Colombia as up and coming country

The country has an average economic growth of 3% per year, compared to the Netherlands with a maximum of 1% per year. Colombia is the number one country in Latin America to do business with and the economy is the fourth strongest of the continent. The Netherlands is currently the third strongest trade partner for Colombia. 

Business is growing between both countries but is far from the potential it has, which means that many opportunities are still to be explored for companies that are working within the Top-Sectors.

Innovations

Colombia has a major problem with the reduction and avoidance of waste to reduce the environmental impact of the country. However, the government is focused on implementing new rules and regulations that force companies to adjust their strategies towards a more sustainable situation. 

In addition, there are many local initiatives that focus on the development of innovative solutions in order to reduce environmental impact, but also to create more efficiency and organization in many sectors. However, due to lack of resources and social barriers, these initiatives tend to develop rather slow.

Nevertheless, the young population of Colombia understands the need for innovation in order to participate in a better future. Therefore, is the country a good opportunity for expanding business activities since the market of these type of solutions is expected to grow rapidly in the coming years.

Ideal partner for import and export

Due to the location of the ports of Cartagena and Buenaventura, Colombia has direct access to both the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Sea. This makes Colombia the best country in Latin America for import and export to North America, Asia and Europe. 

Also, Colombia is an interesting country for production due to many trade agreements with countries in different continents, the relatively low investment and operational costs and high level of education.

Agriculture

Colombia is an ideal country for the agricultural sector and has the potential to become one of the main food suppliers of the world. Due to the stable climate and the large biodiversity, Colombia is an interesting country to cultivate natural products. 

Unlike countries that can only sow and harvest in certain seasons, it is possible to grow continuously in Colombia. In addition, the country only uses about 20% of their capacity in available land, which means that there are still many developments to be made in the sector.

Design

The country has a large design sector, this can be related to interior, architecture and fashion of which Medellin is the main center. Over the years, many different brands, designers and stores from these sectors appeared in the larger cities of the country.

Corporate culture

Dutch and Colombian cultures differ greatly in every sense. In order to be successful in Colombia, it is key to understand these differences and adapt accordingly. Establishing a network in Colombia is difficult without a local presence since personal contact is very important. Also, a long-term vision is needed to be successful in the country because there are a lot of great opportunities, but they will take time. In other words, with patience, persistence and a good local partner, the sky is the limit in Colombia.

Investments

The minimum wages for low-skilled jobs are quite low with an average monthly wage of 250 euros and wages for high-skilled jobs are also significantly lower compared to the Netherlands. In addition, real estate prices for both living and working are also quite lower, even though the main cities start to get more developed and popular, thus more expensive. Colombia also has a favorable tax climate for foreign investments, especially within sustainability. This makes Colombia an ideal country for doing business.

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