After negative results in January 2021, due to new restrictions to contain the second wave of covid-19 infections, the Colombian economy improved in February. Yet, figures are still negative. According to the DANE's Economic Monitoring Indicator (ISE) the gross domestic product (GDP) may have decreased by -3.48 percentage points in February. Among all sectors of the economy, the primary sector decreased by -1.10 percentage points compared to last year.
The Ministry of Health announced yesterday its decision to allow private parties to acquire and provide vaccines against Covid-19. The government also released specific guidelines that companies must follow. In detail, companies can only purchase vaccines directly from producers, such as AstraZeneca and Pfizer.
In February 2021, exports totalled $2.9 billion while imports $3.6 billion, resulting in a $714 million deficit, reported Dane. Yet, it was $116 million lower than the same period last year. Imported fuels and other products related to the extractive industries had the largest drop at 24.2% among imports.
The Bogota Chamber of Commerce and the Korean Chamber of Commerce and Industry will create a bilateral business council to strengthen trade relations between the two countries. In 2020, Colombian exports to South Korea rose by 18% to $ 571 million, while South Korean imports to Colombia decreased by 10.71% to $676 million.
Today, the Colombian Ministry of Finance carried out its largest financing operation. It issued both $2 billion in 11-year maturing bonds with a 3.356% yield rate and $1 billion 20-year maturing bonds at 4.235%. The operation attracted purchase orders for a total of $ 10.2 billion, 3.4 times higher than the amount issued. According to the government, the capital will be allocated in the General Budget of the Nation for the period 2021.
Since the National Government resumed air traffic operations in September 2020, the National Civil Aeronautics agency has approved 32 international and 15 local routes for passenger transport. Most of the new international routes are for Central and North American destinations. Within Colombia, Cartagena and Santa Marta register the highest increase in new services.
Colombia’s government on Thursday formally proposed to Congress a $6.4 billion tax reform that would eliminate many deductions and increase duties on individuals and business. The measure seeks to boost tax collection by $6.38 billion (Co$23.4 trillion) a year, equivalent to 2% of gross domestic product.
Colombia’s infrastructure agency (ANI) has halted the prequalification for the $773 million (Co$ 2.8 trillion)Dique canal rehabilitation private-public partnership due to social consultations with locals. The national planning department (DNP) and the finance and transport ministries are reviewing the project. The entities expect to approve the financial, technical and legal structuring during the second half of this year, ANI said in a press release.
From January to March 2021, The Banco Agrario de Colombia net income increased by 37.2% to $36 million (Co$ $ 131,119 million), compared to the first quarter of 2020. This year, loans for agricultural businesses have increased by 32% to $272 million (Co$989,538 million), of which 96.65% have gone to small farming businesses.
From February to March 2021, sales rose by 26 pp. According to the latest business survey conducted by the National Federation of Colombia Businesses (Fenalco), 49% of business owners reported an increase in the net quantity of sales. However, Fenalco also raised concerns for April results as new lockdown measures have recently taken place in many regions of Colombia.