A study drawn up by the Development Bank of Latin America (CAF) has warned that Brazil needs to invest $6.67bn in port infrastructure by 2040. This investment is needed if Brazil is to be able to incorporate new technological changes that will enter the sector in the years to come and also be able to compete with other regional ports in Latin America.
The CAF study, which looked at investment across ports in Latin America and the Caribbean, takes into account existing restrictions and capital requirements and what is needed to overcome these over the next two decades, as demand on extra port capacity will inevitably grow.
Significantly, the investment needed in Brazil represents 13% of the total $55bn that CAF calculates will be needed in the region as a whole, although this figure is somewhat less than investment required in its container handling facilities. Indeed, the study shows that Brazil handles around 9.3m teu, equivalent to around 20% of all regional box traffic.
However, Brazil’s ports industry will not require the most investment in the region; that honour falls to Mexico and Panama, which will account for 24% and 16% respectively of required total regional investment.
The CAF study does point out two other major problems in Brazil: the inadequate amount of space given over to bulk handling and also a lack of dredging in ports.