Although China is continuing to refuse access to its ports by Valemax vessels, the Chinese ambassador to Brazil has noted that his country is interested in an association with Vale in respect of the transshipment of minerals from its bulk carriers to smaller vessels.The ambassador conceded that using the bigger vessels would help to drive down transport costs and that the transship cargo could then access Chinese ports.

In addition to an existing transfer station that Vale has established on the Philippines, it is currently building another in Malaysia.

Currently, it costs Vale $22 to transport one ton of iron ore; moved directly from Brazil to China using Valemax vessels would help to save seven dollars per tonne. At present,Australian producers are $10 cheaper compared to Brazilian output.