The Finance Minister, Guido Mantega, defended on March 1st, the measures adopted by the Government to avoid an excessive appreciation of the real and affirmed that the economic team will not be watching the currency war unabashedly. Today, new measures were announced to contain the excessive appreciation of the real against the dollar. "The Government will not be watching the currency war without taking any action. We have to defend ourselves,” said Mantega at a news conference. "The Government will carry on with our policy to take measures so that the real does not [over] appreciate, jeopardizing the Brazilian production," he added. The decree number 7,683 published on Thursday in the Diário Oficial da União (Government’s official press), changes from two to three years the collection of 6% financial transactions tax (IOF) on the liquidation of foreign exchange operations that bring dollars to the country, settled as from March 1, 2012. Mantega reminded that the practice of adopting this type of measure was seen under suspicion until recently, but, given the current crisis, it started to be recommended even by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). "The Fund did not agree with our policy, but changed their way of thinking especially after Brazil began to apply intervention measures on the foreign exchange market that are proven to be successful," he added. Mantega also emphasized that, to this end, the Government has been adopting measures that include changes on the application of the IOF tax, as well as on dollars purchase operations in the Brazilian financial market. Such actions should strengthen the international reserves held in the Central Bank of Brazil, avoiding the excess of American currency in circulation. "We will keep buying reserves and, as needed, we should continue with measures that will punish and reduce the profitability of foreign capital in excess in," he concluded.