Colombia

Last modification: 1 Feb 18

Chapter 1: Economic and business environment

Demographics

Population 49.55 million (December 2017 est.)

Capital

Bogota (10.2m in metro area)

Major cities

Bogota, Medellin (3.7m), Cali (3.4m), Barranquilla (2.3m), Cartagena (1.0m), Cucuta (0.8m)

Languages

Spanish

GDP

GDP: US$286,000 million
GDP per capita: US$5,810

Unemployment rate

9.2% (2016)

Main industries

Agriculture – products: coffee, cut flowers, bananas, rice, tobacco, corn, sugarcane, cocoa beans, oilseed, vegetables; forest products; shrimp

Industries: textiles, food processing, oil, clothing and footwear, beverages, chemicals, cement; gold, coal, emeralds

Currency

Colombian peso (COP), USD 1 = COP 2.977,61 (18 Dec 2017)

Interest rate

4.75% (14th Dec 2017)

Political key info

Presidential Representative Democratic Republic.
Colombia is a unitary republic formed by thirty-two departments and a Capital District.
Each department has a Governor (Gobernador) and a Department Assembly (Asamblea Departamental), elected by popular vote for a four-year period.

Inflation

7.5% (2016)

Chapter 2 : Automotive market, segments & sales

Total Car park

13,24 million units registered at RUNT (6m vehicles and 7.24m motorcycles)

New vehicle registrations (Cars, LCV, Trucks)

212,814 (Jan- Nov 2017):

  • Cars: 113,770
  • LCV: 85,453
  • Trucks & Buses: 13,591
     
Top 5 brands (total market)
  1. Chevrolet (46,697 units)
  2. Renault (42,167 units)
  3. Nissan (18,968 units)
  4. Kia (17,829 units)
  5. Mazda (16,468 units)

*Jan- Nov 2017 data
 

Model preference top 5 (total market)
  1. Chevrolet Spark  (11,255 units)
  2. Chevrolet Sail  (10,484 units)
  3. Mazda 3  (5,831 units)
  4. Renault Sandero  (4,925 units)
  5. Ford Fiesta (4,918 units)
     
Dealer network (including fleet dealer network)

750 car dealers around the country

Used car market/renewal cycle

According to figures from the National Traffic Registry, RUNT, as of 2017 there have been 1,047,428 transfers, compared to a total of 699,203 new registrations (including motorcycles).
There is no good used car market business in Colombia.

Chapter 3: Company car market

Total Fleet Park (company cars)/Fleet penetration in total fleet sales

This information is not available, but it’s estimated that 15% of vehicles in Colombia are fleet vehicles.
Most fleets are small. A company with 20 vehicles is considered a big fleet.

Top 5 fleet brands (fleet market)
  1. Chevrolet
  2. Renault
  3. Mazda
  4. Toyota
  5. Nissan
     
Fleet Model preference top 5 (fleet market)
  1. Chevrolet spark
  2. Chevrolet Sail
  3. Kia Picanto
  4. Renault Logan
  5. Renault Duster
     

Chapter 4: Taxation & legislation

4.1 Car registration

  • Every buyer must be registered with the RUNT system (National transit register system).
  • Tax payment on motor vehicles, has three levels depending on the range of purchase price 1.5%, 2.5% and 3.5%. More expensive cars pay more tax.
  • SOAT purchase (Traffic Accident Insurance) is a mandatory accident insurance.

4.2 Car Taxation

  • All new car sales are taxed at the time of invoicing with VAT, currently at 19%. This VAT can’t be deducted, it is part of the value.

4.3 Motor vehicle tax

Private vehicles

Valuation ranges (in COP)

Rate

All cars, jeeps, vans, station wagons, freight vehicles and passenger

Up to $43,953,000

1.5%

Between $43,953,000 and $98,993,000

2.5%

Over $98,893,000

3.5%

4.4 Direct taxation – taxable persons

Company cars can also be used for personal use. Having a company car doesn’t affect the user’s income tax, and the company that owns the car can deduct it 100%.>

4.5 VAT

  • The general VAT rate is 19%. However, certain services and goods are taxed at 5% and 0%.

4.7 Company car

Vehicles can depreciate completely in the normal estimated useful life that is 10 years. A company car can be deducted by the company as an expense if the company can prove that it is needed for the use of the company.

4.8 Income taxes – drivers’ personal taxation

  • The income tax rate is 34%

4.9 Electric vehicles

  • Electric vehicles are tax free and duty free in Colombia and have a 5% VAT

4.10 Future developments

4.11 Legal background (import taxes)

  • Car import rate is up to 35%, but Colombia has Free Trade agreements with Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Mexico, the United States, the European Union and Korea. These FTAs bring these taxes to 0%.

Chapter 5: Car policies

The title of the car rests with its owner. Therefore, if the vehicle is leased, its title and property belongs to the leasing company.

The sector that provides one of the largest numbers of fleet vehicles is the pharmaceutics.

General Manager, Sales representative frequently benefit from company cars.

Reference cars:

  • Entry/junior sales level: Chevrolet Sail, Spark, Renault Logan
  • Senior sales/management level: Mazda 3, Ford Fiesta
  • Executive level: Toyota Fortuner, Ford Explorer

Chapter 6: Funding methods

6.1 Outright purchase

  • This is the most common system used by individuals, while it is not very common for large companies, except for the pharmaceutical companies that believe it is a good way not to inconvenience their employee.
  • Colombia has 18 banks and 17 financing companies (many of them with special lines for car purchases), in addition to entities specialised in the sector, such as GMAC or Finandina, or with special exclusive savings plans for vehicles, such as ChevyPlan (Chevrolet) ) and Plan Rombo (Renault). However, it is important to keep in mind that consumer credit is the most expensive of all.
  • The ownership and the title of the vehicles are held by the individual or company buying the vehicle.

6.2 Finance lease

  • Although the first option contemplated is the request for a financing loan, a traditional financial product offered by banks, there is another system that many users do not know, such as leasing for a vehicle, a modality in which a lease is made of the vehicle, but with a purchase option. This modality has a greater penetration in medium - large companies, since it is a system that offers greater tax benefits.
  • The title of the vehicle belongs to the leasing company, and the contracts generally extend from 36 to 48 months.
  • At the end of the contract the customer takes the purchase option, normally agreed for 10% of the initial value of the vehicle.

6.3 Full service leasing (operational leasing)

  • Operating leasing, also called "renting" in Colombia
  • Mainly, the need to reduce costs in companies is driving the renting business in the country. 
  • The system offers the lease of a vehicle or fleet of vehicles, generally for periods ranging from 1 year to 5 years, and can be extended to 6 or 7 years. Upon expiration of this term, the company returns the vehicles and begins a new rental cycle with new vehicles, letting the renting company sell these used vehicles on the traditional market.
  • The title of vehicles always stays with the lease company.

6.4 Fleet Management

Although the Fleet Management system is not well known in Colombia, there are companies that offer individual services that support fleet management in companies such as satellite tracking services, fuel control, among others.

6.5 Short term rental

In this system there is a large number of small companies that offer short-term rent, as well as the franchises of large global companies.

6.6 Other funding methods

In the last 5 years the programmed savings system for the purchase of vehicles has had a significant increase in the country. The market leader is ChevyPlan, a company of General Motor Colmotores and its network of Chevrolet dealers, with a 91% share, followed by Autofinanciera with 5.4% and Renault's Plan Rombo with 3.6%. As of March 2017, ChevyPlan has delivered more than 92,000 Chevrolet vehicles, the best-selling references being: Spark Life, Spark GT, Tracker and Onix.

Chapter 7: Fuel

  • The share of the type of fuel used by Cargo vehicles in Colombia is quite balanced between diesel and gasoline with 50% and 49% respectively and 1% corresponds to gas. Gasoline consumption predominates in vehicles with two (2) axles, which can be explained by the fact that they are low capacity vehicles. In the case of the public service vehicles, the consumption of diesel (70%) prevails as that fuel has a large impact on determining the costs of vehicular operation and also have an important participation vehicles of large capacity which basically use diesel. In the private sector, gasoline dominates (75 %) because the private service vehicles mainly have two (2) axes.
  • Fuel price evolution

Fuel Type

Regular Gasoline

Diesel

Regular Gasoline

Diesel

 EUR:COP (Dec)

2012

 $          8.701

 $          8.179

 €            3,73

 €            3,51

 $          2.330

2013

 $          8.361

 $          8.260

 €            3,15

 €            3,11

 $          2.653

2014

 $          8.495

 $          8.258

 €            2,94

 €            2,86

 $          2.890

2015

 $          7.818

 $          7.469

 €            2,27

 €            2,17

 $          3.448

2016

 $          8.046

 $          7.501

 €            2,55

 €            2,38

 $          3.157

2017

 $          8.889

 $          8.197

 €            2,53

 €            2,33

 $          3.516

  • Fuel card solution

Fuel suppliers such as Terpel, Esso and Mobil offer cards to buy fuel with benefits in discounts on the fuel price, or in greater accumulation of points within benefit programmes of the partner financial entities.

Chapter 8 : TCO components

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Chapter 9: Safety, insurance and telematics

 

Dec-15

Dec-17

percentage variation

Premiums issued (millions COP)

2,612,586

2,958,316

13.23%

Accrued premiums (millions COP)

2,370,507

2,644,517

11.56%

Claims incurred (millions COP)

1,624,085

1,811,223

11.52%

Claims Account Company

68.51%

68.49%

-0.02%

Premiums projected to December (millions COP)

2,620,883

2,969,600

13.31%

Average premium (thousands COP)

1,182

1,275

7.84%

Average loss (thousands COP)

5,789

5,832

0.74%

Insured vehicles (thousands)

2,216

2,329

5.06%

Number of claims

280,939

309,397

10.13%

Insurance companies in Colombia: AIG, ALFA, ALLIANZ, BBVA SEGUROS, BOLIVAR, AXA COLPATRIA, EQUIDAD, ESTADO, GENERALI, LIBERTY, MAPFRE, PREVISORA, QBE, SOLIDARIA, SURAMERICANA

Chapter 10: Environment

The segment of electric vehicles in the country has not reached the desired numbers, in spite of government support for this type of vehicles. The Superior Council of Fiscal Policy (Confis) approved importing 46,000 electric and hybrid vehicles without tariffs or VAT in order to improve air quality in the country.

Chapter 11: Mobility

Traffic in the main capitals of the country has become so complicated in recent years that the vast majority of regional governments have opted to implement restrictions on mobility using the "Pico y Placa" system, where the last digit of the vehicle’s plate determines whether it can enter a part of the city or the whole city. Vehicles with public plates for transporting cargo and passengers are exempt from these restrictions. Therefore, many people opt for a second vehicle to avoid mobility restrictions with a different last-digit plate, generating a greater problem for urban mobility.

Uber and Cabify are operating in Colombia, reducing the use of private vehicles but they have been criticised for competing with the regular taxi service.
 

Chapter 12: Key trends to watch