Invest in Colombia

Investment Opportunities in Santa Marta – Magdalena

Investment Map Santa Marta - Magdalena - Colombia


Santa Marta - Magdalena

  • Average Temperature: 28 ° C
  • Department Population 2017: 1,285,380 inhabitants
  • Capital city population 2017: 499,391 in habitants
  • GDP Department 2017: US $ 4,251,847 (Participation of 1.57% of the national GDP)
  • Department GDP per capita 2017: US $ 3,834
  • Department Area: 23,188 Km2
  • Capital city Area: 2,393.35 km2


Reasons To Invest

  • Connectivity:
    Santa Marta has a privileged location on the Caribbean Sea, next to the Sierra Nevada of Santa Marta.

It offers all means of transportation:

  • Terrestrial:
    Ruta del Sol, one of the most important road corridors in the country. It connects 9 departments that include important mining, agricultural, industrial, and largely populated areas of the country.
  • Fluvial:
    Navigability through the Magdalena River which crosses the country from north to south;
  • Railway:
    It is the only port in Colombia with a railway that connects to Chiriguana (Cesar), and soon to La Dorada (Caldas);
  • Maritime:
    Both a mmultimodale and multipurpose port which by being the deepest in the American continent, provides naturally deep draft. This allows it to have access to a wide market of customers thanks to the free trade agreements signed with several countries;
  • Air:
    A recently renovated airport with approximately 39 daily operations.
  • Quality of Life:
    Santa Marta is considered one of the best cities to live in Colombia according to the Ipsos survey 2018. Santa Marta is the capital of the Magdalena Department, and it is also the oldest city in Colombia. Thanks to its location, it has a large network of unique ecosystems and numerous beaches, most of them located inside natural reserves. Archaeological remains of the Tayrona culture and many other cultural and historical sites. Its dry climate is very beneficial for people with pulmonary or cardiac related health problems. It is also one of the cities with lowest violence rates in the country.
  • Business Infrastructure:
    Santa Marta has 4 free zones and 4 industrial parks that meet any type of costumer needs, a railway, an international airport, and a port which has a naturally deep draft that benefits the mobilization and loading of ships.
  • Labour force:
    The Magdalena department is among the 4 that most contribute to the Economically Active Population (PEA) at the Colombian Caribbean with a participation of 11.8%. Since 2016, Santa Marta, the capital of the Magdalena Department has 122 qualified programs, 7 of which are accredited for high quality standards. It has a Public University (Universidad del Magdalena) which was accredited for high quality standards by the National Ministry of Education.

Potential Sectors

  • Manufacturing: Agroindustry and construction.
  • Services: Logistics, hotel and tourism.


Success Stories

  • METROKIA: 2016 - The company that imports KIA vehicles manufactured in Slovakia, transported to Colombia by the Hyundai Glovis shipping company through the Port of Santa Marta, has generated more than 150 direct jobs since its installation in the city on 2016. It has also activated the possibility of generating transshipment of vehicles to other countries in South America.
  • HOTEL MERCURE: 2015 - Accor Hotels, one of the largest hotel chains in the world, opened the first Mercure hotel in Colombia at the city of Santa Marta, joining the other five hotels the group has in the country with the Sofitel and Ibis brands, and generating more than 60 direct jobs in the city. The project was developed by Hecol, and the private equity fund Bricapital was in charge of the investment.
  • HOTEL AC BY MARRIOT: 2018 - With an approximate investment of 13 million dollars, the AC by Marriot brand opened its doors in Santa Marta on 2018 run by OXO, a hotel operator, making a significant contribution to the city's hotel capacity, especially to its objective market which are corporate traveler's. Local workforce was used for its construction in more than 90% of the cases, and 70 direct jobs were created to run the hotel which were filled mostly by people from the region.
  • HOTEL HILTON GARDEN INN: 2018 - With an investment of more than 15 million dollars, the famous and well-known hotel chain inaugurated its Hilton Garden Inn Hotel in Santa Marta on March 2018, generating more than 60 direct jobs, as well as attracting the corporate market to the city.
  • VIVA AIR: 2018 - The airline has established Santa Marta as its third base of operations nationwide. It has a projection of transporting more than 1.1 million passengers in the first year and generating a market growth of more than 30 %, encouraging the creation of more direct and indirect jobs.
  • JERÓNIMO MARTINS COLOMBIA (ARA): 2016 - This Portuguese multinational has opened more than 10 stores around the city.

Free Trade Zone Tayrona

Zona Franca Tayrona S.A. is an operator that directs, manages, supervises and promotes the service of delivery and exit of merchandise, lot and warehouse sales, leasing, and civil work construction. Known for the outstanding quality of its services, contributing to the conservation of the environment, promoting the health of its workers; its contribution to the sustainable development of the region and its commitment to the continuous improvement of its processes.

It offers an agile service at an operational level, based on the in-depth knowledge of current legal customs regulations, with a committed and qualified staff to exercise the controlling and auditing function that is required. That is why the organization is recognized by its high standards related to time, advice and training in Franco regime, as well as the control and verification of inventories.

It is also known for its outstanding logistical work, which was ratified by achieving the Logistical and Industrial Merit Prize, emphasizing on the contributions made to the city such as the increase of direct and indirect jobs, and direct foreign investment.

On the other hand, it has been recognized as an Emerging Star for the global free trade zones, by providing benefits such as desired infrastructure and improvement of the offer through reinvestments and extensions, and thanks to the effort to improve its corporate social policy ; Gold category at the Century International Quality Hunter Award, due to its leadership, quality, innovation and excellence, and Merito Empresarial Simón Bolívar for its active and voluntary contribution to social, economic and environmental service at the project´s area of influence and to society in general.



Yudy Uribe berrio
Commercial Manager
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+57 (5) 436 61 00 ext.: 100



Santa Marta Free Trade Zone

It is a large area where multiple companies can be installed, allowing easy communication with the rest of the country due to its excellent location right next to the Troncal del Caribe highway. In addition, it is only 8 km away from the port and 10 km from the airport. It offers all the franco regime tax and customs benefits in Colombia, as well as all the free trade agreements Colombia shares with other countries. It has an extensive infrastructure such as warehouses, patios, offices, green areas, etc., in order to carry out business in the best environment.

Gustavo Amador Cortés
General Manager
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Sandra Serrano Meléndez
Assistant Administrative Manager
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Manuel Mercado garcía
Assistant Operations Manager
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Phone: +57 (5) 430 06 39 - 430 13 14 EXT 22 - 25


Free Trade Zone Las Americas

Free Zone Las Américas seeks to promote and develop an agroindustry cluster of goods and services aimed at the internal and external markets. Likewise, it is committed to ensure that its facilities acquire the capacity to host companies from various sectors such as: automotive, cosmetics, pharmaceutical, agroindustry, oil, and logistics among others.
Strategically located at km 16th at the Via Alterna to the port of Santa Marta, Ruta del Sol II.

  • 7 km from the Port Terminal
  • 17 km from Simón Bolívar International Airport
  • Total area of 315,000m2, plus an expansion area of 120,000 m2

Julio Mauricio González Acosta
Commercial Manager
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+57 (5) 432 8125

Km. 16 Via Alterna al Puerto - Ruta del Soll II Santa Marta, Magdalena, Colombia your social media marketing partner


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