By Vice Chairperson Joy Cho, Reporter Jung Won-shik
"Korea is a valuable partner for Colombia and although there is geographical distance between the two countries, the mind and heart are very close between the peoples of the two countries.” So said Representative Augusto Castellanos of Procolombia in Seoul at a recent interview with The Korea Post, publisher of 3 English and 2 Korean-language news media for the past 35 years.
According to Representative Castellanos, Procolombia in Seoul makes great contributions to the promotion of trade and economic cooperation between the two countries.
He said that Procolombia is a government-invested institution same as Korea's KOTRA, which greatly contributes to the economic cooperation between the two countries, helping trade and investment consultations between the two countries.
Last year, Chairman Kim Young-joo of the Korea International Trade Association sent a bilateral trade information exchange and trade and investment delegation to a Korea-Colombia trade and investment promotion forum with his counterpart, Flavia Santoro Trujillo, to hold a business agreement ceremony.
Representative Castellanos emphasized that Colombia's agricultural and marine products are exploring the Korean market. He hinted at an increase in exports of high-quality shrimps’ bananas and flowers, which are of very high reputation.
In the case of roses, luxury roses with a price of more than $6 dominate the Korean market, and banana trade volume has increased year by year, doubling the current trade volume last year. Procolombia also supported the clothing business and emphasized market development for leather goods.
One of the main businesses of his organization for the Korean market is a project to solidify Colombia's national specialty, coffee, as the leading Korean market.
Rather than the big business conglomerates or chaebol talk directly to the government at their headquarters, small and medium companies have been main inquirers about the products of Colombia.
There are a number of Colombian companies actively engaged in the promotion economic and commercial cooperation between the two countries. Here are some examples:
Net Marble Video Games:
Netmarble is a small and medium-sized company that makes a global leap forward with video games, and export and export negotiations with Colombia are coming and going.
Celltrion: This company is headquartered in Incheon as a pharmaceutical company and is expanding its market after the world's leading Pfizer and pharmaceutical companies.
I look forward to a stronger development in economic cooperation between the two countries.
Who is CEO Augusto Castellanos of Procolombia?
Name: Augusto Fernando Castellanos Cardenas.
Procolombia Seoul Korea Executive Director. Duties include: Management of Procolombia’s office in Korea. Development and implementation of strategy to promote foreign direct investment, Colombian exports and international tourism. One of the main achievements was to certified in the first six months USD 113 Million in three investment projects in three different sectors: Agribusiness, Logistics and Private Equity.
January 2017 – Currently
Procolombia New Delhi Executive Director, India & Israel. Duties included: Management of ProColombia’s office in India with additional coverage in the Israeli market. Development and implementation of the strategy for the two countries in promoting foreign direct investment, Colombian exports and international tourism. In this period the office achieved to certify more than USD 160 Million dollars investment in Manufacturing and IT projects, and more than USD 300 million in infrastructure projects. June 2012 – December 2016.
Procolombia Bogota, Colombia Intelligence Unit Deputy Director. Duties included: Lead the area responsible for market research and promotional material for Investment and Tourism in Colombia, as well as the development of the strategy through market segmentation and business intelligence tools. One of the main goals was to create a virtual presentation that can be editable regarding the topic and the country in real time. March 2011 – May 2012
Procolombia Bogotá, Colombia Foreign Investment Advisor. Duties included: Constant monitoring and support for foreign companies that showed an interest investing in Colombia, also foreign companies already established in the country and with potential to expand their operations. Additionally, organization of seminars in order to promote investment in Colombia from different countries. During this period projects over USD 150 million were certified. October 2008 – February 2011
Procolombia Bogota, Colombia Intelligence Unit Analyst for Investment: Duties included: Preparing profiles for different sectors as a tool for attracting foreign direct investment and development of particular and tailor-made queries for different companies keen to invest in Colombia. April 2008 – October 2008
Brandstrat Bogota, Colombia Project Leader. Duties included: Quantitative reports at national and Andean level; also attend and participate in the creation of advertising strategies for various categories in the Andean region. September 2007 – April 2008.
Advisor of Senator Gina Parody Bogota: Duties included: Research and presentation of proposals and bills, including subjects such as: entrepreneurship, Habeas Data, proposals for transparency in the reform of the country royalties; likewise, the study of issues related to informal housing, mass transport system in large cities, and monitor the finances. May 2006 – July 2007
Research & Opportunities International Strategy Consultants Bogota, Colombia Economic Analyst. Duties included: Statistical analysis for each economic sector in their respective opportunities and threats with the Free Trade Agreement negotiated between Colombia and The United States of America; as well as analysis of customer export strategies. August 2005 – December 2005
Lower Chamber of Congress Congressman Gina Parody Bogota Colombia Economy and Planning Researcher for Bogota:
Duties included: Specialized reporting about outlook for various topics relevant to Bogota and presentations of the economic behavior of the city. March 2004 – December 2004
Universitat de Barcelona
Barcelona, Spain Global MBA July 2016
EAE Business School
Barcelona, Spain Global MBA May 2016
Universidad de los Andes
Bogota, Colombia Economics September 2006
Colegio Corazonista H.H.
Bogota, Colombia Academic High School December 2000