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21 de November de 2017CAF and SEGIB Boost Productive Transformation and Entrepreneurship in Latin America
2img - CAF and SEGIB Boost Productive Transformation and Entrepreneurship in Latin America
2img - CAF and SEGIB Boost Productive Transformation and Entrepreneurship in Latin America
2img - CAF and SEGIB Boost Productive Transformation and Entrepreneurship in Latin America

CAF provided technical and financial support for the "Do Business in Latin America" report, which highlighted the importance of furthering innovation in a transversal manner and improving liaison between the academic sector and the private sector.

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The political, economic and social challenges facing entrepreneurs when undertaking sustainable projects were discussed in the "Do Business in Latin America" report, a study commissioned by the Ibero-American General Secretariat (SEGIB, initials in Spanish) with the technical and financial support of CAF - development bank of Latin America.

When the report was presented, German Rios, representative director of CAF in Uruguay, pointed out the SEGIB’s interest in promoting public policies to benefit entrepreneurship and described it as "a great spokesman in the Americas" in this particular area.

With regard to the entrepreneurial ecosystem, Mr. Rios said that "wealth has to be created in the region based on the microeconomic contribution" to promote "productive transformation", a concept fundamental for the multilateral agency that aims to promote competitive and sustainable companies.

CAF has set up a program to support competitiveness, which seeks to provide entrepreneurs solutions, focusing on doing away with obstructive public policies and promoting productive chains or integrating networks that include these chains, providing them the means for growth.

Mr. Rios warned that although progress has been made in several countries on the continent as far as backing business is concerned, there is still not enough being done regarding regional policy-making.

In Uruguay, the SEGIB, in conjunction with the OECD, has managed to incorporate the country into a number of regional programs, such as the Río de la Plata Agrotech Companies Promotion Program, the Xcala Program, the Angel Activity Monitor, the Fintech Companies Promotion Program and the Public Policy Index for SMEs in Latin America.

Rebeca Grynspan, Ibero-American General Secretary, analyzed people’s lack of confidence in companies, state-owned enterprises in particular, due to the high cost of the transactions they conduct and said that new enterprises "do not have this problem". In this regard, she invited businesses to experiment and "not be afraid of failure", which is a key factor in undertaking new projects, which should be encouraged from an early age in schools.

Fernando Brum, President of the National Agency for Research and Innovation (ANII, initials in Spanish), took an optimistic stance and referred to the progress the SEGIB had made ever since it was first established. He said that recently "there has been a substantial increase in the number and quality of projects". This has also represents a challenge for the organization, which has had to adapt itself and adopt new methods that go hand in hand with the new proposals, from their conception to their realization. He also said that one positive factor was that the ecosystem worked as a network, which would improve companies’ results.

From an overall point of view, Max Trejo, Secretary General of the International Youth Agency for Latin America (OIJ, initials in Spanish), proposed to strengthen alliances between the public and private sector, the community and academia, "so that entrepreneurship is not just a short-lived trend", but rather one of the outstanding sectors of the economy. On the same subject, Santiago Soto, Deputy Director of the Office of Planning and Budgets, said that "Uruguay is still facing the challenge of institutionalizing the promotion of entrepreneurship".

The above comments and points of view were taken into account in the report presented by Erika Roffler, coordinator of the Grupo Pharos research team that carried out the study.

Amongst the report’s conclusions was that Latin American countries are not developing policies to promote entrepreneurship at the same pace, and that the environment sector is becoming increasingly more complex and global, so more and more specific methods need to be introduced to provide backing, mainly for enterprises set up by women.

In view of this, the challenge that the region is facing is to further change and transversal innovation, come up with a political and legislative agenda that will support the sector with specific agencies, and encourage greater contact between the education system, the scientific and technical sector and businesses, to create more and better instruments. 

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