Bogota 2013 Blog: Panel – Colombia in the Eyes of Wall Street


Panalists discussed Colombia’s growth prospects and the country’s medium and long-term macroeconomic projections.

Colombia's economic growth and opportunities depend on how Latin America's economy as a whole performs now and in the future. AS/COA 2013 Latin American Cities Conference in Bogota panel: "Colombia in the Eyes of Wall Street," addressed the country's prospects in the medium and long term and analyzed it's economic growth in the broader context of Latin America's emerging markets.

Presentations addressed perspectives for Latin America in the recovering international economy, Colombia's investment indicators, and the region's macro-economic prospects as a whole.


  • Luis Oganes, Head for LatAm, Emerging Markets Research Group, JP Morgan (Download his presentation)
  • Roberto Sifon Arévalo, Lead Analytical  Manager, Sovereigns & Public Finance Ratings, Standard & Poor’s (Download his presentation)
  • David Gruppo, Managing Director, Head of Latin America Corporate & Investment Banking, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (Download his presentation)
  • Moderated by Victor Traverso, CAF Representative, Colombia

JP Morgan's Luis Oganes analyzed how developed economies have been recovering from the worst economic crisis in history through the last years, and said that the housing market, investments by the corporate sector, and consumer behavior are the determining factors for the U.S. economic recovery. Considering this context, Oganes talked about disappointing numbers from Mexico and Brazil in the first 2013 quarter, but explored prospects for growth for the rest of the year. He said Colombia has aligned its economic cycle with the region and, therefore, the country should reach its growth potential this year.

Standard & Poor's Roberto Sifon Arévalo pointed out that Colombia receives a BBB/BBB+ classification from S&P, making it a stable market. He explained that investors see the country's political consensus around a market economy and its fiscal policies as positive signs, but noted that inadequate infrastructure and years of armed conflict are still barriers for money inflows from abroad. He pointed out to two last themes—fiscal policy implementation and the management of commodities and capital flows—as important factors to be watched in the future.

David Gruppo added to the theme, showing that Latin American countries have developed their economic indicators and are now considered stable markets, making the region as a hub for foreign investment and an important commercial partner for other regions in the world in many sectors. Gruppo highlighted the potential for integrating Latin American markets: "If we have integration, we will have a market the size of India's. Gruppo noted that commodities exports and imports of manufactured goods are two areas that will likely lead to Latin America doubling its trade with all regions by 2016.

CAF's Victor Traverso moderated the conversation and asked panelists questions on topics such Colombia's peace process and infrastructure endeavors as promises for economic growth.

Watch the video of these presentations and a debate among the panelists.  (In Spanish):