Country Series: Republic of Colombia

Colombia is the fourth largest country in South America, and the 26th largest country in the world. In terms of GDP, in 2015, Colombia ranked fourth in Latin America and 39th in the world. The country is rich in minerals, including coal, natural gas, petroleum, iron ore, nickel, gold, copper, emeralds and platinum.

  Colombia Pakistan
  2013 2014 2015 2013 2014 2015
Population, total (millions) 47.34 47.79 48.23 181.19 185.04 188.92
GDP (current US $ billions) 380.19 378.42 292.08 231.22 244.36 271.05
GDP growth (annual %) 4.87 4.39 3.08 4.40 4.67 4.71
FDI (BoP, current US $ billions) 16.21 16.32 11.73 1.33 1.87 0.98
Official exchange rate (LCU per US $) 1,868 2,001 2,741 101.63 101.10 102.77

This country profile is part of a series of studies undertaken on South American countries by the Pakistan Business Council (PBC). This brief study aims to highlight the economic, trade and investment opportunities in Colombia.

With a GDP of around $ 292 billion in 2015, and having abundant natural resources, Colombia is an attractive destination for investment. In 2015, Colombia’s GDP mainly comprised of the services sector which contributed 59.19% to the GDP. Meanwhile, industry and agriculture contributed 33.98% and 6.83% respectively to total GDP.

With a trade-per-capita of $ 1,339 for the period 2013-2015, Colombia ranked 56 in exports to the world whereas it secured the 47th rank in the world when imports were considered. Colombia’s exports and imports to the world amounted to $ 35.7 billion and $ 54.1 billion in 2015. Further, trade deficit reached a value of $ 18.37 billion in 2015. Top exports to the world include mineral fuels, coffee, tea, mate and spices and plastics and articles whereas imports consist of machinery, electrical machinery and equipment and mineral fuels.

Pakistan’s exports to Colombia reached their highest point in 2012, when exports amounted to $ 58.57 million and which declined to $ 42.94 million in 2015. Imports from Colombia increased from $ 1.38 million in 2014 to $ 9.03 million in 2015, an increase of $ 7.65 million. Ships, boats and floating structures, iron and steel and plastics are Pakistan’s top imports from Colombia whereas Cotton, man-made staple fibres and other made-up textile articles are top exports to Colombia.

In 2015, Pakistan’s import potential for top fifteen products from Colombia amounted to $ 1.47 billion whereas potential exports to Colombia were $ 1.18 billion. Medicaments consisting of mixed or unmixed products for therapeutic or prophylactic purposes and polypropylene dominate the list of Pakistan’s potential imports from Colombia. Pakistan has a substantial advantage in Instruments and appliances used in medical, surgical or veterinary sciences, Portland cement and Semi-milled or wholly milled rice.

Colombia’s Ease of Doing Business Index has dropped in the past year from 51 in 2016 to 53 in 2017. With a score of 37, Colombia also has a low ranking in the Corruption Perceptions Index where a low ranking indicates a more corrupt economy.

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