WASHINGTON, USA – Colombia is taking steps to strengthen its productive development and fostering economic diversification and growth as well as social inclusion with a $850 million loan approved by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB). The loan carries an interest rate based on LIBOR.
The project includes the adoption of public policies that promote innovation, entrepreneurship and business productivity, all of which are considered essential to help the country recuperate from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
This is the first of two consecutive operations, technically related to one another yet independently financed under the Programmatic Policy-Based Loan modality.
This operation aims to provide recognition and support to Colombia’s successful efforts to strengthen the institutional framework set up to design, coordinate and execute policies on competitiveness and productive development as well as those related to science, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship, with the goal of ensuring a coordinated and efficient management of public policies.
The project includes passage of legislation and its accompanying regulatory decree to create and implement a National Competitiveness and Innovation System (SNCI, after its Spanish initials) to coordinate all systems, agencies and institutions dealing with these areas. It also contemplates the establishment of a Technical Sustainability Committee to enhance harmonization of the operations carried out by the SNCI and the National Environmental System, promoting coordinated growth, competitiveness and environmental sustainability agendas. The program will help consolidate the progress made with the creation of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation.
In addition, the project seeks to increase the availability of instruments intended to improve business productivity as well as innovation and entrepreneurial capabilities.
To this end, it endorses the creation and implementation of long-term policy frameworks, including reforming quality and metrology systems, promoting business formalization processes and technological extension, reforming the system of tax incentives for research and development, strengthening institutions that support the development of the creative economy, and stimulating intensive creativity sectors in digital technologies, among others.