The government says Brazil's federal railway engineering and construction company Valec will be responsible for allocating capacity on the Reais 4.6bn ($US 2.1bn) railway.

Earlier this month Mr Luciano Coutinho, president of Brazil's National Development Bank (BNDES) travelled to China in a bid to attract Chinese financial institutions to invest in Brazilian railway concessions. However, prospective investors in Brazil are calling on the government to clarify the structure of the proposed concessions.