We want you to know that we are today more than ever committed to our investors and although working from home, to protect the health and safety of our team, we are connected and at your service.
Colombia is a resilient country, which identifies opportunities amid difficulties. With the necessary precautions, we want our projects to continue.
We have prepared this daily report to keep you updated on the decisions of the National Government regarding the current situation.
1. Number of cases detected in Colombia
On the morning of September 21, 765,076 cases of Colombians infected with the coronavirus (Covid-19) were registered. According to the Ministry of Health, 1,044 cities in the country already have at least one reported patient, Bogotá being the one with the most cases with a total of 252,319.
Antioquia(103.915), Atlántico(66.576), Valle del Cauca(57.244), Cundinamarca(30.883), Bolívar(28.027), Santander(27.463), Córdoba(22.768), Nariño(17.485), Cesar(17.403), Magdalena(14.563), Norte de Santander(14.535), Meta(14.261), Sucre(13.545), Tolima(10.967), Risaralda(9.596), Huila(9.545), Cauca(8.293), Caquetá(7.783), La Guajira(7.397), Boyacá(6.086), Caldas(4.752), Chocó(3.947), Putumayo(3.640) Amazonas(2.732), Quindío(2.655), Casanare(1.875), Arauca(1.475), San Andrés(938), Vaupés(693), Guaviare(649), Guainía(631), Vichada (435).
By gender they are 389,354 male and 375,722 female. There are 633,199 recovered patients and 24,208 deceased.
2. Covid-19 containment measures implemented by the Government of Colombia
President Iván Duque announced that, by decree 1076, mandatory preventive isolation extends until 00:00 on September 1, 2020, due to the coronavirus pandemic.
One of the novelties is that the "film projection, concerts and performing arts carried out under the modality of drive-ins - self-events are allowed, without generating crowds, in the terms established by the Ministry of Health".
In this way, from the car you could see movies and even concerts.
Diego Molano, director of the Administrative Department of the Presidency, said that non-covid municipalities are authorized. In those of moderate and high affectation they must be authorized by the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of the Interior.
Additionally, those who attend these events must wear the mask, as indicated by the Ministry of Health.
Some of the cinemas that already have biosafety protocols ready are the ones in the Ecoplaza de Mosquera (Cundinamarca) shopping center and Cine on wheels, a Colombian venture that has everything ready to open in Bucaramanga, Cali, Medellín and Bogotá.
The Minister of Health and Social Protection, Fernando Ruiz, announced that in order to produce any vaccine, three phases are needed: one in vitro, safety and another that is the evaluation of efficacy, as well as all those that are taking place against the covid-19 are between phase two and three.
"At this time it is not feasible to know which of the fifteen that are in the front have any effectiveness," he said.
In addition, he added that the time when they will be available is also not clear and precise because in the phase in which they are only those that are later they are in the phase of experimentation in humans.
Regarding the acquisition of a vaccine by Colombia, he pointed out that the Covax mechanism is being worked on, which is an alliance between the different countries to be able to have access to them, through agreements in which the countries commit to acquire a specific percentage of these.
"In this mechanism, what is expected is that they will acquire two trillion vaccines throughout 2021 with an equitable distribution among the different countries that are part of it," said Minister Ruiz.
Starting this Thursday, mayors and governors will be able to request authorization from the Ministry of the Interior to activate the ground transportation pilots for passengers in the country, as announced by the Vice Minister of Transportation, Carmen Ligia Valderrama, noting that the local administrations will be in charge of receive activation requests from carriers.
"The mayors and governors of the places of origin and destination of routes are those who may request authorization from the Ministry of the Interior to reactivate ground transportation as pilots," Valderrama explained.
The official also indicated that land passenger transport must comply with all biosafety protocols stipulated by the Ministry of Health, such as the use of face masks, the disinfection of vehicles, avoiding crowds at transport terminals, keeping distance social, among others.
In this sense, the Minister of Transportation, Angela María Orozco Gómez, stressed that "the end of the decisions adopted seek to support land transportation in the country, and gradually activate its activity, with the support of the Mayors and Governors; in application and supervision of biosecurity protocols. We continue to work so that the sector continues to make progress in the health emergency.
Likewise, the ministry explained that the Logistics and Transportation Center provided guidance to companies that provide the public ground transportation service and that have route authorizations so that they can advance their requests with all the requirements requested for service activation. The same was done with mayors and governors so that they can make a complete evaluation of the requirements before submitting the requests to the Ministry of the Interior.
"It is essential to reiterate the importance of guaranteeing compliance with all prevention measures in terminals, buses and infrastructure associated with this type of transport, and both users and companies must comply with biosafety protocols," Vice Minister Carmen Ligia Valderrama.
3. Economic support measures for entrepreneurs (incentives) that are being given by the National Government
The Nation's budget for 2021 will be $ 313 billion (COP) according to the Department of Treasury (Minhacienda) project.
The Deputy Minister of Finance, Juan Alberto Londoño, confirmed to LR that the project of the general budget of the Nation, designed by the portfolio and that will be filed this afternoon in Congress, totals $ 313 billion (COP)
This would mean an increase of around $ 37 billion (COP) compared to what was approved in 2019, effective in 2020.
One of the most significant changes is the investment item, since according to the 2021 Annual Investment Operational Plan (Poai), designed by the National Planning Department (DNP), next year $ 52.8 billion (COP) of the budget will be allocated exclusively to investment, of which more than $ 4 trillion (COP) will go to recovery.
This would mean an increase of 11% compared to what was approved for this item in 2020; but in turn it shows an increase of 56% compared to what had been projected for 2021 in the preliminary draft of the Budget published in April, when it was planned to invest $ 33.7 billion (COP).
It should be remembered that this document had to be redesigned practically from scratch, because although a preliminary project had been presented in April, the calculations had been made before the pandemic, with information from February.
They assure resources to start the first line of the Bogotá metro
One of the most ambitious infrastructure works in the country is the Bogotá metro, a project that, on its first line has 23.9 kilometers, and turns out to be one of the largest on the continent.
However, the financing of this construction involves more than just money, since being of such magnitude requires a series of strategies and tools that minimize the risk inherent in its operation and give more guarantees to the actors in the process, so that ensure the necessary resources for its construction.
Thus, the first of the most recent steps to secure resources was when a line of guarantees was signed between the Bbva and Chec for US $ 90 million, in local silver, close to $ 334,066 million (COP) to guarantee the financing of the concession contract for construction. This corresponds to a guarantee that seeks companies to respond if necessary.
Almost eight months have passed since the contract with the Chinese concessionaire was signed, and although it was planned to start in August of this year, the pandemic ran the calendar and it will not be until October that what was agreed upon before this year begins
Minhacienda signed a guarantee of $ 2.4 billion (COP) to finance the Bogotá metro line
Through Resolution 1502 of July 24, 2020, the Minister of Finance, Alberto Carrasquilla, certified that the Nation will be guarantor for the Bogotá Metro Company to obtain $ 2.4 billion (COP) for the adaptation and construction of the first line of the Metro.
This is in line with the decision of the Economic and Social Policy Council (Conpes) that with document 3923 of May 8, 2018, gave the go-ahead for the Nation to grant a guarantee to the Metro Company, up to $ 7.8 billion (COP) , to support the plan.
Specifically, the document indicates that “the Nation was authorized to grant the respective guarantee, through the subscription of a letter, to the financing operation that the Bogotá Metro plans to carry out consisting of the issuance of promissory notes (Execution Payment Titles -TPEs-) for $ 2.4 billion (COP) at constant prices in December 2017, in the terms of resolutions Nos.2071 and 1404 of June 27, 2019 and July 9, 2020 ”.
For its part, according to the Resolution, the Metro Company must present a counter-guarantee to the Nation of furniture type without tenure on the future cash flows to the Nation approved by the Confis, equivalent to $ 2.6 billion (COP)
Regarding the progress of the project, it must be remembered that on July 23, the proposals were opened to select the firm that will be in charge of supervising the first line of the metro.
Residential users of energy and gas services in the country will have additional help in paying bills, as they may defer these obligations to 36 and 24 months, depending on the stratum they are in.
This was announced this Sunday by the Energy and Gas Regulation Commission (Creg), after noting that this measure is an extension of the one set at the beginning of the emergency by the covid-19 pandemic, through Decree 517 2020.
Thus, residential users of strata 1 and 2 will be able to defer for 36 months the payment of their electric energy and fuel gas bills for networks corresponding to the July billing cycle, without additional surcharge up to basic or subsistence consumption. In strata 3 and 4 they will be able to pay their electric energy and natural gas bills within 24 months.
“From the first moment of the covid-19 emergency, our priority has been to ensure energy and gas service for Colombian homes and key sectors such as health and transportation. In this sense, we have generated relief for users and alternatives for the liquidity of companies, measures that were recently endorsed by the Constitutional Court, "said the Minister of Mines and Energy, Diego Mesa.