The government’s railway plans to get Brazil back on track

Railway concessions aim to increase the amount of cargo shipped by trains in Brazil, a job usually dominated by trucks

railway brazil
North-South railway construction site. Foto: PAC/ABr

Brazil’s railway system spreads across 30,000 kilometers (in 27 states), but the system is underused and almost exclusively focused on freight shipments. Of the network that exists today, only one-third is in regular operation, with the rest struggling from a lack of maintenance or profitability. Passenger transport, outside of urban metro areas, is near non-existent. But now, after some warning signs of the fragility of the country’s transport infrastructure, Brazil is turning its attention back to trains.

In May of 2018, truck drivers all over the country went on strike in protest of rising fuel prices. With 60 percent of...

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