A great leap in electronic invoices


Author: Hayrne Salvanha

Source: Gazeta Mercantil, 24/11/2008

São Paulo, November 24, 2008 - In December, new and important sectors of activity will start to use the National Electronic Invoice (NF-e): automobile industry, medicines, cement, refrigerators, manufacturers of pig iron, laminates, beverages and steel. The new system, with legal validity guaranteed by the sender's digital signature, simplifies the taxpayers' ancillary obligations and allows real-time monitoring of commercial operations by the tax authorities. Its implementation is a great advance for those who pay and also for the inspection of operations taxed by the Tax on Circulation of Goods and Services (ICMS), charged by the states, and the Tax on Industrialized Products (IPI), collected by the Union.

The company that issues the NF-e will generate a file with all the tax information of the operation, which will be transmitted over the Internet to the State Finance Department, which will do a pre-validation and return, if there are no restrictions, the Use Authorization. it is the guarantee for the transit of goods. The note will also be transmitted to the IRS and, in the case of interstate transactions, to the destination Finance Secretariat. Everything can be consulted on the Web. In order to track the transit of goods, the DANFE (Auxiliary Document for Electronic Invoice) is printed on plain paper and a single copy, which contains the key to access the Internet consultation inserted in a bar code. The mandatory fiscal bookkeeping is maintained, but this should only be done after electronic consultation with the Treasury Department. The note must be kept in a digital file for the period provided for in tax legislation. For non-sending recipients, the alternative is to keep DANFE.

Gradually, the new system is becoming mandatory, as has already happened in the scope of manufacturers and distributors of cigarettes and fuels and, now, in the automobile, cement, medicine, refrigerators, pig iron, laminates, beverages and steel manufacturers. .

For all these segments, the main challenges in the implementation of the project are the following: sanitation of registrations, automation of processes related to registration, review of the current processes of purchase and sale orders, automation of the process of receiving tax documents and the entry of information in corporate / transactional systems, use of digital certification by issuers and exchange of electronic data in B2B relationships.

However, in the case of exchanges between companies, the data contained in the electronic invoice, although this can also be transmitted to the commercial partner, is not sufficient to meet the requirements for the efficiency of operations along the supply chain. Only the forwarding of logistical and financial information, together with the note data, guarantees benefits such as speedy receipt of goods, reduction and efficient control of inventories and increase in sales.

Faced with this challenge, GS1 Brasil anticipated and promoted a group that discussed the harmonization of NF-e with existing B2B processes, focusing on various sectors of the economy, which resulted in the B2B Addendum, which was created in the same pattern as NF- and (XML) and may be sent together with the NF-e file to the business partner.

Fortunately, the automation and integration of systems and the electronic exchange of purchase orders and invoices have been carried out for more than 15 years in Brazil, through EDI (Eletronic Data Interchange), which had already modified the form how companies do business. The electronic invoice will be responsible for the massification and expansion of this process. The Finance Secretariat of São Paulo, for example, has the goal of reaching 30 million emissions through the new system by the end of the year. This corresponds to 50% of the total invoices issued in the State.

A great example of how the barcode and EDI with GS1 standard, prevalent all over the world, contribute to the efficiency of supply chains and the important role they will play in facilitating the dissemination of electronic invoices is the GOL Group. Created in 2001 and promoting the certification of companies in the leather-footwear sector that use those automation tools, the group developed a model for this supply chain that encompasses all activities of the logistical and commercial processes to have an impact on the electronic invoice. This is an important competitive differential within the reach of all sectors, in the context of the irreversible advance of electronic invoices.

(Hayrne Salvanha is an Advisor to the GS1 Brasil Business Solutions Cell.)