Foreign Affairs Minister Andrés Allamand officially launched this new version of ENEXPRO, the export event organized by ProChile, for the construction, engineering, architecture, non-conventional renewable energy and energy efficiency industries and companies developing smart city solutions.
“Our foreign trade will be a cornerstone of the economic recovery. It already represents 60% of the GDP,” stated the minister, who highlighted ProChile’s crucial role in reactivation. “The country’s image is an asset. It contributes to Chile’s foreign policy and, certainly, to issues as important as trade and investment,” he added.
The minister noted, “A year ago, many questions about Chile were raised abroad. Today, Chile has democratically channeled its political process and started down a road of deep reform. It has chosen an institutional path away from violence.” He added that “the international community has reacted very positively and, objectively, the country’s democratic prestige has been reaffirmed abroad. The attention that the Chilean political process garners from abroad is an opportunity to reaffirm its nature as a country that is integrated with the world and determined to continue contributing to the international community.”
ENEXPRO CEI (City, Energy, Infrastructure), Chile’s most important industry event for exporters, runs today through Thursday, October 29. During the event, which will be 100% virtual, 100 Chilean companies will have the opportunity to meet with 60 buyers from 15 countries, primarily from Latin America, a priority region for national service exports.
At the opening, Director General for ProChile Jorge O’Ryan also highlighted the importance of the trade event for industries that have been significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. “ENEXPRO CEI aims to promote Chilean specialized and high value-added export industries, which jointly constitute more than 7% of the GDP and contribute approximately 100,000 direct jobs related to international expansion. Through this export event, we will facilitate strategic partnerships and business opportunities for Chilean companies, particularly service providers. This is another contribution to boosting Chile’s economic revival,” he said.
The event was organized through a public-private initiative involving the industry’s leading representatives, which included the Association of Architectural Offices of Chile (AOA), Association of Engineering Consulting Firms of Chile (AIC), Chilean Chamber of Construction (CChC), Chilean Solar Energy Association (ACESOL), Association of Chilean Technology Companies (CHILETEC) and the País Digital foundation. These industries represent approximately 1,800 companies, 42% of which are SMEs and 38% are large companies.
Non-traditional service exports have gained particular prominence in diversifying the national export matrix. Between 2003 and 2019, they have grown an average of 12.4% annually thanks, among other factors, to advancements in education, highly trained professionals and growth of SMEs with exporting capacity in Chile. Thus, companies that stand out as world-class, reliable and quality service providers participate in this version of ENEXPRO to share their experience in comprehensive solutions for cities, energy or infrastructure. Examples include CAP Aceros, SOLARMOVIL, PREVSIS and Tecnocal.
According to the AIC and the Santiago Chamber of Commerce (CCS), engineering exports were down 49% in the first half of 2020 with respect to the same period last year. The outlook for the second half of the year is more grim, with historic minimums projected for the sector. “Given this outlook, ProChile has placed special emphasis throughout the year on supporting the industry with trade missions and international seminars. The crown jewel, today’s trade event, aims to help Chilean companies build new contacts and thus hasten the signs of reactivation that are beginning to appear,” added the Director General for ProChile.
In addition to supporting the architecture, engineering and construction sectors, which have been seriously impacted by the drop in international demand, ENEXPRO CEI will also support promising sectors like smart cities, non-conventional renewable energy and energy efficiency. Sixty percent of the participating exporters are SMEs and large companies, distributed among 10 of Chile’s regions.