Between 2005 and 2017, EU-based companies accounted for 39% of the value of new projects in Latin America and the Caribbean. North American companies took second place (32%), followed by investments from companies in Asia (16%), specifically in China and Japan, according to recent numbers from the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (Cepal).
A significant trend that has emerged in recent years is the increase of investments in “key and quality sectors”, like renewable energies and telecommunications. In the past, investments were focused on extractive industries – these represented 43% of FDI in 2005, but only 14% in 2017. The renewable energy sector saw an increase in investment from European companies. In 2005, only 3% of total investments from European companies were in the renewable energy sector, while in 2017, the figure increased to 18%, with a record of 34% in 2016.
“For European companies, Latin American economies are strategic spaces, said Alicia Bárcena, Executive Secretary of Cepal, “It goes beyond creating conditions to attract foreign capital, these investments become generators of technological advancements, jobs, and create economic growth which is sustained, inclusive, and sustainable.”