Archivo de noviembre, 2012

First contracts open for bids in May

Martes, noviembre 27th, 2012

Bonus, the investment bank providing financial advice and structure for the Prosperity Expressways, must decide if it will put six or seven contracts out to tender by March of 2013.

In a project of this magnitude, said manager Federico Restrepo, the risks must be distributed among several contracts as opposed to just one. The total cost of the Expressways will be 13,1 billion pesos.

Colombia will not engage in verbal confrontation with Nicaragua

Martes, noviembre 27th, 2012

Nicaraguan President, Daniel Ortega, announced that his National Army has sovereignty over the waters that, according to the ruling from the International Court of Justice, are now Nicaraguan territory.

The Colombian Government, however, said it will not engage in a verbal confrontation with Nicaragua and is currently “weighing the options” in the matter.

Nothing is much clearer 23 years later

Lunes, noviembre 26th, 2012

On November 27th of 1989 an explosion at an altitude of 13,000ft took 107 lives. Authorities believe druglord Pablo Escobar was attempting to assassinate then-presidential candidate, Cesar Gaviria, who never boarded the flight. The explosives were likely carried on board by an unsuspecting passenger.

Today Federico Arellano is the attorney for 50 of the victims, who are still hoping for but have yet to see any kind of reparation. Arellano’s biggest accomplishment in the case thus far was three years ago, when the act was deemed a crime against humanity, which kept it from being subject to the statute of limitations.

Medellín sets out to improve air quality

Lunes, noviembre 26th, 2012

As the most industrialized and populated city in the Aburrá Valley, not to mention the city with the most vehicles on the streets, Medellín also has the highest levels of pollution, especially in the downtown area.

According to an inventory of environmental contaminants, mobile sources are the biggest culprits but local authorities are determined to make changes that will improve the quality of the air.

Some of those measures include improving fuel quality, offering sustainable means of transportation as well as encouraging the use of non-motorized alternatives like bicycles; local universities and other entities will participate in monitoring air quality in nine municipalities.

Infrastructure needs at least 20 billion

Viernes, noviembre 23rd, 2012

For Colombia to catch up in terms of infrastructure, an annual investment of at least 20 billion pesos is required, according to an infrastructure study developed by Fedesarrollo for the Colombia Chamber of Infrastructure (CCI). The document claims that investment needs to be 3,1 percent of the country’s GDP by the year 2020 in order to improve competitiveness as more free trade agreements go into effect.

No male motorcycle passengers as of November 30

Viernes, noviembre 23rd, 2012

Only a few details remain before the ten mayors of Medellín’s Metropolitan Area sign the decrees formally prohibiting male passengers on motorcycles, a measure that will be in effect between November 30th of this year until the same day next year, possibly extended after results are analyzed. Violators will be fined 284,400 pesos and only emergency responders are excluded from the restriction.

Many drivers of motorcycles are upset over the measure and feel the effects will be inconvenient as well as expensive; others feel the added safety and sense of security are worth it, as many crimes are committed by male passengers on motorcycles.

Master Vásquez offended over mural incident

Viernes, noviembre 23rd, 2012

Master painter Ramón Vásquez is deeply offended by the removal of a mural he created at the headquarters of the Metropolitan Police as a tribute to the National Police back in 1994. “I never imagined a commander could be so ignorant as to erase a mural without knowing what it meant or how it was donated,” he said referring to current Police Commander, General Yesid Vásquez.

Meanwhile Vásquez said there was severe water damage to the wall where the mural was and he, being unaware of the painting’s significance, failed to address it with the artist or a curator. He admitted to the mistake and apologized.

45 municipalities will get education parks

Miércoles, noviembre 21st, 2012

The ceremony to announce the winners of a new education park was almost like a reality show, with hopefuls waiting anxiously for the moment when the towns with the best proposals would be revealed. Initially only 40 were going to be selected, from among 108 proposals, but judges felt it was necessary to take an additional five into consideration.

The Mayor of Alejandría was the happiest, the loudest fans were from Santa Rosa de Osos, the people from Peque celebrated the most, but none were more anxious than the Governor of Antioquia, Sergio Fajardo. Other winners include San Luis, Titiribí, Puerto Triunfo, El Retiro, Girardota, La Pintada, Santa Fe de Antioquia, Tarso, Sabanalarga, and Marinilla. Fajardo said he hopes to gather up the funds to build 80 education parks and begin construction by mid-2013.

Colombia will continue to defend its sovereignty

Miércoles, noviembre 21st, 2012

The presence of six Colombian warships on the 82nd meridian three days after the International Court of Justice made its ruling in the dispute between Colombia and Nicaragua sparked a reaction from the Nicaraguan Army, who claimed “it too can push it to the limit” and warned Colombia that, if it finds Colombian ships in territory that now belongs to Nicaragua, they will have to leave.

Colombia’s Foreign Relations Minister, Maria Angela Holguín, said the Government is planning a new judicial strategy to sort out what could easily be the most difficult situation the country has ever faced in terms of sovereignty.

Holguín said Colombia will be asking Costa Rica, Panama, Jamaica and the United States for advice and assistance and the option of backing out of the Pact of Bogotá is still on the table.

Colombia not happy with ICJ ruling

Lunes, noviembre 19th, 2012

The International Court of Justice confirmed Colombia’s sovereignty over the archipelago of San Andres and seven keys in the Caribbean, but took away a considerable portion of maritime territory, which will have an effect on Colombian fishing activities and hydrocarbon exploration.

“In drawing a single maritime boundary,” President Santos said, “the Court made serious mistakes (…) that will affect us negatively.” The decision also leaves Quitasueño and Serrana as Colombian enclaves in Nicaraguan waters.

President Santos said he is planning to meet with the group of people who defended Colombia in the case to study further options but, according to experts, the ruling is indisputable and the only option remaining for Colombia is to request a revision, in which case the Court could take another ten years to respond.

noviembre 2012
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