Exhibition World Issue 5 - 2018 - Page 61

LATAM Colombia’s calling Carolina Ethel Martinez Mercado from ProColombia explains the Latin American appeal What are the key reasons for global exhibition organisers to launch events in Colombia? Colombia is the world’s gateway to South America. Colombia, land of Sabrosura, is the slogan of our current global tourism campaign. Sabrosura is a feeling and our way to share the musical diversity of a country with over one thousand rhythms. The Land of Sabrosura is also home to innovative destinations filled with cultural and gastronomic delights, and villages surrounded by imposing mountains. Colombia has wide-reaching international connectivity, ports on both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts, and more than 1000 weekly flights. What are the industries targeted for growth by the Government? Colombia is diversifying its exports portfolio. Traditionally, the focus w w w.exhibitionworld.co.uk What new infrastructure projects are underway in Colombia at the moment? We call it the ‘Infrastructure Revolution’, which includes the construction of fourth generation road infrastructure, tertiary roads and the construction or renovation of airports. It’s a long-term project that has required a $20 billion investment, of which 60 per cent is already spent. During 2010 and 2017, 180 hotels opened, adding a total of 19,628 rooms. has been in the mining-energetic sector, as well as in coffee, flowers, and bananas. Now all efforts are concentrated on six different productive chains: Agrofood sector, IT, Metal-mechanic and other Industries, Fashion, Chemicals, Life Sciences, and Tourism. Is your government supportive of business events? Promoting Colombia as a world- class tourist destination is a priority. There’s been both private and public investment in the building and suitability of airports, hotel infrastructure, convention centres, and trade fair grounds. The country has about 27 convention centres and 455 suitable hotels. Colombia has 117 non-traditional locations that make an event a unique experience, like Salt Cathedral in Zipaquira, which is the biggest in the world. Colombia, land of Sabrosura, is filled with cultural and gastronomic delights. What international shows have launched recently in Colombia? The Central American and Caribbean Games (Barranquilla, 2018), the World Economic Forum, Medellín (2016), and UNWTO twice (Cartagena 2007 and Medellin 2015). Last year, 30 laureates arrived at the Nobel Peace Prize Summit in Bogotá. Issue 5 2018 59