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Sunday, September 21 2014 @ 12:06 PM EDT

Panama Canal Expansion 32% Advanced (Inadvertent Confirmation of Delays)

Canal Expansion The project to expand the Panama Canal has advanced by 32%, said on Wednesday, December 21, Jorge L. Quijano, the Executive Vice President of Engineering and Management of the Panama Canal Authority (ACP). Quijano said as of 30 November 2011 a total of $4.257 billion dollars in contracts had been awarded, which is within the budget of $5.25 billion dollars approved to conduct the canal expansion program. PROGRESS - In a talk with reporters, Quijano explained the progress of the projects being made in the canal expansion program.

The design and construction of the new third set of locks has advanced by 16%. The Pacific access channel in four phases has progressed by 65%, and the dredging of the entrance to the Pacific by 84%. Meanwhile, the deepening and widening of Gatun Lake and Gaillard Cut has advanced by 62%, and the dredging in the Atlantic access channel has advanced by 97%. (See Comments)

For the ACP an expanded Panama Canal will further improve the position of the country in world trade, and it will also give the entity the ability to provide global guidance on project management. (Prensa)

Editor's Comment: There you go. There's official confirmation of the articles I published about the expansion project at the start of this month. Remember these articles? Panama Canal Expansion - "A Train Wreck Waiting To Happen" published on 1 December 2011 and Expansion of Panama Canal Now "At Least One Year Behind Schedule" (Cover-up) published on 6 December 2011. I was contacted by several individuals in late November and early December 2011 who expressed their concerns over the lack of progress being made on the Panama Canal expansion project, specifically with regards to the construction of the third set of locks. They explained to me how the project was falling behind schedule, and how every day they were actually getting less work done than was programmed. As a result they were falling further and further behind schedule with each passing day. In those articles I described how the construction of the third set of locks was supposed to be 28% done by now, and my inside sources told me only 17% had been completed. And now in this official press conference by the ACP they announced officially that only 16% of the work on the third set of locks has been completed. Of course the local journalists who covered this press conference simply lapped up the numbers as they were presented, and none of them had the knowledge or background information needed to be able to ask Quijano about the allegations of delays on the third set of locks construction. Anyway, as far as I'm concerned, this is official confirmation of my earlier reporting. And sure, overall the project might be 32% done, but the key element (the third set of locks) is way, way behind schedule and falling further behind every day.

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