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The president of CAF – development bank of Latin America – Luis Carranza, highlighted today the business and investment opportunities in Latin America, during a business meeting at CEOE, in which the vice president of the Confederation and president of SEOPAN, Julián Núñez, and the permanent secretary of CEIB and CEO of International CEOE, Narciso Casado also participated. Previously, Luis Carranza and the CEO of CEOE, Antonio Garamendi, met to discuss the CAF projects in the region and the possibilities of cooperation with Spanish companies.

Previous meeting

During the meeting prior to the meeting, Garamendi and Carranza expressed their interest in cooperating in areas of common interest and that Spanish companies can collaborate on projects that contribute to the development of Latin America. Garamendi commended the work of CAF, for its firm commitment to establish and promote sustainable development and regional integration, which represent key elements for productivity growth in the area. He stressed the efforts that are being made in the fight against climate change, the promotion of the digital agenda and the productive transformation of the region through industry 4.0, which, in his opinion, are essential elements to incorporate into the business strategy and that “we share both from CEOE, and from the Council of Ibero-American Businessmen (CEIB)”.

For this reason, he considered it essential that both institutions collaborate in areas of common interest in the region, such as education, training and retention of talent; the promotion of financing and the need to improve the regulatory and institutional framework; digitalization and commitment to innovation; the strengthening of public governance; and the need to establish a framework of public-private partnerships to undertake the investments required in Latin America and achieve the objectives and goals of the 2030 Agenda.

Business forum

The Vice President of CEOE and President of SEOPAN, Julián Núñez, thanked Luis Carranza for the event, which was attended by more than 180 representatives of institutions, embassies and companies in the region. Núñez highlighted the presence of Spanish companies throughout Latin America in sectors such as transport infrastructure, logistics, energy, water, sanitation, banking or tourism, among other sectors. In this regard, he stressed the need to promote a framework of public-private partnerships, which will attract the private capital required to modernize the public infrastructure and services demanded by the region.

In this context, Núñez stressed that public-private partnerships represent an essential lever to boost the participation of private companies with the other agents involved, such as international and multilateral organizations and public administrations. However, he said, so that public-private partnerships can respond to the strong expectations placed on them, it will be essential to work in two areas of great importance, such as financing and improving the business environment.

Development in Latin America

Luis Carranza reviewed the evolution and main lines of action of CAF, as well as the business and investment opportunities that exist in the region. Carranza explained that they have incorporated a corporate strategic framework and that the institution focuses on projects that contribute to social development. In this regard, he highlighted five main axes by which the bank is governed: efficiency, equity, sustainability, institutionality and integration.

During his speech, Carranza focused on the challenge facing Latin America to improve its productivity, for which internal efficiency, institutional strengthening, greater infrastructure efficiency and equity in various sectors, such as health, education, water or sanitation, are required. , among other issues. The president of CAF insisted that Latin American countries should make an effort to make better use of their natural resources, to achieve prosperity and growth, always counting on the impact on the environment and on development and social equity.

The CAF executive president explained that they have created a Study Fund for large infrastructure projects, and that they have proposed to the Spanish government to co-finance some engineering studies. Likewise, Carranza said that the priority is to carry out infrastructure throughout the region, in order to integrate the markets. Finally, he emphasized the commitment to public-private partnerships, especially in the field of SMEs, which are the ones that can innovate and contribute to growth in the area.

Closure

The permanent secretary of CEIB, Narciso Casado, closed the day by mentioning the intense and extensive collaboration that has been carried out between CAF and the Council of Latin American Businessmen for a long time. For his part, he highlighted the main challenges that Latin America has to face and the work carried out by CEIB to find possible solutions to them. Among them, Casado highlighted the low productivity of Latin American companies, so the efficiency and competitiveness of the business environment must be improved; and highlighted the progress made in infrastructure, but insisted on the need for long-term stable development plans in different countries. He also mentioned the high levels of employment protection, which affects the activity of companies; lack of access by companies to financing; and the importance of retaining talent in the region. In this regard, Casado said that since CEOE-CEIB and SEGIB, work is being carried out to launch an ‘Ibero-American Erasmus’, through which young people can be trained in any country in the region.

On CEIB

The Council of Ibero-American Businessmen (CEIB) was born in 2015 as an institution that brings together the 23 most representative business organizations of the 21 Latin American countries, Spain, Principality of Andorra and Portugal, which, in our case is CEOE. It is an organization that assumes the representation and defense of the interests of the majority of companies, professionals and freelancers of any size and sector of activity, and of young people, through the Ibero-American Federation of Young Entrepreneurs (FIJE). In this way, CEIB is emerging as the largest business network in the region, under the umbrella of the International Organization of Employers (OIE, with more than 150 sister business organizations in 140 countries).

About CAF

CAF – development bank of Latin America – has the mission of promoting sustainable development and regional integration, through the financing of public and private sector projects, the provision of technical cooperation and other specialized services. Established in 1970 and currently made up of 19 countries – 17 from Latin America and the Caribbean, along with Spain and Portugal – and 13 private banks, it is one of the main sources of multilateral financing and an important knowledge generator for the region.

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