Honduras Forecasts FDI of $1B in 2024

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By Marco Echevarria

The Minister of Investment anticipates that three large companies will start operations this year and emphasized that President Castro has instructed to prioritize investment collection

Medina has the support of President Xiomara Castro to lead the CNI and addressed the opening of more companies in the country, the generation of employment and the plans for this 2024. The interview below:

What assessment do you make from 2023 on the issue of investments?

The balance sheet of foreign investment was higher than what we were handling as we closed the year as $900 million in foreign direct investment, I don’t think it’s bad but Honduras has the potential for more. In March we turned two years and some projects have already begun to be implemented, equivalent to 14,000 jobs. There are three big companies coming to the country.

What are your goal for 2024?

We would like to exceed the billion dollars this year and it’s going to be pretty easy to get to that number.

What are the three companies coming to focus on?

In maquila, it has already bought land the largest textile company in the world and is a Chinese company, it is the largest cotton buyer in the world and bought a 300-hectare land in Choloma and is expected to begin this year. Another is a floor company where they will set up a porcelain and ceramic plant in Honduras, comes with an investment of about 120 million dollars and create just over three thousand jobs. The other is a tobacco company and will be the largest tobacco plant in Honduras generating about 3,500 jobs.

What will Honduras have at the forum to be held in Switzerland in the coming days?

It is the annual event of the World Economic Forum and where about 60 heads of state, ministers, presidents of the world’s largest companies will go. We have a technology company, electronic systems and more companies that we’re going to serve. We have arranged a meeting with Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Investment and it is that in the Middle East they are concerned about the food security of their population, in addition to Qatar’s foreign economy minister.

With China, there are plans?

They are interested in several projects, with the ambassador we have created an agenda for the next year and the intention is to make two visits to China to create events in which we invite companies and expose the benefits of Honduras. We’re going to work with the Chinese Chamber of Commerce, in April we’re going to do the first three events.

What work is the National Investment Council doing?

We support private investment. If a company comes we help you with providing you with permits, if you come you want to participate in a tender we help you with information and pass it on to a Secretariat.

Are there more companies that can come this year?There are two more companies coming after those that have already been achieved. Between March and June we will give announcements of new companies.

He told me about Qatar, what’s the search for with them?

With Qatar’s foreign economy minister, it is an emblematic country in the technology system and what is sought is to increase its industry. In Qatar there are leading companies of medical equipment or car parts, we think there are companies in Qatar that can help us.

What about Saudi Arabia?

They’re looking at how to buy land, plant their food and grow the meat line and we’ve had a lot of interest from them. Look for a relationship with them and bring in companies that can come and invest in that food sense.

I understand you’ll be at other events, apart from the Swiss event

We have two events where I have been asked to exhibit, one related to industrial competitiveness and how countries are going to compete in an industrialized world with new public policies, the other is an event by a representative of the White House, which is a program of the vice president of the United States and I have been invited to participate as a speaker. They are interested in several projects, with the ambassador we have created an agenda for the next year and the intention is to make two visits to China to create events in which we invite companies and expose the benefits of Honduras. We will work with the Chinese Chamber of Commerce, in April we will do the first three events.

About the plan to open investment offices abroad, tell me about that…

With the CNI one of the most important plans we have is to open commercial offices in the foreign affairs offices in different countries. In the United States, our first office will open in the first semester with donation funds to operate for two years, then see what other countries we focus on, one of them China.

What is your opinion of the current relationship with private enterprise and what you have said about the lack of foreign investment?

They are an important figure in the country, but I think with that kind of action it’s hard for the government to sit down and talk. Dialogue is important that it is given and the CNI is the space, making such public exhibitions (raising a black flag) does not build, are actions that rather destroy good relations. That’s right, it has to be said that doesn’t stop us from working with them anymore.

Will a dialogue be held with the private sector?

There are already talks led by the Minister of the Presidency and a dialogue will be held, it will be a dialogue led by Minister Pastor. How and what the themes would be, the president has been clear that there is no development in the country without private enterprise and more in Honduras.

This article has been translated from the original which first appeared in El Heraldo