Nintendo Says Bye-Bye Brazil

In sad and disappointing news for Nintendo fans in Brazil, Nintendo has made an official announcement that they’ll cease operations in that country, effective immediately and for the foreseeable future. This month we’ll see distribution of games and systems stop, and the reasoning comes down to heavy tax laws.

The official word being given is that Brazil’s tax laws lay very heavy taxes on some items that aren’t directly produced in Brazil, like game consoles and games, causing companies to make a decision of whether to invest in an entirely local manufacturing setup or to sell their products at insanely high prices.

How insane? Well, the PS4 at launch cost $1850USD in Brazil. Someone fortunate enough to be able to travel to the US could certainly buy a system there and download the games they want while out of the country, but how many Nintendo fans can afford that? It’s not news that Nintendo’s consoles and games are difficult to acquire in Brazil, so perhaps it shouldn’t be a huge surprise that the company has decided to pull out completely until things change.

Here’s a summary of translated comments from Bill van Zyll, the Director & GM for Latin America of Nintendo of America:

“Brazil is an important market for Nintendo and home to many passionate fans but unfortunately challenges in the business local environment have made our current distribution model in the country unsustainable.


These challenges include high tariffs on imports that apply to our industry and our decision not to have a local manufacturing operation. Working together with the Juegos de Video Latinoamérica, we will monitor the evolution of the business environment and evaluate the best way to serve our Brazilian fans in the future.


…We will continue to monitor the environment in the country so that we can evaluate future opportunities.”


On the one hand, it makes sense. On the other hand, it’s incredibly disappointing for fans of Nintendo living in Brazil and the region in general. Certainly Nintendo won’t be turning a blind eye, so perhaps there will be hope for a return in the future—or maybe local companies will step up and offer partnership. We’ll have to wait and see.


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Author: Micah View all posts by
Micah has been playing games since his first pong machine, and has been writing for as long as he could grip a pencil and not drool on the paper. So, for about a week.

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