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Peru 2015 | TELECOMS, IT & MEDIA | INTERVIEW

TBY talks to José Antonio Blanco, Chairman of inPERÚ, on past successes, promoting Peru abroad, and the importance of Asia as source of investment.

José Antonio Blanco
BIOGRAPHY
José Antonio Blanco is a graduate of Architecture and Urbanism at the Universidad Ricardo Palma in Lima, Peru. He has worked in several construction and real estate companies since 1998. He participated in the execution of more than 15 real estate projects. He is currently CEO of Actual Peru, a regional firm with presence in Chile, Colombia and Peru. He is responsible for developing five simultaneous housing estate projects in neighborhoods like Chorrillos, Surco, San Miguel, and San Isidro in Lima, Peru.

What was the initial motivation for founding inPERÚ, and how would you characterize the organization's progress so far in “exporting Peru to the world"?

The initial motivation was and still is to promote investment in our country. It is common knowledge that the fastest growing economies in the world have achieved such results due to years of significant investments—investments that have represented more than 25% of their GDP each year. inPERÚ has reached more than 6,000 investors with eight roadshows around the globe thus far and has visited almost 20 of the most important cities in the world.

The recent decline in mineral prices has led to a slowdown in the Peruvian economy. Has this led to a decline in international interest in Peru as an attractive investment destination?

The decline of mineral prices has affected our economy, and the mining industry in particular as it has seen a decrease in investments. Fortunately, our economy is not solely dependent on mining: it only constitutes one-third of our total exports and of these exports, 50% are mining products. Our mineral exports are diversified which provides a natural advantage in varying environments. We are ranked among the world's top five as an exporter of minerals such as gold, silver, copper, zinc, and lead. In the context of the global economy, we are still an attractive market to investors.

In 2015, inPERÚ's Road Show is focused on Asia (particularly China, Japan, and Korea). Why did inPERÚ choose Asia for this year and what is the importance of these markets for the Peruvian economy?

Our business model operates on the belief that we need to return to the regions we visit every one to two years. We were last in Asia two years ago, so now is a perfect time to revisit. Asia remains the fastest growing region, as countries like China have been very aggressive in acquiring companies around the world as part of its strategy to ensure enough resources for its growing population. Peru's largest mining, fishing and oil and gas companies are Chinese.

Which sectors of the Peruvian economy have attracted the most interest from international investors at recent inPERÚ events?

inPERÚ's approach is inclusive, meaning we present every possible business opportunity in our country without an emphasis on a specific industry. It is hard to deny that our lack of infrastructure is the most attractive opportunity for investors. Asia has a special interest because they have built everything over the last decade and now need to find new places to invest.

What makes Peru a good destination for international investors?

We present many attractive conditions for investors because our economy continues to grow, we have sound fiscal and monetary policies and constitutionally-protected investments. We are conveniently located and rich in natural resources. We also have a young population, and our middle class is expanding.

What are your goals for inPERÚ over the next year?

We need to keep revisiting the most important cities in the world while bringing large delegations comprised of both private and public representatives. We also need to ensure our association grows so that we can guarantee the necessary resources to remain sustainable over time, which will allow us to assist governments in the future, despite their political or economic status.