Banco Colpatria in Bogotá, including whether there were threats by the FARC against employees in 1998 and the responsibilities of the Special Products department (1998 to Sept. 2002) [COL38999.E]

The following information is additional to that found in COL37203.E of 18 July 2001.

In April 1995, Colpatria ARP was commercialized and specialized in workers' compensation and health insurance, an area previously under the exclusive management of the Institute of Social Security (Instituto de Seguros Sociales) (Colpatria 2002a). In October 1998, the Banco Colpatria was merged with the Corporación Upac Colpatria thus creating the Red Multibanca Colpatria (ibid.). In 2000, the Spanish bank Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria (BBVA) amalgamated two institutions of pension funds it owned in Colombia into one financial entity: Colpatria and Horizonte (ibid.; Radio Caracol 10 May 2000). According to the BBVA, the name of the pension fund institution would be called BBVA Horizonte (ibid.).

The Website of Colpatria lists 89 offices in Bogotá affiliated to Colpatria (2002b). The network includes branches of the Red Multibanca Colpatria and Colpatria ARP, as well as securities, health and construction offices (Colpatria 2002b). The Website, while not providing any information on a "Special Products" department, does list a number of financial products (2000c). Personal services (personas naturales) include savings, credit, investment, health, securities, as well as electronic and construction services (ibid.). Business products (productos empresariales) include deposits, electronic and credit products, investment, social security and health (ibid.). Credit cards, electronic credit cards and e-money are also among the products offered by the bank (ibid.).

No reports on whether employees of Colpatria were the targets of the FARC in 1998 could be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate. Attempts to obtain information from the main branch of Colpatria in Bogotá were unsuccessful within the time constraints of this Response.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum. Please find below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.


Colpatria. 2002a. "Reseña Histórica." [Accessed 27 Sept. 2002]

Colpatria. 2002b. " Nuestra Red - Lista Oficinas." [Accessed 27 Sept. 2002]

Colpatria. 2000c. "Bienvenido a" [Accessed 27 Sept. 2002]

Radio Caracol. 10 May 2000. "Se fusionan Colpatria y Horizonte." [Accessed 26 Sept. 2002]

Additional Sources Consulted

Country Report on Human Rights Practices for 1998. 1999.

IRB Databases

Latinamerica Press [Lima]. 1998.

Latin American Regional Reports: Southern Cone Report [London]. 1998.


World News Connection (WNC)

Internet sites, including:

Actualidad Colombiana [Bogotá]. Search engine.

Amnesty International


El Espectador [Bogotá]

Human Rights Watch

El Tiempo [Bogotá]. Search engine.

Search Engines: