27 de Julio 2015
Bogota—No. 2 destination for Iberoamerican investment
- fDi, the Financial Times magazine, recently highlighted Bogota as the No. 2 destination for Iberoamerican investment according to the number of investment projects received between 2005 and 2014.
- According to fDi Markets, between 2005 and 2014 Bogota recorded 111 new projects from Iberoamerican cities, 39.22% of the total number of projects attracted.
- “Increasingly, we find instances of companies from different sectors and countries deciding to locate their centers of operation in Bogota when seeking a regional base to attend to their Latin America business,” states Juan Gabriel Pérez, CEO of Invest in Bogota.
- “The type of foreign investment arriving in the city has become more specialized. We are now starting to attract companies that form part of regional value chains of goods or services that are ever more complex. From there, we are increasingly able to support businesses that contain greater added value in their specific proposal to transfer technology and create quality jobs,” Juan Gabriel Pérez, CEO of Invest in Bogota.
During this period, using a tool that tracks greenfield investment throughout the world, fDi Markets recorded Bogota as welcoming 111 new projects from Iberoamerican cities. This volume positions Bogota as the city with the second largest number of new investment projects out of all the analyzed cities.
According to the analysis, much of the investment arriving in Bogota originates from companies located in Spanish cities such as Madrid and Barcelona. Since the implementation of the bilateral agreement between Spain and Colombia in September 2007 for the reciprocal promotion and protection of investments, the number of new Spanish investment projects in Bogota has increased—mainly in areas related to corporate and business services.
“This ranking confirms the positioning of Bogota as an epicenter for business in the region. Previously, most foreign companies focused their strategy only on the Bogota and Colombia markets; however, increasingly, we find cases of companies from different sectors and countries that are taking the decision to locate their operating centers in Bogota to attend to all of their Latin American businesses,” notes Juan Gabriel Perez, CEO of the investment promotion agency for the Colombian capital, Invest in Bogota.
Pérez emphasizes, “The type of foreign investment coming to the city has become increasingly specialized. We have begun to attract companies that are parts of regional value chains of goods or services that are ever more complex. This enables us to support businesses of greater added value, with a more significant element of transfers of technology and knowledge, as well as the creation of quality jobs. Some examples of these investments include a world class shared-services center for insurers, such as AIG; Weatherford’s regional research and development center for analysis of soil samples; and the most modern plant in Latin America for processing fruits and vegetables for Dole, among others.”
The President of the Bogota Chamber of Commerce—Mónica de Greiff—adds, “Latin American businessmen and investors’ perceptions of Bogota have significantly improved in the last 15 years. Its favorable business environment—the result of a process of urban, economic, social, and cultural transformation—has become an attractive destination for foreign investment and generation of business opportunities. In the last decade, the number of companies coming to Bogota has tripled; currently, more than 1,500 foreign capital companies are located in the city.”
“The appeal of Bogota continues to be its market and consumption potential, its geographical location and the fact of having an economy that today is more competitive than many other capitals in the region. To this, one must increasingly add the city’s competitiveness in the operating environment areas and the competence of its qualified human talent, offering investors a young labor force of 4.5 million people,” adds the District’s Secretary of Economic Development, Carlos Simancas Narvaez.
The ranking also highlights the good performance of Colombia in attracting new investment, mainly for implementing a series of regulatory reforms that have facilitated business, pro-investment policies, and a secure and stable legal framework. According to the World Bank’s latest Doing Business 2015 report, Colombia ranks 34 in the world and first in Latin America for ease of doing business. According to this, Colombia’s improved image, stable economic growth, and attractive domestic market all placed the country’s cities onto the global investment map.
This ranking is prepared by fDi, which is internationally recognized for its expertise in matters related to foreign direct investment and investment promotion. The analysis is based on its own tools, such as fDi Markets, which monitors announcements and investment cases worldwide.
First, cities in Latin America, Europe, and the United States with a high proportion of Spanish or Portuguese speakers are identified. From this list, 100 cities that have received most recent investment projects in the period are identified. Finally, these initial rankings are refined by the inclusion of the level of “intra-regional” foreign investment, i.e., investment between Iberoamerican cities and their growth rates.