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Colombia’s national infrastructure agency (Agencia Nacional de Infraestructura, ANI) and the Financiera de Desarrollo Nacional (FDN) national financing organization jointly announced December 14 that a new deal ensures COP$1.47 trillion (US$490 million) financing for the “Ruta al Mar” highway project linking northern Antioquia to Atlantic coastal ports.

The new financing package is a first-of-its-kind for Colombian public-private infrastructure projects, involving a combination of bonds and other investors and featuring investment-grade rankings from Wall Street bond raters Fitch and Moody’s, according to ANI.

Medellin-based Construcciones El Cóndor is the highway project developer and builder.

Commenting on the deal, FDN director Clemente del Valle stated that the financing consortium includes local banks, the FDN, debt-finance specialist Ashmore CAF, and international financiers.

FDN will provide COP$400 billion (US$133 million) or 27.17% of the total loan funds, while local banks will put-up 19.02%. Ashmore CAF assumes 18.74% and another 35.46% comes from international capital markets via purchase of Colombia’s UVR bonds.

For the deal, U.S.-based Goldman Sachs organized a COP$520 billion (US$173 million) float of bonds carrying a 26-year term and a 6.75% coupon, according to ANI.

The “Ruta al Mar” Project – linking Antioquia, Cordoba, Sucre and Bolivar departments -- is part of a series of “fourth generation” (4G) highway projects around Colombia. The latest project also would smooth commerce between Valle del Cauca, the coffee regions and Atlantic ports.

The project will create bypasses around congested municipalities along the route, as well as connect to other major highways including the “Conexion Norte” and “Mar 2” highways, according to ANI.

In all, “Ruta al Mar” includes construction of 112 kilometers of new highway, rehabilitation and upgrades to another 226 kilometers of existing highway, and operations-and-maintenance of another 154 kilometers of existing highway, according to the agency.

FDN’s investors including Japan-based Sumitomo Mitsui, the U.S.-based International Finance Corporation (a division of the World Bank), and Latin America’s “CAF” multilateral investment bank.

Construcciones El Condor president Luz María Correa hailed the new financing deal, describing it as “a great milestone in financing of public-private [infrastructure] partnerships without government funds -- and this validates the strength of 4G concession contracts.”


Colombia’s top economic think-tank -- Fundación para la Educación Superior y el Desarrollo (Fedesarollo) -- on December 13 unveiled a report which finds that mining and energy projects will continue to be crucial to restoration of slumping national government finances.

Antioquia is Colombia’s biggest gold-mining department -- and hence figures into the equation.

“The future of the mining and energy sector is key for the stability of foreign currency reserves and government finance for the coming years -- and for social well-being,” according to the latest Tendencia Economica (economic trends) report from Fedesarollo.

“Nevertheless, the panorama for the [mining and energy] sector looks uncertain. Therefore it’s indispensable to create the necessary conditions to increase production of petroleum and other minerals in the mid-term," according to Fedesarollo.

“While petroleum prices have recovered in the short term, there are various factors that could affect crude production in the future.The decline in [national crude] reserves is paired with relatively low rates of return in the sector. This provides little incentive to stimulate private investment in secondary recovery [at existing crude production sites] or for projects to exploit unconventional reserves through practices such as hydraulic fracturing [fracking],” the report adds.

However, fracking “faces hostility from many sectors of society as well as environmental authorities,” Fedesarollo’s report notes.

“On the other hand, production of petroleum, coal and other minerals confront important obstacles associated with institutional weakness and unstable rules [involving] government environmental licenses and community consultations” that could spell “grave economic and fiscal consequences for the nation,” the report warns.


Antioquia’s development agency (Instituto para el Desarrollo de Antioquia, IDEA) announced December 13 that it’s extending a COP$132.5 billion (US$44 million) credit for the 157-kilometers-long “Vias del Nus” fourth-generation (4G) highway project in northern Antioquia.

The credit will help support financing, design, environmental studies, purchase of adjacent properties, construction, rehabilitation and operations along the new route, which will pass through the municipalities of Donmatías, Cisneros, San Roque and Maceo.

The new route will connect Medellin and central Antioquia northward to other major highways including “Magdalena 2” and the Northeast Trunk routes, as well as smoothing connections to southern Colombia, according to IDEA.

Project director Ricardo López Lombana added that “this is the first time that an institution such as IDEA – which isn’t a comercial bank – has entered into competition with national and international banks . . . marking an important moment for financing [infrastructure] projects in our country.”

The project – estimated to cost COP$1.5 trillion (US$498 million) and due for completion in 2021-- also includes construction of two, 4.1-kilometers-long parallel tunnels through the “Quiebra” mountain pass.

That pass is the principal obstacle linking Medellin to northeast Colombia. The existing “Quiebra” tunnel – far too small for highway vehicles -- was built for narrow-gauge railroads that no longer operate commercially.

The first phase of construction involves rehabilitation of 35.6 kilometers of highway between Cisneros and Alto Dolores. Then -- over the next four years -- 24.3 kilometers of four-lane, divided highway between Pradera and Porcesito will be built.

By 2021, the project will form part of 97.5 kilometers of four-lane divided highway including the section between the Medellin suburbs of Bello and Hatillo, according to Colombia’s national infrastructure agency (see Medellin Herald on March 09, 2017).

The “Vías del Nus” concessionaires include Mincivil S.A. (51.85%), Construcciones El Cóndor S.A. (22.22%), SP Explanaciones S.A.S. (21.10%), EDL S.A.S. (3.72%) and Latinoamericana de Construcciones S.A. (1.11%), according to IDEA.


Medellin-based Inexmoda – the trade association for Colombia’s textile and fashion industry – announced December 5 that the 30th annual “Colombiatex” trade show will bring-together some 550 companies, 125 exhibitors and about 15,800 buyers from 60 countries.

The show -- running January 23-25, 2018, at Medellin’s Plaza Mayor convention center – will feature displays and demonstrations of textile manufacturing, novel materials, chemicals, new technologies, emerging fashion trends and business analysis.

Medellin’s Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana (UPB) will offer 17 expert presentations at the adjacent Teatro Metropolitano, while the main Plaza Mayor will host another 15 workshops on business models, communications, brand marketing, technologies and sustainable practices, according to Inexmoda.

The Medellín metro area (including Bello, Marinilla, Don Matias and Santa Rosa de Osos) is home to 38% of Colombia’s national textile production, specializing in cotton, polyester mixtures, specialty wools, flat panels and stitching, the trade group noted.

Key markets for Medellin textile products include the USA, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, Brasil and Costa Rica. (The formerly robust export market to Venezuela has collapsed in recent years thanks to that country’s disastrous “socialist” economic policies).

“Colombiatex has established itself as a reference space for the Latin American market, in addition to presenting a very good image for the sector,” said Ana Marcela García, chief executive at Artextil, exhibiting at Colombiatex for 25 years now. “It is the perfect opportunity to generate synergies that strengthen us as a world-class sector,” she added.

On a similar note, Enka-Colombia president Álvaro Hincapié Vélez noted that his company has participated in every Colombiatex fair since its launch in 1987.

“The history of Enka can be described as a story of transformation in which we’ve succeeded in making [materials] recyling a sustainable business,” Hincapie explained.

“Today, more than 45% of our products are derived from recycled materials -- and in this edition of Colombiatex we’re launching our new ‘EKO’ filaments made from recycled PET [polyethylene terephthalate] plastic bottles,” he said.

This year’s special invitee is Brazil, sponsored by ABIT, Apex-Brasil, Abimaq and Assintecal. The new free-trade agreement between Colombia and Brazil “enables Colombian clothing and textiles to enter Brazil without tariffs,” Inexmoda noted.

For Colombiatex 2018, a new section will be dedicated to high-tech graphic arts in clothing manufacture, the trade group added.


Colombia’s national planning agency -- Departamento Nacional de Planeacion (DNP) -- on December 5 announced that the city of Medellin ranks best among Colombia’s 13 biggest cities for government planning and execution.

While Medellín took the top spot in the ranking of Colombia’s biggest cities, Bogotá came in second, followed by Barranquilla, Cali, Pereira, Manizales, Pasto, Ibague, Cartagena, Bucaramanga, Villavicencio, Monteria and Cucuta (see chart, above).

Three of the top-five mid-sized cities in the DNP study also are in Antioquia: Rionegro, Envigado and La Estrella, along with Girardot and Mosquera (the latter two both in Cundinamarca).

“The report highlights those municipalities that, starting from similar initial capacities, achieve good management and better development results -- that is, increasing the quality of life of the population is the ultimate goal of public management at the local level,” according to DNP.

“After 10 years of measuring ‘Integral Performance,’ the DNP has updated this indicator and launches the ‘New Municipal Performance’ measurement, an index that evaluates the new challenges of local administrations and for the first time measures results-oriented management.”

“This new measurement seeks to be a useful instrument for the design of policies aimed at strengthening the capacities of territorial entities, in such a way that results-oriented investment is encouraged and we achieve the closing of gaps at the territorial level,” added DNP acting director Juan Felipe Quintero Villa.

The ranking system grouped “homogeneous” municipalities, “taking into account the existing differences in their capacity levels with the resources they have, as well as their level of rurality,” according to DNP.

The agency measured capacities of 1,101 municipalities, classified into six groups: Large cities (13 main cities); Group 1 (high level of capabilities); Group 2 (medium high); Group 3 (middle level); Group 4 (medium low) and Group 5 (low level).

“The measurement takes into account variables such as the effort of the municipalities to generate their own resources, quality in the execution of resources by different sources, conditions of open government and transparency, as well as the use of territorial ordering instruments in the collection,” according to DNP.

The study also analyzed city planning and management of education, health, access to public services, security and citizen coexistence.

Mobilization of resources and land management instruments “are the main management challenges of the municipalities,” according to the agency.

City managers could improve their rankings via updating of real-estate cadastre and land use planning, “as well as using other instruments such as surplus value, urban delineation and valorization,” said Quintero Villa.

“At the national level, only 4% of the municipalities of the country make use of three or four land management instruments to increase [property tax] collection, while almost 96% of the country uses two or less,” according to DNP.

Meanwhile, “big gaps are seen in education and public services. While on average the net [public education] coverage of the 13 main cities is 50%, the average coverage in the municipalities of ‘Group 5’ is 28%. Investments in educational infrastructure and teacher training are essential,” according to DNP.

For the biggest cities, the bigger challenge is “security and coexistence," DNP added.


New York-based Institute for Robotic Process Automation and Artificial Intelligence (IRPA-AI) announced November 29 that Medellin’s “Ruta N” information-technology development center inked a deal whereby IRPA-AI will help launch a “Digital Americas Pipeline Initiative” (DAPI).

“The initiative will provide companies with direct access to trained, experienced, and certified robotics process automation [RPA] and artificial intelligence [AI] professionals on-demand and at-scale,” according to IRPA-AI.

The partners expect that the new deal will create “thousands of RPA and AI jobs in Medellín,” according to the Institute.

“DAPI will leverage IRPA-AI's membership network, trusted relationships, training and certification capabilities, as well as the cost-effective technology talent pool in Medellín to provide North and South American enterprises, service providers, startups and advisory firms with trained, experienced and certified RPA and AI professionals,” according to the Institute.

The deal will include IRPA-AI apprenticeships, training and certification programs, business networks “to promote market engagement and sales for new AI/machine learning, RPA, and digital powered services,” according to the Institute.

DAPI also aims to trigger more research and development in automation and AI “to enable analytics, Internet of Things [IoT] and cloud computing,” while generating more economic growth and jobs in Medellin.

“The greatest challenge in the rapidly expanding RPA and AI space is not technology, it’s talent, and proximity to that talent,” said Frank Casale, founder of IRPA-AI.

“This is the first initiative of its kind to address this challenge, while creating scalable and affordable talent from a trusted, time-zone-friendly source. DAPI has full support from the Colombian government, businesses and academic research communities,” he added.

“DAPI is a direct and bi-directional conduit, connecting RPA and AI technology, talent, intellectual property and funding between North and South America,” said Alejandro Franco, executive director of Ruta N.

“It provides us with economic fuel, creating highly sought-after employment opportunities that will positively and significantly impact our city's future business development. Frank Casale’s vision, and IRPA-AI’s expansive global network and technology expertise will help anchor Medellín as the RPA and AI hub of Latin America,” Franco added.

Companies around the world “have woken-up to the transformational effect that RPA and AI bring to their businesses [but] are hard-pressed to find the right digital talent from a relatively small pool,” according to the institute.

“A global study from IDT found that 80% of businesses cite digital transformation as a priority, but only 17% of respondents had enough employees with the right skills to embark on a smooth digital transformation.

“The serious shortage of experienced and qualified people who can meet the demand has U.S. and Canadian corporations looking outside traditional sources for geographically close and cost-effective talent,” the Institute added.


Medellin-based textile giant Fabricato SA announced November 28 that it has begun the process of moving the entire operations of its “Riotex” factory in Rionegro to its Bello factory – both of which are nearby Medellin.

Transfer of dry production units will be completed by January 2018, while the wet production units will move to Bello by July 2018, according to the company.

“Transfer of the wet process [units] will be done at a later stage because expansion of the wastewater treatment plant at Bello is necessary,” according to Fabricato.

“This expansion has already been contracted and should be operating as of May next year. The [wastewater treatment] technology is the same with which we operate today and will allow us to treat and reuse water in our production process. Thus, the current [water] volume of 50,000 cubic meters per month will rise to 100,000 cubic meters per month,” the company added.

Total investment for expansion of wastewater treatment is US$900,000, according to the company.

“The consolidation of the productive process [at Bello] was made possible due to the investment made during the previous years and will allow us to maintain the installed production capacity using fewer resources, including space,” according to Fabricato.

“Consolidation of production will not require elimination of any business unit. Fabricato will continue to be present in the production and marketing of denim fabrics, drills (for fashion, for manning and for military forces), knitted fabric, woven interlinings and nonwoven interlinings.

“This [consolidation] process will not affect the fulfillment of the purchase orders of our clients,” the company added.

Consolidation will cut fixed production costs, improve the use of self-generated hydroelectric and thermoelectric power at the Bello plant, cut logistics costs and enable development of a real estate project at Rionegro – via leasing of the 36,000 square meters available at the old plant.

“The lease of the Riotex property is additional to the well-known ‘Ciudad Fabricato’ projects in Bello and ‘Fibratolima’ in Ibagué, thus giving full use to the available real estate assets,” the company added.

Antidumping Decision

Meanwhile, Fabricato announced November 28 that as a result of its request for an investigation into foreign denim-fabric-dumping into the Colombian market, the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism on November 23 adopted a US$4.63/kilogram provisional duty on Chinese denim for at least the next six months, “renewable for three additional months or until the investigation is completed,” according to the company.


Medellin-based multinational utilities giant EPM reported November 28 that its net profits for the first nine months of 2017 hit COP$1.6 trillion (US$534 million), up 25% year-on-year, while earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) rose 22%, to COP$3.9 trillion (US$1.3 billion).

So far this year, the city of Medellin – EPM’s sole owner – has netted COP$1.2 trillion (US$400 million) in profit transfers from EPM, according to the company.

While profits and EBITDA improved, EPM group revenues dipped to COP$12.2 trillion (US$4 billion), 48% of which came from local operations, 17% from Colombian subsidiaries and 35% from foreign subsidiaries. Lower average prices for electric power in the Colombian market this year versus last year explain the revenue dip, according to company.

“These results show the commitment of this organization to the social, environmental and economic dynamics of the regions where we are present,” said EPM general manager Jorge Londoño de la Cuesta.

"The national and international subsidiaries maintain an important dynamic that drives our business group. Likewise, in Medellín and Antioquia, we continue to contribute so that there is better quality of life and more development opportunities for people," he added.


Organizers of the biannual Feria Internacional del Sector Electrico (FISE) electric-power industry conference in Medellin announced December 1 that this year’s edition generated US$230 million in new business deals, of which US$214 million involved 50 international buyers and US$10.9 million from 80 national buyers.

FISE’s organizers include the Chamber of Commerce of Medellin for Antioquia (CCM), the “Cluster Energia Sostenible” (the 867-member power-industry group of metro Medellin), the Medellin municipal government, and Medellin-based electric-power research group CIDET (Centro de Investigación y Desarrollo del Sector Eléctrico).

Organizers combined this year’s version of FISE with two concurrent conferences – the International Center for Hydropower (ICH), and the fifth congress of the Latin American energy integration group (Comisión de Integración Energética Regional, CIER).

Medellin is at the center of Colombia’s top international electric-power conferences as it hosts the nation’s biggest multinational power producers, transmitters, distributors and engineering giants, including EPM, Isa, Isagen, XM and HMV Ingenieros. What's more, city-owned multinational power giant EPM by itself provides 25% of the annual revenues for Medellin, as Mayor Federico Gutierrez pointed-out in a press conference here.

In addition, once the 2.4-gigawatt “Hidroituango” hydropower plant (owned by EPM and the Antioquia departmental government) is in full production by 2021, Antioquia alone will produce more than 50% of all Colombia’s electric power, as sustainable-energy-cluster director Jaime Arenas Plata explained to Medellin Herald.

Following start-up, Hidroituango would generate roughly COP$6 trillion (US$2 billion) in annual revenue, Mayor Gutierrez added.

The three industry conferences – held concurrently at Medellin’s Plaza Mayor conference center – together attracted an estimated 15,000 delegates, plus 158 technical sessions (which attracted 3,300 delegates), taking 20,000 square meters of show-floor space (the entire Plaza Mayor capacity), and brought 310 exhibitors from 20 countries – including 208 from Colombia, 15 from Mexico, 13 from the USA, 12 from China, 12 from Brazil, 10 from Argentina, six from Norway, five from Germany, four from Spain and two each from Ecuador, the Czech Republic and Turkey.

Exhibitors and technical talks rose sharply, while the international business-deal estimate for 2017 was nearly double that of 2015 -- the product of 700 arranged negotiations involving buyers from 16 nations, as ProColombia regional director Santiago Viera Ochoa explained in a closing press conference.

‘Smart City’ Highlights EVs, Power Networking

This year’s version of FISE featured a first-ever “Smart City Experience” section including demonstrations of electric cars, motorcycles and bikes, organized by FISE and Medellin’s Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana (UPB) university.

The “Smart City” also included demonstrations of computer-controlled street-lighting systems, advanced sensors and automated controls for energy-efficient homes and offices, a mock-up of Medellin-based national power-grid operator and power-trading center XM, plus technical presentations on Medellin’s expanding electric vehicle (EV) fleet and recharge network.

While Medellin hopes to expand its electric vehicle (EV) fleet, the city today has less-than 200 total EVs, with public EV-recharge-capacity for only 5,000 more -- compared to the city’s 700,000 gasoline-powered motorcycles and 650,000 gasoline or diesel-powered cars, trucks and buses, Mayor Gutierrez pointed out in his press conference prior to the launch of the "Smart CIty" exhibit.

However, EPM distributed-power technical expert Jorge Mario Ramirez explained in a presentation here that EPM is working with taxi fleets on a plan to bring 1,500 EV taxis to Medellin over the next three years, to complement the existing electric-powered Metro rail, “Metrocable” aerial trams, the “Tranvia” electric road trams and the eventual conversion of today’s natural-gas-powered “Metroplus” bus-rapid-transit (BRT) buses to all-electric power.

Broader adoption of EV’s in Medellin would help slash the city’s air pollution – 80% of which is caused by a huge fleet of diesel and gasoline cars, trucks, buses and motorcycles (many of them obsolete), as Mayor Gutierrez pointed-out.

To help jump-start this transition, EPM employees have been running experimental trials of EVs since 2012. But the company only launched promotion of an incipient public-recharge network last month.

Meanwhile, Colombia’s national government recently extended the 0% tariff on imported EVs for the next three years (for a maximum 3,000 vehicles) -- and the value-added tax (IVA) was cut to 5%, from 19% for most other goods in Colombia. IVA on EVs could be cut to zero if a bill pending in the Colombian Senate eventually passes.

EV’s also enjoy an exemption from Medellin's “pico-y-placa” control system that bans cars with certain license-plate numbers from operating on certain days.

Another law passed earlier this year slashes the cost of installing an EV recharge station by 80%. Typical residential recharge installations are estimated at COP$1 million (US$330) to COP$2 million (US$660), depending upon complexity and distance between the garage and customer’s meter, Ramirez estimated.

Still, the cost of EV batteries needs to fall even more in order to attract more car buyers, as Mayor Gutierrez and numerous other experts pointed-out at FISE here. Once new EV cars have an initial cost that’s similar to a comparable gasoline-powered car, then EV sales are likely to skyrocket beyond the 1.1 million EVs sold world-wide so-far this year.

While some car buyers might worry about traveling distance between recharges, most new EVs today have a traveling autonomy (between recharges) of around 200 to 250 kilometers – far more than needed by typical daily commuters, Ramirez added.


A new study (see: https://idc.compite.com.co/) by the national private-sector competitiveness council (Consejo Privado de Competitividad, CPC) and Universidad del Rosario shows that Antioquia continues to rank near the top in competitiveness among all of Colombia's 32 departments (states).

The departmental competitiveness index (Indice Departamental de Competitividad, IDC) -- now in its fifth edition -- shows that Antioquia ranks second only to Bogota in over-all competitiveness, with Santander third, Caldas fourth, Risaralda fifth, Valle del Cauca sixth, Cundinamarca seventh, Atlantico eighth, Boyaca ninth and Bolivar in 10th place.

Antioquia’s population of 6.6 million represents 13.9% of gross national product (PIB in Spanish intials), equivalent to COP$119.9 trillion (US$40 billion), while per-capita PIB is COP$18.3 million (US$6,135) and output per worker is COP$40 million (US$13,410), the study shows.

Besides coming-in second over-all in the national competitiveness ranking, Antioquia came-in third on institutional quality, fourth in infrastructure, second in market size, third in health-care, third in efficiency, third in higher education, second in market efficiency, second in innovation/sophistication and second in empresarial dynamism, the study shows.

However, Antioquia came-in at a relatively poor 18th in basic (primary and secondary) public schooling – down sharply from the 2013 survey -- and only 19th in environmental sustainability, also down from 2013, the study shows.

The study analyzed 94 variables, grouped into three main categories: basic conditions, efficiency and innovation/sophistication. 

Among the variables analyzed, Antioquia came in at 15th place in unemployment rate (9.62%), second in terms of worker contributions to health and pension funds (at 46.7%), second in terms of secondary-school English proficiency (34.12%), 18th in percent of total area in protected parks (10.7%), eighth in terms of total area covered by forests (34.6%), and sixth in per-capita financial investment in basic public education.

Antioquia came in at 15th place in terms of freight costs (transfers from cities to ocean ports), at US$68.84 per tonne of freight. Antioquia’s decades-long backlog and delays in building divided highways through its mountainous terrain explain the relatively poor freight-cost competitiveness, compared to cities nearer the Atlantic and Pacific ports.

Notably, despite claims by certain politicians, Antioquia is among the best departments in all Colombia in terms of long-term contract electricity costs (mainly for industry), at COP$290 per kiloWatt-hour, the study shows.

In the report, Jaime Echeverri, vice-president of planning and development for the Medellin Chamber of Commerce for Antioquia, pointed to greater economic diversification and greater focus on value-added production in Antioquia over the past 10 years.

This diversification "has been supported by the cluster strategy, in which public-private cooperation and the commitment of companies have been important assets,” according to Echeverri.

“This strategy prioritized six clusters: electric power; business tourism, fairs and conventions; building; medicine and odontology services; technology, information and communications; and textile clothing, design and fashion.

“The cluster model has focused on generating environmental conditions that favor competitiveness and productivity, around aspects such as innovation, science and technology, education, institutionality, human resources, as well as strengthening of the business base for taking advantage of business opportunities in high-potential segments.

“In a recent context, and with emphasis on the subregions of the department, the model of productive chains is being developed, in which business initiatives around coffee, cocoa and dairy products have been prioritized, and progress is being made in citrus and rubber, among others.

“In terms of diversification of the export basket, and of export destination countries, the region now has the ‘Grupo Antioquia Exporta Más’ [Antioquia Exports More] initiative, which integrates the entities related to the internationalization of companies -- and this is supported by the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism.

“This initiative seeks to integrate efforts and resources, and generate synergies in face of the challenges faced by the export base of the region, by advancing in an orderly manner on different fronts: country cost, market opening and expansion, design and development of products and services , business strengthening, human talent, financing, promotion of export culture and development of strategic capabilities,” Echeverri concluded.


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About Medellin Herald

Medellin Herald is a locally produced, English-language news and advisory service uniquely focused upon a more-mature audience of visitors, investors, conference and trade-show attendees, property buyers, expats, retirees, volunteers and nature lovers.

U.S. native Roberto Peckham, who founded Medellin Herald in 2015, has been residing in metro Medellin since 2005 and has traveled regularly and extensively throughout Colombia since 1981.

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