ArcelorMittal FCLATAM, consists of integrated steel mill ArcelorMittal Tubarão, finishing facility ArcelorMittal Vega, and some joint ventures. It is one of Brazil’s most valuable businesses. It provides excellent wages and benefits to nearly 6,500 employees and supports another 4,000 contractors. The company represents 13% of GDP of the Espirito Santo state. But the company doesn’t take its size and influence for granted.

“We don’t exist just to make and sell steel,” said Benjamin Baptista, CEO of ArcelorMittal FCLATAM. “We work to build a brand centred on the health, safety and wellbeing of our communities. And we do this through regular engagement with our stakeholders.”

Due its size, scale and location, much attention is given to ArcelorMittal FCLATAM's largest steelmaker by capacity, ArcelorMittal Tubarão.

Engagement from within

Located on the South Atlantic sea between Espirito Santo's capital Vitoria, and the most industrialised municipality Serra, the facility opened in 1983 as a state-owned operation within a metropolitan area consisting of around 300,000 people. At the time, the operation produced 3 million tons of steel and employed around 8,000 people, plus thousands of contractors. ArcelorMittal assumed ownership in 2006 and grew the operation to 7.2 million tons of raw steel capacity. Today, the metropolitan area has a population of nearly 2 million.

“On one side of our operations are thousands of neighbours, and on the other, the sea,” said Baptista. “That’s why we spend considerable focus on building our community brand and maintaining our license to operate.”

This focus started inside the facility when the company was privatised in 1992. Since then the company began investing in new equipment and technologies to improve its operational efficiency and increase capacity. The challenge, however, was that many employees had not enough education and training to safely and effectively run the new machinery. ArcelorMittal spent the next several years investing in education and training programs for all employees in partnership with Sesi, an education service of the local Industry Federation. Later, the company extended those opportunities to contractors, then to employees’ spouses.

ArcelorMittal Tubarão also boasts one of the most comprehensive safety and occupational health programs within ArcelorMittal, covering everything from managing environmental risks to providing vaccinations, addressing chronic diseases and promoting lifestyle choices, such as addressing the use of alcohol and tobacco. These programs are open to employees, contractors and families.

“The results have been very good. We have one of the best safety records of the Group, and our last fatality was more than five years ago,” said Baptista. “This illustrates that the programs and processes we have in place are working, and we must stay the course. And the one common thread through it all is communication.”


“We don’t exist just to make and sell steel. We work to build a brand centred on the health, safety and wellbeing of our communities. And we do this through regular engagement with our stakeholders.” Benjamin Baptista, CEO of ArcelorMittal FCLATAM


Engagement beyond employees

ArcelorMittal Tubarão embraces its ethics and integrity policy, which promotes fair and equal treatment among all employees. It extends that commitment to its relationships with stakeholders – from the local government and regulators to community partners and neighbours.

“We understand that our license to operate depends on the perceived value we deliver to stakeholders, not just on the environment, but on all things social, cultural and economic,” said Baptista.

Below is how ArcelorMittal Tubarão is engaging within the community to build its brand and maintain its license to operate:

  • Each year, the facility contributes up to $2 million for social projects within the community. However, ArcelorMittal does not select the organisations that receive the funding. More than 30 individuals representing local government and municipalities, public safety, academia, NGOs and other community groups review the applications and select the recipients. Everything the facility supports has the engagement of the public.
  • ArcelorMittal Tubarão also works closely with the city to responsibly use the land on which it is privileged to operate. Of the facility’s 13 square km of land (3,200+ acres), just 60% is used for industry, the remainder is green. The facility has planted trees and created a green belt, which helps to protect a diverse species of plants and animals, including caiman and sea turtles. The site provides local schools with access to the site for environmental education lessons and is an important partner in Project TAMAR, a Brazilian nonprofit organization coordinated by the Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversity Conservation. Together, the partners aim to protect sea turtles from extinction on the Brazilian coastline, including a colony of turtles that call ArcelorMittal Tubarão home.
  • In 2018, the facility, along with neighbour and iron ore producer Vale, signed an agreement with the state and federal government to address fugitive emissions. Fugitive emissions are those not monitored and controlled via stacks, such as dust. The agreement includes targets and action items with a spend of more than $300 million over five years. Progress is shared via the app, Evoluir, where all air quality and environmental data is publicly available.
  • The facility also contributed R$3.9 million to the State of Espírito Santo Federal University (UFES) for a study to evaluate the impact of industrial pollutants on asthma symptoms in children and adolescents. Through this process, ArcelorMittal Tubarão aims to build trust with its stakeholders by demonstrating it takes air quality seriously, contributing to the strengthening of public policies. 

While stakeholder engagement at the local level tends to focus on locally relevant topics, conversations also include issues with global impact, such as climate change.

“We aim to share everything with our stakeholders – from matters of local concern to the policies at the group level. Everything we do as a local operation and global company has stakeholder implications. It’s our job to ensure our stakeholders, both in and outside the operation, are engaged and informed,” said Baptista.