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Manta-Manaus Multimodal Corridor, Ecuador/Peru/Brazil

The titanic project belongs to IRSA plans and despite its numerous financial, environmental and social inadequacies, it is still backed by political elites and national and international companies


The Manta-Manaus multimodal corridor was designed to “connect port city of Manta on Ecuador's Pacific coast with Manaus, a bustling river port in western Brazilian”. The project was developed in 2000 within the IIRSA (Initiative for the Integration of the Regional Infrastructure of South America). The IRSA gathers more than 500 mega-infrastructures projects. The initiative for the multimodal corridor aimed at building and improving an infrastructure for storing and transporting goods (hydrocarbons, agricultural and fishing products, wood and biofuels) along the Amazon.

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Manta-Manaus Multimodal Corridor, Ecuador/Peru/Brazil
Accuracy of locationHIGH (Local level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict. 1st level:Infrastructure and Built Environment
Type of conflict. 2nd level:Ports and airport projects
Transport infrastructure networks (roads, railways, hydroways, canals and pipelines)
Pollution related to transport (spills, dust, emissions)
Specific commodities:Water
Project Details and Actors
Project details

The project included the construction of a 600 km land route from Manta to Francisco de Orellana (Coca), and a 2,860 km river route to Manaus. It also includes the construction of one port and one airport. It was planned to build a huge petrochemical complex in El Aromo, near Manta, that could refine up to 300,000 crude oil barrels per day. The dredging of the Napo river would mean removing 82 million m3 of sediment and transporting them to large pools.

Level of Investment for the conflictive project800,000,000
Type of populationRural
Start of the conflict:2006
Company names or state enterprises:Petroecuador from Ecuador
Odebrecht Energy Luxembourg (Odebrecht) from Brazil
Petróleo Brasileiro S.A (PETROBRAS) from Brazil
Ekron Construcciones from Ecuador
HPH from China
TIDE S.A. from Ecuador
Serman and Asociados S.A. from Uruguay
CSI Ingenieros from Uruguay
Emepa from Argentina
Hidrovia S.A.
Palmeras de los Andes S.A. from Ecuador
Relevant government actors:Ministerio del Ambiente - Ecuador, Ecuador Government, Brazilian Government, Initiative for the Integration of Regional Infrastructure in South America (IIRSA), Ministerio de Transporte y Obras Publicas - Ecuador, Ministerio de Transportes y Comunicaciones - Peru, Chinese Government, Autoridad Portuaria de Manta - Ecuador, SUFRAMA - Brazil, ZOFRAMA - Ecuador, ZOMANTA - Ecuador, ECORAE - Ecuador, CORPEI - Ecuador, Andine Parliament - Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia
International and Finance InstitutionsCorporación Andina de Fomento (CAF) from Venezuela
Inter-American Development Bank (IADB)
Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Econômico e Social (BNDES) from Brazil
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:Accion Ecologica, CONAIE, Observatorio Ciudadano de Impactos Socio Ambientales del Proyecto Manta-Manaus, Amazon Watch, IUCN - Switzerland, ICAA - USA, Fundacin Pachamama, ECOLEX, COICA, Grupo Faro, MUPP
Conflict & Mobilization
IntensityHIGH (widespread, mass mobilization, violence, arrests, etc...)
Reaction stagePREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups mobilizing:Indigenous groups or traditional communities
Social movements
Forms of mobilization:Development of a network/collective action
Official complaint letters and petitions
Public campaigns
Street protest/marches
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Air pollution, Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover
Potential: Floods (river, coastal, mudflow), Food insecurity (crop damage), Genetic contamination, Global warming, Noise pollution, Soil contamination, Soil erosion, Waste overflow, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion
Health ImpactsPotential: Accidents, Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…), Malnutrition, Deaths
Socio-economical ImpactsVisible: Increase in Corruption/Co-optation of different actors, Displacement, Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures, Violations of human rights, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Potential: Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment
Project StatusUnder construction
Conflict outcome / response:Strengthening of participation
Under negotiation
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:No
Briefly explain:The construction of a part of the project started in 2006 in Ecuador. It stopped a bit later, but it is still planed to continue with it.
Sources & Materials
Juridical relevant texts related to the conflict (laws, legislations, EIAs, etc)

Convention #169 IOL

References to published books, academic articles, movies or published documentaries

IIRSA, Ficha de proyecto, Mejoramiento de la navegabilidad del Rio Napo (tramp Ecuador)
[click to view]

Eje Amazonas Manta Manaos, Perspectivas y Opciones, ECOLEX, 2011
[click to view]

Eje Amazonas Manta - Manaos, UICN, ECOLEX, 2011
[click to view]

Informe: Talleres de Exigibilidad de Derechos en relación a IIRSA y la implementación del Eje Multimodal Manta-Manaos en las comunidades de la Cuenca del río Napo, Observatorio Ciudadano, 2009
[click to view]

The Manta -Manaos Project : Nature , Capital and plunder, O. Bonilla - Acción Ecológica - Ecuador, May 2010
[click to view]

La iniciativa para la integracion de la infrastructura regional Sudamericana (IIRSA) en Ecuador desde un enfoque de derechos humanos: el caso del proyecto del eje multimodal Manta-Manaos, Davalos Gonzalez, Tesis de Maestria en Derechos Humanos, Universidad Andina Simon Bolivar, J. G. 2009
[click to view]

Planificacion Territorial Indicativa: Cartera de Proyectos 2009, IIRSA
[click to view]

Ecuador y Brasil acuerdan profundizar el comercio, financiamiento e impulsar el Eje Manta-Manaos, El Ciudadano, 26/01/2016
[click to view]

IIRSA and the Manta-Manaus Corridor, Amazon Watch
[click to view]

Ecuador y Brasil analizarán la propuesta "Eje Manta-Manaos", el Tiempo, 30/09/2008
[click to view]

Brasil espera un avance en el proyecto Manta-Manaos por el viaje de Rousseff a Ecuador, Diario las Americas, 21/01/2016
[click to view]

Related media links to videos, campaigns, social network

Voces desde el Napo, Bank Information Center
[click to view]

Manta-Manaos Axis and Amazonia bassin (Google Earth), CEECEC
[click to view]

Meta information
Contributor:Lucie greyl
Last update18/08/2019
Conflict ID:475
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