Vale announced on May 24 that the world's largest ore carrier, Vale Brasil (400,000-dwt), was loaded for the first time in the morning of May 24 at Pier I at Ponta da Madeira Port Terminal in São Luís, Maranhão in Northern Brazil. The ship, which was loaded with 391,000 tons of iron ore, is now sailing for the Port of Dalian in China. Vale Brasil was ordered by Vale from Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co in South Korea and its construction completed last month.|
Besides owning 19 400,000-dwt ships, Vale will have an additional 16 ships with the same dimensions which will operate for the company under long-term contracts. Out of the 19 ships which will be owned by Vale, seven ore carriers are ordered from the South Korean shipyard, totaling an investment of US$748 million. The rest of 12 carriers are ordered from the Rongsheng Shipbuilding and Heavy Industries shipyard in China, involving a total investment of US$1.6 billion. Sixteen ships, including four ships to be provided to Oman Shipping Company, will operate exclusively for the company under long-term contracts signed with ship owner partners. These 35 ships are due to be delivered between 2011 and 2013.
Vale's Marketing, Sales and Strategy executive director, José Carlos Martins said, "As the new ships come into operation, the freight and ore costs will become more stable, benefiting Vale and its steelmaking customers."