SANTIAGO, Chile, July 29, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Foreign investment in Chile didn’t stop for the pandemic. This is clear from the results of InvestChile’s portfolio of projects, which, at the close of the first half of this year, recorded an increase of 28% in the total value of its initiatives, rising to nearly US$24 billion from US$18.8 billion at the same date in 2020.
During the period January-June, the agency processed 372 initiatives – at different stages of development – which together will generate more than 11,000 new jobs.
The largest growth in value terms was in the Infrastructure sector, which closed the first half at US$1.65 billion, an increase of 746% over the same period in the previous year. However, the industry that made the biggest contribution to the whole portfolio was Energy, which grew from US$5.4 billion in 2020 to US$9.2 billion in 2021. Other industries showing a big rise in value were Mining and Suppliers (15%) and Global Services (9%).
Chinese projects, biggest contributors by value
Turning to the countries of origin of the projects handled, China ranked first with an increase of 26% in the value of its initiatives and 11% in their number, totaling 30 projects for a combined value of US$5.6 billion. In second place was the U.S., with US$5.1 billion, an increase of 15% over the same period in 2020. Canada, in third place, showed a 32% increase in the value of its initiatives to US$4.1 billion.
InvestChile Managing Director Andrés Rodríguez noted that, despite all the restrictions associated with the pandemic, the flow of foreign investment into Chile has not stopped. "This is good news and reaffirms investor confidence in Chile," he said.
"One of our main work strategies has been precisely to support companies – despite the pandemic – in continuing to develop their business," Rodríguez added.
Plans for the second half
The Agency has announced that it will focus its efforts in three core areas in the second half of this year. First, it will reinforce the proactive search for companies, through both in-person and remote activities in key markets, and work with companies that have already been contacted in order to speed up their decision to set up in Chile. Second, it will develop the "Investment Link" strategy, an unprecedented initiative to promote investment aggressively through the network of commercial offices. Third, it will work with ministries to generate policies to improve the business environment and facilitate foreign investment.
Work will continue to attract investment from new markets. A working plan already exists to attract capital from the Middle East and talks are at an advanced stage with sovereign funds in Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the UAE, which together handle assets of some US$1.4 billion. Another focus is India, where a proactive campaign is underway to attract companies with investment potential.
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