News story

Colombia state visit strengthening trade and investment links

Government investing up to £1 billion to support trade and development in Colombia as new partnerships open in oil and gas sector.

Liam Fox at the Colombia Business Forum
  • state visit by Colombian President sees new partnerships in oil and gas sector
  • government’s export credit agency will provide up to £1 billion in support for UK trade with Colombia to support rural and post-conflict projects
  • Department for International Trade (DIT) to host series of business events to facilitate trade in important sectors

The UK and Colombia will work together to strengthen commercial ties and position the UK as a partner of choice as Colombia looks to develop its offshore oil and gas industry, government has announced.

Energy partnerships with Colombia

As part of the state visit, a new 5 year agreement signed between DIT and the Colombian National Hydrocarbons Agency has been announced which will see them become strategic partners in the development of the offshore hydrocarbons sector in Colombia.

Aberdeen

There will also be a joint declaration agreed between Aberdeen City Council and the Colombian city of Barranquilla to support Barranquilla as it works towards becoming a member of the World Energy Cities Partnership.

Business engagement with Colombia

With the state visit by President Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia focusing on trade and investment, a number of business events are taking place bringing together Colombian and British businesses in important sectors such as oil and gas, healthcare, infrastructure and mining.

The centre piece of these business events was the Colombia Business Forum at Mansion House. A chance to highlight the business opportunities in Colombia for UK investors and exporters, the event was attended by over 300 businesses and executives, the Secretary of State for International Trade and the President of Colombia.

Secretary of State for International Trade, Liam Fox, said:

Today the UK and Colombia are building a historic new economic alliance, a partnership which will secure the prosperity of both our nations for generations to come and help unlock the significant opportunities for UK companies in key sectors such as infrastructure, transport and agriculture.

It will not only strengthen economic ties between the two countries, but with £1 billion of UK Export Finance limits and British business input, these projects will also make a real social impact in helping give Colombians living in rural areas access to much needed clean water and healthcare.

The partnership between the Department for International Trade and the Colombian National Hydrocarbons Agency will see them working together to promote the UK supply chain in Colombia and sharing best practices in a range of areas including regulation and licensing, skills and training, social impact and infrastructure and supply chain development. It will also help to promote the development of commercial partnerships and links between both countries.

Barranquilla’s agreement with Aberdeen City Council will see it work with Aberdeen’s supply chain to identify the products and services needed to make the Colombian oil and gas sector a global success story.

Development in Colombia

The visit is also an opportunity to highlight the need to support post-conflict activity in Colombia. Recognising the strong links between economic stability and trade and prosperity the government’s export credit agency, UK Export Finance, will provide up to £1 billion in support for UK trade with Colombia.

It is hoped that this will support projects across numerous sectors. The government is actively encouraging applications in the healthcare and renewable energy sector to support the 2 million people in Colombia who are currently off-grid in rural areas with poor medical facilities.

Read International Trade Secretary Liam Fox’s speech to the Colombia Business Forum.

Contact UK Export Finance for more information on support for your exports

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Published 2 November 2016