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The Andean Community of Nations’ Deepening Integration


The Andean Community of Nations is a regional organization that includes Bolivia and Ecuador. It has taken a variety of steps to improve integration among its members in 2021. 

A Biz Latin Hub graphic of a map of the Andean Community of Nations (CAN)
The Andean Community of Nations – CAN

This is not just a good thing for the local population, but it also benefits businesses that operate in the members countries. The integration facilitates international expansion and cross-border commerce.

The Andean Community was established in 1969 to implement a single market that is based on European principles. It aims at bringing together the populations and economies of its members.

SEE ALSO 5 Advantages of Doing Business in Bolivia

Chile and Venezuela had been both members of CAN in the past, but Chile was removed three years ago after a coup brutally executed in 1973. 

Colombia, Peru, and Chile are now associated via the Pacific Alliance — a decade-old association that also includes Mexico — while Bolivia and Ecuador each have preferential trade agreements in place with the Southern Cone nation.  

Venezuela, which was occupied by the coup in Chile in 1973, joined the Andean Community of Nations that same year. The country then left in 2006 to rejoin the Andean Community of Nations. the Southern Common Market (Mercosur) — from which it has since been suspended.

Although the Andean Community has been around for more than 50 years, they have recently taken a variety of steps to improve integration among its members.

Three things CAN did in the last few months to improve integration are highlighted below.

If you’re interested in business opportunities in the Andean Community and/or are active in it, contact us todayLearn more about our back-office integration services and how they can assist you. 

The Andean Community has become more cohesive in 3 ways

A number of steps have been taken in recent months to increase integration in the Andean Community of Nations.

  1. Freedom of movement increased 

This August the Andean Community introduced a new freedom of movement statute — known officially as ‘Decision 878.’ That was declared an “historical landmark”Jorge Hernando Pedraza is the Secretary General of CAN. This move is not the first to increase mobility for the over 110 million residents in four countries.

Those moves have included the establishment of the Andean Passport — allowing CAN member nation citizens to travel within the region using only their national ID cards.

However, Decision 878 was the biggest move in freedom of movement. It allowed citizens of all member nations to travel to any other country as tourists for 180 days each year, without needing a visa.

The system also allows for easier pathways to permanent and temporary residency. Workers can move among member countries to find employment if they are able to prove that they have work or any other source of income.

  1. Regional protection of intellectual property

The Andean Community will be opening its doors in October announced the launch of an intellectual property (IP) databaseAllows for searches on trademarks or brands that are registered in all four sub-regions. 

Known as ‘CAN TMview’ the database forms part of a European Union-led initiative known as IP Key Latin America, that is intended to develop more stringent IP protection across the region.

Although IP registered only in Colombia and Peru were added to the new database when it was launched, Ecuadorean IP were expected to be included over the next few months. Bolivia was currently arranging their inclusion.

IP from the four nations involved in this project will ultimately be easy to search. The leaders of the project highlight the benefits it brings for regional cohesion as well as the need to encourage foreign direct investments (FDI) from smaller and larger enterprises located within the European Union.

  1. Reduction of roaming costs for mobile phones
A stock image of a woman on a phone representing someone from the Andean Community of Nations (CAN) speaking without incurring roaming charges
In Canada, mobile roaming fees will be eliminated

The Andean Community announced in November that it would allow people to move among the four states within the Andean Community. mobile roaming charges would be eliminated — echoing a similar measure introduced in the EU a few years before.

After originally being agreed to in Decision 854 of January 2020, the elimination of roaming fees among CAN countries will take effect on January 20, 2022.

The Andean Committee of Telecommunications Authorities oversees the elimination of roaming fees. However, this only applies to pre-paid phones and phones that are under contract.

The recent CAATEL approval of the measure was celebrated widely as a significant step in digital integration. would “reinforce Andean identity.”

What is CAN integration for business?

It is beneficial for the people of the Andean community as well as for the businesses that operate within it. 

Improved mobility not only gives workers access to opportunities in other member countries, but also allows businesses operating within the subregion to move their talent more efficiently.

It has proved to be an asset for EU businesses and it should also bring benefits to Andean companies.

This will encourage investors to consider the region and encourage businesses operating in one of the member states to pay more attention to other markets when expanding to new markets.

It will only get stronger if there are moves to standardize IP claims across the region. A future goal is to make IP claims that have been enforced in all four countries.

Cross-border travel will be made easier by the removal of roaming fees for mobile phones. The Andean Community of Nations’ ongoing integration efforts will continue to increase the number of businesses that look towards the bloc.

The dividends can be felt by everyone, but it will be especially beneficial for Bolivia and Ecuador since Colombia and Peru have been two of the top destinations in the region.

Biz Latin Hub is able to assist with doing business within the Andean Community of Nations

Biz Latin Hub has offices in Bolivia and Ecuador as well as Ecuador and Peru. This means that we can help you expand your business within the Andean Community of Nations.

The complete portfolio of services we offer back-office includes company formation, accounting & taxation, legal services, visa processing, and hiring & PEOThey can tailor-make integrated service packages for every customer’s specific needs. 

We have teams in 16 Latin American and Caribbean markets, and we specialize in the entry and operation of multi-jurisdictional markets throughout the region.

Contact us todayLearn more about our support to you in doing business within the Andean Communities

Also, you can read more about our team and expert authors.

Key services offered by BLH including legal services, accounting & taxation, hiring & PEO, due diligence, tax advisory, and visa processing
Biz Latin Hub provides key services

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