Vale.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Provisional measure No. 875 of March 12, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Childcare</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The Ministry of Citizenship defined the specific rules for the access of Brazilian states to the Happy Child (Criança Feliz) program. Rules established a year ago for the program as a whole already made it clear that the Happy Child program would be executed in a decentralized way, and this ordinance makes it very clear, with states having enough autonomy to develop actions from guidelines defined by the federal government. </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">It draws attention, especially, to the logic of the team structure that will execute the program in the states. There will be the figure of the &#8220;multipliers,&#8221; who will be trained and can then empower other multipliers. They will be the branch of the program related to municipalities, being responsible for the control of residential visits. </span><br /> <span style="font-weight: 400;">Each will have a maximum of 30 municipalities under his/her responsibility.</span></p> <h5><b>Potential loopholes:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The requirement for the position of multiplier is simply a university degree, without other objective criteria. The training area can be anywhere, provided that it is trained in the methodologies of the Ministry of Citizenship, in the areas of &#8220;home visit&#8221; and care for the child&#8217;s development. Considering the strongly ideologized line of government, including in the care area, it is possible that people connected to conservative entities with relevant actions in municipalities, such as evangelical churches, will do this follow-up work. There&#8217;s a loophole for that.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The ordinance, however, provides a way to control this, in some ways: the coordinator of the Happy Child Program in the state must send quarterly reports to the federal government informing about the activities in the state and &#8220;also about the activities undertaken by the program in each municipality.&#8221;</span></li> </ul> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">A rule in force since March last year, and also signed by actual minister Osmar Terra (at the time Minister of Social Development), predicts that, in the event of a state not adhering to the program, the federal government will act in the municipalities within that state. The ordinance now regulates, one year later, the access of states to the program.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 431, of March 6, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;"> TAX ISSUES</h2> <h4><b>Counterweight for automakers</b></h4> <p><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">Rules were defined for the management board that will take care of the criteria and approval of projects and institutions that will benefit from the required resources of vehicle assemblers and auto parts importers as a counterpart to the benefits granted by the government in the Rota 2030 program (the special tax regime for companies in the automotive sector). A percentage of total gross sales revenue must be destined for projects in the area of research, development and innovation for the industrial and technological development of the sector (this year, for example, it’s 0.7 percent of the sales revenue of automobiles). These projects must be made in partnership between automakers or importers of auto parts and universities, research institutions, public companies, NGOs and civil associations. Some of the main points of the ordinance:</span></p> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The board will have 11 members, six of which are representatives of the government, three from companies, one from workers and one from the scientific community (Brazilian Association of Engineering and Mechanical Sciences). Decisions will be made by simple majority. That is, the government has full control.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Brazil has several trade union centers, including the CUT and the Union Force. But the representative of the workers in the group will be nominated exclusively by the General Union of Workers (UGT).</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The accredited projects and the respective actions will be disclosed on the internet, as well as the responsible coordinating institutions, the amounts contributed in each program, the amounts effectively used and the main results of the projects and actions completed. </span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Annually, an audit will be performed on the work done by the coordinating institutions.</span></li> </ul> <p><b>Source: </b><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 86, of March 12, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Repatriation of funds</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The final analysis of funds of people who were unable to adhere to, or were excluded from, the program of repatriation of funds illegally held abroad (launched by the government in 2016) was up to now the responsibility of the local tax authority office in the region of the taxpayer&#8217;s residence. A normative instruction published by the Federal Revenue Service repeals this provision. It is unclear from the text which agency will actually now be responsible for the final analysis of the resources &#8211; especially concerning cases of exclusion, caused by the failure to comply with the terms of the program.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Normative instruction No. 1,875, of March 14, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Tax authority fines</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">Companies that are required to submit their Social Security contributions and PIS and Cofins taxes digitally are now subject to heavier fines. Those which do not provide the accounts required by the tax authority (now on the online accounting platform, available at </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;"></span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">) will be subject to a fine of 0.5 percent of the gross revenue value of the company in the period of the accounts, and 5 percent on the value of the transaction that has been omitted or has been presented incorrectly (but limited to 1 percent of gross revenue). </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Before, fines were much more lenient, with part of them defined by absolute values. The new rules also provide for possible criminal, civil and administrative actions not only in relation to companies but also against those people responsible for the company.</span><br /> <span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Normative instruction No. 1,876, of March 14, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Digital Revenue</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">Companies taxed in the taxable income regime must submit their cases to the Federal Revenue Service digitally. These so-called &#8220;digital dossiers&#8221; (digital cases including all documents) are optional for individuals and companies of other types, but the opening of a &#8220;dossier&#8221; can only be requested if they have a digital certificate. Requests for the entering digital documents may be made, in addition to the physical facilities of the tax authorities, by way of the Portal E-CAC, on the Federal Revenue Service website (in this case, a mandatory procedure for companies using the taxable income regime).</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Normative instruction No. 1,874, of March 12, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Calculation of land value</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> This alters the normative instruction that regulates the criteria for calculating the value of land (without considering building improvements), for purposes of calculating the rural real estate tax (ITR). Now, the calculation of the value of land must be done specifically by a professional empowered by the Federal and Regional Councils of Engineering and Agronomy (Confea and Crea, respectively), by way of a set methodology. Before this was done by &#8220;price survey based on transactions, offers or opinions.&#8221;</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Normative instruction No. 1,877, of March 14, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">LABOR RELATIONS</h2> <h4><b>Alteration to labor reform</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> Labor reform ended the obligation of union dues, but left a loophole for a union assembly to decide whether the members of that profession should have their wages discounted. Now, a degree signed by the president on the eve of the carnival holiday has defined that this charge may happen, but must be authorised individually by each employee.</span></h5> <h5><b>Other important points worth knowing:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Even employees who expressly want to contribute to trade unions must individually pay the bills sent out to their residences.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Medida Provisória No. 873, of March 1, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;"> FOOD SAFETY</h2> <h4><b>Fishing welfare</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Ministry of Agriculture has decided to end one of the largest security points created in the &#8220;Welfare Fish Farming&#8221; program. Since at least 2015, producers of fish and other aquatic animals, such as crustaceans and molluscs, have had to fill a document called a “production bulletin” &#8211; mandatory for transporting these live animals to processing units, before reaching the final consumer. That obligation no longer exists. All references to it have been eliminated from the program&#8217;s rules. The document is essential for the control of any epidemiological problems relating to animals. At present, there is no longer the main formal control, adopted since 2017, of potential contamination in seafood. In the “production bulletin”, the fish farmers informed whether they carried out monitoring of residues and contaminants, such as dyes, heavy metals, lead, mercury, arsenic, among others. They also had to report whether they carry out monitoring of microorganisms hazardous to public health, such as salmonella, a bacterium causing severe stomach infections. It should also inform if there was a finding of disease in the animals of the batches.</span></h5> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The normative instruction also directly benefits private laboratories, which can now make general diagnoses relating to aquatic animals, as well as identify diseases. This was the exclusive responsibility of four public laboratories.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The new standards value the work of veterinary physicians in the process. Only veterinarians may be responsible for quarentenary establishments and for the prescription of aquatic animal products. Before that, it was a generic technical manager who could have another specialty.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Dead aquatic animals must be buried or destined for compost in a place with the &#8220;lowest possible risk&#8221; of contamination of watercourses. Before the watercourses were not cited, but only groundwater and contact with other animals.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href="*"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Normative Instruction No. 4 of February 28, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h5><b>Grape festivals</b></h5> <p><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The wine producers of Rio Grande do Sul state will no longer need to indicate the number of their vineyard registration in the entry of grapes in states from other locations. It was an expected requirement since 1998, but it is now suspended at least until the end of this year. It is a measure that tends to expand the possibility of grape production by those not registered with Embrapa.</span><br /> <span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 33, of February 28, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">PUBLIC SERVICES</h2> <h4><b>Reducing bureaucracy</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">As a preparation for the implementation of the new identity document for Brazilian citizens, recently postponed to March next year, President Jair Bolsonaro issued a decree saying that the individual taxpayer number (CPF) will be sufficient for the provision of any public service offered by the federal government &#8211; such as searches for information concerning protocols and obtaining benefits. </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The CPF should replace, at the federal level, any other need for indication of document (e.g. PIS number, worker identity card, enrollment in class council, among others). </span></p> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">All information about any public service offered by federal government agencies should now be gathered in the </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Service Portal</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> of the federal government. Any creation or changing of requirements relating to public services should be published on the portal beforehand. The site will also include a ranking indicating the public agencies with the highest incidence of complaints and those with the best evaluations by the population.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The decree also facilitates the use of the &#8220;Simplifique!&#8221; form to present demands for the simplification of public services. Now these demands can be related to virtually any aspect of any public service. Before that reach was more restricted.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The national network of ombudsmen is created, coordinated by the Federal Controller General. Membership will be voluntary for states and municipalities, but by joining, they will have free access to the digital system for the receipt of statements and requests for simplification, and shall gain training for their servers in the areas of simplification of services and ombudsman, with the support of the National School of Public Administration.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Decree No. 9,723 of March 11, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Employment systems</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The government extended the deadline, initially established until May, until the end of this year so that the posts of the Sine (National Employment System) across Brazil, which have an already expired agreement deadline, can create &#8220;work funds&#8221; for the receipt and movement of federal resources destined for these units. In this period, however, there will be no more funds from the Workers&#8217; Support Fund, which was one of the sources of expenses of the units. Until the creation of the work funds, the costing of activities will depend on the funds of states and municipalities responsible for the execution of these spaces.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Resolution No. 824 of March 11, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">TRANSPARENCY AND CORRUPTION PREVENTION</h2> <h4><b>Siege of large debtors</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">This is an important and discrete measure, but tends to have a significant effect on the actions of the National Treasury against large tax debtors. Now, even National Treasury attorneys working in regional units and most state units, and not in the central organ of PGFN, can also participate in internal selection processes to occupy, among others, the positions of national chiefs of the divisions of Tax Matters, management and strategy of large debtors. The appointment to these posts, until now, was restricted to attorneys who were already working in the central organ of PGFN, in Brasília.</span></h5> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The ordinance also expands the range so that the positions of heads of the regional divisions for the monitoring of large debtors, the division of active debt and tax affairs are occupied by attorneys in the office in question, but which are currently working in other units.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 198, of March 11, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Home Office</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> An ordinance now allows for &#8220;tax analysis of interest&#8221; to be made by the servers of the tax authority via teleworking—that is, at a distance (home office). This analysis is precisely the </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">type</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> which resulted in the controversy involving Supreme Court Justice Gilmar Mendes. That is, revenue servers can now carry out tax investigations from home.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source:</span> <a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 456, of March 8, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Control of appointments in Dnit</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">Dnit, responsible for the federal highways and a historical focus of corruption, will open a selection process to fill second and third-level commissioned positions, including the positions of regional superintendents &#8211; which, over time, were traditionally occupied by political appointments. At least half of the superintendent positions should be filled by career servants of the Dnit. For the others, requirements include a university degree, minimum experience of four years in activities related to the performance of Dnit, and having already occupied position of trust for at least three years or, alternatively, possessing the title of specialist, master or doctor.</span></h5> <p><b>Source: </b><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ordinance No. 399, of March 12, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>Cooperation with Costa Rica</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">An agreement was enacted, signed back in 2011 during the Dilma Rousseff government, seeking legal cooperation between Brazil and Costa Rica. Among the items of the agreement is the sharing of evidence, including forensics, the execution of attachment of goods, restitution of assets, among others. The aid for locating goods and people in both countries is also provided and information on the existence of assets in banks. At the time of the agreement, Costa Rica was considered by the Brazilian government a tax haven. Last year, it was no longer considered as such.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Decree No. 9,724, of March 12, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">VIOLENCE AND CRIMINAL MATTERS</h2> <h4><b>Genetic database</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core: </b><span style="font-weight: 400;">These are very punctual changes in the resolution that standardizes the procedures to be adopted for the collection and storage of DNA samples (genetic profiles) of prisoners for heinous crimes in the integrated network of genetic profiles databases. In relation to the last amendment, last April, practically nothing substantial has changed &#8211; except for the permission to include samples obtained voluntarily (i.e., without the need for a court order). They can be included in the database without the need for a new collection. Either way, the person has to have been arrested.</span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Resolution No. 10 of February 28, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h2 style="text-align: center;">URBAN DEVELOPMENT</h2> <h4><b>PAC</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> Rules in force for almost 11 years concerning the PAC (Growth Acceleration Program) have been changed, taking control over the use of funds in strategic works by ministries from the economic area. A 2008 rule foresaw that the Ministry of Planning (now incorporated into the Ministry of Economics) should previously rubber stamp any use of funds for the program&#8217;s works, based on requests made by the ministries. It was a way to centralize the execution of these resources. </span></h5> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source:</span><a href=""> <span style="font-weight: 400;">Decree No. 9,722 of March 7, 2019</span></a></p> <hr /> <h4><b>New rules for sanitation</b></h4> <h5><b>To the core:</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> The review of the National Plan for basic sanitation is now in public consultation. The government completed the stages of diagnosis and formulation of a review proposal, which will now pass through the formal screening of general society. This means that, in addition to the public consultation, which will be open until April 6, public hearings will also have to be carried out. The government must carry out at least two (the schedule will still be disclosed), and everything indicates that there will only be two, as this review is pending since the beginning of last year.</span></h5> <h5><b>Other issues to bear in mind:</b></h5> <ul> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">After the closure, the government will have up to 90 days to report with the analysis of the contributions received. In other words, this procedure should enter the second half of the year. Then advice will give an opinion prior to the proposal and a draft decree will pass through the approval of the Minister of Regional Development, then signed by the President.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">One of the central goals of the plan, in force since December 2013, is to universalize access to sanitation by 2033, but the sector considers that this deadline is impossible to be fulfilled in view of the current rules, which, according to companies in the sector, do not appropriately stimulate investments.</span></li> </ul> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source: </span><a href=""><span style="font-weight: 400;">Normative Instruction No. 7 of February 26, 2019</span></a></p> <p>

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