07 de September 2015

Bogota takes over the Colombia Pavilion at Expo Milano 2015 to promote business and international cooperation

Multisectorial Mision
Bogota takes over the Colombia Pavilion at Expo Milano 2015 to promote business and international cooperation

A multi-sector campaign to promote the city at this global event has been prepared by the District Department of Economic Development, the Bogota Chamber of Commerce, the District Direction of International Relations and Invest in Bogota, praising a Bogota of business opportunities, cultural diversity and tourism that has brought it widespread recognition of its transformation over recent years.

With an accent on investment, exports and development cooperation that characterize the Bogota brand, meetings, official visits and investment seminars with Italian businessmen and government entities -organized in coordination with ProColombia- will be among the highlights of the agenda.

In this regard, the General Secretary of the Mayor’s Office, Martha Lucía Zamora, explains that the strengthening of relations with Italy and the Lombardy region means that experiences can be shared to improve the competitiveness of the city: "New markets are opened for foreign trade and we stress that Italian companies choose Bogota in their expansion plans in value-added sectors."

She also stressed that "through the District Direction of International Relations (DDIR) we will be promoting the 5th World Congress of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) – a meeting to be held next year between October 12 and15 that brings together nearly 3,000 attendees to influence the approval of Sustainable Development Goals and the World Urban Agenda.”

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In turn, Monica de Greiff, President of the Bogota Chamber of Commerce, notes that in recent years Bogota has undergone a process of urban, economic, social and cultural transformation and has become a venue for major international events. In the context of these opportunities and a culture of public-private work, Bogota has been working since 2008 on the construction and launching of the city’s marketing strategy, an initiative that aims to develop projects that emphasize the positive attributes and strengths of the city, promote its international position and attract investment, business, events, tourism and talent. To this end, the institution will be working in Milan on an interagency agenda of environment issues and projects for improving competitiveness and promoting Bogotá.

Carlos Fidel Simancas, District Secretary of Economic Development, explains that "the value of this multi-sectoral campaign lies in sharing with the governments that participate in Expo Milano 2015 our experiences in nutrition and food supply and security models, publicize the model that the capital district currently manages and in turn get to know the best practices of the industrial districts of Milan’s fashion industry in their rural, urban and regional perspectives."

Juan Gabriel Pérez, CEO of Invest in Bogota - a public-private initiative - affirms that "Bogota is an ideal city for Italian companies to consider as their hub for Latin America, since it is one of the most dynamic urban markets with the greatest potential for growth on the continent. In turn, important Italian institutions such as the Italian Cultural Institute, the Colombo-Italian Chamber and Leonardo Da Vinci Italian School, among others, are present in the Colombian capital. Bogota offers competitive advantages in business vis-à-vis its Latin American peers, thanks to its economic strength, qualified human talent, favorable business environment, favorable geographical location, market access and quality of life."

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The sectors with opportunities for investment in Bogota are services (IT services, BPO and shared services, creative industries, business and consulting services, and energy and clean technology); manufacturing (automotive and transportation, chemicals and processed foods); life sciences (biotechnology, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment and supplies); and infrastructure and city projects (infrastructure for transport and logistics, city projects and hospitality and tourism).

"To date, more than twenty Italian companies have chosen Bogota as their operations centers in Colombia, with operating revenue estimated in over USD 2 billion. Standing out among these companies are: Generali (insurance), Maccaferri Group (engineering), Ducati Motors (non-automotive transport), Siae Microelettronica (telecommunications), Zambon (pharmaceuticals), Soilmec (machinery and equipment), Salvatore Ferragamo (textiles), Ferrero (confectionery), Assicurazioni Generali (services), Fiat Group (automotive) and Dolce & Gabbana (textiles)," concludes Perez.

Expo Milano 2015 is the best showcase to continue building assertive policies for the modernization and automation of Colombian farming, the productive sector of the country’s future, and it allows Bogota to fortify the rural sector and the development of its sustainability policies.


Colombia at Expo Milan 2015 in numbers

  • Since May 1, almost one million people have visited the Colombia Pavilion at the International Exposition.
  • 65,000 cups of coffee have been served.
  • More than 9,000 Colombians crafts and snacks have been sold.
  • 1.3 tons of Colombian exotic fruits have been offered.
  • The Pavilion restaurant attends about 1,000 people every day.
  • In 4 months at least 15 business agendas for the official allies of the pavilion have been organized, in coordination with ProColombia, which have been attended by over 400 Italian and foreign businessmen and investors, interested in Colombia's exportable supply and in the investment opportunities that the country offers.
  • During Agriculture Month, last June, the Expo was filled with the colors of over 20,000 Colombian flowers.
  • On July 20 5,000 flowers and hot sugar-and-lemon drinks were handed out. The day ended with a concert by La-33, the salsa band, which was attended by over 1,500 people, the Expo’s biggest concert to date.
  • 74% of the total budget of 38 billion pesos is contributed by public entities of the national Government, 16% by departments and municipalities and 10% by the private sector.