Doing business

Business culture

Current business situation

President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski was elected in 2016 with a slim majority over rival Keiko Fujimori, whose party holds the balance of power in Congress. The former Peruvian prime minister and banker has an enormous breadth of private and public sector experience and he has committed to continue Peru’s pro-business and pro-trade stance as well as increasing investment in public infrastructure. Peru offers an ease of doing business ranking of 50 overall, out of 189 economies assessed by the World Bank, making Peru and Chile the easiest business climates of all South American economies.

Business culture

Initial correspondence with potential business partners should be in Spanish, as letters in English are more likely to be given lower priority.

The level of proficiency in English varies widely among Peruvian business executives - many understand and read more fluently than they are willing or able to speak, and therefore an interpreter may be useful.

Personal contacts are important in Peru and can make the difference between finding an open or a closed door.

Peruvians are formal and generally conservative when it comes to dress. Business attire for men is a suit/jacket and tie except for certain sectors such as design, mining engineers or those working in ITC. For women, business dress is usually a suit or jacket and skirt. Many corporations expect their staff to wear uniforms. Evening functions are similarly dressy unless advised otherwise. Business or social clubs often enforce very conservative dress codes not allowing men to remove jackets, wear jeans or insisting on ‘whites’ for the tennis courts.

Corruption may be encountered, however it is being actively combated by the government and is on the decline.

Setting up in Peru

Finding the right partner

Partnerships and agreements such as joint venture partners offer advantages for Australians wishing to operate in Peru.

Austrade Lima can assist with partner searches reducing the time taken to locate potential business contacts.

In market representation

Local distributors, agents or representatives can facilitate business however finding the appropriate person or company to represent your company’s goods and services requires market insight and knowledge.

Austrade Lima can assist with market representation via services which include due diligence, access to credit checking agencies and reference checks.

Banking and finance

Peru’s banking system is relatively modern and Lima is home to several multi-national banks including Scotia Bank, HSBC, Citibank, Standard Chartered, USB and BBVA. Banco de Credito (BCP) and Interbank are the largest domestic banks.

Correct documentation and resident papers will be required to open a bank account.

Peru works on a double currency system US dollar or Peruvian New Soles and accounts can be opened in either currency without any restriction on foreign currency.

Global financial services are also available in Lima.

Links and resources

Government, business and trade

Australia Peru Chamber of Commerce
Ministry of Economy and Finance
Ministry of Labour
Ministry of Mines and Energy
National Institute for the Defence of Competition and Protection of Intellectual Property 
Peru’s promotion agency

News and media

BN Americas
El Comercio 
Gestion
La Republica 
Peru this week
Radio Programas del Perú (RPP)
SEMANeconomica