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Tuesday, July 29 2014 @ 02:39 AM EDT

Panama Canal Has Paid $7 Billion Dollars to State Treasury Over 13 Years

Canal Daily OperationFrom 2000 to 2012 the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) has provided to the State $7.323 billion dollars in fees paid, excesses, and public services, according to projections by the entity. This amount includes $950 million in contributions to the State budget for the fiscal year running from 1 Oct 2011 through 30 Sept 2012. In 13 years of Panamanian administration, the Canal will have delivered $3.312 billion in "rights per ton," $3.828 billion in surpluses, and $182.4 million for public services (trash collection payments and others). ACP's budget for 2012 amounts $2.398 billion dollars, more than $200 million more when compared to the previous year, when it as $2.106 billion.

HISTORICAL RECORD - According to the ACP administrator Alberto Alemán Zubieta, all projections indicate that in this fiscal year (2010-2011) the Panama Canal "broke a historic record" in both revenue and contributions to the National Treasury. "We estimated contributions of $840 million dollars, which we will overcome and we will be closer to $1 billion dollars," he said. Although the Panama Canal Expansion Program is running, this has not affected the passage of ships using the canal, said Alberto Alemán Zubieta, who highlighted the work carried out by the ACP to achieve these historical records. (La Prensa)

Editor's Comment: How to look at these numbers: The Panama Canal's operating budget for 2012 will be $2.398 billion dollars - money paid to the ACP in the form of tolls collected from passing ships. This is the best kind of money there is for a national economy, fresh, new, and coming from somewhere else. Practically all of that money gets spent right here in Panama and it quickly cycles back through the Panamanian national economy. It includes every employee's paycheck, for example, and they trot right down to the Rey supermarket and spend it on corn flakes or what have you, just like the rest of us. It also includes supplies and expendables, stuff like fuel and tires and what have you. They buy all of those things from local suppliers. So, most of the ACP's annual budget get's spent locally. This year the Panama Canal will be giving about $1 billion dollars to the state treasury. Again, this is a wonderful thing for the Panamanian economy, and that's enough money to pay the annual operating budgets of several of the government's Ministries, all by itself. And once the expansion program is complete the annual operating budget will be more than $3 billion per year and the canal will be generating more than $2 billion per year for the treasury. Most importantly, the economy of Panama is relatively tiny so this numbers have a big impact. And, the population of Panama is also relatively small, so improvements to the overall economy are felt. And before you tell me that "this money does not trickle down" spend some time to understand the GDP per capita (PPP) and see how it's been steadily improving since Panama took over management of the Panama Canal. The bottom line is the Panama Canal is one of the most significant economic engines behind the impressive growth of the Panamanian economy in the past decade.

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Panama Canal Has Paid $7 Billion Dollars to State Treasury Over 13 Years | 2 comments | Create New Account
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Panama Canal Has Paid $7 Billion Dollars to State Treasury Over 13 Years
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, August 03 2011 @ 04:07 PM EDT

The canal makes Panama's economy and society very similar to that of major oil producers. This has a downside, as we have seen countries like Saudi, UAE, Kuwait experience an evisceration of the local workforces' skill base. In Saudi, for example, the Pakistanis, Philippinos, etc...do all the grunt work, and Europeans, Americans, Canadians etc... do all the specialized (highly skilled) stuff. Their local homegrown workforce is very limited, and does not contribute to the nation's productivity. I can see this becoming an issue here in the future.

Panama Canal Has Paid $7 Billion Dollars to State Treasury Over 13 Years
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, August 03 2011 @ 10:46 PM EDT

As a Panamanian flight instructor in the east coast of the US, I've had a number of Saudis student pilots, most of them have been friendly while a few have been kind of arrogant and expect me to get them through the program with as little training/studying as possible so they can return home and become managers or supervisors while the Goverment of Saudi Arabia hires foreign pilots to do the bulk of their flying, must of these kids have been getting an absurd amount of money from the Kingdom from an early age and they feel superior to everyone else not from Saudi Arabia. The previous comment feels that this could happen in Panama, this is where I have to disagree by pointing out that Panamanians currently do must of the grunt work in the Canal and it is a subject of great pride to most panamanians how efficient and profitable the canal has become under their stewardship. Yes, Don's articles have pointed out how it is possible for Panama to become the richest country in Latin America, however many things need to happen before we as people feel entitled or superior to any other groups. No, I like my people the way we are, we work hard, we party hard and we enjoy having a good time with a cold cerveza in our hands and friends and family. I hope we never become as arrogant and we stay humble while improving our little piece of heaven between 2 oceans...Chevereeee!!!