BOGOTA, July 29 (Reuters) - High levels of investment in Colombia’s economy including a $26 billion infrastructure program focused on transport will help to sustain the Andean nation’s quickening economic growth, Finance Minister Mauricio Cardenas said on Tuesday.
Cardenas said the infrastructure investment program, which still has outstanding financing needs, could add 1 percentage point to economic growth, which he said was averaging 5 percent. The economy has grown above 4 percent each year since 2010.
The minister said Colombia would seek financing for the projects internally and externally. He said a high level of investment in the economy in general, above 30 percent of GDP, was another factor that would help sustain its expansion.
Separately, he said that if peace negotiations the government is engaged in with leftist FARC rebels are successfully concluded, an end to conflict could add a further percentage point to average economic growth.
“Colombia can become a country that can grow at 7 percent a year with these initiatives,” Cardenas said, speaking at a meeting with a Japanese trade delegation headed by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. (Reporting by Peter Murphy; Editing by Eric Walsh)