Colombia 2017 | FINANCE | COLUMN

TBY talks to Jorge Alberto Zapata Builes General Manager, Coomeva Medicina Prepagada, on the sector.

Jorge Alberto Zapata Builes

What was the strategy behind Coomeva's recent partnership with US-based Christus Health?

For five years, we had been looking for a strategic international partner, and we found Christus, which basically invested in three branches. Through these three branches, Chirstus wants to strengthen its brand in Colombia, while Coomeva wants to strengthen its position in Mexico, Chile, Peru, and the US. This is something that will have a great impact in the next few years and we seek to build a long-term partnership.

What is your outlook on the level of interest from foreign investors in the sector?

We see a great deal of interest from companies around the world in Colombia's health insurance industry, both mandatory and voluntary additional insurance. Colombia has 48 million inhabitants, only 3 million of whom have voluntary health insurance. So there is a great deal of potential if we can change people's mindset in terms of health insurance. On the other hand, there is 100% coverage when it comes to mandatory insurance.