This does not only include the construction of new installations, but the expansion and renovation of many of the lodging centers already established in the country.
For a while now the availability of rooms (which was over 5,694 in July 2008) is now lacking and according tot hte PanamaTourism Authority (ATP) 1,188 new rooms will be available at hotel that are already registered. This year the investment surpasses $117.7 million.
Hotel occupancy in Panama has dropped by two percentage points in the first months of the year, and it is estimated that by 2012 the occupancy rate will fall to 38%.
In the race for growth between the number of tourists arriving in Panama, and the supply of available beds, the latter is winning, and it is estimated that it wont be until 2016 that the current occupancy rates are achieved again.
Hotels in Panama City continue to show a high occupation rate.
During the first four months of the year the hotel occupation rate was 66.5 percent, and rises to 78.7 percent for hotels with more than 100 room or special services, according to the statistics department of the Panamanian Tourist Institute.
Businesses that operate in the northern zone of the country can access lines of credit in order to invest in or expand their operations.
Daniel Choto writes in an article on Elsalvador.com: "Starting now, businesses interested in investing in or expanding their projects in the northern zone of the country have a new ally, the Northern Development Trust Fund (Fidenorte, acronym in Spanish) due to the $17 million allocated yesterday by Fomilenio and Banco Multisectorial de Inversiones (BMI).
During the first seven months of 2012, occupancy was down 7% compared to the same period in 2011, while the figure for July 2012 was 14% lower than in July last year.
The number of visitors to Panama has not decreased, so the decline in the number of occupied hotel rooms is explained by the continuous addition of new hotels, with beds being added that end up unoccupied, especially in the Panamanian capital.
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