To which language should you translate to localize in Colombia?
T-Index ranks countries according to their potential for online sales.
Amerindian languages, Creole languages.
Low proficiency (EF) – 81 of 112 countries/regions in the world- 17/20 position in Latin America.
Currency: Colombian peso
Population: 50,88 m
Population density: 46/km2
GDP: 271.44 billion USD (2020)
GDP per capita: 5,334.6 USD (2020)
Exports: $32.2 billion (2020)
Internet users: 96.1% penetration, 35.50 million
Unemployment rate: 12.2% (2020)
Urbanisation: 81.1% (2019)
Literacy: 95.09% (2018)
Arabic numerals and comma as decimal separator
Date format: dd – mm – yyyy
Time: 24h time system
Country code: 0057
Language data sources: Worldatlas/Britannica//EF/Wikipedia; Demography data sources: IMF/Worldometers; Conventions data source: Wikipedia; Economy data sources: WTO/OEC/CIA/Esomar/Datareportal; Statistics data sources: Datareportal/WorldBank/UN/UNESCO/CEIC/IMF/Culturalatlas/Commisceoglobal
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Facts and data
$42.2 billion (2020). Broadcasting Equipment ($1.99B), Refined Petroleum ($1.95B), Cars ($1.47B), Packaged Medicaments ($1.31B), and Corn ($1.11B), importing mostly from United States ($11.1B), China ($10B), Mexico ($2.76B), Brazil ($2.41B), and Germany ($1.55B).
Financial inclusion factors (over 15 years of age)
• 45% have an account with a financial institution
• 14% have a credit card
• 4.7% have a mobile money account
• 12% make online purchases
Ease of doing business
Ease of conducting business is medium (rated 70.1 out of 100). Ranked 3rd out of 32 Caribbean and Latin American countries. Ranked 67th out of 190 countries worldwide (2019, World Bank).
$32.2 billion (2020). Crude Petroleum ($7.46B), Coal Briquettes ($4.13B), Coffee ($2.54B), Gold ($2.34B), and Refined Petroleum ($1.55B), exporting mostly to United States ($9.55B), China ($2.8B), Ecuador ($1.51B), Panama ($1.43B), and Brazil ($1.28B).
Main local online stores
mercadolibre.com.co, dafiti.com.co and linio.com.co, asivendo.com.ar and mercadoshops.com.co
‘Relatively free’ (rated 65.1 out of 100). Ranked 12th out of 32 Latin American countries. Ranked 60h out of 186 countries worldwide (2019, Heritage Foundation and Wall Street Journal).
Global Innovation Index
Ranked 17th out of 18 Latin American and Caribbean countries, 67rd out of 132 worldwide.
The Global Innovation Index captures the innovation
ecosystem performance of 132 economies and tracks the most recent global innovation trends.
Service Imports (2018)
Service Exports (2018)
Most complex product by PCI
Product Complexity Index measures the knowledge intensity of a product by considering the knowledge intensity of its exporters
Most Specialized Products by RCA Index
Specialisation is measured using Revealed Comparative Advantage, an index that takes the ratio between Colombia observed and expected exports in each product
Export Opportunities by Relatedness
Relatedness measures the distance between a country's current exports and each product, the barchart show only products that Colombia is not specialized in
Most popular payment methods for online shopping in Colombia in 2018
B2B e-commerce spending per capita in Colombia in 2011, 2016 and 2021
(in 1,000 Colombian pesos)
Media language Spanish
The Grupo Clarin and La Nacion conglomerates are the main players in the national media. The top free-to-air TV networks – Telefe, America, El Nueve and El Trece – are privately owned. Public broadcasting has a minor role. Clarin and La Nacion are the leading national newspapers. The government does not routinely block or filter online content, says Freedom House.
El Tiempo – Liberal Party daily
El Espacio – evening daily
El Nuevo Siglo – Conservative Party daily
El Colombiano – Medellin-based daily
Vanguardia Liberal – daily
El Espectador – daily
La Republica – business daily
Semana – weekly
Colombia Reports – English-language online news
Hundreds of stations are registered with the Ministry of Communications.
Among the main networks are:
Radio Nacional de Colombia – state-run
Cadena Super – including Radio Super and Super Stereo FM
Caracol – runs several networks, including flagship station Caracol Colombia
Radio Cadena Nacional (RCN Radio) – mediumwave (AM) network with many affiliates
Media data source: BBC
69.1% penetration, 35.50 million
Share of web traffic by device
49.97% mobile phones, 49.19% computers (laptops and desktops), 0.82% tablet devices and 0.03% other devices
Median download speed of mobile Internet connection
Average speed of fixed Internet connection
Mobile connection as a percentage of total population: 127.9%
Percentage of mobile connections that are broadband (3G-5G): 88.2%
Most popular web search engines
Google (96.48%), Bing (2.1%), Yahoo (0.96%), Ecosia (0.17%), DuckduckGo (0.11%),
Most used social media
Facebook (75.49%), Twitter (7.52%), Pinterest (5.9%), Instagram (5.31%), YouTube (4.41%), Reddit (0.77%), Tumblr (0.13%)
Devices used for online shopping in Colombia in 2018, by age
Most popular internet browsers in Colombia in 2019 by market share
77.36 yrs (2020)
5.9% of GDP
Colombia is increasingly equalitarian with regard to the gender issue; however, women are not well perceived in some types of jobs. It is common these days to see women in high-ranking corporate positions and gender is not an issue at all if their level of education is comparable to that of her colleagues. In the lower income classes, women have less access to education and they are still normally perceived as the ones in charge of their kids, with the man providing for the family.
Colombia is mainly catholic country, but there is a proliferation of Christian sects coming mainly from the US. There is a Jewish minority and almost no Islamic presence at all (besides diplomats from Arabic countries).
Like many countries, Colombia was heavily influenced by Spanish colonization, which lasted more than 300 years. Drug consumption is a sensitive topic in Colombia. Many families have been affected by the violence caused by the criminal organizations that traffic narcotics, so if you want to discuss it, do so in a serious manner – joking about it in formal settings is strongly discouraged.
Graduates (tertiary education)
Colombia has one of the lowest shares (23%) of tertiary-educated adults (25-64 year-olds) among OECD countries. Although the share of tertiary-educated younger adults (25-34 year-olds) is slightly higher, at 29%, it is still among the lowest of the OECD countries. The shortage of tertiary-educated adults may explain why having a tertiary degree carries an earnings advantage that is surpassed only by Chile: adults with tertiary degrees earn over twice as much in Colombia as adults with an upper secondary education, whereas on average among OECD countries tertiary-educated adults are only paid 57% more. The earnings advantage increases with age in Colombia: while 25-34 year-olds with tertiary degrees earn 95% more than their peers with upper secondary degrees, 45-54 year-olds earn 166% more.
The majority of adults with tertiary education (82%) are in employment in Colombia, a sign that the tertiary education system is relevant to the labour market. However, access to the labour market varies between regions: Colombia exhibits high regional variation in employment rates among tertiary-educated adults, ranging from 76% in Chocó to 86% in Nariño and the capital region.
The private sector plays an important role in Colombian tertiary education, particularly at bachelor’s and master’s level where 60-70% of students are enrolled compared to 30% on average across OECD countries. In contrast, only 20% of short-cycle tertiary students enrol in private institutions in Colombia compared to 40% on average across OECD countries.
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Dialectal variants of the Spanish language in Colombia
Chibcha and Guahibo
Photo credit: Michael Lechner, Unsplash