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QCOSTARICA (Prensa Latina) The 19th Conference of Duty Free Zones of the region confirmed that job creation and added value characterize these industrial parcels in today’s Latin America.

Latin America, the Caribbean and Spain conform the area that creates the Association of Duty-Free Zones of the Americas (AZFA, acronym in Spanish), whose executive director, Camila Moreno, highlighted in dialogue the excellence of the gathering recently concluded in this capital.

AZFA is a regional guild that already groups 17 countries, four more than those represented a year ago, underlined the executive of Colombian origin.

In Latin America operate almost 400 duty-free zones, 12.5 percent of the world total, in which the eight thousand enterprises installed inside them give direct employment to over 900 thousand persons.

At world level, some 130 countries have from three thousand 500 to four thousand duty-free zones that give jobs to 100 million persons, two percent of active population, detailed Samir Hamrouni, executive director of the World Duty-Free Zones.

After describing as excellent the result of the Managua Conference, Camila Moreno underlined the importance being conferred now to these type of events by some of the main international economic institutions.

She quoted the case of the presence in the Nicaraguan capital of directives of the World Trade Organization (WTO), the Economic Commission for Latin America (Eclac) and the Interamerican Development Bank (IDB), who participated in four panels during the theoretical sessions on Thursday and Friday.

The concretion of strategic alliances between users and operators of duty-free zones and the participation of officials from several governments of the region, which now are in the inventory of positive actions achieved by the meeting, considered Moreno.

Álvaro Baltodano, presidential adviser for issues on investment and exports in Nicaragua, explained his country walks toward developing a new strategy in the sector of duty-free zone that allows for attracting better investments.

He put the example of the textile industry, which at this moment manufactures and exports clothing, but the intention is to give added value to the production of inputs like thread and buttons to complete the productive chain.