Investment in Colombia’s hotel industry to reach $2B

By the end of 2011, investment in the hotel industry will have reached $2 billion, announced the president of Colombia’s hotel association, Cotelco, local newspaper LaVanguardia reported Friday.

Juan Leonardo Correa, president of Cotelco, went on to say that the rate of growth in the industry will be between 10% and 20%.

Correa said, “The increase in hotel investment in Colombia this year has been very important. Last year hotel investment stood at $1.7 billion. This year we estimate that we are going to reach $2 billion. This is because we are counting on some hotel projects to be initiated in January, February and March of 2012.”

According to Correa, factors contributing to this increase in hotel investment are tax exemptions given by the previous government to these construction works, improved security conditions, and that Colombia has become fashionable on the global travel circuit.

However, Correa said that the hotel industry is being held back by the poor state of the roads and the high price of airline tickets.

“We have a very big delay of at least 30 years in the road network. The road infrastructure of the country needs urgent surgery, important projects,” said Correa.

The association president added that airline tickets in Bogota are very expensive compared to prices in the rest of Latin America and Europe.

Correa made the announcement at the Tourism Sector and Hotel Certification Conference in the Hotel Pipaton in Barrancabermeja, in the department of Santander.

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