Brazil – Immigration Controls for Seafarers - Update

14 September 2023

Further to our previous news alert of 28 June 2021 (available here) Members and Assureds whose vessels call at ports in Brazil are reminded that as of 1 May 2023 the Brazilian immigration authorities will only accept the Seafarer Identity Document (SID) issued in accordance with ILO Convention C185  as a valid travel document for seafarers transiting/entering in Brazilian waters. The Seaman’s Book issued under ILO Convention C108 is no longer a valid immigration document for seafarers in Brazil.  

All seafarers calling at Brazilian ports must hold a valid ILO C185 SID or valid visa, unless they are crewmembers serving on board vessels whose flag country has entered into an agreement with Brazil exempting them from an ILO C185 SID or visa. Note that whilst China has such an agreement with Brazil in place, the exemption only extends to Chinese crew serving on board Chinese flagged vessels.  

For more details on entry/transfer requirements for seafarers in Brazilian waters, please see the Circular from Representações Proinde Ltda, a correspondent in Brazil, which is available here (illustrated) or a PDF version downloaded here.

Members and Assureds should take note of the above and liaise with local agents and correspondents, where appropriate, to allow sufficient time to ensure compliance with Brazil’s immigration laws and avoid being fined.