San José, Costa Rica, since 1956
Foreign investment

President-elect Solís announces upcoming US trip to court investors

President-elect Luis Guillermo Solís pledged on Tuesday to maintain and improve the business climate in Costa Rica to help draw more foreign investment to the country.

Solís addressed 200 representatives from 150 foreign companies and board members of local business chambers during a Tuesday meeting organized by the Costa Rican Investment Promotion Agency (CINDE).

Companies attending mostly were from the high-tech, services and manufacturing sectors. Vice President-elect Helio Fallas, Foreign Trade Minister-elect Alexander Mora, and top CINDE officials joined Solís.

“I will be traveling soon to the United States, which is a center of major investors. I want Costa Rica to continue improving conditions as an optimum location for foreign direct investment, and we will continue that effort with innovation, equality and competitiveness,” Solís said.

He did not disclose an exact date for the trip, but added that he also would travel to other key countries to reinforce the message that Costa Rica “is open for business and has all the necessary conditions to remain one of the most competitive locations in Latin America.”

Solís also said he would maintain current conditions for companies operating in the Free Zone regime, and he promised to improve the business climate to facilitate the arrival of more companies.

His message was delivered in the shadow of a tough blow to Costa Rica’s industrial sector following the recent layoffs of 3,000 workers by Intel and Bank of America.

CINDE President José Rossi said he was satisfied with the results of the meeting as it allowed attendees to hear Solís’ strategy on foreign direct investment, job creation and development.

CINDE data show that Costa Rica in 2013 attracted 43 new investment initiatives that generated some $583 million in foreign direct investment and created more than 7,000 jobs.

Contact L. Arias at

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Mark Kahle

I completely agree that Foreign investment is a priority for the economic well being of Costa Rica.

What is not being discussed is the matching of foreign investors or even Costa Rican investors with truly worthy Costa Rican businesses and start-ups.

One of the main problems foreign businesses have when coming here is the myriad of spider web of Ministries one must wade through in order to get something done. There is no one place where one can get a list of exactly what Government requirements must be met to form or expand a business.

Each and every place you go has there very own requirements that may or may not be different from the other Ministries yet require that they be done in order and all with original paperwork and none accept the work already submitted and accepted elsewhere as a submission.

The process can take over a year even if everything is submitted. Two identical projects can obtain two different results .. one approved and one denied even if all factors are equal. The process is very subjective rather than objective.

This stops any decent start up from being started up. The costs are exorbitant to an idea unless one is “well connected” or sells out a large part of the rights to the idea. This does not help the average Costa Rican help himself or his countries economy.

I do believe that regulation is a necessary thing but more important is a clear listing of the exact regulations with which one must comply in order to get something done. There is far too much delay and far to many hints at what can be done to get your submission to the top rather than the bottom of the pile.

Let’s take a small example. There are several Government “Priorities” that are constantly in the news… Carbon Neutrality, mitigation of dumps and land fills, the war on Dengue, alternative energy production….

Are these actual “Priorities” ? No, they are not as any business that wants to do something that directly addresses these issues is given no “priority” in any dealings with any agency.

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