China Opens its Market to Panamanian Free Trade Zones

A market of one billion consumers has been opened up to products that are manufactured, processed, assembled or finished in Panamanian Free Trade Zones, without requirements for having value added locally.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Companies under the free zone regime in Panama are offering local and foreign companies the ability to export to China under the special conditions that govern them, with the aim of achieving the high production volumes required.

Products which are manufactured, processed, assembled or finished in processing zones in Panama may enter China, according to a statement released by the Asian government to its Panamanian counterpart. reports that "Free Zones Association of Panama (Azofrap) have already been in contact with U.S. and Latin American companies, among others, and are offering the opportunity to companies in Panama who are interested in exporting to China."

"Obviously, there is an important detail, which is that exporting to China requires large volumes and we are promoting the integration of international value chains, where business groups established in Panama composed of one or two companies join to assemble products and export them to China," noted Ricardo Muñoz Tejeira, president of Azofrap.

More on this topic

Guatemala: Controls on Free Zone Companies

April 2017

The new law requires companies operating under the regime to report to the ministries of Labor and Economy data on wages paid and investments made.

Government Agreement 52-2017 published in the newspaper Diario de Centroamérica details the information that must be provided by companies registered under the free zone regime. 

Panama Needs More Free Zones  

November 2014

For companies in the sector, the country has the right conditions to become a hub of global added value chains, but more zones need to be built.

The Panama Canal expansion will open up new opportunities in the field of logistics and value added, which according to representatives of the free zones, must be taken advantage of. One such emerging sectors has to do with the value chains.

More Free Zones Planned in Panama

August 2013

There are currently 15 active zones plus five being installed, adding up to $50 million in investment.

They are dedicated to the production of goods and services, with exports totaling $500 million a year, and are located in the metropolitan area, but also in La Chorrera, Arraiján and Cocle.

New Free Zone in Panama

August 2012

The Panamanian government has authorizing the establishment of Zona Franca Parque Industrial y Corporativo Sur, S.A. (Parque Sur), east of Panama City, with an investment of $8.2 million.

A statement from the Presidency of Panama reads:

The cabinet has given approval for the establishment of a free zone in the eastern sector of the capital.

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