Understanding the CE Mercante and how it works!

Understanding the CE Mercante and how it works!

The CE Mercante (Merchant CE) is nothing more than a method of tax control for maritime operations, which consists of a bill of lading informed electronically to customs authorities.

Made through digital certification of the issuer, this is a process that aims to lessen bureaucracy, cheapen, facilitate, and accelerate the collection control, which previously depended on confused and unclear forms.

Find out more about the CE Mercante concept, those responsible for its data, its main purposes, deadlines for its registrations, fines provided for in cases of noncompliance and means of consultation below! Continue reading!

What is CE Mercante?

Created through Ordinance No. 328/2001 of the Ministry of Transport, the CE Mercante is a number generated through the Electronic System of Collection Control of the Additional Freight for Renewal of the Merchant Navy (AFRMM).

Its main purpose is to determine the criteria and establish standards for the procedures for making waterway transport data available.

CE stands for Electronic Bill of Lading and serves to replace the old method, which was previously done through physical forms and with unclear controls.

According to Decree 5.543/05, art. 2, the CE Mercante characterizes as an “electronic system of collection control of the Additional Freight for Renewal of the Merchant Navy – AFRMM”. ”

In the next item, check out who is responsible for including the data in this important system.

Who is responsible for the inclusion of the data?

Representatives of shipping companies and agencies are the holders of the information included in the Master bills of lading and responsible for including the ship’s manifest and stopovers.

Therefore, they need to transmit electronically through the CE Mercante, all data present in each process, generating the Master CE number.

Electronic deconsolidation of the Master bills must be done by the  freight forwarder, who must also inform the houses bill of lading in the CE Mercante.

As highlighted by the Fazcomex , the Mercante System has been integrated with the waterway cargo control module of the Integrated Foreign Trade System (Siscomex), called Siscomex Carga, since 2008. 

What is the purpose of using the system?

The CE Mercante aims to make the processing of information from maritime cargo transport operations systematized and less bureaucratic.

It also serves to integrate the different institutional information management systems of foreign trade of the Federal Government, especially SISCOMEX systems, with emphasis on Siscomex CARGA.

Another important purpose of CE Mercante is to automate the AFRMM collection process and improve the performance of the Regional Units through automatic control methods.

In addition to improving control and government actions, de-bureaucratization benefits agents, reducing operating costs related to cargo release procedures and methods in ports.

Lastly, CE Mercante also provides a complete management of the procedures for granting the most diverse tax benefits that are provided for by current legislation.

What are the deadlines for its use?

The company responsible for navigation must transmit the data of its Master bill of lading within 48 hours prior to the arrival of the vessel at the first national port of call.

The freight forwarder needs to deconsolidate the Master bill of lading up to 48 hours before its process arrives at the final port of unloading.

There are exceptional routes, especially in foreign ports near to Brazilian territory, such as Uruguay, Argentina, and Panama, for example.

In these situations, the deadline may vary according to the vessel and its origin, with an average of 12 hours to 24 hours before arrival. The record, which can be consulted by the transporters, is done on Siscomex Carga by Coana.

If any information is not provided within the deadlines foreseen, a fine is generated automatically, according to the formalization of the infraction in the tax process.

Cases of “bill corrections” are not configured as infractions, so the fine is not applied. They are provided for in art. 44 of Decree No. 4543 of 2002 of the Customs Regulations, which states:

“For tax purposes, any correction to the bill of lading shall be made by means of a letter of correction addressed by the issuer of the bill of lading to the customs authority of the place of unloading which, if accepted, shall result in correction of the manifest.”

What fine is imposed in case of noncompliance with the deadline?

If the deadlines mentioned in the previous item are not respected, a fine of BRL 5,000.00 is applied for each process not entered in time.

The penalty may be applied within 5 years of release or with correction outside the information period.

How can a CE Mercante be consulted?

In order to perform a cargo item consultation in the CE Mercante, it is first necessary to access the website of the Collection Control System of the Additional Freight for Renewal of the Merchant Navy – AFRMM.

With the Mercante System open, proceed to the “Bill Tab”, then “Bill/BL/BL-House”, then “Consult” and finally “Cargo Item”.

Once this is done, simply enter the input parameters, such as the cargo item or the CE Mercante number.

To consult all items of the electronic bill of lading, simply follow all the steps described, but after the “Consult” tab, the “All Items” option must be selected.

The input parameter in this case is simply the CE Mercante number.

On the website of  the Federal Revenue Service , there is a complete description of the operations that can be carried out in the system. Simply follow the steps indicated to perform any consultation!

Did you already know about the concept and peculiarities of CE Mercante? If you have any questions about the matter, please contact us and learn how we can assist you in this matter!

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