- Latin American Association of Integration - ALADI
- Andean Community - CAN -Colombia, Equator, Peru, Bolivia
- CAN - Mercosur
- Central American and the Caribbeans
- FTA - Free Trade Agreement Colombia and Chile
- FTA Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras
- FTA Colombia, Peru and Canada
- FTA G2- Group of Two - Colombia and Mexico
- FTA Colombia and Peru - EFTA
- FTA Colombia and United States
- Trade Union CAN - UE
Colombia is part of the Pacific Alliance.
For more information consult this link.
All imported goods have to be registered with the Ministry of Foreign Trade (Mincomex) on a form called 'Registro de Importacion', worth 21,500 pesos. Most products are automatically authorised to be imported if this form is presented (imports under the 'Registro' procedure). There are nevertheless a certain number of goods (especially agricultural products) that are subject to licence (imports under the 'Licencia' procedure).
Import authorisations (automatic and licensed) are valid for 6 months, except for the following products: capital goods: 12 months; perishable foodstuffs: 2 months. The goods have to be claimed at Customs before the expiry date of the licence.
Besides that, some products are subject to phytosanitary measures, and the importer should be registered with a certain number of organisations: the Instituto Colombiano Agropecuario for plants and animal products, the INVIMA for medicines, medical underwear, cosmetics and the Ministry of Transport for all types of vehicles. Some farm products can be imported only with a visa from the Ministry of Agriculture, as long as the importer also buys identical local products. According to local conditions, it is also possible that the Ministry does not permit the import of certain products during a given period.
The import of vehicles, tires, second hand clothes and violent toys is forbidden. The import of weapons is strictly limited to the army.
Other products may be subject to the presentation of certificates of free sale to be registered in Colombia. For more information, please visit the website of Colombian Customs.
Colombian household consumption mainly concerns primary needs and education, but a change in consumer habits can be observed and Colombian consumers are increasingly willing to buy non-vital products. Colombian consumers are strongly influenced by fashion trends, brands and promotions, but there is also a strong influence of traditions on consumption habits. Colombians are currently experiencing increasing brand loyalty levels. Healthy and ethnic food categories are especially fast-growing, and organic food products are a new trend, as Colombian consumers are more concerned about ecological issues.
Regarding food products, consumers take heed of the brand's reputation, the quality of nutritional information and the attractiveness of the packaging. After-sales service and consumer support are decisive factors in the purchase decision. Only a minority of Colombians has a high purchasing power, and for the majority of Colombian consumers the price remains the main criterion.
Even though online commerce remains underdeveloped, it is growing steadily and has benefited a lot from the lockdowns due to the COVID-19. The growth rate of online sales in 2020 was 34% (Statistica). In the coming years, ecommerce is expected to benefit from massive investments in network infrastructure by the Colombian government. Colombian online consumers are used to buying from foreign websites, mainly American, Chinese, Mexican and Brazilian.
Imported goods must be accompanied by the transport documents, packing list and transport insurance. Colombian regulations make insuring consignments for the country compulsory. Wooden packaging entering Colombia must be treated (fumigated) and marked with the standard NIMP n°15.
To search directories by industry in Colombia, check out our service Business Directories.
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Latest Update: September 2023