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OECD Investment Policy Reviews: Colombia 2012

image of OECD Investment Policy Reviews: Colombia 2012

This Investment Policy Review examines Colombia's achievements in developing an open and transparent investment regime and its efforts to reduce restrictions on international investment. The Review  shows  that, in the past few years, Colombia has made tremendous progress in promoting investment liberalisation and improving its investment policy framework. Colombia has also recently undertaken important policy reforms in many of the areas covered by the Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, including human rights, labour issues and bribery.

In recognition of its progress in pursuing policy reforms to promote investment liberalisation and improving the business climate, Colombia became the 43rd country to adhere to the OECD Declaration on International Investment and Multinational Enterprises. As an adherent to the Declaration, Colombia commits to providing national treatment to foreign investors and to promoting responsible business conduct, in line with the Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. In turn, the country benefits from similar assurances from other adherents to treat Colombian investors fairly.

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Colombia and the National Treatment Instrument

The principle of non-discrimination and equal treatment of foreign investors is embodied in Colombia’s Constitution. National treatment and most-favoured nation status with respect to investment are referred to in recent free trade agreements signed or negotiated by Colombia.Colombia does not apply any trans-sectoral exceptions under the OECD National Treatment instrument. Sectoral limitations on foreign ownership concern television broadcasting and fisheries. Several measures applied by Colombia qualify for notification as measures reported for transparency under the OECD National Treatment instrument. For national security reasons, foreign investment is prohibited in the following areas: land ownership in border areas, manufacturing, possession and use of chemicals, biological and nuclear weapons and trade with these products, and foreign presence in private security and surveillance services. Colombia also imposes some conditions on corporate organisation and key personnel in maritime transport, newspapers and radio broadcasting. Public monopolies apply in production, import, export distribution and sale of liquors and for games of chance and gambling.As a result of Colombia’s limited number of statutory restrictions on foreign direct investment in the meaning of the OECD investment instruments, the country’s score under the OECD FDI Regulatory Restrictiveness Index is below both the OECD average and the average of non-OECD countries for which the Index is available.

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