National business newspaper Portafolio reports that the State Council (a superior court that decides on government-related cases) ruled in favor of Ecopetrol in a lawsuit in which 56 individuals sued the company for US$239M claiming ownership of the Cuisiana and Cupiagua fields subsoil. Ecopetrol provisioned the money in the mid-nineties while resolving the lawsuit, so now, after the ruling, it will be returned to the company and will be used on investments.
The government and the Central Bank agreed to take measures in order to curb the appreciation of the peso, which was revalued by over 10% in 2012 and in 2013 has depreciated by 0.62%. MinHacienda Mauricio Cardenas announced that besides a 0.25 basis points cut in the interest rate, the government will implement three measures for raising the exchange rate value by 8%.
Paula Acosta, deputy director of the National Planning Department (DNP), spoke to Portafolio.co about the strengths and weaknesses of the royalty system. Acosta said: “The system is running. The leaders already know how it works. It probably does not yet have the desired regional effect, but that is a consequence of a new process. The goal that the eight departments come together to make a great project still has not arrived. It’s something we have to build. Another gain is that there are many projects ready to present in 2013 and 2014. In general, the fundamental change is that everyone is moving based on projects and spending quality.”
Portafolio.co reports that, according to a study by Central Bank, despite the last 20 years’ worth of investment, exploration and successful drilling, it has not been possible to find oil fields with reserves as large as those of the Cupiagua (Casanare), Cusiana (Llanos) or Caño Limón (Arauca).
National newspaper El Tiempo reports that the royalty system reform recently passed by Congress was endorsed for a second time by the Constitutional Court. According to the court, Legislative Act 5 of 2011 amending Articles 360 and 361 of the Constitution, which determine the conditions for the royalties’ distribution, does not overstep the law nor go against regional autonomy.
This week, MinHacienda Mauricio Cardenas went to the World Economic Forum at Davos, Switzerland to sell the Colombian success story. Earlier in the week he told Bloomberg he was not looking for foreign direct investment but was looking to sell the country’s bonds. From a MinHacienda press release, translated and with comments by Hydrocarbons Colombia.
In an interview with Cali newspaper El Pais, the economist Salomon Kalmanovitz spoke about, among other things, the recent tax reform, mining and oil. According Kalmanovitz the reform was not made in depth. He said: “It was mostly tax cuts and the increase was a congressional initiative and not of the government: a one point in the income tax rate from 33 to 34%”.
Last Friday, January 18, 2013 MinMinas Federico Renjifo toured Meta speaking with local inhabitants, mayors and visiting Ecopetrol projects. We thought it interesting very relevant for its comments on environmental and community management. From a MinMinas press release, translated and with commentary by Hydrocarbons Colombia.
Finance Minister (MinHacienda) Mauricio Cardenas spoke to the Morgan stanley Latin America Executive Conference in Miami, recapping the country’s macroeconomic progress over the past years. From a MinHacienda press release, translated and with commentary by Hydrocarbons Colombia.
The Territorial Development Finance company (Findeter) is an autonomous corporation reporting to Colombia’s Minister of Finance (MinHacienda). It can raise its own debt (which has a sovereign rating) and receives deposits from government agencies. It then lends this money to municipalities, departments (states) and other entities providing low-cost financing for infrastructure and development projects. The company recently announced its budget for next year. From a Findeter press release, translated and with commentary by Hydrocarbons Colombia.