As many have probably noticed we are based out of Dallas, Texas but also have an office in Lima, Peru. South America was a first choice to place a second office outside of the United States and there are a number of reasons why.
Most people have misconceptions about South American countries. People think countries in South America breed dishonest business practices. Economies are not balanced and technology is lacking. Third world is usually the name given to most countries in South America.
However, in the last decade since we have been working and traveling here things have changed tremendously. Technology has advanced rapidly, middle class has grown at an enormous rate. Businesses are learning that professionalism, honesty and global connections is what makes them grow. Access to products and services may have been a problem a decade ago but today we find that whatever exists in the United States can be found in Lima, Peru.
The cost of living remains much lower than the United States giving people opportunities to save and invest in small business. Since this is a moderate weather zone cooling and heating costs are virtually non-existent. City services such as garbage and water are half that of the United States. Property taxes are very low encouraging real estate investment. Regulations are lower than the United States allowing for small businesses to operate much more freely. Higher education has increased and remains very inexpensive compared to the United States. Food is extremely healthy and health care is very inexpensive and accessible to everyone without waiting on long lines.
Peru is also one of the leading suppliers of raw materials. Mining is a strong and growing industry that brings much wealth to Peru. Access to high speed internet is no longer an issue as 4G LTE spreads rapidly and cable internet connections in homes is becoming popular and offered at rates comparable to the United States.
Labor remains lower than the United States which allows for healthy global competition. Lima is a major shipping port for South America and contains one of the highest concentrations of population across the region.
The growth of South America is steady and very strong. As the author of this blog I have reason to believe that the misconception of “third world” will soon be history. What I see developing is “third world” culture mixed with high technology. You could describe it as cave men with smart phones but do not be fooled those cave men are creating and writing half the apps you use on your cell phones today. Before the developed world can blink they will realize how the developing world is not only catching up but in many ways going beyond.
Discussions here about South America is our goal. We are here to help businesses and individuals understand more about expats working and living in South America and invite your feedback, comments and questions.