Colombian construction materials open paths in the Panamanian marketplace
Bathtubs, floors, roofs, doors and windows. These and other construction materials were traded between over 50 Panamanian buyers and 33 Colombian exporters in Panama City.
Contact between the buyers and sellers took place during the II Construction Materials Business Round held in the capital of Panama, arranged by Proexport Colombia, with the intent to enhance engagements between the parties and creating better business opportunities for the sector.
The Colombian mission, which was coordinated by Proexport Colombia, reported an efficiency level of 78 percent in buyer appointments, where business expectations for US$16 million were achieved. "New possibilities have been opened between Panamanian builders and distributors, which have the need for the products we manufacture, which will undoubtedly lead us to make the decision to go back to Panama to broaden our knowledge of the marketplace," said representatives of Merkagres Ladrillera de Colombia, a company originally from the city of Cucuta.
Buyers were also satisfied. Carlos Espinosa from Tucan Real Estate, a Panamanian company dedicated to construction and sales, was one of them. "Our company currently imports material from Colombia, since we know the quality of their products, the fact that we are neighboring countries, and the competitive shipping freight costs," he said.
Bi-National Relations Grow Stronger
Perspectives are positive. The Central American country has become one of the most attractive destinations for Colombians to do business, not only thanks to the ease of market access there, but also due to the constant economic growth of the country, which is forecast to reach six percent this year.
Specifically, the construction sector is one of the ones showing the largest progress: Last year’s variation was 20,4% as compared to 2009, of which 20.9% was for residential and 9.6% was for non-residential.
The Panama Canal and coastal line expansion has to be added to the above, as well as the construction of the capital city’s metro-rail and another international airport, all of which are important growth factors in the sector for the coming years.
Colombian construction material exports as of November 2010 reached US$ 40.5 million, representing 14.54 percent of the total non-traditional exports, which reached US$ 279 million, with a 10% growth as compared to 2009.
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