AGEXPORT participated on the World Free Zones Congress, organized by the World Free Zones Organization (World FZO), which took place in Barcelona, Spain from June 25-27th, 2019.
By participating on this type of international events, we have the possibility to put Guatemala on the mindset of key global stakeholders and allow us to learn about the future that we want for Guatemala. By having free zones in Guatemala, we would be able to achieve a revolution in areas like education, nutrition and infrastructure; as well as attract more national and international investments; said Mrs. Fanny D. Estrada, AGEXPORT’s Public Relations Manager.
This Congress gathered more than 1,500 leaders and stakeholders on international trade from 79 different countries, who learned how globalization and digitalization are currently being integrated on different production and trade processes globally.
Around the world there are 5,400 free zones that have state-of-the-art infrastructure and supply chains. Countries like China, the Philippines, the United States, Russia, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Honduras are good examples for its free zones. In Guatemala, on the opposite, we have 100 companies that were located on free zones already shut down and others in line to follow the same pathway, which is why we urgently need the approval of a new Free Zones Act as well as the approval of specific regulations on the Free Zone of Santo Tomas de Castilla, remarked Mrs. Estrada.
As part of this global event, the Free Zones of the Americas Association organized its II Free Zones Summit, with the participation of government authorities from Colombia, Peru, Panama, the Dominican Republic and Guatemala.
As part of the event, there was also a panel on “law amendments for free zones”, where panelists updated the attendees with new regulations being established around the world in relation to free zones.
According to the Guatemalan Economy Ministry, the country has 11 active free zones, where economic activities such as garments, textiles and the food industry generate more than 16,000 formal jobs, both directly and indirectly.