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In fact, in the first five months of 2004, Colombian exports to Venezuela grew by 119.4% compared to the same period in 2003, increasing from 205 to 450 million dollars.

The fastest growing exports were vehicles, vehicle spare parts, chemicals, cattle, plastics, textiles, and clothing. Non traditional exports towards the neighboring country rose from 198 to 444 million dollars; a 124.41% recovery.

Despite the good results, the volume of exports for the January-May period has not surpassed the 536 million $ figure for the same period in 2002. However, the month of May in particular, registered 127% growth; from 45 million $ in sales in 2003, to 102 million in 2004. According to the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean(Cepal), Venezuela is one of the countries with the best economic figures so far; a 10.3% recovery, that can be explained in part with the rise in oil prices.

It is clear for the commission, that if the Venezuelan government allocates the country’s extra oil income to social housing programs, the impact that construction will have on productivity can initiate a recovery of construction material suppliers.

A study by the Colombian agency for the promotion of exports (Proexport) reveals that including non traditional exports for the first 5 months of the year, estimated exports to Venezuela could reach 1,100 million dollars by yearend.

Published in Quantum, issue No 27