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Glossary

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flag of Colombia.

Republic of Colombia

Relationship with New Zealand

Bogota, Colombia
Bogota, Colombia. [1]

New Zealand has a friendly relationship with Colombia. Bilateral links between the two countries are deepening, particularly in the areas of education and agriculture. The New Zealand Embassy in Chile is accredited to Colombia.

New Zealand and Colombia cooperate on a number of multilateral issues, most closely climate change and human rights.

Trade and economic links

Bilateral trade increased over the last year (in the year to December 2010 exports were NZ$12 million and imports were NZ$15.6 million), dominated by exports of hormones, yachts, albumins, aircraft and machinery and imports of coffee, cruise vessels, insecticides, ambergris and medicaments.. There is potential for New Zealand investment in Colombia in agri-tech, dairy processing, horticulture and biofuel.

People to people links

Education and exchange programmes

is a key component of the bilateral relationship.  Colombia is one of six priority countries in the Ministry of Education’s Latin American Regional Strategy, approved by Cabinet in 2008.

The number of Colombian students enrolled in New Zealand educational institutions has grown more than 100% in the period between 2007-2010 to a total of 464 students in 2010 according to the Ministry of Education statistics..New Zealand schools, universities and private training establishments (principally English language schools) are showing a growing interest in the Colombian market and Colombian education agentsare increasingly aware of New Zealand.The New Zealand Embassy in Chile has run visa workshops for education agents.

The Colombian government has introduced arange of measures toimprove the level ofEnglish language teaching andhigher education levels generally (e.g. tertiary studies include a component of English language study, scholarship funds for overseas study, and an English language assistants programme).This may mean increased opportunities for Colombian students to study in New Zealand.

Productive working relationships have been developed by the New Zealand Embassy in Chile with the scholarship agencies Colfuturo and Icetex. Both areinterested in closer engagement with New Zealand universities andin student mobility in both directions. The President of ICETEX visited New Zealand in March 2010. In May 2010 a representative from COLFUTURO visited New Zealand to meet with Universities with a view to encouraging Colombian students to study in New Zealand.  Since then, two umbrella arrangements have been signed between Universities New Zealand with Colombian entities ICETEX and Colfuturo respectively.

The Embassy has also established contacts with individual universities that are interested in engaging with New Zealand counterparts. New Zealand institutions visit the market in increasing numbers for annual education fairs.

There are currently three exchange programmes approved by the Ministry of Education, Immigration NZ and Colombia:

Immigration and Tourism

A small number of Colombians have settled in New Zealand permanently under New Zealand’s United Nations refugee quota since 2007.

In 2010, there were 765 short term visitor arrivals from Colombia to New Zealand (a small decrease from the 776 the previous year. There was an increase of 29% in the number of short term visitor departures from New Zealand to Colombia.

All visa applications are now processed by the New Zealand Embassy in Chile (prior to July 2008 they were processed by the British Embassy in Bogota on behalf of New Zealand).

Political links

Multilateral links

Foreign, agriculture and trade ministers from the two countries have met periodically at meetings of the United Nations, Cairns Group, WorldTradeOrganisation and the Forum for Latin America and East Asia Cooperation. Colombia participates in the South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Organisation and hosted the second session of the Preparatory Conference of this organisation in January 2011 in Cali.

New Zealand and Colombia have also worked closely in the Human Rights Council. In June2009, theCouncil adopted a landmark resolution recognizing maternal death and illness as a pressing human rights concern. Over 70 UN member states co-sponsored this resolution (including the US) which was led by Colombia and New Zealand.At subsequent Council meetings in 2010 and 2011, the two countries have continued to collaborate on this and other issues, such as sexual orientation and gender identity.

Colombia hosted the Cartagena Summit for a mine free world in December 2009 which was attended by Minister for Disarmament, Georgina Te Heuheu.

New Zealand and Colombia are cooperating to address greenhouse gas emissions in the agricultural sector through participation in the Livestock Emissions and Abatement Research Network (LEARN) and as members of the Global Research Alliance on Agricultural Greenhouse Gases. Colombia is one of the participating countries in the FONTAGRO livestock mitigation research project, in which New Zealand is also engaged.

Development assistance

The New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs International Development Group provides a small fund for discrete development projects in Colombia. This HeadofMissionFund, as it is called, provides NZ$25,000 per year and is administered by the New Zealand Embassy in Chile, which is accredited to Colombia.

In 2010 New Zealand funded two projects in Bajo Grande: the construction of a nursery to grow chilli peppers and the construction of a piggery and the purchase of pigs for breeding. These projects were presented by Social Action of the Office of the Presidency and developed by the NGO Fundación Idear Colombia.

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Key facts

Geography/Demography

Land Area –  1,140,000 sq km
Population –  45.2 million (2012 estimate)
Capital City – Santa Fe de Bogotá (population 8.2 million)
Religion –  Roman Catholic 90%, other 10%
Official Language –  Spanish
Currency – Colombian peso (COP)
Exchange Rate – 1 NZD = 1,492.22 COP (30 january 2013)

Political

Political system – Unitary republic

National government The president heads the executive branch and is elected for a four-year term, with the possibility of being re-elected for a second term.

National legislature – Legislative power is vested in Congress, which consists of the Senate (the upper house) and the Chamber of Representatives (the lower house), both elected by popular vote for four years.

Last election – Presidential May 2010; Legislative March 2010

Next election due – Presidential May 2014; Legislative March 2014

Head of State and Government – Juan Manuel Santos Calderón

Political parties: Social Party of National Unity, Colombian Conservative Party, Colombian Liberal Party, National Integration Party, Radical Change Party, Alternative Democratic Pole, Colombian Green Party, Mira Movement, Indigenous Social Alliance, Indigenous Authorities of Colombia, United Popular Movement, Afrovide Association

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Administration

President

Juan Manuel Santos Calderón

Vice-President

Angelino Garzón

Minister for the Interior Fernando Carrillo Flores

Minister of Justice

Ruth Stella Correa

Minister of Foreign Affairs

María Ángela Holguín Cuéllar

Minister of Finance and Public credit

Mauricio Cárdenas

Minister of Defence

Juan Carlos Pinzón

Minister of Agriculture

Juan Camilo Restrepo

Minister of Social Protection

Mauricio Santamaría Salamanca

Minister of Mines and Energy

Federico Rengifo

Minister of Trade, Industry and Tourism

Sergio Díaz Granados

Minister of Education

María Fernanda Campo Saavedra

Minister of Housing, City and
Territory

Germán Vargas Lleras

Minister of Information and Communications Technologies

Diego Molano Vega

Minister of Transport

Cecilia Alvarez Correa

Minister of Culture Mariana Garcés Córdoba

Minister of Environment and sustainable development

Juan Gabriel Uribe


Economic


2010a

2011b

2012c

GDP

Nominal GDP (US$ bn)

288,0

334.8

362.3

Nominal GDP (Ps bn)

546.951

601,929

650,237

Real GDP growth (%)

4.3

5.0

5.0

Expenditure on GDP (% real change)

Private consumption

5.1

6.7

5.6

Government consumption

4.6

2.5

3.8

Gross fixed investment

8.3

9.6

10.8

Exports of goods & services

2.0

10.8

11.2

Imports of goods & services

14.9

16.2

15.6

Origin of GDP (% real change)

Agriculture

1.7 c

1.5

3.5

Industry

5.5 c

4.0

3.5

Services

4.0 c

6.5

6.4

Population and income

Population (m)

46.9

47.6

48.2

GDP per head (US$ at PPP)

9,276 c

9,750

10,366

Recorded unemployment (av; %)

11.8

11.2

10.7

Fiscal indicators (% of GDP)

Public-sector balance

-3.2 c

-3.5

-2.3

Public-sector debt interest payments

2.6 c

2.6

2.8

Public sector primary balance

0.0 c

-0.9

0.5

Net public debt

45.4

45.7

44.1

Prices and financial indicators

Exchange rate Ps:US$ (end-period)

1,914

1,760

1,824

Consumer prices (end-period;% )

3,2

3,9

4,4

Producer prices (av; % change)

1.7

6.0

4.8

Stock of money M1 (% change)

17.8

14.9

12.2

Stock of money M2 (% change)

10.2

15.3

14.7

Money market interest (av; %)

9.4

10.8

12.2

Current account (US$ m)

Trade balance

2,137

5,411

3,319

Goods: exports fob

40,778

54,955

59,889

Goods: imports fob

-38,642

-49,544

-56,571

Services balance

-3,465

-4,592

-5,067

Income balance

-12,096

-13,428

-14,207

Current transfers balance

4,481

5,432

6,314

Current-account balance

-8,943

-7,177

-9,641

External debt (US$ m)

Debt stock

62,101 c

69,761

75,448

Debt service paid

9,9361 c

11,677

13,131

Principal repayments

7,0510 c

8,463

9,614

Interest

2,885 c

3,214

3,517

International reserves (US$ m)

Total international reserves

28,077

35,675

40,451C

Source: IMF, International Financial Statistics.

Actual. b Economist Intelligence Unit Estimates.

Copyright Economist Intelligence Unit Forecasts.


Trade with New Zealand

Top five New Zealand exports to Colombia
12 Mths Ended December  2010
NZ$ (FOB)

Hormones, prostaglandins.

2,273,553

Yachts and other vessels

1,483,862

Albumins

613,501

Aircraft; parts of heading

556,459

Lifting, handling, loading or unloading .machinery

459,506

Top five imports from Colombia to New Zealand
12 Mths Ended December  2010
NZ$ (FOB)

Coffee

6,204,932

Boats

1,830,593

Insecticides, rodenticides, fungicides

1,440,760

Ambergris, castoreum, civet and musk

1,155,309

Medicaments

1,059,424


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Embassies

The New Zealand Embassy in Chile [external link] is also responsible for Colombia.

There is a New Zealand Honorary Consul in Bogotá, Colombia called Annette Pearson.

The Colombian Embassy in Tokyo is also responsible for New Zealand.

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Travel advice

The SafeTravel website has comprehensive travel information including advice on the safety and security of travel to Colombia.

Further enquiries may be directed to:

Consular Division
Tel: +64 4 439 8000
Fax: +64 4 439 8532

Email:cons@mfat.govt.nz

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Footnote

[1] Colombian flag swaying in front of Bogota, Capital of Colombia. Bogota is the largest city in Colombia, one of the biggest of Latin America, figures in the 30th largest cities of the world, and its altitude (2,640 metres) makes it the third-highest capital city in the world, after La Paz and Quito.

Page last updated: Monday, 09 December 2013 13:00 NZDT