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Friday, February 27 2015 @ 11:48 AM EST

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6 nations accused of fishing violations

FishingWASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. government said Tuesday that a half-dozen foreign nations are engaging in illegal or unregulated fishing. Officials said they plan consultations with France, Italy, Libya, Panama, China and Tunisia in hopes of getting those countries to take corrective action. "Illegal fishing is a global problem that is depleting fish stocks and hurting the economies of nations and the livelihoods of people who depend on sustainable fishing," said Dr. Jim Balsiger, acting assistant administrator for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Fisheries Service. It is the first time NOAA has reported specific countries as engaged in such fishing. After consultations, the agency will either certify that a country has taken corrective action, or list it as still engaging in illegal, unregulated or unreported fishing, in which case that nation's vessels may be denied entry into U.S. ports and the president may prohibit imports of certain fish products from that nation. According to NOAA's report, in the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea, fishing vessels of identified nations were using illegal fishing gear, fishing during a closed season or not complying with reporting requirements. In the Pacific Ocean, it said, vessels violated an international rule requiring any ship fishing for tuna in the eastern Pacific be listed by the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission, which manages tuna stocks in that area.
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Salsa star Blades donates recordings to Harvard

Bands & Music BOSTON (AP) — Salsa superstar and actor Ruben Blades has agreed to give his personal papers as well as rare recordings of rehearsals and concerts to Harvard University. The university's Eda Kuhn Loeb Music Library will receive a complete collection of all the 60-year-old musician's LPs, CDs and liner notes. The archive will eventually grow to include material devoted to his political career, with posters from his failed run for the Panamanian presidency in 1994. Harvard librarian Virginia Danielson said the first components of the collection will be available in mid- to late-2009. The seven-time Grammy winner holds a masters degree in international law from Harvard. He recently announced he was leaving his post as Panama's tourism minister to return to recording music.
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Courts try to decide what to do with Manuel Noriega

Panama News By Rich Phillips, CNN Senior Producer MIAMI, Florida (CNN) -- What to do with an aging, all-but-forgotten former military strongman who has served his time but is also a prisoner of war? Manuel Noriega's U.S. drug trafficking sentence ended about 16 months ago, but he remains behind bars. The controversy over the next step for former Panamanian Gen. Manuel Noriega is winding its way through the federal courts. Arguments were heard Wednesday by an appeals court in Miami, Florida. Noriega, who was captured in Panama by U.S. military forces, completed his prison sentence for drug trafficking and money laundering in September 2007 but remains imprisoned until the courts can decide where he should go. Noriega attorney Jon May told the court that his client wants to return to Panama and that the United States is obligated to return him under the Geneva Conventions. Assistant U.S. Attorney Sean Cronin said that the government has been asked to send Noriega to France and that there is nothing in the Geneva Conventions to prevent that. (more)
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The Cuban Music Chucho Valdés at the VI Panama Festival Jazz 2009

Bands & MusicCuba News Headlines - The sixth edition of the Panama Jazz Festival 2009 was opened last 12th of January in installations belonging to the Panama Canal. About 20 halls of the Ascanio Arosemena Auditorium and Training Centre are at disposal for this event that will receive students and teachers who take part in different musical institutions, indicated. The participation of several international musicians, such as the Cuban Chucho Valdés, the US Wayne Shorter and the Panamanian Danilo Pérez, considered all of them legends of jazz, are expected to take part in the Festival. The installations of the inter ocean way will also receive the famous quintet of the Puerto Rican saxophonist Marco Pignataro as well as a recital of the US pianist Edna Golandsky. The Ascanio Arosemena centre, as well as school for students, will be the stage of concerts and workshops given by the musicians who take part in this international event. The sixth edition of the Panama Jazz festival 2009 will be held for six days, from the 12 until the 17 of January. These events started in 2003 and since that moment on it has consolidated as one of the most important cultural events of the hemisphere. The festival also has concerts in the historic centre of the Panama capital and at the Anayansi theatre of the Atlapa Conventions Centre, located next to the shore of the Panama Bay. The organisers expect to have over 16,000 spectators, which is the number of public who attended last year edition.
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Safe Foods' Cecure Heads To Panama

Foreign Direct InvestmentBy Arkansas Business Staff - Safe Foods Corp. of North Little Rock said Wednesday that its Cecure antimicrobial technology will be used in Panama. "We are pleased to see the further adoption of this proven food safety intervention in markets beyond the U.S.," Curtis Coleman, Safe Foods' president and CEO, said in a news release. The product has recently been deployed for use South Africa, Saudi Arabia, Mexico and Canada. Coleman said the product has been used in the U.S. poultry industry to provide control against Salmonella, E. coli and other food-borne pathogens. Coleman also said studies are underway exploring the use of Cecure for treating the surface of certain tropical fruits to control bacteria and molds. Safe Foods’ food safety interventions are used in more than 20 U.S. food processing companies and in meat and poultry processing companies in Canada, South Africa, the Middle East and Central America.
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Templar Panama Sponsors Jazz Fest Trip

Bands & MusicPanama City, Panama (PRWEB) January 14, 2009 -- Panama City-based real estate company Templar Panama has organized a trip for children from El Valle to the 2009 Panama Jazz Festiva. The real estate company commissioned a minibus to bring 12 children and four parent chaperones to a the final performance of the festival, a free, open-air concert on in Casco Viejo's Plaza de la Catedral on January 17th. This effort grew out of Templar Panama's Christmas Toy Drive, explained Martin Lamb, Templar's President of Investment. "While organizing the toy giveaway, we had the chance to contact and develop relationships with needy families," Lamb said. "We couldn't help everyone and people's needs continue after Christmas. So we see little things like this as a way to reach more people and help them access Panama's many cultural opportunities year round." The excursion includes round-trip transportation to the concert and lunch for the group. This is the type of effort than any company can and should make, Lamb said, adding that admission to the Jazz Festival event is free, and the company rents cars for business every day. "We take things like going to a free concert for granted, but for families who can't afford transportation, even these events are usually out of reach."
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Panama's Noriega fights U.S. extradition to France

Panama NewsMIAMI (Reuters) - The fate of former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega was placed in the hands of a U.S. appeals court on Wednesday, as he fought another round to avoid extradition on money laundering charges in France. Seeking to overturn three previous U.S. court rulings, Noriega's attorney Jon May told a three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that his status as a "prisoner of war" gives him special protections under the Geneva Conventions that block his extradition. "The convention trumps the extradition," May told the judges, arguing that because of his POW status Noriega should have been repatriated to Panama immediately upon completion of his U.S. prison sentence in September 2007. That argument has been rejected before, most notably by U.S. District Judge William Hoeveler, who presided over Noriega's 1992 trial on drug trafficking, racketeering and conspiracy charges. He was the judge that granted Noriega POW status in the first place. (more)
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Balbina Herrera Returns To Her "Chola" Roots

Politics

By DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - I caught the speech Balbina Herrera made in Penenome yesterday. Quite obviously, after having reviewed the most recent polling data, she has decided that the "nicer, calmer" Balbina Herrera simply is not working, and that it's time to go back to the screaming and yelling fiery approach she's famous for. During the PRD primary her "Balbina de Corazon" campaign had her just smiling nicely, tapping her heart, and shooting big a thumbs-up to supporters. In short, the word was that she had to try to play "nicer" in order to gain wider acceptance - that people didn't want to see the "Chola" side of Balbina Herrera. Well, yesterday she said "screw it" and went on an all-out (rather bumbling) offensive. Don't worry so much about facts and content, just come out blazing... She's down by about 15% or more depending on which poll you read so she probably thinks she had to make some kind of a change. Also, today I had the opportunity to talk to reporter who covers the political beat for one of the newspapers. I pointed out that the polling data from Jan 2004 hit the May 2004 election results just about on the head - he's going to use it because no one had picked up on that (except me, of course.) Anyway, as usual, politicians are fun to watch, especially when they're getting desperate like Balbina Herrera.

Copyright 2008 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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Panama property could offer spectacular growth

Real Estate Hot Property.co.uk - Latin American Panama enjoyed a property boom from 2006 to mid-2008, but things have been quiet in the last six months. However, in the long term Panama is to the US what Spain is to the UK, so it should always have appeal. Examples of ongoing construction are the Trump Ocean Club, a “condo” tower development by Donald Trump, and the Canal Expansion Project, which should provide a massive boost to the Panamanian property market and overall economy. It is due for completion in five years. Despite the economic slowdown Panama’s annualised growth for first quarter 2008 was 6.9 per cent. However, that was down on the figure for 2007 which was 11.2 per cent. (more)
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FAQ: Is Efferdrine Legal in Panama?

Healthcare

By DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - Received today via email: "Hello, We are going to be traveling to Panama in a couple of weeks and one of our party is taking efferdrine as a supplement for weight loss. Should she be bringing it to Panama? Is it illegal there? Thank you." I have no friggin' idea. Can anyone help this person? Please add comments below, and thanks.

Copyright 2008 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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Retired Polk County judge drowns in Panama

Expat TalesBy Archie Ingersoll and Kirsten Stromsodt, Grand Forks Herald - A retired Polk County judge drowned this week while on vacation in Panama, his daughter, Jill Burggraf, said Monday. John M. Roue, 68, Crookston, died Sunday afternoon, she said. Roue was vacationing with his wife, Mary, at a friend’s villa. Burggraf said her father and stepmother were swimming when they were caught in an undertow. “She was able to escape it and Dad wasn’t. The water was waist-high, but Dad must have stepped into a hole or got caught or something.” Roue graduated from Fosston (Minn.) High School in 1957. In 1961, he graduated magna cum laude from the University of Minnesota with bachelor’s degrees in political science and history. He received his law degree from the U of M in 1964. (more)
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FBI Returns Pre-Columbian Artifacts to Panama

Panama News

By DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - Today the FBI returned to the government of Panama more than 100 ancient artifacts uncovered during an investigation conducted by the FBI’s Portland Division. Deputy Assistant Director Daniel D. Roberts, Criminal Investigative Division, presented the artifacts to Deputy Chief of Mission Abey Saied, Embassy of Panama, at a ceremony at FBI Headquarters. The artifacts include a number of pottery pieces and gold works, including jewelry. Experts date many of the objects to the pre-Columbian period of 1100-1500 A.D. It is difficult to put a monetary value on the items, although some estimates range from $500-$3,000 per piece depending upon the item’s age, quality, and preservation status. (more)

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FREE 2006 KIA SORENTO 4X4!

Cars & Transportation

By DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - Extra credit for a cool idea - "Hi Don from a loyal long-time Panama-Guide reader. Don, I am moving from Panama next month and have a car I need to get rid of. My time is limited, so I came up with a unique way to try to get it sold... This could turn into a phenomenal deal for somebody... the car has got to go! Check it out and share it with your readers if you think it may be of interest ?! www.Free-Kia.com. Saludos, Steve Smith cel. 6727-9615" My obvious question for Steve was "and why don't I just keep my mouth shut and go pick up the free (or really cheap) car in a couple of weeks. Nah, this is more fun. Happy hunting, campers...

Copyright 2008 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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Investors want tally of salvaged gold

Gold & Mining BY KEVIN MAYHOOD for THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH - Investors complain that there has never been a proper accounting of the gold recovered from the Atlantic Ocean wreck of the Central America. Former Battelle engineer-turned-treasure-hunter Thomas G. Thompson pulled one of the largest stashes of gold known to sink in the Atlantic Ocean from the seafloor 20 years ago. But dividing the treasure among investors has proved more difficult than recovering it from the SS Central America. Estimates of the value have varied from $21 million for the gold by weight, to the $100 million to $400 million that collectors of Gold Rush-era old coins and bars might be willing to pay. In the latest court action, The Dispatch Printing Company and Donald C. Fanta, former president of the Ohio Co., complain that Thompson and the directors of companies formed to find and market the gold have failed to give investors a true accounting of what happened to it. The side-wheel steamer was carrying 578 passengers and crew members and an estimated 3 tons of gold bars, coins, nuggets and dust to New York from Panama in 1857. The ship sank during a hurricane about 160 miles off the South Carolina coast. (more)
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Rainforest loss may have been overstated, scientists

Panama News By Louise Gray, Environment Correspondent for the Telegraph - Satellite data to be debated by top scientists show huge tracts of abandoned tropical forests that were once logged or farmed are regrowing. Some researchers contend that this process has been inadequately factored into estimates of future species loss – but others maintain that only 50 to 80 per cent of plant species may return to logged or altered forests. Scientists meeting at the National Museum of Natural History in Washington are debating extinction rates in the tropics. Conservationists argue that the loss of the rainforests due to logging, climate change and other factors, is fueling catastrophic rates of extinction – despite the evidence of rainforest regrowth in many places. However Joseph Wright of the Panama-based Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute has pointed out that the tropics now have more protected land than North America, Europe or Japan. (more)
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Fitch Affirms Banco General's Ratings; Outlook Stable

Money MattersNEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Fitch Ratings has affirmed Banco General's (Panama) ratings as follows: --Foreign Currency Long Term Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at 'BBB'; --Foreign Currency Short Term IDR at 'F3'; --Individual Rating at 'C'; --Support Rating at '5'; --Support Floor at 'NF'. The Rating Outlook is Stable. The rating of Banco General's US$150 million issue maturing in 2010, formerly obligations of Banco Continental, is affirmed at 'BBB'. Banco General's (BG) ratings reflect its strong local franchise, market share, strengthened competitive position, consistent strategy, dependable performance, good portfolio quality and sufficient capital. They also factor in the worsening economic scenario and the increasingly competitive landscape. A long-standing dollarized economy, Panama lacks a central bank or lender of last resort. Banco Nacional de Panama, the largest state controlled bank, could only provide temporary liquidity loans - if needed. In Fitch's opinion, external support for BG, although possible, cannot be relied upon. (more)
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With U.S. economy stuck, economists look abroad

Money MattersBy Jack Chang, McClatchy Newspapers WASHINGTON — As U.S. consumers stop spending and investors keep their money to themselves, government and business leaders hoping to get the country's ailing economy moving again are playing one of their few remaining cards. They're trying to sell more U.S. goods overseas despite the decline of both global demand and U.S. competitiveness. Exports currently make up about 13 percent of the country's total economic activity, far less than the 70 percent taken up by production for domestic consumption. But that's where economic growth can still happen, analysts say, especially as the domestic housing and credit crises promise to freeze spending at home for at least another year. Economists and business leaders suggest the incoming Obama administration implement export-friendly measures such as streamlining U.S. customs operations, negotiating more free trade agreements and developing industries such as alternative energy that can become the next generation of U.S. economic powerhouses. (more)
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Panamanian writer Rodriguez Velez dies

Books & ReadingPANAMA CITY, Panama (UPI) -- Noted Panamanian writer and journalist Mario Augusto Rodriguez Velez has died of a heart ailment at age 92, colleagues said Sunday. The Panamanian Writers Association said Rodriguez Velez died Saturday at a Panama City hospital, the Latin American Herald Tribune reported. A journalist, essayist, dramatist, poet and storyteller, Rodriguez Velez was the oldest active writer in the Central American nation, said his grandson, author Jose Luis Rodriguez Pitti. He was awarded the Order of Omar Torrijos Herrera, Great Cross grade, by Panamanian President Martin Torrijos last year in recognition of his support for communications and Panamanian culture and history. From 1932 to 1989 he worked in a variety of positions, from correspondent to chief editor and director at a number of newspapers and magazines, including Mundo Grafico, La Hora, Prensa Libre, El Dia, El Panama America, Prensa, Matutino and La Republica, Preludios, Urraca, Siete, Educacion, Loteria, Mas and Semana. He also authored several story collections, starting with "Campo Adentro" in 1947.
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Martinelli Keeps Gaining in Panama

Politics (Angus Reid Global Monitor) - Ricardo Martinelli remains ahead in Panama’s presidential race, according to a poll by Dichter & Neira released by TVN Noticias. 44.3 per cent of respondents would support the candidate of the opposition Democratic Change (CD) in this year’s ballot, up three points since November. Balbina Herrera of the governing Revolutionary Democratic Party (PRD) is second with 31.3 per cent, followed by Juan Carlos Varela of the Panameñista Party (PPA) with 14.1 per cent, and former president Guillermo Endara of the Moral Vanguard of the Homeland (VMP) with 2.5 per cent. PRD member Martín Torrijos—the son of Omar Torrijos, an army general who ruled Panama from 1968 to 1981—won the May 2004 presidential election with 47.44 per cent of the vote. His tenure included an ambitious plan to expand the Panama Canal with an investment of $5.25 billion U.S. In October 2006, the proposal was ratified in a nationwide referendum. Martinelli, the owner of a major supermarket chain, portrays himself as a political outsider. Herrera served as housing minister in the current government. On Jan. 9, Varela discussed his campaign, saying, "I do not intend to waste millions in advertising to attack my political adversaries with lies. We should all think about what’s best for the country." The presidential election in Panama is scheduled for May 3.
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Local woman ambassador, works for good of U,S,, Panama

Expat Tales By April Simpson for Ocala.com - During her 1976 valedictory speech at Wildwood High School, Barbara Stephenson quoted a passage from "Walden Pond" by Henry David Thoreau: "If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away." Stephenson, a Wildwood native, had not imagined that her drummer would lead her to a job in the Foreign Service, or to postings in Ireland, South Africa and Curacao. She had not considered such a path until a comparative politics professor at the University of Florida suggested it. But this past summer, Stephenson earned her highest calling yet when President George W. Bush appointed her ambassador to Panama. "She was a small-town girl, until she got into the big time," said Jane Clause, Stephenson's former high school guidance counselor. (more)
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Panama Faces Drop in Banana Exports

Panama News Inside Costa Rica - Panama - Panama faces a possible drop of around 20 percent in its banana exports due to the lack of financing, plagues and climate adversities. According to industry stats published by the local media, from January thru November, 2008, foreign sales of the fruit reached 17 million 689 thousand boxes. That represented a reduction of 2.7 million boxes compared to the same period of 2007. Revenues from the sales amounted to 92.8 million dollars, a setback of nearly nine million dollars. Producers consider the situation could be still worse in the short term, taking into account the effects from November floods in the provinces of Bocas del Toro and Chiriqui. As a result of the severe rains brought by a cold front in that month, dozens of acres of banana plantations were damaged.
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Miguel Antonio Bernal is an Anti-Semite (Ornstein)

Politics

By DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - Today Okke Ornstein writes the following about his personal lawyer and candidate for the mayorship of Panama City, Miguel Antonio Bernal; "All across Latin America antisemitism is common, also among the left. I remember walking back from lunch with some lawyers from Bernal's office. We entered a department store on Via España to look for some office supplies or something, and when we didn't find them we tried to leave on the other side, the other street. The security goon wouldn't let us, saying that we couldn't just cut our walk by going through that store if we didn't buy something. A discussion with that idiot solved nothing, and my suggestion to break through the blockade anyway was voted down. Anyway, once outside again, one of these lawyers started what can only be described as an antisemitic rant about the Jews, whom, I learned, owned that store. It went on all the way until we reached the office. Nobody objected." I guess it's politically prudent to surround yourself with anti semitic lawyers in Panama? I have a couple of questions; - Who was that lawyer and is he still working for the Bernal campaign? And "nobody objected?" Even Ornstein?

Copyright 2008 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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35% More Corruption Complaints in 2008

CorruptionBy William Sala for La Prensa - Complaints filed against Panamanian government institutions alleging acts of corruption increased 35% in 2008 compared to 2007, according to information released by the offices of the Anti Corruption Prosecutor yesterday. Prosecutors Ramsés Barrera, Yolanda Austin and Mercedes De León explained that in 2008 a total of 821 complaints were filed, compared to 520 in 2007, an increase of 291 cases. In addition these cases represent alleged acts of corruption in 56 different governmental agencies causing more than $7.5 million dollars in damages to state coffers. In addition there are twelve more cases in which the total damages to the state have not yet been determined. The scandal involving the Fund for Fairness and Quality in Education (FECE) of the Ministry of Education for $1.5 million dollars was the largest single case of the year. The theft of the sculptures of the "Juegos de Antaño" from a storage facility in the Parque Omar was also included on the report. With regards to the recovery of stolen assets, the First Anti Corruption Prosecutor Mercedes De León said those agencies or institutions affected must demand them, since it is not a function of the prosecutor's office. The prosecutors said it has been difficult to investigate these kinds of crimes because subordinates who are caught often do not want to implicate their bosses who obligate them to commit these acts. They added that rewards for $1,500 and $10,000 respectively are still in effect for the cases of the embezzlement of the FECE funds and the theft of the sculptures, respectively. (See Comments)
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Tucson Audubon Society celebrates its 60th year

Expat TalesB. POOLE for the Tucson Citizen - Perhaps it's fitting that the first order of business for the newly formed Tucson Audubon Society in 1949 was to organize a birding field trip for the 25 founding members. Birding trips are a staple of the conservation group that keeps an eye on our birds, and the Tucson chapter apparently comprises champion day-trippers. "Bird-watching field trips are a hallmark of the Audubon Society, and the Tucson chapter does more of them than any other chapter, according to some research," said Kendall Kroesen, the society's restoration program manager. The group has sponsored hundreds of trips to every corner of Arizona. A trip to Panama is planned for later this year. (more)
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Panama Focuses on Elections

PoliticsPanama, Jan 10 (Prensa Latina) Panama is focused on the forthcoming May vote in an environment characterized by revitalization of campaigns for the different posts. The election will allow Panamanians to choose occupants of the Presidency and Vice Presidency of the Republic and 621 mayoralties' representatives. Positions include 75 mayors, 71 National Assembly legislators, 20 deputies to the Central American Parliament and 7 town city councilors, with their substitutes in all cases. In this context the governing party is losing position in this candidature for the presidency of the country after announcing the first polls from January 2009. For the Dichter and Neira firm opponent Ricardo Martinelli from the Democratic Change has reached a voter intention rate of 44.3 percent in contrast to 31.3 percent of Balbina Herrera from the Democratic Revolutionary Party. Street campaigning is growing with the participation of groups defending different political tendencies.
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Sector Snap: Drybulk shippers soar as rates rise

Canal Daily OperationNEW YORK (AP) -- Drybulk shipping stocks leaped Friday as the rates for the biggest drybulk vessels on the seas hit their highest point since October. Capesize vessel rates jumped 20 percent Friday, Dahlman Rose analyst Omar Notka said, as excess vessels supply continues to shrink, driving up prices for remaining vessels. The cost to charter a Capesize vessel has leaped nearly 50 percent in the last week, he said. Capesize vessels are so named because they are too big to fit through the Panama or Suez Canals and must instead navigate around the Cape of Good Hope or Cape Horn to travel between oceans. "Other sectors of the market are more muted, but Capesize momentum is carrying through to some extent," he said. Two out of three other vessel classes posted minimal gains on Friday. Also Friday, Lazard Capital Markets shipping and logistics analyst Urs Dur raised his price target on drybulk company Diana Shipping Inc. to $17 from $14 and reiterated his "Buy" rating, suggesting the company is low-risk compared with its peers. In afternoon trading, Diana Shipping rose 77 cents, or 5.5 percent, to $14.91. DryShips Inc. gained $1.94, or 12.8 percent, to $17.07 and Danaos Corp. added 75 cents, or 7.9 percent, to $10.21.
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IPTV Makes Rapid Strides in Latin America

Internet & Technology By Eve Sullivan, TMCnet Editor - IPTV (Internet Protocol television) is emerging as the buzzword in Latin American’s telecommunications industry, as several operators have either started testing the waters or intend to do so. New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, “Internet Protocol Television Services Markets in Latin America,” finds that IPTV service is beginning to see widespread deployments in the region, as traditional telecommunications service providers try to complete a triple-play offer. “Traditional telecommunications providers are increasingly feeling the heat of competition from cable TV service providers bundling TV, Internet, and telephony,” explains Ignacio Perrone, industry manager at Frost & Sullivan. “To retain their market share and reduce churn, they may also have to join the IPTV bandwagon and increase their wallet-share among their client base.” (more)
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Torrijos to SICA Summit in Nicaragua

Panama NewsPanama, Jan 9 (Prensa Latina) Panama President Martin Torrijos will attend the 30th Summit of the Central American Integration System (SICA) on January 15 in Nicaragua. Foreign Minister and Vice President Samuel Lewis said the President will return home on the 15th itself but attending this summit will help attract investments, prosperity and domestic development. He added that Panama has been able to create new jobs and hit new levels of prosperity and development thanks to international arrangements and contacts with investors and other governments. The SICA Summit will address key issues when the world deals with an economic crisis that affects many countries. An irresponsible behavior in that scenario would result in retrogression in poverty fighting and creating opportunities.
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FTA between Panama, Honduras takes effect

Money MattersTrend Capital - The Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Panama and Honduras took effect on Friday, which will facilitate the circulation of 80 percent of the goods between both countries, the Panamanian Ministry of Commerce and Industry (Mici) said, Xinhua reported. According to Mici, the commercial agreement will allow the free circulation of goods, intensify the services sector and create opportunities for bilateral commercial exchanges, which totaled 165 million U.S. dollars. The agreement was signed in June 2007 by Panamanian President Martin Torrijos and his Honduran counterpart Manuel Zelaya after one-year negotiations. For the Panamanian production sector, the accord means preferential deals on the trade of 400 tons of bovine meat and 100 tons of pork meat in two years, as well as quotas on other products like milk and cheese. Honduras is considered the third largest market of exports for the Panamanian products and one of the most important destinations of the re-exports in the Colon Free Zone, the main commercial center of the region. Meanwhile, 17 percent of the Honduran exports are sent to Panama. Honduras' main investments and credits also come from Panamanian banking institutions, with a credit portfolio of over 236 million U.S. dollars. In addition, the Panamanian financial and insurance institutions will extend their operation to the Honduran market, where there is a growing maritime industry that needs those services.
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Panama Now Using Satellite Technology to Monitor Commerical Fishing Fleet

Fishing

By DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - According to a press release from the Panamanian Aquatic Resources Authority (ARAP), the government will begin using satellite technology to more closely monitor the activities and behavior of Panama's commercial industrial fishing fleet. ARAP Director Dr. Reynaldo Pérez Guardia recently signed resolution #46 which informs the owners of industrial fishing boats weighing more than six gross tons that they had until 20 December 2008 to obtain and install the mandatory system in order to be granted fishing licenses. These systems are now required and will allow for governmental oversight of the activities of the commercial fishing fleet, specifically to prevent fishing in protected areas.

Copyright 2008 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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