Colombia plays an important role in the global economy. Thanks to its human resources, the quality of its products and its excellent international relations; its quality as a strategic partner in commercial alliances, free trade agreements, and its air, maritime and terrestrial connectivity.
Colombia is a business destination, it is located in the focal point of the maritime activity due to its proximity to the Panama Channel, and in the crossing of the main communication ways of world trade, becoming a point of strategic connection between North and South America, and between the West Coast of the United States and Asia, which is an opportunity as a platform of commercial exchange.
A growing country, with 48.2 million people, according to the 2015 Census conducted by DANE, and favorable economic indicators that show a growth of the Gross Domestic Product in 3.1%, USD$35.6 billion exports, and USD$51.5 billion imports.
Reasons to buy from Colombia
With a high score in satisfaction, in 2016 Colombia ranked above Brazil (6.5), Spain (6.4), and France (6.0) in the Customer Satisfaction in companies Index, being Latin America´s best ranked country with a score of 6.9, being 10 the highest possible.
Among the thirteen countries evaluated in the Customer Satisfaction Index in companies, Colombia occupied the fourth position, after three major powers: Hong Kong, with a score of 8.3, the United States, with 8.2, and the Netherlands, with 7.4.
Also, Colombian labor is competitive in terms of wages in relation to other countries in the region. Our country is characterized by its quality, having national companies with international certifications such as:
- BASC (Business Alliance for Secure Commerce).
- C-TPAT (Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism).
- HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point), food security.
- Global GAP- food security.
- ISO 9000 (Quality Management System)
- ISO 14000 (Environment Management System).
- Organic food (ÖKO-CCOF).
- CE, UL, SAE, NOM, Joint Commission, among others.
Since innovation is one of the strategic pillars when it comes to competitiveness and sustainable development, Colombia´s score in the different indexes that analyze innovation in the world is recognized, and is on the top positions.
According to the ranking of the Global Innovation Index 2015, conducted in 141 countries, Colombia ranked 67, with a score of 36.41 and ranks sixth in Latin America and the Caribbean, surpassed by Barbados, Chile, Costa Rica, Mexico and Panama.
According to the International Global Competitiveness Report conducted every year by the Institute for Management Development, that evaluates the infrastructure, economic performance, efficiency of the Government, and of the companies of 61 countries, in 2015 Colombia was the region´s second country with the greatest availability in terms of labor.
For that same year, with a 43.1%, the country ranked as Latin America´s second country with the highest percentage of women in the labor force, even more than the Republic of Korea (42.2), Chile (41.1), and Indonesia (37.2), among other countries.
- Doing Business in Colombia 2007-2016
In the ranking that the World Bank presents every year, which analyzes several indicators that allow to measure how easy to do or not to do business is in the 186 countries evaluated, Colombia ranks in a good place.
Thanks to the management of the national Government, the country is ranked in Latin America´s fourth place, thanks to factors that allow businessman to access credits, speed up judicial processes, and the standards that support the cross-border trade, which facilitates importing and exporting products and services.
- Program of Productive Transformation (PTP for its Spanish acronym)
The provision by the national Government to implement tools like this, leveraged by the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism since 2008, contributes to the business development of the country.
In addition to optimizing the productive processes of the national industry, it promotes a more competitive environments and more solid and lucrative companies. This benefits the sectors with high possibilities of exporting their products, thanks to the synergy between the public and the private sectors.
Thanks to this partnership, the country has developed different world-class sectors, including services, manufacturing and agriculture.
- Socially Responsible
The country is part of the Global Covenant of the United Nations, that integrates more than 350 institutions in the public and private sectors. Thanks to this type of initiatives that promote an economy that is aligned with environmental issues, social equality and organizational climate, among others, Colombia is Latin America´s first country in terms of social responsibility.
According to the 2016 ranking of World Competitiveness, our rating is above the score of countries such as France (5.58), Brazil (5.24), Mexico (5.12), and Spain (4.97).
- FTA Trade Integration and Trade Agreements
With various free trade agreements coming into force, a wide range of investment and export opportunities for domestic and international entrepreneurs is opened. This gives easy access to markets, very low tariffs, fair competition conditions, and a clear legal framework.
Currently, Colombia has thirteen trade agreements in force and five signed or under negotiation. Thanks to these coalitions, a preferential access to a market of more than 1,500 million of consumers is possible.
Also, the country´s network of agreements also includes 26 International Investment Agreements (AII for its Spanish acronym) * between in force, signed and under negotiation, besides 18 agreements to prevent the double taxation (ADT) in force, signed, and under negotiation*.
*It includes investment chapters in the FTAs.
- Trade Agreements
With the effort of the Government, Colombia has excellent international relationships and agreements that benefit the commercial exchange with other nations. In 2015 the exports to countries Colombia has agreements with represented a 67.1% of the total exports.
Colombia has 18 valid agreements with Chile, Canada, Mexico, and the United States, among other countries; two agreements signed with Israel and Panama; and three agreements under negotiation with Japan, Tisa, and Turkey.
- Location and Strategic Connectivity
Colombia´s geographic location facilitates its access to global markets. Being the gateway to South America, it is a meeting point for other countries and has several maritime trade routes and 2,300 air routes. In addition to the commercial ports on its coastline and its proximity to the Panama Channel.
There are more than 1,000 international direct commercial frequencies, operated by more than 20 airlines. Factors that allowed to mobilize more than 980 thousand tons by 2015.
Additionally, there are 4,200 sea routes departing from Colombian ports with export products, offered by 40 shipping lines to more than 590 cities in the world. Among them, Vancouver (20 days), London (18 days), Sydney (28 days), and Rio de Janeiro (20 days).
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