Ecuador and Chile
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Chilean experience in infra, mining ‘welcome’ in Ecuador

Bnamericas Published: Wednesday, February 19, 2020
Chilean experience in infra, mining ‘welcome’ in Ecuador

Chile’s experience in mining, agriculture and infrastructure “is very much welcome” in Ecuador, where FDI growth is expected to increase 50% this year.

Irene Reyes, a lawyer at Montt Group Ecuador, the local branch of Chilean law firm Montt Group, also said during a webinar in reply to a question from BNamericas that “Chile’s knowledge in mining is much needed.”

Reyes said the 2016 earthquake exposed Ecuador's lack of seismic safety measures, unlike Chile, whose key infrastructure is built earthquake-proof.

Chilean infrastructure firms can therefore find business opportunities with Ecuadoran municipalities, which also often develop large works independently of the national government, as is the case with Quito's metro.

Santiago-based Agunsa already has a presence in Ecuador, being the concessionaire of Manta port, while state copper firm Codelco operates in Ecuador's mining sector.

Reyes said Chilean firms should establish a limited liability company in Ecuador, rather than open a new branch, as the former requires a minimum capital of US$800, compared to US$2,000 for the latter.

Chilean investors will also benefit from a bilateral agreement that avoids double taxation.

Reyes highlighted that both countries signed 27 bilateral agreements last year as relations “keep progressing.” The lawyer also thinks Ecuador could join the Pacific Alliance some day.

“That would open a much larger field for Ecuador’s investments,” she said.

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