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Social Initiatives in Maranhão

We believe that building high-quality relationship and trust with the communities where we operate is through partnership and dialogue.

In 2015, our activities and projects contributed to socio-cultural appreciation and economic development of there communities in Maranhao.

Vale in Maranhão – key figures


New passenger train

In 2015, the Carajás Railway received a new passenger train. This US$55.6 million investment has further improved the comfort and safety of the 350,000 people who use the service every year. The train has 39 railcars – 6 executive, 21 economy and 12 service – as well as a specially designed area for people using wheelchairs.

The railcars, which meet European quality standards, are more modern, and all of them have air conditioning. The restrooms have a new layout and technologies that prioritize the sustainable use of natural resources. In addition, the whole train is equipped with smoke detectors, making passengers safer. On top of these upgrades to facilities, customer service has also improved, and it is now possible to buy tickets online.

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New passenger train

Some social and cultural investments in 2015

Babassu palm product cooperative

Composed of women in the community of Pedrinhas, in the municipality of Itapecuru Mirim, a babassu palm product cooperative gained a fully equipped 160-m² building. Previously, they extracted babassu oil by hand, without using any special location or equipment. In addition to the building, the 30 members of the cooperative did training to help boost their business.

Agir EFC

Carried out by the Vale Foundation, the Agir EFC program promoted the development of collective businesses with vendors who used to work along the railway. More than 220 small entrepreneurs were given infrastructure, machines, and technical and managerial advice, supporting 22 businesses in 11 communities across 7 municipalities.

Celebration of bumba-meu-boi folk theatre tradition

Vale sponsored a project called “The singers, masters and poets of bumba-meu-boi in Maranhão” Designed and implemented by José de Ribamar Viana, a musician and researcher from the state, the project compiled an unparalleled collection of materials documenting the last 34 years of the bumba-meu-boi folk theatre tradition.

Ponta da Madeira’s 30th anniversary

The leader in the ranking of cargo movements in Brazil, Ponta da Madeira Maritime Terminal reached its 30th anniversary in January 2016. Located in São Marcos Bay, São Luís, the terminal is now preparing to become the world’s biggest port.

The terminal is undergoing work to expand its capacity to handle increased output from the S11D project in Canaã dos Carajás, Pará. It is currently able to export up to 150 million metric tons per year. By 2018, once Vale has completed its mine, railway and port expansion work, it is expected that the terminal will be capable of shipping out 230 million metric tons per year.

Ponta da Madeira anniversary

Environmental management