In its efforts to promote the island as a business hub, Invest Puerto Rico (InvestPR) has attracted more than $1,000 million in capital investments from approximately 2,500 new companies in the last five years of operation.
According to Ella Woger Neves, CEO of the organizationHowever, a large part of the results obtained are the product of efforts to promote Puerto Rico as an investment destination, particularly in the bioscience, technology, space and energy sectors.
“I am very excited and pleased with InvestPR’s results. I think that for such a new organization, because we have only been in business for five years, the results that we have received, the hiring commitments, the investment capital that we have achieved, are indicators of the credibility and positive work that the organization has done.Woger Nieves said.
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The same has been the case for the past five years InvestPR has secured commitments to create approximately 20,000 jobs on the island, of which 30% have already been employed.
to Humberto Mercader, Assistant Secretary for Strategic Affairs of the European Union Department of Economic Development and Trade (DDEC)Although the process of recruiting workers is progressing at a good pace, I realized that there was still a challenge in the availability of talent to fill the positions. However, he expressed confidence that a compromise could be reached.
“I think 30% is very reasonable for the first two or three years (for companies). Rarely can you say that 100% is achieved in the fifth year, perhaps it can happen in the sixth year, but that is not quite the case security Mercader, who confirmed this, said: “(In all honesty) we assume that this percentage will be completed as the fifth year approaches.” If companies do not meet their target, they are subject to penalties from DDEC.
Official Woger Neves stressed that many of the negotiations that began in the first year began to bear fruit after the second anniversary.
“Working in economic development is like a marathon,” Woger Nieves said. “The seeds you plant today will produce results one, two, or even three years from now.”For her part, the CEO of InvestPR said:
The successes of InvestPR’s first five years were made possible, largely due to the results of the last fiscal year, which was the most significant for the organization by attracting 564 new companies, equivalent to more than $416 million in capital. Investments and about 6,000 confirmed job opportunities.
In the current fiscal year, InvestPR aims to increase 600 new business attractions, $425 million in capital investments, and more than 5,000 job commitments.
In contrast, in fiscal year 2024, they will strengthen their campaigns in the sectors of bioscience, manufacturing, aerospace, technology, energy, professional services, tourism and even creative industries such as music production, Woger Neves noted.
Puerto Rico is generating more interest
The results, in Woger-Nives’ opinion, reflect the change in perception of Puerto Rico as an investment destination. “There are companies and businessmen who are considering having the island do business in other jurisdictions.”Woger Nieves said.
According to data provided by the organization, the probability of Puerto Rico being considered at the expense of other US jurisdictions among corporate executives rose from 2.4 in 2020, to 2.8 in 2023, a probability that was repeated at the international level.
However, InvestPR’s chief executive confirmed that they are working on initiatives that need to be addressed Visualize the business environment in Puerto Rico, as well as others Challenges such as talent supply, availability of industrial real estate and electrical power infrastructure.
InvestPR has focused on key US jurisdictions, such as New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, California and others, to carry Puerto Rico’s message.
But Woger-Neves highlighted that they will also direct efforts in Europe, Latin America and Asia. In this plan, InvestPR will lead a trade mission to India next November.
It should be noted that for the past few years, in addition to receiving its budget – which is barely around $5 million – it has been living on non-recurring federal funds, which is why it is developing a proposal that, based on the results presented on its fifth anniversary, would require an increase In the recurring rule.
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