16 mar 2018
Business lunch Spain-Bolivia

EVO MORALES MET WITH SPANISH ENTREPRENEURS

The president of the Plurinational State of Bolivia, Evo Morales Ayma, met today with Spanish businessmen to jointly analyse investments in sectors of the country, during a lunch held at CEOE’s headquarters. The meeting was attended by the Secretary of State for Trade, Marisa Poncela; the president of CEOE, Juan Rosell; and the Director of Spain’s Chamber of Commerce, Inmaculada Riera, among others. On the Bolivian side, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Fernando Huanacuni Mamani, delivered the event’s closing speech and the Ambassador of Bolivia to Spain, Jorge Ramiro Tapia Sainz, also participated.

Business lunch Spain-Bolivia with president Evo Morales
Business lunch Spain-Bolivia with president Evo Morales — ©CEOE

The president of CEOE, Juan Rosell, stressed that Spanish companies from different sectors such as the energy, infrastructure or the environmental fields, are contributing to the economic and social development of Bolivia and to the diversification of its economy. In fact, he explained that they could be a decisive contributor in the modernization and expansion of infrastructures related to transport and energy, which are key to the competitiveness of companies in the country. Rosell highlighted that the Economic and Social Development Plan 2016-2020 provides for extensive investments in the development of road, rail and airport infrastructures, as well as in hydroelectric and combined cycle power plants. "In addition to these sectors, our companies could play an important role in the development of social infrastructures, agro-industry and tourism," he said. He concluded his speech by showing the full willingness of CEOE to continue strengthening business relations between Spain and Bolivia.

The Secretary of State for Trade, Marisa Poncela, highlighted the positive prospects for Bolivia’s development.  She explained that Spain is a valuable partner for the strengthening of strategic sectors of the country at business and institutional levels, and it would like to accompany Bolivia in its plans to diversify the economy. Therefore, he believes that there is plenty of room for extending our economic, commercial and investment relations.

Meanwhile, the head of Spain’s Chamber of Commerce, Inmaculada Riera, underlined in her speech that the Bolivian economy has been growing at an average of 5% over the last ten years, even in an unfavourable external economic environment. "The strength of domestic demand is driving this positive momentum, based on the increase in income and purchasing power of Bolivians, as a result of improved wages and transfers to the most underprivileged groups, and the efforts made in public investment." Finally, Inmaculada Riera highlighted that economic growth achieved was inclusive, since the poverty index had decreased by more than ten points in the last decade to be set below 17%.