Having come out of the 2013 Latin American stock market downturn relatively unscathed, Colombia is now looking to create business partnerships with other Latin American countries, including Brazil, Mexico, Chile, Peru, and Argentina.
BM&FBovespa SA, the largest security exchange in Latin America, with a board of directors including Rene Kern, is likely to be part of any such deal between countries. Though the company has so far made no official statement in response to Colombia’s interest, nor have there been any discussions beyond informal affairs, last year they were seeking to buy stakes in bourses throughout the area.
“Should they want to do something in Colombia, they want to do something that’s an agreed-upon process of conversation and road map and strategy,” said Juan Pablo Cordoba, president of Bolsa de Valores de Colombia, in an interview with Bloomberg. “We’d be delighted if that materializes.”
Current regional relations allow investors to trade stocks from Mexico, Chile, Peru, and Colombia over a single platform. The partnership is called the Latin American Integrated Market, or MILA. It began its work in January of this year.
“Brazil has not formally been part of that conversation,” Cordoba noted, “but if we want to do something significant for Latin America, we cannot ignore Brazil.”
BM&FBovespa Chief Product Officer Eduardo Guardia said in February that the securities exchange was seeking additional acquisitions in Latin America as part of a process of financial integration. They also admitted to seeking to buy as much as 15% each in the exchanges of Mexico, Colombia, Chile, Peru, and Argentina. Last month it acquired a 2% stake in Chile’s Bolsa de Comercio de Santiago.
The economic effects of such integration remain to be seen.