Panama’s economy surges, especially in foreign investment – Weekly News Roundup, June 19th.

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Panama’s Economy Grew 5.9% in the First Quarter.

Despite a slow 2014, Panama’s been off to a great start economically in 2015. It’s a critical point in the Varela administration to show sustainable progress, and so far this is a good sign.

Panama’s economy grew 5.9 percent in the first quarter compared with the same period in 2014, driven by construction activity and the service sector, the economy ministry said on Monday. The government predicts that the Central American economy will grow by between six and seven percent in 2015.

Source: Reuters


Panama: Over Two Billion Dollars in Ports Investment.

Investment is on the rise in Panama, and obviously, one of the biggest drivers is the Canal and its subsidiaries. Not only does this mean big business for shipping companies and imports, but it’s also revving up for a huge impact on the ports.

In statements to Prensa Latina, the Director of Maritime and Port Affairs in that regional institution, Jose Dopeso, said the privileged geographic location of the Panama Canal allowed to develop a shuttle center that moves around 85 percent of the cargo arriving to the country’s ports.

When referring to competitiveness, he assured these operations exceed those carried out in the Interoceanic way and between the posible rivals due to the volumen they move daily and mentioned the ports of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Cartagena, Colombia and Mariel, Cuba in the future.

Source: La Prensa Latina


Foreign investment surges 32.2 pct. in Panama

Foreign and offshore investment in Panama is big, and 2015 is proving to be a banner year so far. In fact, foreign investment is so strong, it’ starting to climb to one of the biggest contributing economic growth factors in Panama; and that means big business.

Foreign direct investment (FDI) totaled $1.7 billion in Panama in the first quarter, up 32.2 percent from the same period in 2014, the National Institute of Statistics and Census, or INEC, reported. Foreign capital flowed mainly into hotels, banks, real estate, electricity generation, commerce and manufacturing, the INEC said.

Some 65 percent of FDI in Panama comes from reinvested profits, while 22 percent comes from purchases of Panamanian companies’ shares by investors based overseas, the INEC said.

Source: Fox News Latino

Copa Inches Further Towards Asia Connections With New San Francisco Direct Flight

Copa Airlines continues to grow its fleet, and its bottom line, as they add yet another non-stop location to their schedule. Earlier this month, Copa announced extending direct service to San Francisco. But the biggest benefit may not by the end location, but instead from the connection. Here’s why, from one of our recent blog posts:

San Francisco may be known as more of a tourism hub than a business hub, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. The San Francisco bay area, specifically Silicon Valley, is home to the largest concentration of tech companies, most of which do a significant amount of business with Asia, Europe, and the Americas. As an Asian connection hub, San Francisco is considered the gateway for Eastern travel for many in the US, with Seattle and Los Angeles following right behind. Latin America, on the other hand, has very few direct flights to Asia, and Panama currently has none.

Most Latin Americans who fly to Asia have to go through Los Angeles, Mexico City (albeit very limited, and only to China), or Sao Paulo. With Panama adding a San Francisco route, not only Panamanians, but other Latin American business travelers can now connect through SFO by way of PTY. This saves them time, money, and will be a huge advantage in marketing Copa’s latest non-stop destination.

Read more about Copa Airline’s direct flight to SFO

About Manoj Chatlani

Manoj Chatlani is a Senior Partner at POLS Attorneys, a full-service law firm in Panama City, Panama. Specializing in offshore services, including asset protection, estate planning, offshore banking, and offshore corporations, as well as Panama immigration and real estate transactions, POLS Attorneys offers clients a streamlined solution to all their Panama legal needs. Manoj is a Panamanian lawyer and holds a law degree from USMA and earned a Masters in Communication Law and Panama Tax law.

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