In progress

Establishing a Centre for Excellence

Supporting growth in Colombia’s automotive industry


The automotive industry is a critical economic driver of the Colombian economy, supporting more than 59,700 jobs in the commercial sector. In addition, hundreds of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) play a key role in supplying the local operations of global carmakers.

But delays and costs associated with moving automotive parts and final goods through Colombia’s ports of entry have limited the sector’s growth and led to higher prices for consumers. Those delays and costs stem in part from inconsistent decisions on the processing of automotive goods and parts.

What we are doing

The Alliance is working with the Colombian Customs and Tax Administration (DIAN) and the private sector to establish a Centre for Excellence that will provide decisions in advance to the automotive industry on how their products will be treated by DIAN. The Centre will be a virtual hub for specialised automotive industry knowledge within DIAN. By centralising and harmonising decision-making on an industry-specific basis, it also aims to create a more fluid and operational relationship between the public and private sectors.

Our project involves:

  • establishing a working group comprised of customs officials and representatives of the automotive industry to direct and oversee the Centre’s work
  • assisting with the institutional setting-up of the Centre
  • testing and launching the Centre
  • providing experts to assess the impact of the Centre on external users and on customs clearance


Establishing a Centre for Excellence in Colombia is a win for the government, the private sector, and the wider Colombian population. It will:

  • improve predictability and harmonise customs processing across all ports of entry
  • establish a single point of contact that will streamline administrative processes, eliminating duplicate work and reducing requests for information
  • enhance Customs’ knowledge of ruling on key automotive industry practices and importers’ specific commodities
  • reduce costs for both traders and government through quicker release times and fewer holds or examinations
  • improve the competitiveness of the Colombian automotive industry, allowing it to attract investment

The initiative has already improved information sharing and increased trust between the public and private sectors, as evidenced by the Alliance’s ground-breaking research into the impact of trust in international trade.

Monitoring and evaluation

We are evaluating the project’s impact. Key indicators include:

  • reduction in the number of valuation and classification disputes
  • reduction of time and cost for border clearance
  • savings per customer, generated partly by shorter average cargo release times at the border, which will lead to money saved on total transport and logistics costs

Private sector support

In Colombia, we are looking for businesses to get involved in a wide range of activities, including:

  • testing and piloting of the centre
  • assessing the Centre’s impact

Project Structure

Phase 1


Preparatory work and education process

Phase 2

In progress

Institutional set up and regulatory reforms

Phase 3

In progress

Testing, piloting and launching the centre

Phase 4


Supporting legal and regulatory reforms

Phase 5


Assessment of impact on the Colombian automotive industry

Get involved

Find out how to get involved in the wider Alliance by clicking the boxes to the right.

Contact us