“Colombia has a privileged location that turns it into a cornerstone and an equidistant point to all regional markets” Guillermo A. Heins President and General Manager for Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Venezuela, DuPont
Colombia: Main reasons why • Free access to a USD 220 billion market per year. Colombia has become a centre of production,distribution and an export hub for North, Centre and South America, due to a number of commercial agreements that have been signed with different countries of America ( and Europe). Additionally, costs and times of transportation are relatively better compared to production facilitties in Europe and Asia. Captive domestic market: Currently, textile imports add up for more than USD 950 million. Aninvestment opportunity to strengthen national fibre and textile production for domestic consumption and export is currently available. Despite the fact that Colombia has an integrated and consolidated supply chain, denim and other textile imports, which currently aren’t produced in Colombia, could be substituted. Colombia has an excellent supply of energy with competitive costs compared to othercountries of the region. (USD 0.073 KW per hour) Colombia offers uninterrupted and low cost energy services thanks to its abundant supply of energy. According to Latin America’s Energy Organization, Colombia’s costs are inferior to those from Peru, Mexico and Central America. Multiple investment opportunities trough strategic alliances have come up due to the high level of competitiveness achievedby the sector. Expansion of textile production plants in order to supply the domestic market; activity which related to the apparel sector (which has a strong global presence), will create a favourable competitive platform and comply with the growing necessity to follow international trends and change the textile sector into a technology-intensive sector . • • •
ECONOMIC OUTLOOK Colombia hasbecome a strategic market, and has positioned itself as a major destination for foreign investment, according to important publications such as “Business Week”, which also highlight the leading position of our country in coffee, oil, textiles and flower production, and the rapid economic growth of the country, which is “faster than the Latin American average”1. This trend is the result of the goodperformance of the industrial sector, including the textile and apparel industries, which have increasingly been gaining ground in international markets, thanks the greater innovation and specialization, particularly through high-quality needlework, similar to Hong Kong, that improved efficiency and speed in production and product delivery processes (4 to 6 weeks), and quality certifications (ISO,BASC, WRAP)2. These factors have turned the industry into one of the most promising sectors of the national economy, and one of the greatest beneficiaries of the free trade agreements which offer foreign investors the possibility of entering potential markets with preferential treatment. IMPORTANCE OF THE SECTOR: The textiles and apparel sector is one of the most important industries in Colombia;it generates more than 600.000 direct and indirect jobs, and has a business track record of over 100 years. It also accounts for 10.3 percent of manufacturing GDP and 1.6 percent of national GDP3. Additionally, Colombia has become one of the main fashion centers in Latin America, featuring trade shows such as Colombiatex and Colombiamoda, which bring together companies from several countries todisplay the advantages, quality, design and major developments of the fashion industry. Colombiamoda 2007 generated business opportunities valued at 72 million dollars. Of these, 23.178 million were closed deals during the event, and the remaining 49 million are expected sales over one year as a result of over 5,000 business meetings held during the event. This trade show recorded confirmed visits...