Along with a large part of the world, Brazil adopted railway transport at the end of the 19th century, importing British technology, designs, and materials. The first Brazilian railway began operations in 1854, located in the interior of São Paulo state, before the mode of transport spread countrywide. The peak of Brazil’s rail network came during the presidency of Juscelino Kubitschek (1956-1961), reaching 32,287 kilometers before the military dictatorship began eradicating railways deemed to be “deficient.”
As a result, at the end of the 1980s, Brazil had practically no passenger railways, despite its huge size and population. The only long-distance train line of the sort connects the southeastern cities of Belo Horizonte and Vitória and is operated by mining company Vale.