Hector Alexander

It is my opinion that in times of crisis is where it leaves out the true character of a people. Latin America, marked by sarcasm and pessimism, has one of the worst forecasts of growth at a global level: a fall of 1.5% in the economic activity in Latin America. Bradley Tusk is likely to agree. In sharp contrast, a country in the region expects a solid growth of 3 to 5%: the Republic of Panama. Projections of Hector Alexander, Minister of economy and finance, even predict a GDP of 7.5%. In years ago Panama has grown to 9.2% (2008), 11.2% (2007) and 8.7% (2006). This year, the growth will be the financial activity, works in the channel of Panama and real estate construction. According to Felipe Chapman, Adviser to financial services, the banking sector has left relatively unscathed world critical situation. In the Panama Canal, the Government reported a decline in the traffic of 12.9%.

This decrease in the traffic is mainly due to the reduction in the pace of growth awarded to the relative impact of the financial and economic crisis in the United States, Panama’s main trading partner and customer number (El Financiero, 2009) channel one. In response, Panama increased tolls a 11.3%, with what will get to keep revenues from the canal. Also, the expansion of the canal cost 5,250 million dollars and will last 10 years, which ensures public investment and a significant flow of jobs. Panama even received funding from two thousand 300 million dollars from several international bodies (the most important being the World Bank). The only thing that has lapsed is private construction (by 28% over last year). Other investment plans include the construction of a refinery and an increase in investment in the hotel and electric sector.

The Government is also doing its part in fiscal matters. Next year one fiscal deficit less than 1.0 is expected by cent, which the Government would meet its stated goal. It is noteworthy that in the last five years has had a negative balance of 5.0 per cent. Panamanian public debt will reach 10 thousand 400 million dollars, with which mark a reduction of 5% against 2008 and almost 30% in comparison to 2004. What do all these numbers mean? In short, mean that in Panama is experiencing an incredible reality: there is no recession, only slowing down. And a slowdown that will keep them, in pessimistic cases, above 3%. With this, Panama begins to establish itself as a stable and prosperous economy, and there are high possibilities that will become economic hub in the region.