Panama, Apr 3 (Prensa Latina) The Chinese company Evergreen Marine, a Panama Canal client, has triggered alarm in the isthmus after confirming that some of its ships will use the Suez Canal, due to delays in Panama’s third lock. (source: Frank Marmol)
That was the important objective and recurrent issue presented by the Panama Canal Authority Administrator Jorge Quijano, in a lecture to 450 transnational executives, all clients of the inter-oceanic way, at the Ninth World Economic Forum on Latin America concluding today in this country.
The official said a reduction of the Canal’s income is predicted, but there is no way that works on its extension can conclude before December, 2015, a date that itself is questionable, due to huge delays and a sluggish resumption in the works after a two month stoppage.
Quijano recalled that the container section represents 48 percent of the Canal’s income, but it is a fact that under current circumstances, shippers prefer to use the Suez Canal.
He told the Executives that this business strategy will have an impact on the Panama Canal’s budget, which will be reduced in the fall.
Quijano did not specify which Evergreen service will stop using the Panama Canal, although it is likely to be that of the post-Panamax ships for 40-feet containers, but he admitted that the situation has aroused concern, due to its significance for other clients.
“It has hit us really hard, ” he said in the best Creole style, when he confessed to the insufficient market. Economies are weak and as consumption continues to decrease, ships do not go through Panama and cross the Suez Canal instead.