The U.S. Deputy Secretary of Commerce is set to head a delegation of over 20 U.S. businesses which will visit Colombia on May 15 to mark the one year anniversary of the Free Trade Agreement between the United States and Colombia, as well as assessing the plans to develop commercial infrastructure and increase exportation.
The delegation will also visit Sao Paolo and Panama City, with the visit extending from 12 to 18 May. The emphasis of the mission will be placed on the commercial relations between the United States and Colombia and Panama, both of whom already entered into Free Trade Agreements with the U.S.
Deputy Secretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank declared that the delegation will work “to deepen the economic and commercial relationship between the United States and Latin America”, while also declaring trip will focus on opportunities in the infrastructure and transport sectors, allowing the U.S. businesses to further bolster the commercial ties and facilitate exportation through the sharing of market information, from making presentations to individual companies and through direct contact with the decision makers in the governments of each country.
The Free Trade Agreement between Colombia and the U.S. has been in effect since 15 May 2012, allowing 80% of all exportation of industrial and commercial goods to take place duty free. In its fifth year the figure is set to rise to 95% and 100% by year ten.
Since the signing of the agreement there has been widespread enthusiasm for its beneficial effects on exportation to the U.S.
Colombia’s 2012 exports increased by 15% in comparison to 2011 and the government reportedly plans to invest $26 billion on its motorways over the next four years as well as investments into the modernization of its airports, maritime transport, river and railways.
The 20 U.S. companies involved in the mission are:
- Allen & Shariff Corporation, LLC (Columbia, Maryland)
- Autodesk, Inc. (San Rafael, California)
- Case New Holland Inc. (Burr Ridge, Illinois)
- Cessna Aircraft Company (Wichita, Kansas)
- Chen Moore and Associates (Miami/Ft. Lauderdale, Florida)
- Condortech Services Inc. (Springfield, Virginia)
- Del Valle Group (Toa Baja, Puerto Rico)
- Fluidic Energy (Scottsdale, Arizona)
- Ghafari Associates, LLC (Dearborn, Michigan)
- Greeley and Hansen (Chicago, Illinois)
- Innovari, Inc. (Austin, Texas)
- Integra Design Group Architects & Engineers, PSC (San Juan, Puerto Rico)
- Mabey Inc. (Elkridge, Maryland)
- Meridiam Infrastructure North America Corp. (Nueva York, New York, NY)
- Morgan Stanley Infrastructure (New York, NY)
- OSISoft LLC (San Leandro, California)
- Propex Operating Company, LLC (Chattanooga, Tennessee)
- Pulltarps Mfg. (El Cajón, California)
- Rapiscan Systems, Inc (Torrance, California)
- Tollgrade Communications, Inc. (Cranberry, Pensilvania)
Bogota Embassy Press release