BRAZIL: Industrial group PetroCity Portos SA is pursuing plans to develop a new railway to serve the states of Espírito Santo and Minas Gerais, running inland from a proposed port, logistics and business complex at Urussuquara, south of São Mateus on the Atlantic coast.

Costed at R$9bn, the 566 km Estrada de Ferro Minas-Espírito Santo is one of several project awaiting the passing of legislation permitting the private sector to take the commercial risk on new railway schemes. PetroCity CEO José Roberto Barbosa da Silva anticipates that the line will carry general cargo, including oil, grain, livestock, steel and ornamental stone, much of which originates from granite deposits near Barra de São Francisco.


EFMES would be built in several stages, with much of the route parallelling the BR381 highway. The first phase would run from the port to Governador Valadares, with subsequent sections extending the line to Ipatinga and ultimately to Sete Lagoas in Minas Gerais.

The line is intended to serve four 200 000 m2 freight and transhipment terminals in Minas Gerais, at Sete Lagoas, Confins, Itabira and Governador Valadares, and one at Barra de São Francisco in Espírito Santo, where a dry port with customs facilities is also envisaged.

PetroCity is backed by engineering and logistics groups BTO, Enseada and Odebrecht, along with Cisco. Its proposals were initially submitted to the National Logistics Planning Agency in 2019, at which time technical studies for the route of the new railway were expected to be completed in 2022 followed by a start on construction and the launch of operations in 2025.

The promoter received preliminary authorisation for the port elements of its package from the Ministry of Infrastructure in May 2020. Progress will depend on obtaining an environmental licence following a submission to the Brazilian Institute for the Environment & Natural Resources on February 26 this year.