Published On: Wed, Sep 10th, 2014

Palm: “Trade mission to Colombia was a huge success”

PalmWILLEMSTAD, BOGOTA - The Minister of Economic Development, Stanley Palm was recently in Colombia where he headed a trade mission, in which more than 25 business owners and representatives of the private sector in Curaçao participated.

Minister Palm met first with the Ambassador of the Dutch Kingdom in Colombia, Mr. Robert van Embden and also the Colombian Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism, Her Excellency Mrs. Cecilia Alvarez Correia. The conversations with Minister Alvarez Correia were very concrete and she demonstrated full support for Curaçao to solve the issue of shortages in fruits, vegetables and fish. Minister Alvarez Correia immediately called her advisors to form a small committee to instruct providers and transporters in the coastal cities in Colombia to initiate contacts with companies in Curacao.

Minister Alvarez Correia is one of the more respected ministers in Colombia. In the first government of President Juan Manuel Santos, she was the Minister of Infrastructure and Transport and was recognized as a super minister. Now that she calls the shot at the Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism in the second government headed by President Santos, it is expected that she will take Colombia to higher levels of economic growth.

Minister Alvarez Correia gave Minister Palm her support and cooperation and indicated that she has Curaçao at heart since her grandfather was born on the island and her father lived here for a while. This is of course great news. It could mean that the island will have the attention of this important minister, according to Palm.

The Colombian entity which promotes export, investments and tourism PROEXPORT was also visited by Minister Palm. During his visit both parties spoke of a cooperation between PROEXPORT, the Curaçao Ministry of Economic Development and the private sectors from both countries to attend to points of common interest in the field of commerce and investments.

Minister Palm also witnessed the signing of a cooperation agreement between the Curaçao Small and Medium Business Association (ADECK) and the Colombian business association ACOPI. There are high expectations on both sides to cooperate with each other to fortify the position of businesses in both countries.

The highlight of the trade mission was the opening of the “Casa de Curaçao” (the Curaçao House), which is a point of contact for businesses in Curaçao that want to do business in Colombia and Colombian companies that want to do business in Curaçao. “Casa de Curaçao” is a bilateral Chamber of Commerce, which carries the name Colombian Curaçaoan Chamber of Commerce and Integration and is open for all business owners from both Curaçao and Colombia to affiliate and become member so they can use the facilities offered in Bogota, Colombia.

The Government of Curaçao has given the mandate to open various trade representations in important countries for Curaçao through bilateral chambers to facilitate the commercial contacts for the businesses in Curaçao and the respective countries. There is currently one representation in Brazil and now in Colombia. Soon there will be representations in Panama, Miami, The Netherlands and China.


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