The local subsidiary of General Motors expressed optimism for the future of Colombia’s domestic car market as the automaker opened a new factory.
“We’re below where we hoped to be, but you have to remember that Colombia has very low consumption of vehicles, less than Chile, Brazil and Ecuador… so the potential of Colombia is great,” GM Colombia President Jorge Alejandro Mejia told national radio on Wednesday.
GM Colmotores let the pressure of falling exports weigh little on the company presence in Colombia. Demand, said Mejia, has fallen by 9% since 2012 and fell 4 or 5% the year before that.
But a new manufacturing plant in Bogota‘s industrial zone that will assemble vehicles for export is not worried about its future, nor market conditions.
Mejia even hopes to “look for markets further away,” after establishing Chevrolet’s new manufacturing set up in Colombia.
Being competitive, however, is not easy in the current global manufacturing climate. Colombia has free trade agreements with South Korea and Mexico, both automaker giants on the world manufacturing stage. That means fiercer competition.
“All of the free trade agreements,” said Mejia. “Well, they make it more difficult to achieve being more competitive in world.”
GM Colmotores hopes that the new plant will create around 1,900 new jobs. Roughly $70 million has been invested in the new GM plant, which is designed to produce some 60,000 vehicles annually.