Bogota’s Mayor Gustavo Petro said Thursday that Colombia’s recently-finalized Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the U.S. would hurt Colombia’s capital city.
In a presentation at Bogota’s Chamber of Commerce, the mayor said that the cost of production and delivery of goods to other countries from the city was much higher compared to other FTA signatories with the U.S.
“We must make a monumental effort to be aware as a society of the association between the manufacturing economy and transportation infrastructure which makes transporting manufactured goods from Bogota to Venezuela, and Ecuador to the United States cheaper,” said Petro.
The mayor believes that the Colombian government needs to construct railroads in order to bring down the cost of shipping goods internationally, to allow the full benefits of the FTA which takes effect May 15.
Colombian congressmen said Tuesday they were filing a lawsuit against the passage of the FTA because its legislation dealing with intellectual property and Internet access did not pass through proper Congressional procedures.
There has also been fierce opposition from unions in both Colombia and the U.S. due to ongoing unionist killings and labor rights violations — something the Andean nation was supposed to fully address before the agreement could go into effect.