UPDATE 2-Colombia triples trade surplus in 2009

(Adds details, 2008 surplus figure)

BOGOTA, Feb 16 (BestGrowthStock) – Colombia more than tripled its
trade surplus last year to $1.66 billion as imports fell by
17.1 percent to $32.89 billion compared with 2008, the
government said on Tuesday.

The Andean country, the world’s No. 3 coffee exporter and
increasingly a top South American oil producer, reported a
surplus of $470.5 million in 2008.

The positive balance was generated by increasing surpluses
with the United States at $3.85 billion, the Netherlands at
$1.1 billion and the United Kingdom at $489 million, the DANE
statistics agency said in a statement.

In December, Colombia registered a trade surplus of $293
million while imports fell 0.1 percent compared with the same
month a year earlier, the DANE said.

Colombia’s central bank expects economic growth of just
above zero for 2009 and a rebound of around 2 to 4 percent for
this year as the Andean country recovers from the impact of the
global financial crisis.

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(Reporting by Nelson Bocanegra in Bogota; writing by
Patrick Markey; Editing by Dan Grebler)

UPDATE 2-Colombia triples trade surplus in 2009