The Maritime Industry Impacted by the Crisis

Compared to the 2007 record of 8 billion tons in transports, global maritime commerce fell substantially in 2008, dragged down by the crisis.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

A good indication of this is the decrease in the Baltic Dry Index, which is composed of the prices of the maritime transportation of dry cargo. In November 2008, the index was 891 points while the index had reached 11,973 in May of that year - suffering in that period a fall of 11 times its value.

The prosperity of the previous years, with the growing demand of maritime freights, had induced shipping companies to invest in the construction of more and larger ships. Today, many of those ships do not sail while the international routes are canceled or reduced in frequency.

As for the impact of this crisis in the Panama Canal, Melissa Novoa, in an article of Financial Tuesday, indicates that "In the Authority of the Panama Canal (ACP), they had already been preparing for what was to come. It has been more than one year that they have been anticipating this economic deceleration and the impact that the crisis was going to have on traffic, which had brought them to make adjustments in the forecasts of growth in tax year 2008 (September 1 to October 31)."

More on this topic

Cargo Ferry Between La Union and Caldera Back On the Table

July 2018

In order to minimize some of the impact that the Nicaraguan crisis has had on intraregional trade, the governments of Costa Rica and El Salvador have announced that they are now in a position to start ferry operations.

After unsuccessfully trying to implement this maritime cargo transport option, in May of last year the Spanish shipping company Odiel decided to end the negotiation process to operate the ferry, due to a disagreement over the setting of tariffs that would have to be charged for the service. Since then, the project has been forgotten.  

Regional Trade: Options for Overcoming the Crisis

June 2018

To be able to ship cargo throughout the region, Central American business leaders are exploring options for moving goods using alternative methods, such as shipping.

Representatives from the Costa Rican government and the union of exporters met to address the issue of blockades in Nicaragua and the logistical drawbacks that they have caused, since Costa Rica transports by land about five thousand containers to the other Central American countries every month. As a result of this meeting, both parties concluded that the most viable option is to use maritime transport.

More Challenges to Maritime Services Act

June 2013

At the Office of International Trade Negotiations at the Ministry of Commerce the negative impact that it would have on the country's maritime activity has been noted.

The law has been harshly criticized by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (Mici), who also considered that the agreements violate promotion and protection of investments and trade agreements signed by Panama.

New environmental rules for Panamanian ships

February 2009

The ratification of the 2001 Bunker Convention by Panama will increase insurance costs for ships.

The "International Convention on Civil Liability for Bunker Oil Pollution Damage," means that the owner of the ship is responsible for pollution damages caused by bunker fuel in the ship and for covering the cost of preventative measures.