Qualified talent – the key to the development of Bogotá

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| The European | 18th March 2019
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In the last ten years, the Colombian capital has attracted more than 1,000 companies and USD 21 billion in greenfield investment projects. Although company owners have many reasons to establish in the city and set up a business presence, one of the most significant reasons is without a doubt its highly qualified human talent.

In addition to being one of the strongest and most stable economies in Latin America, Colombia boasts the third largest workforce (24 million people) in the continent behind Brazil and Mexico, and compared to other countries in the region, its human talent stands out well above the rest. According to UNESCO data, in 2016 Colombia had the highest number of graduates with two-year vocational degrees in the region (more than 138,000) and the second highest number of master’s degrees (more than 85,000), and the second highest percentage of graduates from university programs among the total adult population, according to the OECD.

Most of these professionals live and work in Bogotá, home to the country’s largest labour force with 4.6 million people, more than Santiago de Chile and Quito combined (3.6 million and 877,000, respectively), and far above cities such as Buenos Aires (1.7 million) and Panama City (799,000).
The Colombian capital is also recognised for its privileged and strategic location right at the centre of the American continent, with frequent flights to destinations all over the world, and for having two of the ten best universities in Latin America according to QS University Rankings. Bogotá was as well ranked as the country’s most competitive city in the City Competitiveness Index 2018 and the most innovative in the Province Innovation Index for Colombia 2017.

Well-trained talent

According to World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report 2018, Colombia had the second-best score in the critical and creative thinking in teaching indicator and consistently meets company expectations regarding the professional skills needed to succeed above countries such as Mexico, Argentina, Peru, and Brazil. Furthermore, in addition to the excellent academic opportunities offered, Bogotá’s human talent stands out for its intangible advantages, such as adaptability, willingness to serve and commitment to the job. To name an example, the added value that local workers offer in relation to the wages that they earn is one of the highest in Latin America, according to the Latin Trade’s Labour Competitiveness Index 2017.

This availability of skilled human talent ready to take on any challenge is complimented by a favourable environment for company owners and entrepreneurs looking to invest in one of the most dynamic capitals in the continent, with the fewest hiring restrictions according to the Labour Competitiveness Index 2017.

The Colombian capital is growing steadily but surely. The city’s economic growth exceeded Latin America’s over the last decade, and according to the latest forecasts the economy is expected to grow even more thanks to initiatives to improve competitiveness and to the knowledge and expertise brought in by national and international companies in every industry, the economy is expected to grow even more. Supported by a large stream of highly qualified workers, exceptional education opportunities and an environment where it’s easy to do business, Bogotá will undoubtedly continue consolidating its position as the capital of human talent.

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