Cover of The Report: Panama 2014

The Report: Panama 2014

For the past decade Panama has registered impressive economic growth. According to the World Bank, GDP growth averaged 6.8% from 2000 to 2012, while government figures show double-digit growth for four of the past seven years. Economic development has been fuelled by heavy public sector spending on infrastructure, particularly the $5.25bn expansion of the Panama Canal, which should ensure long-term growth.

With GDP growth expected to decelerate but still average 7-9% from 2013 to 2015 and 6-8% through to 2020, Panama is set to remain a unique and exciting destination for investment in the short to medium term due to its solid macroeconomic record, importance to global trade and strong investment framework.

Public sector spending has emerged as the primary driver of economic growth in the past few years as the country prepares for the post-Panamax era of the Panama Canal. The canal’s impact, both domestically and internationally, will expand substantially upon the completion of a third set of locks scheduled for 2016.

Putting exact figures on the domestic impact of the expanded waterway is a tall order, though further capitalising on the country’s status as a major trade route will most certainly be crucial to future economic progress.

OBG & Panama