Colombia- Tag Archives - Business News and Updates


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Colombia and Costa Rica Join the OECD: What Does This Mean?

Colombia and Costa Rica Join the OECD: What Does This Mean?

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) is an international organization with the aim of designing policies for a better way of carrying out development and economic co-operation. These policies would bring prosperity, equality, opportunities, and well-being for everyone. The OECD works with the organization’s member governments to set international standards to produce solutions too different social, economic, and environmental challenges. They are described as “a single forum, a knowledge center for data collection and analysis, sharing of experiences and good practices”. Currently, the organization counts 38-member states, including Colombia and Costa Rica, who became members 37th and 38th respectively. Colombia: the journey to the OECD In 2020, Colombia became an official member of the OECD. Colombia began its journey to join the OECD in 2011 when its President, Juan Manuel Santos, showed interest in their country becoming a member state of the organization. Between 2013 and 2018, the 23 OECD committees worked on technical reviews in order to determine the viability on behalf of the Colombia Government to make the necessary modifications to access membership of the organization. In 2014, the country took the necessary actions for its accession to the organization. These included the issuing of a memorandum on legal instruments applicable to the country by the Organization which grants immunity to the members to carry out their duties as independently as possible. It was in 2018 when Colombia received a formal invitation to become a member...

Claudio Ramirez, Canadian Trade Commissioner for Colombia, Discusses Trade Relations and Business Opportunities

Claudio Ramirez, Canadian Trade Commissioner for Colombia, Discusses Trade Relations and Business Opportunities

Claudio Ramirez shares his perspective on the nature of the Canada-Colombia relationship and his team's success in promoting Canada as an important partner for Colombia. Find out about the current trade relationship and business potential between Canada and Colombia from Canada's Trade Commissioner to Colombia, Claudio Ramirez. Biz Latin Hub’s Chelsea Heywood had the pleasure of connecting with Claudio to gain his insights on the bilateral trade relationship, and what Colombia can offer Canadian businesses expanding into Latin America. Claudio also shares his perspectives on the future of the relationship between these two countries and the Trade Commission's success in promoting Canada as an important partner for Colombia. 1. Could you tell us about your background with Global Affairs Canada, and what led you to take up the role as the Canadian Trade Commissioner in Colombia? I joined the Canadian Foreign Service in 2001, mere weeks after 9/11, which plunged the world into a major crisis: that of global terrorism. At that time, just like in today’s crisis (the Covid-19 pandemic), political leaders were quick to recognize that an economic recovery would require more trade between nations, not less. Back then, some 160 members of the World Trade Organization came to an agreement to launch of the Doha Round, which aimed to lower trade barriers and to reform to trade rules in order to promote economic development.  Thus, from the outset of my career in the Canadian diplomatic corps, I have always been attracted by the profound impact that doing business across borders...

What Does the Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement Mean for Business?

What Does the Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement Mean for Business?

The Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement (CCoFTA) has been in force since August 2011. It is Colombia’s second free trade agreement with a developed country. The negotiated items in this agreement are comparable to the commercial terms found in Canada’s other bilateral agreements with Chile, Costa Rica, and Peru. Since the establishment of the agreement, trade between both countries has developed tremendously. In this article, we'll describe the principal goals, results, and opportunities of the Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement. Goals of the Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement The goals of the agreement include: Developing a secure market for goods and services.Creating new employment opportunities and improved working conditions.Reducing trade distortions.Ensuring a predictable commercial framework for business planning and investment.Enhancing the competitiveness of firms in global markets.Strengthening regulations regarding environmental impact.Respect internationally recognized corporate social responsibility standards. Promoting economic development to reduce poverty. Results for Canadian and Colombian business The Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement has successfully eliminated tariffs on 98% of the goods and services traded. Additionally, it ensures equitable treatment for Canadian and Colombian investments in each country. Trade between both countries has grown by over 50% since the enforcement of the agreement. As a result, bilateral trade has grown by over 50% since the enforcement of the agreement. In 2019, bilateral trade reached...

Manage Employee Payroll in Colombia Through an External Provider

Manage Employee Payroll in Colombia Through an External Provider

Current travel restrictions and business climate are incentivizing companies to consider alternative ways to manage employee payroll in Colombia. Company incorporation and establishing a representative branch or office may previously have been the preferred method to enter the Colombian market. Now, as foreign companies work to secure their cash flow and are unable to travel to the country, engaging with local providers to support their overseas staff is an increasingly viable option to continue business. Find out how multinationals can outsource their needs for payroll in Colombia through local payroll providers. Current challenges to HR and payroll activities in Colombia While COVID-19 remains a significant issue for governments in Latin America, measures to counter its spread have halted domestic and international travel. While the COVID-19 pandemic remains a significant issue for governments in Latin America, measures to counter its spread have halted domestic and international travel to countries such as Colombia. Institutional support continues to operate at a lower capacity in order to support efforts to reduce risk of transmission. Colombian President Iván Duque declared the country’s state of emergency to remain in place until 31 August. It is uncertain if further announcements will be made to extend this timeframe and other regulatory measures, as has happened a number of times already in the country. Foreign companies operating in Colombia may face challenges when undertaking a number of regulatory procedures, including company formation and compliance, visa...

May 2020 Regulatory Update: Bolivia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Panama, Paraguay

May 2020 Regulatory Update: Bolivia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Panama, Paraguay

Our senior legal and accounting experts deliver monthly updates on regulatory and other changes in their respective countries in Latin America. Find out regulatory changes occurring across Latin America that may impact you and your business. Extension for Registry of Commerce renewal in Bolivia Bolivia's response to the COVID-19 includes an extension of the deadline for commercial renewal with the Registry of Commerce. In Bolivia, the government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic has included an extension of the typical deadlines for companies to provide certain documents to government agencies out to 29 May. These documents include: Annual Financial Statements,the company’s Annual Report 2019, andIncome Tax Declaration. As such, the deadline for commercial renewal with the Registry of Commerce (Registro de Comercio) will be rescheduled. The official due date is pending confirmation from government officials. Colombia reduces contributions from employees and employers In Colombia, Decree 558 of 2020 reduced the required pension contributions from employers and employees in order to increase business cash flow and disposable income for individuals. This is part of Colombia’s overall initiative to prevent mass job loss. These pension contributions are reduced from 16% to 3% - 2.5% from employers and 0.5% from employees). Other Decrees and Circulars announced by Colombia during their COVID-19 Pandemic response include: Circular 021: outlines options for flexible working arrangements, and options to take vacations in advance to avoid further layoffs.Circular 022: confirms...

Potential for Stronger Colombia-China Trade Relations

Potential for Stronger Colombia-China Trade Relations

In recent years, market observers have recognized a high potential for stronger Colombia-China trade relations. As many know, China is the second-largest economy in the world. Colombia is the fourth-largest economy in whole Latin America. A pairing like this offers strong potential trade channels for exporters and importers operating in Colombia.In the last decade, all of Latin America’s economies have grown more accustomed to receiving Chinese investment and commercial attention. China is the biggest trading partner for Brazil, Chile and Peru. As part of that, Brazil received US$66 billion in Chinese investment, Peru US$25 billion and Chile US$9 billion. Chinese trade with Latin America jumped to US$225 billion in 2016 from US$12 billion in 2000, according to Jason Marczak, Director at the Atlantic Council. We outline the potential for a stronger context for Colombia-China trade relations and opportunities for multinationals to enter the market. Overview: current Colombia-China trade relations With Colombia-China trade relations strengthening in recent years, China has become Colombia's second-largest trading partner. Colombia is now China's fifth-largest trading partner in Latin America. In 2018, Colombian imports from China reached US$4.06 billion. Top 10 imports from China in 2018 include (table adapted from TradingEconomics): Colombia imports from China in 2018ValueMineral fuels, oils, distillation products$3.48 billionIron and steel$297.79 millionCopper$171.67 millionCoffee, tea, mate and spices$16.66 millionOres slag and ash$15.46 millionRaw hides and skins (other...

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