Colombia has one of the highest levels of income inequality in the world, despite being an upper-middle income country and OECD member. It is shaken by violence from illegal armed groups and struggling with the consequences of more than 2 million Venezuelan migrants and refugees arriving to the country.
The EU and its Member States are long time partners of Colombia. For over three decades, peacebuilding has been the backbone of the EU’s cooperation with Colombia under the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument (NDICI). The EU Trust Fund for Colombia has played a particularly important role in the relations, focusing on support to the implementation of the peace agreement between the government and FARC (the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia).
The EU supports Colombia towards sustainable and inclusive development in line with the Global Gateway Strategy. The three main areas of the Global Gateway Investment Agenda in Colombia are: connectivity and digitalisation - with a goal to reach 85% connectivity by 2026 - climate and energy, and transport. This also encompasses multi-country projects on climate finance and electro-mobility.
Team Europe Initiatives in Colombia bring together funds from the EU with those of EU Member states. Peace and the environment have been identified as priority topics
The initiative on peace, covering socio-economic development, governance and the rule of law, is implemented in alignment with a rights-based and leave-no-one-behind approach, with a strong focus on the empowerment of women, youth, minority ethnic groups and ex-combatants with disabilities.
The initiative on environment covers sustainable local development, sustainable cities and infrastructures, and sustainable finance and institutions.
Colombia also participates in various regional programmes, such as EL PACcTO (technical assistance on the fight against transnational organised crime), EUROFRONT (technical assistance on integrated border management), COPOLAD III (drugs policies), EUROsociAL+ (good governance, gender policies and social policies), Euroclima (environmental sustainability and climate change), and AL-INVEST Verde (support to enterprises for sustainable growth and jobs creation).
Our flagship initiatives
The Global Gateway Investment Agenda in Colombia is focused on three areas with several projects:
- Digital - supporting President Petro’s plan to increase connectivity to 85% of the population by 2026 via three pillars: connectivity for “Paz Total”, cybersecurity, and the creation of a space agency. The aim is to provide last kilometer connectivity and deploy 5G technology, including in remote conflict affected areas
- Climate and energy:
- Green and climate finance - development of a taxonomy for economic activities considered environmentally sustainable, and access to finance. The Global Green Bonds Initiative aims to scale up the green bond market, facilitate private capital flows and ensure interoperability with EU sustainable finance frameworks
- Wastewater management - Sewage Treatment Plant of Canoas as part of a public-private partnership (PPP) with a high importance for the city of Bogotá
- Green hydrogen - Development of green hydrogen production and renewable energy
- Nature-based solutions for climate change adaptation
- Transport, specifically electro-mobility - aiming for a sustainable public transport transition with several projects, such as the Bogota metro line 2 extension and the installation of an electric bus manufacturing plant in the country