Invest in Maranhão

In order to support the economic development to the State, the International Business Center – CIN/FIEMA, through Brazil4Business project, works as a strategic agent in the identification of business opportunities to promote and facilitate the growth, diversification and expansion of foreign industry investments performed in Maranhão, presenting to foreign companies and institutions information about the market access, economy, culture, opportunities and tax incentives offered by the government, in addition to organizing technical visits, institutional meetings and provide all necessary support to investors.


Why this state?
With privileged geographic position which favours the flow of state’s and the central-north axis of Brazil’s industrial and agricultural production, Maranhão has 217 municipalities housed in five regions and a population of 6.6 million inhabitants, with more than one million of them in the capital, São Luiz (IBGE 2012). Climate stability allows various types of agriculture to adapt quickly to the Maranhão soil, which enables a wide range of crops with broad potential and the establishment of agricultural industries.

Maranhão has many skills in the areas of agribusiness, industry, trade and services. It is housed in the North Central Corridor of Brazil, which facilitates access to most of the Brazilian states and major transport corridors, such as BR Belém-Brasília and the Railroad Carajás. There are good prospects for the GDP of Maranhão in the coming years, including growth rates above the national and the Northeast average.


Discover Maranhão
To assist and support to foreign investors, the International Business Centre (CIN) makes available to businessmen information, consulting services, organization of fairs, events and international missions. The CIN-FIEMA is part of a network led by the Confederation of Industry (CNI) and connected with dozens of international institutions in promoting business and investments.


The agricultural sector of Maranhão now accounts for 17% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), slightly higher rate than the industry (15%). Currently, soybeans and sugarcane are the most important crops in the state's economy. With a territorial extension of 332.000 km² and owns 56% of the total hydrographical network in the Northeast, Maranhão is a state that offers ideal conditions for agribusiness, with competitive advantages of soil, climate and the logistics of production flow.

Maranhão has the 2nd largest cattle herd in the Northeast and was declared by the Ministry of Agriculture as a FMD-free zone in 2013. According to the State Bureau of Agricultural Defense of Maranhão (AGED-MA), the effective creation in 2010 of cattle herd sum 6.9 million heads of cattle. The 3rd largest cattle producers in the state are occupied by swine production, with the creation of 1.3 million pigs. The buffalo production has already reached 77.800 animals.


Electrical Energy
Maranhão tends to turn into a great national electricity producer. The sector currently receives billionaire investments in generation complexes involving hydroelectric and thermoelectric plants that are being implemented. These are projects that will enable the state to meet market demands facing the new demands of enterprises. The installed capacity of power generation currently in Maranhão is 1.316 MW according to data by ANEEL (National Electric Energy Agency). With the new investment projects (a thermal completed in March 2010, as well as thermal and hydroelectric on-going and projected), the capacity of power generation of the state will jump to 7.571 MW.


Oil and Gas
The oil and gas industry is taking great strides in Maranhao and reflects the great economic momentum of the state. Companies like Petrobras, OGX, Petra Energy, GASMAR, Engept and Panergy invest in various projects like refinery, gas pipeline, oil and natural gas exploration. The Petrobras project is one that concentrates the biggest share of investments. With resources of approximately R$ 40 billion, the state has already started to build its largest refinery in the country , the Premium I - the fifth largest in the world -, in the municipality of Bacabeira, about 60 km from São Luis. Premium I refinery will have the capacity to process 600.000 barrels / day. The unit will produce mainly for diesel for export, naphtha, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and jet fuel. The works are in excavation phase and will generate 132.000 direct & indirect jobs and will have an income effect.


Maranhão has large companies in the mining and metallurgical sector, highlighting the activities of steel mill, lamination, gold mining, pig iron production, and the production of alumina and aluminium. One of the largest manufacturing complexes of alumina and primary aluminium in the world is located in São Luís - Aluminium Consortium of Maranhao - Alumar, formed by the companies Alcoa, Rio Tinto, Alcan and BHP Billiton. Maranhão has a pig iron pole that has 19 blast furnaces and an installed capacity of 2.2 billion tons per year and accounts for 11% of Brazilian production.


Large beverage industry plants are located in Maranhão, such as Equatorial Brewery (AmBev), Refrigerantes do Noroeste S/A (Renosa) and Schincariol Brewery. The state also counts on genuinely Maranhão brands such as soft drink Guarana Jesus (Renosa) and mineral water Lençóis Maranhenses.

Contact The Sistema FIEMA by phone +55 (98) 3212-1896 or e-mail

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