Mona Lisa’s Smile Must Be Turned Upside Down

All over town we have been seeing billboards for Mona Lisa. Clueless, we asked for a literal translation from our guide.

Come to find out that just about 3km from the town of Foz do Iguacu is the country of Paraguay, and Mona Lisa is the name of a huge electronics store chain, the Best Buy equivalent. Brazilians, and Argentinians too, cross the border into Paraguay, where taxes are cheap, almost non-existent, to buy their flat screen TVs and all other electronics fresh off the boats, some likely black market goods, we were told.

Brazilians can also buy cars in Paraguay, half the price of what it costs in Brazil, but we got lost in a translation a bit as we thought our guide said the Brazilian government can seize your car bought in Paraguay if you don’t pay the taxes.

We had one foot in Paraguay yesterday, standing at the power plant, which is half in Brazil and half in Paraguay. It’s amazing how little I can tell you about Paraguay.

One thought on “Mona Lisa’s Smile Must Be Turned Upside Down

  1. I think you understood your guide perfectly. 😆 I looked this up earlier today but forgot to save the link for when I had more time. The short version is that you can expect to pay 95%-115% of the price of the vehicle in import duties and various other taxes and you can’t buy it until you’ve jumped through a zillion Brazilian hoops either. Once you buy it you can expect to wait at least 3-4 months to take delivery and then you still have to find a way to register it. Only brand new, or 30+ year old, cars are allowed with some exceptions for inherited of consular vehicles.

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