Posted on 2017-07-27
The commercial operations, especially infrastructure projects, attract potential Chinese investments in Panama, after the establishment last month of diplomatic relations.
China Communications Construction Corporation and its subsidiary China Harbor Engineering Company, as well as China Railway Group and COSCO Shipping Corporation, have shown interest in several projects.
Panama for its part is planning a liquefied natural gas terminal on the Atlantic side of the canal, and a logistics park of 1,200 hectares, in addition to a "roll-on roll-off" terminal to move vehicles, machinery and heavy equipment, both adjacent at the Pacific entrance.
Panama also plans to invite new bids for a container terminal in Corozal on the Pacific coast.
An offer last fall was suspended due to legal defects.
The logistics park would be a free trade zone, where components imported from Asia could be assembled in customs warehouses for re-export to other markets in North and South America.
It would also serve as a transshipment center for containers destined for other parts of the hemisphere.
Chinese companies have already participated in several Panamanian projects in recent years.
Landbridge Group Company Limited acquired last year land on Margarita Island, next to the Atlantic entrance of the canal, for the development of a port of 700 million dollars.
Meanwhile, China Construction America - a subsidiary of the China State Construction Engineering Corporation Limited - is building a convention center on Calzada Amador in Panama City, while Chinese companies have also participated in the construction of the Panama Metro.
Panama is also interested in attracting tourists from China, whose two largest cities - Shanghai and Beijing, with a combined population of 40 million - are within the non-stop range for both the Boeing 777-200LR and the Airbus A340-500.
As part of the plan, the Panama Canal Authority is building a new visitor entrance to the Miraflores locks, and adding an IMAX theater and a new restaurant.
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