More Companies Leaving Colon Free Zone

The lack of tax incentives has led to 55 companies leaving the free zone in January 2016, on top of the 125 who ceased operations last year.

Friday, February 19, 2016

In total, from 2015 to now, about 180 companies requested the removal of their key operations in order to cease doing business in the Colon Free Zone (CFZ), according to the Association of Users of the CFZ.

See also: "Ideas to redirect the Colon Free Zone "

The need to reduce operating costs through tax incentives in the CFZ is not new. Users once again warned, via a statement released by, that "... it is imperative that the Executive and the Assembly approve an amendment to the Law on the free zone in order to provide better tax conditions and equal conditions compared to any other special area in the country. "

See also: "Pessimism in the Colon Free Zone "

"... The business association stressed that the consultation that has been announced by the Executive can in no way can be carried out by the same company who suggested to the last Government that taxes on the CFZ be increased, and furthermore that this consultation period should be not be an excuse for further delay of the decisions that are needed urgently."

More on this topic

Businessmen: "Proposal for Colon Free Zone is Not Enough"

March 2016

Free Zone users require another type of measures on top of the proposals the government has discussed in the Assembly, such as reducing the charges for renting.

The bill that was discussed in Congress and which seeks to increase the competitiveness of the Colon Free Zone (CFZ), (already approved in the first debate) is not enough for entrepreneurs.

Panama: Improvements to the Colon Free Zone

February 2016

The government is proposing relaxing charges for maritime entry, waste collection, and security, and is awaiting a response from users of the Free Zone on 1 March.

The proposal sent by the Government of Panama to the Association of Users of the Colon Free Zone (AU) provides for reductions in the charges for maritime entry from $150 to $25, as requested by the AU, a reduction in the fee for waste and security services and a change in the use of the declaration of commercial movement.

Pessimism in the Colon Free Zone

October 2015

Employers indicate that there are no incentives for maintaining business operations, which between 2012 and 2014 fell by 20%.

Commercial activities, which rebounded in 2012 compared to 2011, totaling $31 billion, fell to $27 billion in 2013 and to $24 billion in 2014.

An article on reported that the president of the Association of Users of the CFZ, Marcos Tellez, noted that "...

Colombia Extends Additional Tariffs for CFZ

January 2014

The imposition of tariffs on imports of shoes and clothing from the Colon Free Zone has been extended until March 2016.

The Colombian government announced that it will extend, for two more years, the measure which partially amended the Customs Tariff duties on imports of apparel and footwear, a ruling which affects the activities of re-exports from the Colon Free Zone (CFZ), according to customers of the free zone area.