The National Treasury Secretariat was created on March 10, 1986, by Decree nº 92,452, merging
the former Financial Programming Commission and the Internal Control Secretariat of the
Ministry of Finance. It is the central entity of the Federal Financial Management System and
the Federal Accounting System. Creation of the National Treasury was a significant step in
consolidating Public Finance in Brazil.
Milestones in the National Treasury Secretariat trajectory
Centralization of federal financial activities resulted in a process of modernization and
reorganization of Brazilian public administration, leading to the creation of the Integrated
System of Federal Government Financial Administration (SIAFI), in January 1987, interconnecting
five thousand management units with approximately 34,000 users charged with Fiscal and Social
Security budget execution. The same year witnessed creation of the finance and control career
which is designed to select and train personnel specialized in performing the activities
reserved to the National Treasury.
The 1988 substitution of the Government Operating Account at Banco do Brasil by the Treasury
Operating Account at the Central Bank created a direct link between the management and control
of federal finance and the budget operations of the various management units. Implementation of
the Operating Account eliminated more than five thousand government bank accounts and made it
possible to exert more effective control over the government cash flow. Parallel to this, the
monetary budget was eliminated and the various government budgets were unified in such a way as
to subordinate government spending to prior congressional authorization. Toward the end of the
1980s, agricultural and export development programs were transferred from the Central Bank to
the National Treasury, which also took on those activities related to domestic public debt
Other measures were taken in the 1990s with the aim of further improving federal government
financial and budget administration. Among the most important of these measures, one could cite
centralization of activities related to external debt management (making it possible to
incorporate this service fully within the General Federal Government Budget), the debt
securitization process using privatization currencies and operations involving restructuring of
the Treasury Bonds Portfolio at the Central Bank.
The responsibility for the control and operation of the special foreign currency accounts
created as a result of external agreements formalized with multilateral organizations and
credit agencies was transferred to the National Treasury in August 1993, by Decree nº 890.
Consequently, the National Treasury Secretariat assumed responsibility for the control and
administration of the federal domestic and external, bonded and contractual public debts, thus
centralizing responsibility for management of all federal government financial commitments
within a single government unit. Since all payments are included within the General Federal
Government Budget approved annually by the National Congress, the result of this process is
enhanced budget and financial transparency.
The new structure has been a factor of decisive importance to the nation’s relations with
multilateral organizations and international credit agencies, where the results achieved by the
STN are reflected primarily in lower interest rates and standby fees in operations with the
World Bank and in lesser credit insurance rates for Brazil in operations with government credit
insurance agencies, thanks to the punctuality with which the country has paid its debt service.
As a further step in improving public debt management (the last one was the prohibition in the
Fiscal Responsibility Law for the central bank to issue domestic public debt bonds, relying on
National Treasury bonds for monetary policy purposes), activities related to issuance and
implementation of structured operations involving external Treasury bonds has been performing
exclusively by the National Treasury Secretariat.
Financial relations between the federal government and the states improved considerably with
the new legislation regarding debt rolling (1993), which defined more favorable interest rates
and maturities for payment of debts with the federal government. Furthermore, in order to avoid
future defaults, this legislation earmarked specific percentages of the State and Municipal
Revenue Sharing Fund as debt guarantees. In 1995, the responsibilities consequent upon State and
Municipal Fiscal Adjustment Programs were transferred to the National Treasury Secretariat as
an instrument for further strengthening relations between the federal government and the states.
In 1997, the activities involving restructuring and assumption of contingent liabilities were
incorporated into the institutional functions of the Secretariat.
In order to ensure efficient performance of the new responsibilities of the National Treasury
Secretariat, important improvements were introduced into the administrative organization and
human resources management of the institution. In early 1994, the functions of financial
administration and control and auditing were segregated, with the latter being placed under the
responsibility of the Federal Secretariat of Control. This measure made it possible to achieve
high levels of specialization, while resolving questions raised by the overlapping of activities.
In the same year, the wage structure of the finance and control career was totally overhauled,
conditioning earnings to the institutional performance of the National Treasury and the
individual performance of its employees. Since that time, this system has become a model to the
Brazilian public service system as a whole.