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Chile looks to Africa for alternative markets

Chile is looking for alternative markets, as Europe and the US are reducing their imports and Chilean exporters are in dire need for new destinations. Due to this, the idea of reopening an office in Africa is being assessed, given the force of private interests and the current growth of this continent.

Following a decline in exports reported by the Central Bank, exporters have been showing strong concerns. In fact, experts have determined that the global recession is mainly affecting the Chilean economy through foreign trade, which set off the alarm bells.

Given this scenario, one of the solutions that first come to mind is the ability to diversify commercially and strengthen efforts to maintain competitiveness. ProChile’s deputy international director, Carlos Honorato, points out that the figures behind this decline must be analysed carefully. “While exports have registered a decline, the price of copper is having a very clear influence. Mining is the sector experiencing the sharpest falls, next to the cellulose industry,” he explains. According to them, exporters should look where to target their efforts, especially considering this is a year when “the recession is proving how competitive trading has become.”

Honorato details that ProChile is strengthening its measures and working hard with both public and private institutions to monitor the activities in Central and Eastern Europe and continue generating competitiveness in the sector. “We are looking for opportunities to diversify, but maintaining also our promotion activities in those markets which have been affected by the recession; the idea is to show that Chile is a trustworthy provider which is willing to stay in any competitive market,” he added.

In fact, the organization is already working on the 2013 schedule of activities, focusing on those places where exporters call for the opening of new markets.

About this he said that ProChile is currently looking into the possibility of opening a commercial office in Africa, as this is a growing continent with plenty of interests from the private sector. It is worth noting that until 2010 there already was an office, located in South Africa, but it

was closed by the current administration.

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