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Colombia: The Next Chile?

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Colombia continues to attract foreign investors due to its economic and political climate. Will it even become the next Chile?

BY JOACHIM BAMRUD

While neighboring countries like Venezuela and Ecuador continue driving foreign investors away by breaking existing contracts, Colombia is cementing its position as one of the most attractive destinations in Latin America for foreign investors.

"A very positive note is that Colombia continues to honor the sanctity of existing contacts," says Ali Moshiri, president for Africa and Latin America exploration and production for U.S.-based oil giant Chevron. "Colombia currently has very competitive fiscal terms for doing business in the energy sector. In addition, the energy sector receives excellent institutional support from all ministries in the Colombian government, including at the local government level."

Colombia's economic growth is also a major attraction, adds Fernando Rubio, managing director in Colombia for German software company SAP.  "It is a country growing in infrastructure and economy," he says. "These positive indicators have generated better social conditions and a highly competitive workforce with more and better training."

Last year, Colombia's economy grew by 7.0 percent - its best performance in 30 years. In the first quarter, the GDP expanded by 4.1 percent, according to the official statistics agency DANE.  There has only been one recession year – 1999 – in the last 70 years, points out Alex Silberwasser, the Colombia manager for U.S.-based financial advisors Compass Group.

Foreign direct investment has averaged $6.0 billion the past four years - or nearly three times the average during the previous four years, according to the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC). Last year's FDI of $9.1 billion represented a 40 percent...



Keywords: Credit Suisse, CTPartners, Exclusive Analysis, Sergio Fajardo, FARC, Salvatore Ferragamo, Re-election, Juan Manuel Santos


 

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