Newsletter September - October 2013 English version
Editor in Chief
Cecilia Porras Eraso
Colombina – Amazon Pepper
Mr. Mohammed Hamdan
Director of Trade Promotion, Ministry of
Economy – UAE
María Fernanda Concha
Sustainability and Corporate
Mr. Kamel Mukharesh
Vice Chairman MOKA
United Arab Emirates
Algeria and Morocco
Calle 125 No. 19-89 Of 502
Phone line: +57-1- 2153266
September - October
• ACCC News – Upcoming
• How to do business with
• Cultural Tip
• Report Economic Relations
U.A.E and Colombia
• Juan Valdéz enters in the
• Saudi Arabia - An economic
• Invited Cities of the United
• Diplomatic Missions Agenda
• Services & Benefits of the
The articles published
compromise solely their
authors and do not
necessarily reflect the
opinions of newsletter’s
directors. Total or partial
reproduction without the
express permission of the
publishers is forbidden.
How to Efficiently
Access the Arab
We build relations, we make business
ACCC NEWS – UPCOMING MISSIONS
DUBAI UAE. ACADEMIC MISSION FROM OCT 18 TO 26, 2013 - Visit to the
GITEX TECHNOLOGY FAIR "Technology Week" (October 20 to 24)
Trade show for technology enthusiasts. Gateway to the Middle East, Africa and South Asia,
especially for the ICT Industry.
More than 80% of the top brands in ICT worldwide participate, + 25 000 C-level
executives from key vertical markets in the industry.
DUBAI UAE. II MULTISECTORAL COMMERCIAL MISSION FROM NOV 14
TO 25, 2013 - Visit to the most important GOURMET FOOD FAIR
"Speciality Food Festival" (November 17 to 19) (www.speciality.ae)
Menope Middle East Natural & Organic Products (Dic 3-5)
Display on products of the highest quality for the growing gourmet, Halal and organic
consumer sector. Display for chefs, exclusive importers and distributors in the Middle East.
This commercial event is only open to industry professionals.
DUBAI, UAE. II COMMERCIAL MISSION OF CONSTRUCTION AND
INFRASTRUCTURE FROM NOV 23 TO DEC 2 - Visit to "THE BIG5" FAIR
(November 25 to 28) (www.thebig5.ae/)
be presented in the largest construction event of the Middle East.
What exactly is a trade mission? It is a visit to one
or more international markets to understand its
operation; regulations, distribution channels,
pricing, seeking networks in search for future
business and enhance the commercialization of
products. It also allows you to get an impression of
how the target market works, through
conversations with future strategic partners.
The Arab market imposes the need to build
personal relations before business, it is essential to
present your company in person and that you show
the interest you have by investing time and money.
This has an incalculable effect in front of potential
Participating in a trade mission is the best way to
prospect in a given market, but is also an
alternative to a less theoretical market research
and allows perceiving the real potential of the
market in question. It is all about organizing a
series of visits to different distributors and potential
partners who may be interested in selling their
products or services.
Agendas are often arranged for 6-7 days visits,
including 2 or 3 daily visits. Tracking: It is essential
to do any type of prospecting but if after a mission
or a fair, a constant monitor of the contacts is not
done, all the work will be for nothing.
We always appreciate the contribution made to the
Colombian businessmen by our permanent
columnist, Mr. Kamel Mukharesh, through his
valuable experience, giving us today a strong
CECILIA PORRAS ERASO
Colombia has all the
possibilities for products
and services in the growing
market of Saudi Arabia
Organization of the commercial and
/ or academic agenda.
Training before traveling on
business and cultural tips.
Flight tickets on commercial flights
Permanent Transport Services.
Assistance during the trip. Double
accommodation in the cities of
Breakfast Buffet included.
Lunch included in the plan.
Dinner included in the plan.
Tour in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah and
Number 1 in the MEASA región
+ 139,000 ICT professionals in 144 countries.
3.576 ICT companies from 54 countries.
Major construction event of the Middle East with more than 60,000
professionals in the field. A full range of products and services will
The ACCC invites you to participate in the II Multisectoral
Commercial Mission and visit to the Fairs:
The Speciality food festival (Nov 17-19) www.speciality.ae/
BOOK NOW YOUR SPACE
Information and Registration
Patricia Ángel Carreño:
HOW TO DO BUSINESS WITH ARABS?
GENERAL ETHICAL GUIDELINES
Some general guidelines govern the Islamic
code of ethics with relation to both one's daily
life and business conduct. Muslims are
required to behave islamically in their business
dealings because Allah Himself is witness to
Here are some key business principles that
Muslims should follow:
1. Be Honest and Truthful.
Honesty and truth is especially important for
Muslim business persons.
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said,
"Truthfulness leads to righteousness, and
righteousness leads to Paradise. A man
continues to tell the truth until he becomes a
truthful person. Falsehood leads to al fujuwr
(i.e. wickedness, evil-doing), and al fujuwr
(wickedness) leads to the (Hell) Fire, and a
man may continue to tell lies till he is written
before Allah, a liar." [Hadith No. 8.116]
2. Keep Your Word.
In a hadith narrated by Abu Hurayrah, the
Prophet (peace be upon him) is reported to
If you guarantee me six things on your part I
shall guarantee you Paradise. Speak the truth
when you talk, keep a promise when you make
it, when you are trusted with something fulfill
your trust, avoid sexual immorality, lower your
guise, and restrain your hands from injustice."
[Ubadah Ibn al Samit, Ahmad, Bayhaqi]
3. Love Allah More Than Your Trade.
We must love Allah even if we have to sacrifice
everything else. Allah warns in the Qur'an,
which is translated to mean: "If it be that your
fathers, your sons, your brothers, your mates, or
your kindred; the wealth that you have gained;
the commerce in which you fear a decline; or the
dwellings in which you delight - are dearer to
you than Allah, or His Messenger, or the striving
in His cause -then wait until Allah brings about
His Decision: and Allah guides not the
rebellious." [Al Qur'an 9:24]
4. Deal with Muslims before Dealing with
5. Be Humble in how You Conduct Your
Muslims must not lead a life of extravagance,
and must exhibit good-will in any transactions
6. Use Mutual Consultation in Your Affairs.
“Those who hearken to their Lord; and establish
regular prayer; who (conduct) their affairs by
mutual consultation, who spend out of what we
bestow on them for sustenance.” [Al Qur'an
7. Do Not Deal in Fraud.
Businessmen should avoid duplicity. They
should treat others in the same righteous and
fair manner that they themselves would like to
“Woe to those that deal in fraud those who when
they have to receive by measure from men
exact full measure, but when they have to give
by measure or weight to men give less than due.
Do they not think that they will be called to
account?” [Al Qur'an 83:1-4]
8. Do Not Bribe.
Businessmen may sometimes be tempted to
offer bribes or baqshish in order to persuade
another party to give them special favors or to
allow them to get away with dishonest
practices. The practice of bribery is forbidden in
“The Apostle of Allah (peace be upon him)
cursed the one bribes and the one who takes
9. Deal Justly.
The general principle that applies across all
transactions including those pertaining to
business is that of justice or 'adl. Allah
emphasizes this point in the Qur'an: “Deal not
unjustly, and you shall not be dealt with
unjustly.” [Al Qur'an 2:279]
OTHER IMPORTANT GUIDELINES
- Acting patient as this is a process that
requires study, analysis and research for
each of the sectors and markets they want
- Ask for help or use the experience of
- Be punctual or say no from the beginning,
if there are limitations, this prior to any
- Stay well informed about the political,
commercial and banking situation in the
“The merchants will be raised on the Day of Resurrection as evil-doers, except those who fear Allah, are honest and speak
the truth.” [Tirmidhi, Ibn Majah, Darimi]
THE EXAMPLES OF QATAR AND EGYPT
When doing business in Qatar (and the Gulf in
general) it is important for the company to visit
the region and do follow-up visits to show the
seriousness of the company for this market, as
personal contact is very important.
Depending on the type of business it is
recommended for companies wishing to do
business in Qatar to seek a competent legal
counsel, as well as explore the market and get to
know your clients or potential business partners
before entering into an agreement.
You need to pay attention to the consumer's
characteristics, which has become increasingly
sophisticated and educated in his decision
processes, paying particular attention to the
products of premium quality, gourmet and
Furthermore, the characteristics of the Arab
businessman are equally important when it
comes to doing business. The general Arab
businessmen are skilled negotiators, demanding
buyers who examine with a critical eye the
quality, presentation, price and image of the
Be patient, you should always keep in mind
courtesy and common sense in this market.
The personal relationship is fundamental. If this
last one is good, over time, your client-partner
will deposit on you an overwhelming trust.
Try to understand their point of view. If after
some initial contacts you estimate you may
eventually reach an agreement, be very
generous in the use of your time, your partner
will be, and he expects to feel the same from
You must have a trading strategy taking into
account the above. Indispensable, take into
account Fridays and Saturdays are not days
where people usually work in Qatar. What is
also advisable to enter the market is to do
research in order to identify who you want to
work with and develop a structured business
Inform yourself about import barriers because it
still exists in Egypt substantial protection for
domestic industries and tariffs are high,
especially on consumer products and these
tariffs can sometimes change unexpectedly.
Non-tariff barriers also affect many products;
in this the professionalism of the importer is
The rush is not advisable when business
dealing with Egyptians. It is convenient to go
to the appointments rested and relaxed, do
not look at the clock if the meetings are
extended and and don't make any
commitment that would oblige you to leave a
meeting early. Another important aspect is
that of hierarchies, Egyptian society is deeply
traditional and conservative, and formal
respect for hierarchy is imperative.
As elsewhere in the Arab world, in Egypt
personal relationships and the bonds of fidelity
and loyalty have particular weigh when doing
business. In addition, to strengthen business
it's highly desirable to encourage direct and
personal relationships with customers.
Be scrupulous with formal aspects, make sure
that the credit cards and contracts are
properly drafted and learn about foreign
investment law. Carefully choose your local
agent and note that the Egyptian rarely can
say no, which sometimes leads him to make
promises or statements that he cannot keep.
10 Tips on Arab Culture for Successful
Business in Middle East|
1. "The Arab World" as such does not exist:
Think regionally but act locally, consider that
cultural and ethnic groups in each country.
2. The Family: It is always a priority, even in
business. You need to understand the family to
really understand the person and do business
3. The Hierarchy: Extremely important in this
culture. To establish links to a high level is a
requirement for strong businesses in the region.
4. Bureaucracy: The Arab organizations are
often bureaucratic, but not in the same way it is
handled in the west which is characterized by
impersonally following rules and procedures; on
the contrary the arab bureaucracy handles these
issues in a personal way.
5. Power Change: At least that someone is not
loyal; it is rare in an Arab organization for
someone to be fired for not working well.
To be successful managers must maintain
constant contact with their clients in order to be
sure the person dealing with the decision
6. Honor and prestige: Arabs grow up learning
that the prestige and status are very important
in life, so knowing the status of a person in the
Middle East is of great importance.
7. Quality: You must be the best. Quality
standards must be maintained of high quality
8. Time: In the Middle East, time is everything.
If necessary negotiations can take a long time.
Likewise, you must be prepared to work hard in
a very short time.
9. Verbal communication: It must be a priority.
The "Majlis" is a central institution in the Arab
culture. Most of the time the Arabs learn
through interaction, exchange of ideas,
arguments and observation, preferring to
receive notice orally, therefore long lectures and
presentations are considered inappropriate.
10. The language: It is a tool and
everything is negotiable.
The Arabs have a long history in trade;
therefore they see people willing to take
opportunities as intelligent people, not as
It is appropriate that the contracts are
signed quickly after having established a
verbal contract. Written contracts must be
done legally correct, otherwise they will be
THE IMPORTANCE OF EVENTS,
MISSIONS AND BUSINESS TRAVEL
Traveling Travel is the best alternative when
starting a new business.
Meet another person to close a business is critical
and you must learn to adapt to different methods
to make the meeting a success.
Undertake a trip to the market of interest.
The first contact with the outside can be done in
A. Participate in an international fair.
B. Accompany a Commercial Mission.
C. Perform an individual trip.
In any of these options it is important to have a list
of importers who may be interested in your
products. It is convenient to send the company
information and products.
In case of participating in a commercial fair, make
this sort of contact is a good way to invite people
to visit your stand and discover your products.
International fairs are the first place to gain
market share in the world.
Participating in a commercial feria represents for
the business the most economical way, in time
and money, to promote its products or services, to
study the market, visit and be visited by your
customers, find distributors and complete the
The fairs are one of the major promotional and
communication tools and at the same time more
The Commercial Mission in some occasions, the
national, provincial, municipal governments and
chambers of commerce, organize commercial
missions promoting specific regional business.
The most frequent error, start by understanding
that the definition of protocol is basically kindness
and respect, so when the guest is wrong, the host
should try to minimize the error. The point is to
take into account the details (lay people with who
they can talk, so they don’t stay quiet and bored).
Remember that those who ignore details ignore
Having wrong information or misinformation about
the client and his needs, excessive tropicalism
and / or excessive desire to please, even beyond
obvious limitations. All the above applies in
reverse when we are the ones who seek a service
to conclude a business.
We often don't realize that a gesture as simple as
giving or receiving a business card can close
many doors if it's not done the right way.
HOW TO PARTICIPATE IN AN
INTERNATIONAL FAIR IN ARAB
A fair is a powerful marketing tool, which
enables small, medium and large companies to
market availability or simply to publicize
products and services. In turn, the visitor is
provided detailed information which could be
used in the buying decision process.
The objectives of participating in fairs are
primarily to increase sales, place where the
company plans to increase her sales and thus
her participation in it. The company seeks to
acquire new customers and see the
acceptance of new products, improving with
her image the positioning and her perception
from the industry and customers.
There are several types of fairs, some general,
some specialized, product exhibitions, sales
weeks or universal exhibitions.
How to Choose an International Fair? View the
market potential, review the country's statistical
information, determine the product you will
offer, availability of export supply, products
position against the competition and marketing
In case of participating in a fair, make sure your
organization plan is consistent with the
marketing strategy of the company. At a fair,
good preparation represents 50 % of success
and should carry special attention to the booth
and the products submitted. Having a
presence, attitude and impeccable attention;
know your product, success also largely
depends on the information management.
What do you need to know about the importer?
He should have a product sample (sampling),
get a data sheet of its products, Prices,
Discounts, production capacity, Packaging and
delivery dates, and level of acceptance of its
products in the home market (who they sell the
It is also important to know the countries where
the company usually exports, the experience in
the sector and the size of the company.
AMAZON PEPPER - COLOMBINA
By: GIORGIO ARAUJO
We are in the Arab market since 1999.
Participating in Sial Fair in Paris in 1998 we
met some buyers.
In 2007 we decided to showcase our
products in the most important food fair of
the region GULFOOD (Dubai UAE)
investing in a stand year after year.
During the first ones we didn't get to have
the contacts that we needed for our
expansion project, but after 3 years, we
began to create our own network of buyers
in each emirate and in every country.
Our experience with the Arabs has been
fabulous; we have made many friends and
found even more opportunities. We enjoy it
every time we go. They are people very
similar to us.
You get to know great people but like
everywhere there are others that aren't so
good, nothing above statistics anywhere
else in the world.
Today our products are in the best
supermarkets in each of the Arab countries
of the Gulf and others under his influence.
My advice for Colombian entrepreneurs is to
be CONSTANT. Colombian products have
all chances to be accepted, we need to be
noticed through our participation in
commercial fairs and missions.
The relation with them is what is called "face
to face", they always want to meet people
before doing business, but they are long-
term relations. COLOMBIA has to go and
look for them.
In order to
of the fair.
MUTUAL ECONOMIC RELATIONS BETWEEN
UNITED ARAB EMIRATES AND COLOMBIA
- Increase the value of total
exports of $21 Million and
lower the value of imports,
amounting to 12.1 Million
Dollars in 2012.
- High contribution of the United
Arab Emirates in the volume
of foreign trade rose by 63.2%
and low contribution Colombia
by 36.8 %.
Foreign Trade between United Arab Emirates and Colombia
There is a surplus in the trade balance in favor of the United Arab Emirates, for the following reasons:
- Rise of the value of total
exports rose by 185 percent,
and reduced the value of
imports rose by 27% during
2010 and 2011.
- High contribution of the United
Arab Emirates in the volume
of foreign Trade rose by
55.3% and low contribution
Colombia by a rise of 44.7
There is a surplus in the trade balance in favor of the UAE in 2011, for the following reasons:
Article by Mr. MOHAMMED HAMDAN
Economic Relations with United Arab Emirates
- 24 November 2012: the signing of the United
Arab Emirates, representative of the General Civil
Aviation, air services agreement with the
Government of Colombia in the city of Brasilia in
Brazil. The agreement was signed between the
State of the United Arab Emirates, Colombia, Saif
Mohammad al-Suwaidi, director of the General
Civil Aviation Authority, and Santiago Castro,
Director General of Civil Aviation of Colombia.
- 8 May 2011: Signing agenda of Mutual
Cooperation in air transport services between
General Civil Aviation Authority of the United Arab
Emirates, Civil Aviation Administration of
Mutual Economic Committees
There is no Mutual Economic Committees
between the two Countries.
Visits by Delegations and Events
- 7 November 2012: A meeting between the
Chamber of Commerce and Sharjah Industry, and
Colombian economic delegation. During the
meeting, they discussed to open new fields of
commerce and investment cooperation between
Sharjah and Colombia promoting the United Arab
Emirates schedule of strengthening Economic
relations with various countries all over the world,
especially with the Latin American continent
because of the multiple Trade between the Gulf
States and Latin America in general, and between
a The United Arab Emirates State, Sharjah and
Colombia in particular.
- 26 October 2011: A meeting between
Ambassador Abdullah Absi, director of American
and Pacific office Affairs, in his office at the
Ministry, with Roberto Velez Vallejo, the
ambassador of the Republic of Colombia.
During the meeting discussed how to
enhance the Mutual relations in the political,
economic, trade between the two countries.
- 18 may 2011: A meeting with Ambassador
Abdullah Ali Elsabossi, director of the
American and Pacific affairs in his Office at
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, with Glamirro
Castrro, the executive director of Asia,
Pacific and Ayqonisia Affairs in Ministry of
Foreign Affairs in Colombia. During the
meeting, they discussed the Mutual
relations between the two countries and
how to enhance it, open a Colombian
Embassy in Abu Dhabi.
- 08 May 2011: Signing Agenda for mutual
understanding of (MOU) air transport
services between General Civil Aviation
Authority of The United Arab Emirates, and
Civil Aviation Administration of Colombia.
window of Cooperation in Agricultural, power
and fields, and experience exchange. So this
visit is considered as a first step to push the
commercial, economic, investment relations
between the two Countries.
- There was a visit of Colombian Minister of
foreign affairs to United Arab Emirates on
November to discuss the steps that will
enhance the Commercial and investment Co-
The Most important Goods of Trade between United Arab Emirates, and Colombia in 2011:
- 2009: The visit of Highness Sheihk Abdullah Ben
Zaied Aal Nahiaan, to Colombia to establish
commercial, economic relations and mutual Links
between powerful Companies in United Arab
Emirates and Colombia. This will serve the
interests of Two Countries since they are keen to
build Commercial, Economic relations and
Investments that will be held by Companies,
Agencies, Businessmen and investors of Both
This will be by establishing Mutual Projects,
increase the visits of Commercial delegates and
usual participating at Economic Events and fairs.
Actually, This Participating enhances the
Commercial exchange between both sides and
strength the economic Co-operation generally.
Additionally, Sheihk Abdullah Ben Zaied Aal
Nahiaan welcomed to sign agreements of mutual
Economic Co-operation with Minister of foreign
affairs, especially the two agreements of taxation
duality and encouraging of investments protection
which play an important role in developing the
business between the two sides and facilitating
economic agreements between two Countries.
His Highness added that this visit will open new
fields in this mutual Co-operation in future, a new
operation between the two Countries, the
following are the results of this visit
.- The Colombian Minister of Foreign affairs
assured that he will open a Colombian Embassy
in Abu Dhabi by 2010 and enhance the Civil
Aviation trips between the two Countries. In
addition he cancelled the entry visa of Colombia
for Emirates and he asked for make a special
day for united Arab Emirates in Colombia.
JUAN VALDEZ® ENTERS IN THE MIDDLE EAST:
AN ENRICHED WAY TO RETURN TO THE BEGINNING
By Maria Fernanda Concha
Director of Sustainability and Corporate Communications
Procafecol SA - Special to the ACCC Newsletter
The drink, whose popularity started growing, came to Italy in the mid-seventeenth century by Venetian merchants and then spread to the rest of
Europe, including the Netherlands, which also play an important role in its expansion. The production and marketing of coffee was controlled by the
Arabs until the late seventeenth century, when Europeans were able to bring plants to their colonies.
The coffee crossed the Atlantic and reached the New World in 1689, with the opening of the first store in Boston, USA. And from there he continued to
travel the world. With all this history behind it, it is no coincidence that one of the two main species of coffee sold in the world for consumption is the
Arabica or Coffea Arabica. In contrast with the species Canephora Robusta which contains more caffeine and is stronger and acid, Arabica coffee is
There is no absolute certainty about how coffee came to Colombia. One of the most established versions is that the Jesuits brought the grain to New
Granada in 1730, but the tradition also says that coffee came from the east of the country, brought by a travelers from the Guianas, including the
Dutch one (Suriname) through Venezuela. What is known with more certainty is that the first coffee plantations developed in the east. In 1835 there
was the first commercial production and, according to historical records, the first 2,560 sacks of grain were exported from the customs of Cucuta, on
the border with Venezuela.
It was from northeastern Colombia, more specifically the departments of Santander and Norte de Santander, where its cultivation would spread, after
1850, to the center and west of the country, through Cundinamarca, Antioquia and Old Caldas.
For the sixteenth century, thanks to the Arab merchants, coffee had spread through the rest of the Middle East,
Persia, Turkey and North Africa. The first coffeehouses were established in Byzantine Constantinople in 1554 (969
of the Hegira). In 1583, the German doctor and botanist Leonard Rauwolf was the first Westerner to describe the
drink, "as black as ink, useful against numerous ailments, including stomach aches."
"Its consumers take it in the morning, quite frankly, in a porcelain cup that goes from one to another and from which
each one takes a full glass. It is made of water and the fruit of a shrub called bunnu" develops Rauwolf in his
book"Reise in die Morgenlander".
An economic development Eldorado!
Saudi Arabia is a market that rewards patience and
persistence. Saudi clients like to get to know you
first, and are looking for evidence of long-term
commitment as well as skills and technology
transfer. Long-distance dealing with the market is
not usually an option, and frequent visits are
Fortified by record hydrocarbon revenues and
massive financial reserves of more than US$1500
billion, Saudi Arabia has the ability to continue
spending heavily on developing its economy for
many years ahead, regardless of the price of oil. It
is worthwhile noting that Saudi Arabia has a lot of
untapped oil and gas fields and numerous huge
Saudi’s 2013 budget illustrates the need for Saudi
Arabia to remain a key target for Colombian export
efforts. It envisages spending of US$220 billion,
19% up on 2012, with revenues projected to reach
Saudi Arabia intends to spend more than US$400
billion over the next 10 years on a wide range of
infrastructure investments. Ambitious plans include
thousands of kilometers of new roads and railways,
as well as airport expansion, new urban transport
systems, investments in water, sewerage,
electricity plants, telecoms and the IT sector and
the construction of 4 million new homes and
countless related urban buildings.
Leading investment areas also include
development of new oil & gas facilities, expanding
the petrochemicals sector, enlarging and
diversifying mining and the development of several
new economic cities.
Prospects for trade and investment between
Colombia and Saudi Arabia are significant.
Regular visits at Prime Ministerial and Ministerial
level are necessary for the promotion of a bilateral
relationship, but developing close contact between
Colombian and Saudi businesses and people are
necessary to develop and strengthen ties.
Within the next 3 years new phosphates, aluminum
and iron smelting industries will add billions of
dollars annually to the economy. Much of this new
industrial and business development in Saudi
Arabia is intended to be led or achieved in
partnership between local and foreign investors.
The non-oil economy is of growing importance,
with petrochemical sales at around US$14 billion a
Vice-Chairman – Moka Libani SAL
The metals and alloys sector could handle new
projects. SABIC, which is 70% government
owned and Saudi Arabia’s biggest and most
diversified manufacturing company is active in
chemicals and intermediates, industrial
polymers, fertilizers and metals. The oil
production company Saudi Aramco and Dow
Chemical, is meanwhile looking to become one
of the largest industrial companies in the world
through an initiative called Sadara Chemical
In its quest for diversification, Saudi Arabia
promotes regional economic development. The
projects are not only aimed at nurturing new
industries but also at providing attractive
residential communities, with social and
educational infrastructure developed to
international standards, where people will want
to settle for lifestyle and jobs. Foreign Direct
Investment (FDI) will be attracted to Saudi
Arabia, especially in the new cities, which
represent the key to economic development and
All of this offers a range of long-term
opportunities for Colombian companies.
Opportunities are also being created along the
whole supply chain for engineering
procurement, equipment suppliers, sub-
contractors and consultants. Another smart idea
is to offer Colombia as a hub for Saudi food
What is clear is that Colombia must have NOW
a strategy and chart a course for entering slowly
but surely this important market, based on 3-
prong approach: Business, Government and
Businessmen are equipped to analyze the
opportunities and take calculated risks, the
government should actively support business
groups through bilateral visits of High-level
officials and last but not least is culture, which
builds bridges between the Saudis and
Colombians through educational exchange
programs, cultural activities and tourism.
It was very difficult for me to write this monthly
report from Beirut. Loud background drums
distracted me. It was not drums of the legendaries
John Bonham (Led Zeppelin) or Keith Moon (the
Who), but the drums of WAR!.. Now that things
have cooled off a bit thank God (!), I remembered
my favorite professor at Stanford University
saying that the best promoter of peace is
business between nations and people, and that
motivated me again and the ink flowed again... So
I had to start with the single largest prospective
business partner for Colombia in the Arab world –
Saudi Arabia. Good for Business and good for
Saudi Arabia is the largest economy in the Middle
East North Africa (MENA) region and a member
of the G20, OPEC and, since 2005, of the WTO.
According to the World Bank it is the 13th most
economically competitive country in the world.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) recently
ranked Saudi Arabia 8th among the world’s ten
high growth economies. Saudi Arabia is in the
midst of a massive development program -
building new industrial cities as well as further
developing its current infrastructure to meet the
needs of the 21st century and of a growing young
With a population of 28 million and GDP
increasing by some 6% a year, the Saudi market
is an important source of high value opportunities.
Colombian companies should pursue a wide
range of investment and business opportunities in
Saudi Arabia in a range of sectors including
education, healthcare, infrastructure and trading.
Colombian groups should aim to find Saudi
partners and business opportunities. I’m a strong
believer that people lead business, and
businesses lead governments. Colombian
companies should eventually set up operations in
Saudi Arabia in response to the great
Maximizing local content and employment of
Saudi nationals is increasingly the route to
successful business there. Alternatively, a
presence via an active local partner could be a
good start, whereby one or more staff is a
Colombian national who is eager for the job and
possess the basic and necessary skills for
Colombian business groups should be present at
major conferences, trade missions and road
shows; furthermore the human contact must be
initiated with cultural and educational exchanges.
Go to CV
Saudi Basic Industries
Corporation (SABIC) has
achieved production in excess
of 60 million tons a year of
chemicals and intermediates,
industrial polymers, fertilizers
and metals and is a significant
force in the global
GENERAL DETAILS ECONOMY EDUCATION
Dubai: Summer temperature up to 40°C
and in winter 20°C.
Abu Dabi: Arid and dry climate. Temp
between 24 to 40°C.
Ras Al Khaimah: Desertic. Winter 12°C -
Sharjah: Mild winters and very hot
summers, 20°C - 43°C.
Dubai: Dubai produces between 50.000 and 70.000
barrels of oil, or about 11,000 m3 per day.
Abu Dabi: Generates by itself 15% of the GDP of the UAE.
Ras Al Khaimah: It has focused on developing its
Sharjah: Where is located the Khor Fakkan, major port on
the east coast of the UAE.
There are several public and private
schools as well as universities.
In recent years many universities and
schools have been established,
focused on the education of foreigners.
One of the most important emirates that comprise the United Arab Emirates, Dubai is located in the desert,
on the Persian Gulf coast allowing the entrance of saltwater, called Khor Dubai or Dubai Creek, which
crosses the city from northeast to southwest. Its area is around 4113 km² and most of the population
residing there is foreign, mostly from the Asian continent.
The pearl trade was, until the twentieth century, the largest revenue generator for the country and from the
60's oil discovery marked a significant change in the economy and administration of the emirate, ending
with the dependence on the UK authorities.
Named the "Venice of the Gulf" for its economic and strategic progress, sectors that generate higher
revenues are construction, trade, entrepot, financial services and of course its important touristic approach
based on shopping, Dubai being "the shopping capital of the Middle East", but also thanks to its
architecture both ancient and modern hosting notable buildings such as the luxury hotels Burj Al Arab and
Burj Khalifa - the tallest in the world, with 828m of height-, the artificial ports of Mina Rashid and Jebel Ali,
and the housing complex of artificial islands, The World and The Palm islands.
Dubai is strongly influenced by Islam and the Arab and Bedouin societies, which is reflected from the rules
of etiquette, dress and literature, to gastronomy and art.
GUEST CITIES OF THE
United Arab Emirates
Abu Dhabi is the capital and second largest city of the United Arab Emirates. This is in a T-
shaped island on the southeast of the Arabian Gulf, covering a total area of 67,340 km2.
The emirate hosts the United Arab Emirate government, important financial headquarters,
national and multinational companies and headquarters of the Emirati Royal Family, the
center of political life, industrial activities, and a major cultural tradition. It is also the
commercial center due to its position as capital.
One of the world's largest producers of oil, Abu Dhabi has actively attempt in recent years
to diversify its economy through investments in financial services and tourism.
RAS AL KHAIMAH
The Emirate has more than 300.000 inhabitants and a variety of landscapes ranging from the typical sand
dunes and red desert, to the beautiful mountains and lush green plains along a series of streams and
lakes. Ras Al Khaimah has a rich heritage which includes majestic forts and museums, ideal place to
witness and experience Arab traditional activities such as belly dancing, camel rides, as well as live BBQ
and sailing trips along with numerous water activities. Places like Bassata Desert Village, the Bedouin
Oasis or Banyan Tree Al Wadi and its magnificent spectacle of eagles are just some of the recommended
sites for tourists who eager to learn more about the Arab culture.
Historically the Emirate was one of the richest towns in the region. Third largest and most populous city of the UAE, it
is the only one having coasts in both the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, Sharjah is famous for its annual book fair
considered the cultural capital of the UAE. The city is also noted for its recreational areas, amusement parks such as
Al Jazeirah and Al Buheirah Corniche, and elegant mosques.
On its territory you can find large oasis, being Dhaid the best known of these, where a wide variety of fruits and
vegetables is grown.
DIPLOMATIC MISSIONS AGENDA
Introductory Seminar to the
ENTRY DOOR TO
General Culture, and
Business Culture, myths
and realities, normativity,
trade and cultural barriers.
Seminar - Diploma ABM
(Arab Business Model).
in the search for emerging
Networks / website.
Monthly Newsletter in
Spanish and English, which
is distributed through our
database and allies
of commerce, universities).
Commercial and Academic
Missions, scheduled on the
dates of important thematic
PALESTINIAN CULTURAL WEEK
The Palestinian Ambassador in
Colombia inaugurated the Palestinian
Cultural Week in Unitrópico.
With the presence of the Ambassador of
Palestine in Colombia, Nabil Imad
Jadaa, Governor of Casanare, Marco
Tulio Ruiz, Dean of Unitrópico and
International Relations Coordinator of
the Chamber of Commerce of Casanare,
Mrs. Adriana Bitti; took place the
opening of the Palestinian Cultural Week
in Casanare, scheduled for September
20, 21 and 22 in Unitrópico.
This is the first international cultural
week held in the Department, during
which the community generally from
Unitrópico and Casanare can participate
in conferences, workshops, exhibitions
and screenings of movies and
documentaries that allow them to learn
more of the history, culture, life and
conflict of the Palestinian people.
During the first day of the Palestinian
Cultural Week at Unitrópico Auditorium,
after the inaugural conference of the Ambassador, attendees participated in the conference "Development
of the Nakba. Palestine and the occupation since 1947 ", offered by the political advisor of the Embassy of
Palestine in Colombia, Alexander Montero, the screening of the documentary" Palestine in the eyes of
Tamam Al Akhal ".
In addition, the photo exhibition "Palestine: Land of Wonders and Palestine under occupation," the
Conference "Cultural Shocks and Adaptation of the foreigner to the mentality and traditions of the Arab
countries", by Solarius Torijano, who served for four years as cultural project Coordinator for the
Government of Jordan and the screening of the film Private Address were also schedule.
Embassy of the Arab
Republic of Egypt
Embassy of the
Kingdom of Morocco
Embassy of the
Democratic and Popular
Republic of Algeria
Embassy of the
Republic of Lebanon