Electrical plugs in Brazil

Yeah, here I am talking about Brazil again, but just because it is an interesting story and considering that a huge number of tourists pretend to visit Brazil for the World Cup of 2014 and the Olympics of 2016 it might be a useful post.

About 5 years ago, the ABNT (Associação Brasileira de Normas Técnicas – Brazilian Association of Technical Norms) decided that it was time for the country to have a new kind of electrical plug. And here it is:

From 2010 this plug will be mandatory for all new electrical equipment bought in the country. According to the research that triggered the creation of this new design, more than 15,000 people died in the last 10 years due to electrical shocks in Brazil. According to the ABNT, with this new design it is impossible to place a finger between the pins and the outlet. Another important factor to introduce this new plug was that before Brazil used more than 8 different kind of plugs – even though all my life I did not see more than two different kinds.

Furthermore there will be two dimensions for the plugs, one for common electrical equipment and another for high consumptions gadgets like washing machines and air conditioners.

So this is it and there is no way back. A lot of critics are shouting that this new kind of plug was forced in order to satisfy different sectors of the industry such as the manufacturers of electrical outputs. Others claim that this was created in order to difficult the import of electronic devices that will now require an adaptor. Either way the common citizen will have to pay the bill every time that an output will have to be changed or an adaptor acquired.

I have read some reactions on Facebook in the last days and I can see that a lot of people are proud that Brazil will have a unique electrical plug. I must say that I am not a big fan of this kind of pride that has grown a lot in the country in the last years. The reason to adopt the new plug is noble. A padronization was needed and more security was fundamental, but it is reasonable to ask why the American or European models were not used. If I had a reasonable amount of readers I could use the pool functionality of the blog 🙂

Anyway, here is the tip for the chinese businessman reading this blog, just make one zillion adapters and sell them to Brazil.


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