SOURCE: CINDE

December 15, 2015 12:20 ET

CINDE: Annual Results Report

Costa Rica: Foreign Investment Creates 12,000 New Jobs in 2015

SAN JOSE, COSTA RICA--(Marketwired - Dec 15, 2015) - The Costa Rican Investment Promotion Agency (CINDE, in Spanish) and the Ministry of Foreign Trade (COMEX) reported that foreign investment businesses in the Services, Life Sciences, Advanced Manufacturing, Light Manufacturing and Food Industry sectors generated a total of 12,000 new jobs in 2015.

According to Jorge Sequeira, Managing Director of CINDE, employment data was provided by the Costa Rican Social Security Fund (CCSS, in Spanish) to CINDE as part of the new assessment methodology implemented by the organization.

"The reports from the Costa Rican Social Security Fund (CCSS) allow for specific assessment of employment. The data showed that multinational enterprises generated a total of 11,935 new jobs from September 2014 to September 2015. Accounting for jobs eliminated throughout the year, these companies generated a net total of 6,456 jobs. This figure, compared with total national employment, reveals the significant role played by the multinational sector in generating jobs inside the country. Net multinational employment accounted for 17% of all jobs created in Costa Rica and 22% of jobs created by the private sector," Sequeira said.

Employment reported this year by multinationals has grown at a rate of 9.1%, 3 times faster than the rest of private employment and in the country overall.

In terms of the number of new investment projects, the country managed to capture 39. This number exceeded the target set to attract at least 35 investment projects across these sectors.

Alexander Mora, Minister of Foreign Trade, highlighted the results achieved by the country in the midst of very strong international competition to attract foreign investment.

"The installation of 39 investment projects and the thousands of jobs generated by the companies attracted show Costa Rica's good performance when compared with its competitors. Each year the competition to attract new investment projects gets fiercer and fiercer; however, we at the Government are committed to working for the continuous improvement of local competitiveness in order to remain a strategic destination for such investments. Today, thousands of Costa Ricans can testify to the benefits that investment brings to the country, holding quality jobs that are well paid and that allow for personal growth in globally competitive environments."

Services and Life Sciences: the most dynamic sectors

The Corporate Services Sector was the most dynamic in 2015 in terms of the investment projects attracted and number of jobs created, with a net total of 5,000 high quality jobs and the installation of 23 investment projects in the country. Meanwhile, the Life Sciences Sector reported nine investment projects attracted with a net total of 2,324 jobs.

According to both leaders, the projects captured confirm a trend of the arrival of services and production processes with higher value added and sophistication that start with moderate sized payrolls varying from 20 to 100 people in the first year, with plans to expand to approximately 400-500 over a period of three years.

For its part, the Advanced Manufacturing sector recorded three projects, and Light Manufacturing and Food Industry had four. Two of these are located outside of the Greater Metropolitan Area, specifically in the Pérez Zeledón and Siquirres. 

Domestic value added and local production levels in the Free Zone continue their positive growth

The domestic value added of exports of goods under the Free Zone system grew from $0.27 per dollar exported in 2010 to $0.36 in 2014 (+33%). According to CINDE estimates based on data from the Foreign Trade Promotion Board (PROCOMER) and the Central Bank of Costa Rica (BCCR), by the end of 2015, domestic value added could reach a record $0.60 for each dollar of goods exported from the country's Free Zones.

Local purchases of goods and services (production chains) taken as a percentage of total purchases made by Free Zone companies rose from 20% in 2010 to 31% in 2014 (+11 percentage points). Estimates indicate that local production levels will reach figures close to 40% by the end of 2015.

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