The Costa Rican Investment Promotion Agency (CINDE), indicated that 29 new foreign investment projects that arrived in the country in the high technology services sector, medical devices and advanced manufacturing, in conjunction with the companies already installed, generated 5,730 new jobs and US $304.6 million during 2009.
According to CINDE's President, Alberto Trejos, this new creation of jobs played a part in minimizing Costa Rica's drop in employment as a result of the crisis.
“From the beginning of 2009 we knew it would be a year full of challenges; but also that it would offer opportunities, especially in the medical devices sector and the services sub-sector; given that companies were, for the most part, seeking countries where they could specifically improve efficiency, an element that Costa Rica offers. We are satisfied with the results achieved at the close of the year because, in spite of the difficult international context, multinational companies became important sources of employment thereby reducing the decline in employment that Costa Rica experienced as a result of the crisis”, he stated.
Of the 29 new inward investment projects, 21 correspond to new companies that will automatically initiate their operations in the country and eight are related to foreign companies that established operation contracts with certain companies already working in Costa Rica.
For the fifth consecutive year, the services sector experienced the greatest dynamism both in number of new companies as well as in generating jobs. This sector is responsible for 80% (4 586) of the jobs generated by the three sectors in which CINDE specializes.
According to the Director General of CINDE, Gabriela Llobet, “...the Services Sector has consolidated as one of the largest employers in our country. As a result of the growth and the good results achieved during the last decade by the companies already established; increasingly; the more complex level of processes carried out, places Costa Rica in the world map as an extremely competitive destination for this industry”.
Among the companies included in the services sector there are contact services operations, shared services, software design, back office operations and recruiting and human resource management undertakings that originate mostly in the United States, but also two companies whose home offices are located in India and France (WNS and Teleperformance).
In turn, the medical devices sector attracted six new projects. Among them, Establishment Biotech dedicated to the production of implants (mammary, facial, etc.) stands out and will invest US $10 million in its new plant in Costa Rica.
Furthermore, in this sector the companies Bentec (silicone devices) and Merrill´s Packaging (thermoformed packaging) took the decision to initiate operations in the country to supply the businesses already established. Their operations will strengthen the medical cluster and it is the direct result of the strategy to attract significant providers that CINDE has been developing during the last two years.
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The transnational has announced the expansion of its service center in Calle Blancos which will go from occupying 3,000 m² to 7,000 m².
"With this, the total area occupied by the company in Costa Rica at the end of 2013 will be around 23,000 m². Amazon has three service centers in Costa Rica," explained the company.
Transnational services companies are looking to hire 8,000 more employees this year in Costa Rica, said Gabriela Llobet, head of the Costa Rican Coalition for Development Initiatives.
Llobet was speaking at a seminar on the services sector organized in conjunction with the Central American Business Management Institute (Incae).
During 2012 companies that set up in the country, together with established multinationals, generated more than $574 million.
A statement from the Costa Rican Coalition for Development of Initiatives (CINDE) reads:
Costa Rica surpasses record for third consecutive year in attracting foreign direct investment from high-tech companies.
In 2013 43 foreign high technology companies invested in the country.
From a press release issued by the Costa Rican Coalition for Development Initiatives (CINDE):
Costa Rica ended 2013 with good news in the area of attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in high technology and light manufacturing.