Doing Business in Colombia

Are you interested in investing or establishing a new business in Colombia? At PwC we offer the most complete guidance to invest in the country. Download the document here!

What is Doing Business?

doing business in Colombia

It is a document with key information about the main guidelines to consider when developing business in Colombia. You will find a brief review of the current conditions and main economic indicators, as well as a summary of the essential regulatory aspects for companies and investors.

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Colombia is a diverse country, its people, its fauna, its flora and its geographical location consolidate it as one of the most attractive countries to invest, travel and develop new businesses in the region. 

Despite the high macroeconomic volatility resulting from the pandemic, the Colombian economy has recovered significantly, showing growth of 7.5% at the end of 2022. This growth was mainly driven by an increase in domestic consumption, caused by the recovery of employment and the increase in investment within the country. The promotion of foreign investment continues to be one of the main focuses to continue promoting and strengthening the economy of our country, for this reason, different policies have been advanced and tax benefits have been expanded to attract investors from different countries of the world.

The United States, Spain, Switzerland and China are the countries that invest the most in Colombia, but in recent years, the flexibility in the processes and in the policies tending to encourage foreign investment that the Colombian government has implemented have attracted the attention of Countries like Norway, Singapore, Isles of Man, Cyprus and Sri Lanka, among others that are already making strong investments in Colombia. This shows that foreign investment has been finding important advantages to leverage the economy and profitability of the business, in turn generating employment, investing in infrastructure projects and strengthening environmentally friendly investments to thus ensure sustainable and responsible use and exploitation. of the country's resources.

This third edition of this PwC Colombia publication, called Doing Business in Colombia 2023, aims to provide valuable information to people and companies interested in making or consolidating their investments in the country. We hope that our publication will once again be a key tool in understanding our legal system and that it will be useful for you to have an overview of our business environment, both for local and foreign investors. On the following pages you will find a brief overview of the current conditions and the main economic indicators, as well as a summary of the essential regulatory aspects for companies and investors.


Ambiente Colombiano, Vista al peñon en Antioquía Colombia
  • A 5% economic growth is expected for 2021 in Colombia. Several sectors stand out with a major growth in 2020 such as real-estate activities by 3.3%, and agriculture, stockbreeding, hunting, forestry and fishing by 2.8%.
  • Other main investment sectors in Colombia correspond to technology. For this reason, there are 6 tax benefits for investments in technology in Colombia:
    • Tax benefits for hiring human talent in the companies.
    • Revenue not considered as income and/or occasional income.
    • VAT exemption for import of equipment and elements.
    • Tax benefits for donation in science, technology, and innovation. 
  • Colombia has the biggest labor in the region and the first with major growth and training, exceeding countries such as Peru, Mexico, and Brazil.
Firma de documentos para prevenir el fraude

The Ethics and Compliance Programs (PEC) to be implemented by the companies in Colombia gather a series of guidance and recommendations about international standards and best practices that may vary according to different aspects. Some of these factors are the sector or industry to which they belong, total revenue and/or total assets of the company.

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Avión llega con cargamento para puerto para dejar en aduanas

The international investments in Colombia are divided in foreign investment in Colombia and Colombian capital investment abroad.

In order to promote trade, investment and employment generation in the country, there is a free-trade regime in Colombia composed by geographical areas within the country, but for customs purposes they are considered as external territories.

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Hombre hace operaciones de precios de transferencia en computadores

The formal obligations are Local Report, Master Report, Country-per-Country Report, Notification of Country-per-Country Report, and Informative Statement of Pricing Transfer. 

The formal sanctions for the pricing transfer regime are included in the Article 260-11 of the Tax Statute

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Dos hombres aprietan la mano después de resolver conflictos económicos 

The Colombian legal system incorporates different jurisdictions within its legislation. Through them, controversies between individuals, and between them and the State can be solved. As a general rule, controversies between individuals are solved before the Ordinary Jurisdiction, while those with the State should be solved before the Contentious-Administrative Jurisdiction.

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Contadora de PWC declara renta y esta al día con los impuestos de su cliente

The Colombian tax system establishes taxes at national and subnational (departmental and municipal) level. The main taxes at national level are income tax and complementary capital earning tax, equity tax (temporary validity), sales tax (VAT), special national tax, and tax on financial movements.

However, foreign entities are only encumbered for their income and occasional gains from national source.

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Asesora legal de PWC Colombia revisa estados financieros de la empresa

In Colombia, investment vehicles are supported by constitutional principles, such as the equality right, company freedom protection, and private initiative. 

There are six regular obligations that are required for companies and other entities by the legislation:

  • Renewal of commercial registration
  • Ordinary meetings
  • Deposit of financial statements at the chamber of commerce of the main domicile 
  • Financial statement reporting
  • Statement of control position and business group
  • Appointment of the statutory auditor

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Tres asesoras legales celebran una contratación estatal

The state contracting is a set of standards regulating all procedures performed by State entities to execute any required contracts to comply with institutional duties, goals, and objectives.

Any controversies between individuals are solved before the Ordinary Jurisdiction, while those with the State should be solved before the Contentious-Administrative Jurisdiction. In order to guarantee the principles of the administrative duty, a series of modalities to select contractors have been established:

  • Public bid
  • Abbreviated selection
  • Merit-based competition
  • Direct contracting
  • Minimum amount
  • Framework Agreements or Covenants for Prices

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Empleadora revisa la documentación de derecho laboral que tienen sus empleados desde su celular y computadora

The labor law is divided in two areas, Individual Labor Law regulating any relationships between employer and employees, and Collective Labor Law.

Every employer must pay its workers, who earn an ordinary wage, the following social benefits: severance aid, interests on severance, service premium, transport, footwear, and clothing aid.

Foreign workers have the same rights and obligations as Colombian workers.

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Hombre haciendo viaje con visa de inmigración para negocios

Colombia regulates the entry and permanence of foreign people in the country through a migratory regime. This chapter provides the regulations established by the Ministry of Foreign Relations for citizens from restricted countries.

The Colombian migratory regime offers more than 20 types of visas as well, between which the following stand out:

  • Business visitor visa
  • Emigrant visa as business owner
  • Emigrant visa as real estate investor


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Señor usuario, al registrar su dirección de correo electrónico, usted reconoce haber leído la Declaración de Privacidad de este sitio y de manera voluntaria, autoriza a PwC Colombia para que almacene, use, circule, procese, transfiera y suprima sus Datos Personales con la finalidad de ofrecerle servicios y compatirle invitaciones a eventos que podrían ser de su interés. Dando cumplimiento a la Ley 1581 de 1012, al Decreto 1377 de 2013 y a la Circular externa 002 de 2015 expedida por la Superintendencia de Industria y Comercio, PwC Colombia se compromete a conservar y custodiar su información de manera segura conforme a nuestra Política de Datos Personales, la cual puede consultar en el siguiente link. Si usted desea ejercer cualquiera de sus derechos como titular, por favor contáctenos al correo


Eliana Bernal Castro

Socia Fusiones, Adquisiciones y Estructuración de Proyectos, PwC Colombia

Tel: (601) 743 1111

Andrés Llano

Gerente líder Marketing & Sales, PwC Colombia

Tel: (601) 743 1111

Daniel Rodríguez

Coordinador Marketing & Sales, PwC Colombia

Tel: (601) 743 1111