'The 'Rural Colombia' plan has already allocated $170 million in the General Budget to start the construction phase of 755 corridors in the country, which will be added to 183 projects signed in 2019. 'Rural Colombia' is part of the 'Commitment to Colombia' program, and is expected to generate 50,000 jobs for the 183 projects, and around 210,000 jobs for the remaining 755.
Colombia’s health ministry assigned $29mn for 128 projects to improve hospital infrastructure and boost health services in more than 300 municipalities across the country, to increase the capacity of medium-sized hospitals amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. The funds will come from a $3,600 mn emergency fund established earlier this year to deal with the fallout of the health emergency.
Santiago Castro, president of the Colombian Banking and Financial Entities Association (Asobancaria), said that measures implemented by the sector, associated with grace periods, new credits, among others, reach $105 million to date, 38% of GDP. The banking sector has granted relief to nearly 11.8 million debtors, totaling almost 21% of GDP (39.2% correspond to commercial loans, 36.2% to consumer loans, 21.8% to housing and 2.8% to microcredit).
The Electrificadora de Santander (Essa), a subsidiary of EPM, and Celsia signed a contract for the purchase of future assets for general use of the Mesa del Sol project located in the municipality of Los Santos. This contract includes investments in electrical infrastructure for more than $6 mn, such as the construction of a 115 / 34.5 kV substation, an input-output section of the existing line owned by Essa Piedecuesta-San Gil 115 kV that will allow the connection of the solar generation parks both to the regional transmission system and to Essa's local distribution system and the construction of a seven-kilometer 34.5 kV double-circuit line that will allow the connection of the project from the Mesa del Sol substation to the Acuarela substation 34.5 kV.
Grupo Argos will carry out an issuance of ordinary bonds and commercial paper in the Colombian Stock Exchange for up to $52.4 million. The securities will be offered to the general public under the terms and conditions defined in the Program's information prospectus, the public offering notice of the bond issue and the corresponding operating instructions issued by the Colombian Stock Exchange to such effect, among which it is highlighted that the bonds issued must be paid with other bonds previously issued by the company.
In the electric power sector, Enel Green Power Colombia began a permitting process for transmission works in the Caribbean coastal department of La Guajira. The initiative would link Enel's Windpeshi wind farm to the Cuestecitas substation via a 220kV power line. Estimated investment in the works is $11.7 mn. The Windpeshi complex will boast installed capacity of 200MW and require overall investment of $313mn, according to Enel. Capacity in the first phase of construction is expected to reach 150MW.
Ecopetrol has submitted plans for a new $65 mn exploration program at its Condor bloque in central Colombia. According to Ecopetrol, the proposed drilling campaign aims to "verify the presence of hydrocarbons and incorporate 499 Mboe of contingent resources", reported BNamericas.