11 de Marzo 2019

Bogota, leading Latin American destination for foreign investment in the creative industries

Creative Industries

The city has welcomed more than USD 760 million in foreign investment projects over the last decade. New tax incentives from the National Government would increase the interest of foreign companies in the sector. 


Bogota continues to grow and gain importance as the Latin American capital of the creative industries. A recent study conducted by Invest in Bogota shows that between 2008 and 2018, the city welcomed more than USD 761 million in investments, ranking above capitals such as Santiago de Chile, Mexico City, Sao Paulo, Buenos Aires or Miami.

“These investments have created about 4,900 direct jobs,” said Juan Gabriel Pérez, Executive Director of Invest in Bogota, who also explained that many companies in the creative industries coming to the city are bringing in innovative projects that will place Bogota at the forefront of the sector in Latin America.

Some of the countries that have invested in Bogota’s creative industries over the last decade include the United States (22 projects), Spain (11 projects), Chile (six projects) and Mexico (four projects).

Incentives for the development of new projects

One of Colombia and Bogota’s main advantages for new projects in the creative industries are tax benefits, which could increase thanks to initiatives from the National Government intended to drive the creative economy forward.

One of these incentives is a seven-year exemption from income taxes applicable to any activity that is part of the creative economy.

For the audiovisual industry, the country offers a film production incentive (Law 1556 of 2012), which consists of a cash rebate equivalent to 40% of the expenses incurred in the country for film services (pre-production, production and post-production of feature films, including artistic and technical services) and 20% of hotel, food and transportation expenses.

 The House of Representatives is currently debating the possibility of extending this incentive to the production of TV series. This benefit, included in the National Development Plan that is being discussed at the moment, would apply the same 40% cash rebate to other types of audiovisual content such as TV series and would introduce the possibility of a 35% income tax refund.

In addition to these incentives and the wide variety of outdoor and indoor locations offered by the city for the development of audiovisual products, Bogota is home to highly qualified professionals with extensive expertise in the creative industries, which play a crucial role in attracting foreign investment. According to figures from the Ministry of Education, Bogota graduated more than half of the country’s creative industry professionals between 2010 and 2016.

Experts analyzed the progress of the audiovisual industry based on Bogota’s experience

Some of the most recent examples of foreign investment and reinvestment projects in the creative industries in Bogota include Mediapro, Secuoya Grupo de Comunicaciones, HBO, A&E Networks, Warner Chappell Music and Fox Telecolombia. The "Audiovisual Industry Leaders Think Tank” held this Saturday, organized by Invest in Bogota, the Chamber of Commerce of Bogota, Idartes and the Film Commission of Bogota, brought together companies and industry leaders at the Cartagena Film Festival to discuss some of these success stories and the sector’s latest technological advances.

More than 40 national and international representatives from the creative industries also debated innovation in project development, new business opportunities in the audiovisual sector, and how to reinvent mass media outlets during the event.