Colombian foreign minister invites Russian investment

Colombian Foreign Minister Jaime Bermudez called on Russian businesses to invest in Colombia, promising security and a good business environment, at a meeting at the Russian Chamber of Commerce in Moscow Monday morning.

Bermudez told investors that the Colombian government has “done everything possible to create a favorable atmosphere for investors,” particularly in the fight against illegal armed groups and drug traffickers.

Vice president of the Russian Chamber of Commerce, Gueorgui Petrov, said that Colombia was “among the most attractive markets for Russia.”

“Economic-business relations between our countries are highly favorable, and there are practically no limitations for Russian exports to Colombia,” Petrov said.

The Russian official said his nation’s chamber of commerce was disposed to provide investors help to ensure that “joint projects” get off the ground.

Petrov added that there were “good prospects” for Russian investors in the sectors of energy, machinery construction, agriculture, forestry, metallurgy and toursim.

Bilateral trade between the two countries increased 5% to $223.6 million in 2009, according to Russian media source Rianovosti.

Last Tuesday, Colombian Ambassador to Russia, Diego Tobon said he believed that Colombia exports to Russia, currently valued at $150 million, could reach $500 million annually.

Russia is currently the principal buyer of Colombian flowers in Europe and also buys coffee, cacao and textiles.

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