Panama's megaport in the eye of the hurricane

The decision of the Executive Branch to contract directly and without bids the construction of a 600 million dollar container terminal at Farfán has created distrust in Panama's business and political classes.

Monday, April 21, 2008

The move could be seen as a violation of the Fiscal Code. One politician, Guillermo Endara, president of the Vanguardia Moral de la Patria, called the move an administrative "atrocity" and said he would rescind the contract if he were elected in 2009.
A former president of the Chamber of Commerce, Domingo Latorraca, questioned the opaque nature of the negotiations. "This raises suspicions in society," he said.
Two companies, Cosco Pacific Limited and Ports America Group, have formed a consortium to develop the project.

More on this topic

Poor public services put brakes on investment, say Costa Rican business leaders

May 2008

Business leaders in Costa Rica say that big delays in public works are putting a brake on their investment plans.

"Because of the problems with public transport, we've had to lay our own transport for workers. That adds to costs but it's the only way to make sure they get to work on time," said Christian Rodríguez, vice-president for operations of Western Union in Costa Rica.

Talks launched on new mega-port for Panama

May 2008

Negotiations on the development of a large container port at Farfán, on the western approach to the Panama Canal have begun between Panama's Ministry of Commerce and Industry and a consortium led by Hong Kong-based Cosco Pacific and Ports America Group of the United States.

Representatives of the consortium were met by Carmen Gisela Vergara, the minister for commerce and industry, Fernando Solórzano, manager of Panama's Maritime Authority, and Alberto Alemán Zubieta, the Panama Canal administrator.

Panama Canal bidders given more time

May 2008

The deadline for the presentation of bids for the design of new locks on the Panama Canal has been stretched by 47 days, the canal authorities said.

Four consortiums have qualified to present bids for the contract. Canal authorities said the tender's new deadline still fits within the overall timetable for the expansion project.

Panamanian authorities expand plans for Farfán megaport

April 2008

The government of Martín Torrijos has apparently decided to build three terminals at the port development at the Pacific entrance to the Panama Canal.

However, it's not clear when this will be done. Panama's second vice-president, Rubén Arosemena, says the concession for the megaport development in the Palo Seco area of Farfán must wait until the Assembly approves a contract between the State and the Port Singapore Authority(PSA) to build a container center at the Rodman Quay. Arosemena did not provide details. The PSA says it will invest 70 million dollars in its project.

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