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Colombian Trade Agency Reborn as PROCOLOMBIA

Colombian Trade Agency Reborn as PROCOLOMBIA

Bogota, Colombia – Proexport, the Colombian government agency charged with promoting tourism, trade and investment has been reborn as PROCOLOMBIA.

This new organization “will reach more people in its mission, build better export companies and will strengthen the pursuit of foreign investment for new projects that create more supply, employment and growth.”

PROCOLOMBIA is “the response to the progressive increase of organizational functions, its expansion and its results.”

The name change was predicated on a survey of Colombian and foreign entrepreneurs which concluded that the name of Proexport did not reflect its reach or convey its link to Colombia.

The name PROCOLOMBIA “is self-explanatory, resounding and more inclusive.”

The agency was formed over a process of more than eight months. The agency “will work to position the country’s brand, consolidate Colombia as a tourist destination and coordinate the promotional activities with public and private agencies that can help capitalize the country’s name and be able to position it as a supplier of quality products and services.”

It will also “broaden its scope in the internationalization of MSMEs (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises) offering trade services supported by specialists who will work with them in an incubator environment.”

PROCOLOMBIA will launch a new Export Mentoring Program, aimed at strengthening alliances between firms with export experience, or foreign investors, and MSMEs interested in the internationalization process to gain overall competitiveness.

Export culture programs will also be strengthened so that Colombian entrepreneurs can adapt their products to satisfy global demand.


New York to Form State Trade Promotion Bank

Albany, NY – The State of New York is taking a major step to provide financing for global trade-minded companies throughout the state with the announcement that it will propose the creation of a new import-export bank.

Based on the federal model, the bank, the first of its kind in the country, would initially be vested at $35 million with funds loaned to qualified companies looking to expand their overseas exports.

The bank will have to be approved by lawmakers and would include a $25 million lending program targeted toward small businesses that have difficulty accessing credit, and $10 million for grants of as much as $25,000 to help with export capacity and translation.

Governor Mario Cuomo announced the formation of the bank at the recent Global New York Summit in New York City.

The new bank, the governor said, “is part of a larger push to help companies take advantage of growing international markets. This is about job development and these companies are being sought after by every state. If we don’t give them an incentive, another state will.”

Cuomo also said he will travel on trade missions to Canada, Mexico, Israel, China and Italy over the next year as part of his recently unveiled Global NY Initiative.

Up for reelection next month, the governor Cuomo added that the initiative is meant to help change New York’s image as a high-tax state unfriendly to business and investment and draw more foreign companies to the country’s third-most-populous state.


US SecCom on Major Philippine Trade Mission

Washington, DC – US Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker is leading a major business delegation to the Philippines this week.

The mission is seen as “a concrete sign that the United States is ready to engage Manila in further market access and trade negotiations” that “reaffirms Washington’s commitment to the Philippines and the entire Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) region,” said the US Embassy in Manila.

The 12-person, “CEO-level” mission consists of representatives of companies in the services, energy, consumer goods, communications, electronics and mining sectors.

Part of Secretary Pritzker’s itinerary reportedly includes meetings with President Benigno Aquino, Trade and Industry Secretary Gregory Domingo, Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima and other key Philippine government officials.

Pritzker has served as Secretary of Commerce for the past two years as a member of the President’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board which formulated and evaluated economic policy.

US goods and services trade with the Philippines totaled $24 billion in 2012, according to the latest trade data available from the US Trade Representative. Exports totaled $10.6 billion; Imports totaled $13.3 billion.

In 2013, US companies invested $1.3 billion in the country, while the US ranked as the Philippines’ third largest trading partner and second largest global export market.