According to a balance made by the National Federation of Merchants (Fenalco) on the events that most marked the direction of the country's business in 2020, especially those related to trade and related sectors, the main result was that there was a return to business. neighborhood.

According to the union, attention to purchases was focused on the so-called traditional channel and the neighborhood stores were the jewel in the crown, since more than 45 % of Colombians bought the basic products of the family basket in these businesses.

In turn, the hard discounters or discount stores made more opportunities visible, since it was estimated that there should be a store of this type less than 15 minutes from a residential area.

In a union discussion on economic prospects, it was indicated that favorable trends for neighborhood and discount stores provide better opportunities for small and medium-sized companies (SMEs) to become providers of this type of business.

On the other hand, it was indicated that the so-called department stores incorporated new categories and increased the sales of some that were relegated, such as kitchen items. In addition, the pandemic caused a tumble in the wardrobes and the sales of casual clothing and pajamas increased considerably, Fenalco said, but without specifying the magnitude of the increase.

The previous year, cash was the most relevant means of payment and additionally there was a re-equipment of the home, because the purchase of items to meet the needs that arise inside the homes increased, and the sale of pet products soared, according to the observations of the union.

November was the most positive month for the economy in 2020, leaving the holiday season in the background, which historically generated great expectations and motivation for consumers. "The real estate, financial sector and primary activities such as agriculture, helped the shock to be less severe and did not suffer as drastic effects as those of other activities," it was indicated.

Among the projections for 2021, Fenalco expects economic growth to be between 4.5 % and 5.5 %, and warns that there will be a legislative marathon, since 24 bills proposed by the Government are estimated for June 2021, between which is the regulation of work at home, health reform, comprehensive immigration policy, the so-called Border Law, the Pacific Alliance treaty, the Flagging Law and life imprisonment.

Likewise, a new tax reform that on average is approved every 1.5 years and the last one was Law 2010 of 2019.

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