Archivo de diciembre, 2012

GAFI takes Colombia off its blacklist

Viernes, diciembre 28th, 2012

The Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering, or GAFI, removed Colombia from its blacklist, which is an acknowledgement of the efforts the country has made to stop illegal financial activities and will also likely lead to an increase in foreign investment.

For the director of BASC (Business Alliance for Secure Commerce) in Antioquia, Anita Moreno, coming off the list makes Colombia trustworthy in the eyes of investors.

Workers unhappy with new minimum wage

Viernes, diciembre 28th, 2012

It took the Colombian Government longer to announce the increase in the national minimum wage salary that it did for workers’ unions to say they will file a suit with the Constitutional Court to fight it.

According to Julio Roberto Gómez, president of the General Labor Confederation (CGT), the 22,800 peso increase is offensive and laughable; “if we hadn’t seen the Minister of the Treasury with our own eyes we would think it was a joke, but unfortunately it’s a reality,” he said.

Gómez explained that the Government failed to consider the aspects that are supposed to be taken into account for the increase amount such as past and expected inflation rates and productivity; this will be the basis of any legal action taken by workers’ organizations moving forward.

Venezuelan doctor reveals details of President Chavez’ health

Viernes, diciembre 28th, 2012

From his office in Naples, Florida, Venezuelan doctor Jose Rafael Marquina reveals details of President Hugo Chavez’ health on a daily basis; he currently won’t reveal his sources but much of what he has reported in the recent past to his 193,000 Twitter followers has later been confirmed by the Venezuelan government.

Dr. Marquina said President Chávez knew his cancer was terminal ever since he was diagnosed a year and a half ago, but he kept it from the people of Venezuela because it might have cost him the presidential elections of last October.

Nine days after his most recent surgery in Cuba, where Chávez chose to undergo treatment, the doctor explained, “he still hasn’t surfaced to congratulate anyone for the regional elections.” For Dr. Marquina, Chávez cannot govern any longer and should not be expected to live beyond April of 2013.

No more cell phone signal inside prisons

Miércoles, diciembre 26th, 2012

Colombia’s Justice Minister, Ruth Stella Correa, confirmed that part of the plan to stop criminal activity from originating within the nation’s prisons is to block cell phone signals.

This is just the initial phase of a plan that had been waiting for legislation authorizing the Government to proceed. Correa said signals will be blocked in Itagui, Bellavista, El Pedregal and Puerto Triunfo in early January 2013.

AG will investigate Mayor Petro

Miércoles, diciembre 26th, 2012

Colombia’s Attorney General opened a preliminary investigation against Bogotá’s Mayor, Gustavo Petro, for alleged irregularities in the implementation of a new public trash collection plan for the city.

Attorney General, Eduardo Montealegre, said a “very high level official” will be looking at the complaint filed against Petro and determine whether or not the conduct he is accused of displaying has any “criminal relevance.”

Congress does its job, 33 bills move on for approval

Miércoles, diciembre 26th, 2012

Colombia’s Congress approved 33 bills for President Juan Manuel Santos to approve and make laws, hopefully before the New Year. The most urgent among them is the tributary reform, because otherwise it would not go into effect until 2014.

The number of articles included in each one determines the time Mr. Santos has to approve a law. When a bill has fewer than 20 articles, the president has six days to sign it; he has ten days if the bill has between 21 and 50 articles and as much as 20 days if the bill is even longer.

Medellín judge halts Oslo project in El Poblado

Viernes, diciembre 21st, 2012

A Medellín judge ordered   the suspension of the Oslo Priority Interest Housing Project, which had broken ground in the El Tesoro area of El Poblado, after concluding that there were irregularities committed by builders.

The precautionary decision came in response to complaints filed by attorneys for the Balcones de Padua building, a neighbor of the project site. The judge explained that the Oslo project “is not viable or legal (…)”

Transportation Ministry gets ready for holidays on the road

Viernes, diciembre 21st, 2012

Authorities believe nearly 2,6 million vehicles will be on the nation’s roads for the Christmas weekend.

According to the Commander of the Roads Police, General Francisco Patiño, “there are four actions that lead to the most accidents: (…) passing on a curve, not respecting double yellow lines, speeding and drunk driving.”

The Transportation Ministry has an action plan for 13 critical locations where there were 508 fatalities in November but explained that road conditions aren’t enough to ensure safety and drivers need to display good conduct behind the wheel and make sure vehicles are in good working condition.

Nacional waits for answers as it plans for next year

Viernes, diciembre 21st, 2012

Yesterday, the executives at the head of Atlético Nacional were waiting for answers from one goalkeeper, one midfielder and a forward in their attempt to build a strong and competitive team that is prepared to take on the challenges of the 2013 season, when expectations will be high not just for local tournaments but also for the South American Cup.

Farid Diaz’ contract renewal was being finalized yesterday, and the decision to sign Alejandro Bernal was also announced; in the case of John Valoy, the player was given the freedom to choose his future with either Nacional, Alianza Petrolera or a club in Bogotá, but odds are he will choose to stay where he is.

San Francisco hopes to bring residents home

Viernes, diciembre 21st, 2012

The residents of the municipality of San Francisco are hoping they can make 2013 a year free of anti-personnel mines and that this allows those who were forced to leave town to return to their homes.

With this in mind, the process of humanitarian demining will be intensified in 11 villages that, according to San Francisco Mayor, Luis Emigdio Escobar, are known for “the presence of mines along the paths. If we advance in the demining process, we can give our residents the chance to return.”

diciembre 2012
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