Smuggling involves 31 people in Foz


Source: Valor Econômico, 10/06/2005

By Zínia Baeta from Foz do Iguaçu

The creation of a program to attract industries and services to the Foz do Iguaçu region, in Paraná, has been advocated as a way to reduce piracy and smuggling in the area. The idea, common to parliamentarians, representatives of non-governmental entities and technicians from the Federal Revenue, arises from data showing that around 31 thousand people in the triple border region find piracy or contraband a means of subsistence, and that the repression alone has not been enough to end the problem, which has an economic repercussion that affects the entire country. The region is one of the main ports of entry for smuggling and pirated products in Brazil.

Despite still being in the field of ideas, the possibility was common to all the debates held yesterday during the International Seminar on Strategic Combat against Smuggling and Piracy, promoted by the National Union of Technicians of the Federal Revenue (Sindireceita) in Foz do Iguaçu. A list of suggestions to the federal government will come out of the meeting.

Both Sindireceita and the Brazilian Institute of Ethics in Competition (ETCO) defend the search for other means of combating piracy and smuggling, in addition to inspection. A comparative study carried out by the revenue technicians in Foz and members of Sindireceita, Sergio de Paula Santos and Samuel Benck Filho, shows that there is no direct correlation between the values ​​of goods seized by the IRS and the number of employees involved in these actions. In 1995, for example, more than $ 39 in goods were seized. At the time there were 181 employees. In 2002, with 230 civil servants involved, the seizures represented about US $ 17, 6 thousand. Therefore, they understand that repression alone does not solve the problem and does not attack its causes. "It is necessary to create a program to get these people out of this activity," says Sérgio de Paula Santos. The programs could come with the creation of benefits such as the reduction of taxes, which would attract industries to the municipality.

According to President Sindireceita, Paulo Antenor, it is also necessary to create a project to qualify labor in the region and bring universities to it. The promotion of public awareness campaigns on the ills of smuggling is another proposal. The executive president of the ETCO Institute, Emerson Kapaz, proposed the creation of a group in the municipality, formed by class and business entities, Executive and Legislative, to elaborate a project “structural for the recovery of the triple frontier”. The idea would be to seek support from the federal government and the BNDES and even the World Bank. The institute has already commissioned a study to identify the region's economic vocation, which should be ready in August.