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Monthly Snapshots - August 2019: Colombia Edition

Updated: Sep 26, 2019

Over 500 foreign investors have shown interest in doing business in Colombia

Considered the most important summit in terms of direct foreign investment and strategic alliances in the country, Colombia Investment Summit will take place on 29 and 30 October of this year in Bogotá, in the Gran Ballroom lounge of the Grand Hyatt hotel. Over 500 foreign investors interested in new projects, incentives and expansion opportunities in the Colombian market will attend. The president of ProColombia, Flavia Santoro has explained that this will be, for Colombia, the most important meeting of the year in terms of important foreign investors because it should help attract more major businesses.

Moreover, senior executives of national and foreign companies, as well as international investors interested in building a business in Colombia or using the country as a platform for exporting.

Following this event, the government will continue to work on new incentives to facilitate and attract new direct foreign investment projects. The government will also focus its efforts in optimising the free trade zones model to drive regional development.

Uber Colombia & their innovative approach to attract 'millenials'

Uber won first place in the study ‘Employers for Youth Colombia’ in which more than 50 companies were evaluated. This recognition is delivered by the platform FirstJob which helps big companies recruit, attract and retain students and young professionals, and the Adecco group.

In order to win the award, a rigorous study is carried out on employees aged 18-34, who evaluate certain categories of their own company such as career development, benefits, quality of life, work environment, innovation, talent, infrastructure, diversity and culture, recognition and reputation. For Uber Colombia, shaping the future is not only a challenge, but it is also the opportunity to continue promoting the development of its employees, who have to power to bring change to the company so as to continue improving the lives of its millions of users.

‘This title reaffirms our mission and culture as a company; we are continuously looking to innovate in every area of the company so that each employee feels respected, challenged and learns every day as an individual and a professional’ explained Martha Castro, communications director for Uber in the Andes Region, Central America and the Carribean.

Duque vows to increase Colombia's exports by 50% and curb unemployment

Colombia’s government on Monday said it expected to grow exports by more than 50% and create 866,000 jobs in the coming four years.

President Ivan Duque and Vice-President Marta Lucia Ramirez announced 12 pacts with business leaders that would boost exports and turn the country’s accelerating unemployment rate around. The central bank last week lowered the country’s economic growth rate projection by 0.5 percentage points, citing stagnating exports and domestic consumption.

President Duque last year lowered taxes for corporations, claiming this would generate jobs, but it didn’t. In fact, unemployment has been on the rise since 2015 and has gone up by 0.6 percentage points since Duque took office, averaging out at 10.1% over the past year. Vice-President Ramirez, who has been leading the negotiations with the private sector, said she found the solution to both the country’s stagnating exports and accelerating unemployment through “Pacts for Economic Growth and Job Creation.”

“In each sector, we will seek to strengthen the regions so that they can have growth and greater competitiveness,” the vice-president said. Duque said that “the goal of all this work is for Colombia to grow and generate employment, but also to generate income to make great social transformations.”

Colombia proposes coffee nations group to increase influence on market

Colombia proposed on Wednesday that coffee producing nations form an association to have a stronger influence in the coffee market, as producers from around the world meet in Brazil to discuss the economic sustainability of coffee production.

“We need action, because the problem is clear: there are 25 million coffee producers that can barely cover their production costs,” said Eugenio Velez, a director at Colombia’s coffee federation in the opening ceremony of the 2nd Global Coffee Producers Forum. Velez suggested that countries at the forum, which include representatives from Central and South America, Asia and Africa, join forces to try to impose some sort of supply limitations as a way to boost prices that farmers consider inadequate.

Economist Jeffrey Sachs of Columbia University in the United States presented a study on the situation of coffee farmers globally, suggesting the creation of a global fund to finance improvements both in production and social conditions. Sachs suggested that governments in producing nations, international donors and large coffee processors in developed countries such as Nestle, JDE, Lavazza and Starbucks help finance the fund.

He said the fund could improve agricultural yields, as a way to reduce production costs, and at the same time improve living standards in producing countries.

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