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Colombian Trade Minister Luis Guillermo Plata: "Colombia: The Transformation of a Country"

June 18, 2008

Speaking at AS/COA’s annual Bogotá conference, Colombian Trade Minister Luis Guillermo Plata outlined his country’s progress in economic growth since President Álvaro Uribe came into office in 2002.

During his presentation, titled “Colombia: The Transformation of a Country,” (PDF) Plata provided statistical evidence of the Uribe administration’s accomplishments: continuous GDP growth over the past half decade with the 2007 rate clocking in at the country’s highest level since 1978; rising growth in the areas of tourism, exports, industrial production, and foreign direct investment; and improved investment ratings.

The minister highlighted accomplishments in the area of social mobility. Colombia has witnessed a decrease in social inequality and a steady decrease in unemployment, which fell below 10 percent last year.

The Uribe government has overseen a period of economic internationalization. In the past five years, five treade agreements with Colombia were approved. The country also signed nine treaties allowing for preferential trade agreements with 54 countries.

Plata outlined Colombia’s strategies for the future, including intentions to boost Colombia’s burgeoning international trade ties and to constant improvement of the country’s business climate.