brazil ps 3

Sony has begun making the PlayStation 3 in Brazil. It’s part of a move to get around big import taxes and expand to a fast-growing video game market.

Normally, Brazil charges heavy import taxes for devices such as game consoles as part of its economic policy to encourage local manufacturing. The result is that most Brazilian consumers turn to something else, like the PC, for their games.

Sony will start selling its 250GB version of the PS 3, bundled with God of War: Ascension, for R$1,099, or about $550 in U.S. dollars.

It is extremely late in the cycle for the PS3. But the move might give Sony more sales in the market in the meantime.

“Sony Computer Entertainment continues to invest in the Brazil game market as part of our long-term commitment to the country and its gamers,” said Andrew House, CEO of Sony’s game business. “Locally manufacturing PlayStation 3 in Brazil will benefit gamers, retailers, and developers. The local manufacture of PlayStation 3 is expected to infuse the Brazilian economy with approximately $300 million over the next 12 months.”

“Brazil is home to some of the most passionate gamers in the world, and we’re focused on providing them with the best entertainment experiences that can only be found on PlayStation,” said Jack Tretton, the head of Sony Computer Entertainment America. “With today’s manufacturing announcement and the amazing lineup of localized games, there’s never been a better time to join the PlayStation family if you live in Brazil.”

Microsoft started making the Xb0x 360 game console in Brazil in 2011. It will be interesting to see if Sony tries to make the PlayStation 4 in Brazil as well. That next-gen console debuts in the fall. Sony said that its PS 3 game, The Last of Us, will launch in Brazil simultaneously with the worldwide launch.