“Besides being recognised worldwide for its emeralds, Colombia has gained attention for having the largest coal reserves in Latin America, making it the fifth-largest thermal coal exporter in the world,” Austrade Latin America senior trade commissioner Crispin Conroy said.
“This is why the Colombian government is encouraging the development of coal-related infrastructure. This opens opportunities for Australian firms ranging from infrastructure development, concessions, mine operations and coal preparation plants.”
Austrade is this week participating in the Colombia Minera Conference 2009 at Medellin. The conference, the first of three across Latin America in September, has attracted more than 50 Australian businesses.
At this week’s conference, Australia’s mining equipment and services export association, Austmine, signed an agreement with Colombia’s National Mining Association.
Austrade’s Lima-based trade commissioner and Latin America mining team leader, Daniel Sullivan, said Colombia offered Australian businesses exciting investment and trade opportunities if they were willing to see Colombia for what it was today, not for what it was 10 years ago.
“Australia is recognised globally as a leader in providing innovative solutions for the mining industry, which includes equipment, services and technology across the total mining supply chain, including environmental and safety aspects of the industry,” he said.
“Australian companies and brands are almost iconic and part of the Latin American mining landscape.
“This reputation also extends to Colombia, as many of the large players have already invested and bring know-how, customers in Asia and capital.
“Australian suppliers of equipment and services are following too, because they expect the big miners such as BHP Billiton have concluded that the rewards outweigh any risks.”