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Chapter | Tourism from The Report: Colombia 2019

Over the past decade and a half the long-kept secret of Colombia’s cultural heritage and natural beauty has spread throughout the international tourism circuit. While recent years have been challenging for Colombia’s exporting sectors, tourism has been a consistent contributor to the economy and a catalyst for development in not only large cities, but also in areas formerly controlled by FARC. As the state regains control and opens up new areas, tourism is one of the most significant opportunities to boost rural infrastructure and socio-economic well being. It will be imperative that officials maintain momentum and convert the increasing number of visitor arrivals at traditional destinations into a viable source of development for more rural areas previously considered beyond state boundaries. This chapter contains an interview with Jean Claude Bessudo, President, Aviatur.

Chapter | Agriculture from The Report: Colombia 2019

Colombia’s geographic and climatic advantages, alongside its numerous developments, place it in good stead to become a more prominent regional and global player in food production. Efforts to boost financial capacity, especially of small-scale producers, should lead to greater productivity and higher margins for stakeholders along the value chain. Further prioritisation of agro-industry is a key trend that will play out over the coming years, as the country looks to add value to its wide array of produce, with a particular focus on lucrative export markets in Europe, the US and beyond. However, it remains to be seen how the industry can become a driver of broader economic growth, but the rebirth of rural Colombia will be key to any future success.

Chapter | Industry & Retail from The Report: Colombia 2019

Industry got off to a strong start in 2019, as domestic consumption and exports rebounded. The national government’s policies to expand successful programmes and do away with under-performing ones, together with a focus on improving productivity and leveraging collaboration between the country’s regions, should help to strengthen industrial capacity. However, while efforts to modernise and reduce administrative hurdles are positive steps towards improving performance, regaining momentum in infrastructure development and reducing logistics and transport costs remain economy-wide priorities. Broad trends have buoyed the retail sector in recent years, including the growing number of new shopping malls and the expanding presence of internationally branded stores. The drive to increase IT usage among Colombians has also transformed the country into one of the region’s fastest-growing online retail markets. This chapter contains an interview with José Manuel Restrepo, Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism.

Chapter | Construction & Real Estate from The Report: Colombia 2019

As the economy made a recovery in late 2018 it is likely that construction will soon follow suit, with initial estimates for the first quarter of 2019 already showing signs of improvement. Social housing and infrastructure will likely receive the most attention from investors, with both segments addressing crucial deficits in the country. Likewise, the advent of new vehicles to channel private sector funding is expected to continue driving the sector’s growth. Moreover, changes in retail and office management and rising demand for flexible, bespoke industrial spaces are likely to leverage and sustain new trends in the ways that firms physically conduct their business in Colombia. While cross-segment growth may not accelerate significantly in 2019, developers have demonstrated foresight that should help the supply side adjust to ongoing structural changes in the property market. This chapter contains an interview with Roberto Moreno, President, Amarilo.

Chapter | Transport & Logistics from The Report: Colombia 2019

Notable progress has been made in expanding the country’s road system, and increasing port and air transport capacity. Furthermore, new projects are set to increase the transit of goods along Colombia’s railways and rivers. Rising investment in these segments has boosted the competitiveness of the country and contributed to growth. Nevertheless, Colombia faces high logistics costs and ongoing bottlenecks to connectivity. The transport infrastructure gap is large and set to grow further as demand rises. Significant investment will be needed across the sector to close this gap and ensure that the country can sustain its economic development. While this presents a challenge, the country stands to benefit from its mature public-private partnership framework and openness to foreign direct investment. Leveraging private sector expertise and investment within the framework of a long-term national strategy presents a promising formula for an integrated transport network. This chapter contains an interview with Ángela María Orozco Gómez, Minister of Transport.

Chapter | Mining from The Report: Colombia 2019

With broad political support and efforts to improve the licensing process, the mining industry looks set to experience a rebound in 2019. While investments in coal production are unlikely to increase substantially in the coming years, segments such as gold, copper, nickel, emeralds, and other metallic and non-metallic minerals will provide attractive targets for investment. Government efforts to curb illegal operations, formalise small-scale mining and create a more attractive business environment have already begun to yield results, but the success of new and incoming projects will dictate whether the industry’s momentum will continue. This chapter contains an interview with Kelvin Dushnisky, CEO, AngloGold Ashanti.