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Monday, May 25 2015 @ 09:21 AM EDT

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Expanding the Panama Canal

Canal ExpansionBY ROBERT R. McMILLAN: There is no doubt that Panama can take on the canal expansion successfully. Hopefully that will mean a totally transparent process for construction contracts and financing. A few weeks ago, Martin Torrijos, president of Panama, announced a well thought-out plan to enlarge the Panama Canal and bringing it up to the needs of the future. Before getting into the specifics, some history, and the challenges going forward, I would be remiss if I did not commend the current management of the Panama Canal Authority, the government agency responsible for operating the canal. The current administrator of the canal, Alberto Aleman, is a United States-educated engineer. He and his Panamanian predecessor, Gilberto Guardia, could not be more professional managers. Each one could very well be running a major company in this country. Panama is fortunate to have had such fine people in charge of the canal during the transition and after its transfer from the United States on Dec. 31, 1999.
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For Sale - 15.2 Hectares on Clayton (sucka)

Real Estate The National Assembly is going ahead with plans sell a 15.2 hectare lot on Clayton to the horror of environmentalists who say the land is part of the Camino de Cruces National Park and therefore a protected area. The warnings have not fallen in deaf ears. The Assembly have tried to sell the land twice, on the 11th and 31st of May, but both auctions were declared desert because bidders never appeared. But a third attempt could be announced shortly, since, according to the president of the Assembly, Elías Castillo, "right now there is nothing preventing the sale". The National Environmental Authority (ANAM) seems to support him. A report from the Department of Environmental Protection dated 18 April 2006 certifies that the land is "outside the limits of the Camino de Cruces National Park." Castillo does not know what the potential buyers might do with the land but two companies have expressed interest - Castro and Castro and Royal Development.
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Jara Takes Ride of a Lifetime at Belmont

Sports Section Fernando Jara certainly won't forget the Belmont Stakes. The 18-year-old Panamanian jockey took Jazil on the ride of a lifetime, threading his way from last-to-first and winning the final leg of the Triple Crown. The 1 1/2-mile Belmont may yet be remembered for who wasn't in the race than who was, but Jara and Jazil provided plenty of excitement in the absence of injured Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro and Preakness winner Bernardini. "The kid rode a great race," Kiaran McLaughlin said Sunday, a day after Jazil beat Bluegrass Cat by 1 1/4 lengths and gave the trainer his first win in a Triple Crown race. "You can't map it out, and you worry about what's going to happen. But you just have to leave it in their hands." Jara may be a teenager, but was as cool under pressure as any veteran. As Jazil left the gate, he briefly made contact with Bluegrass Cat, knocking Jara's right foot out of the stirrup. But the rider reached down and put his foot back where it belonged, and Jazil was on his merry way, picking off horses along the backstretch and moving into position to make his winning run coming out of the final turn.
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First three Clippers arrive in Panama

Sports Section The first three of the Clipper fleet arrived in Panama City on a very wet Saturday morning, 24 days after departing on Race 8 from Victoria. The Canadian entry was the first to pull into Flamenco Marina at the Pacific end of the Panama Canal at 0900 local time. After winning into their home port last month, the Ewan Hind and his crew were keen to get in first again despite finishing 6th overall in the last race. Coming alongside in a torrential downpour, the crew were glad to step ashore and taste their first local beer, the aptly named Panama, after over three weeks at sea. Next to pull into the marina was Durban Clipper, who finished in 2nd place in Race 8. The South African entry skippered by Craig Millar was just an hour behind Victoria, but the worst of the rain had cleared by the time they arrived. In Panama, the weather is a real hotch potch, with bright sunshine one moment and bucketing with rain the next. The crews have become accustomed to this tropical weather over the last couple of weeks, and arrived in a mixture of bikinis, shorts and oilskins.

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Panama: Now & Then

Travel & Tourism By Robert W. Bone: PANAMA CITY, Panama » Pelicans circled above the bay with the cool deliberation of master marksmen. When one spotted a fish, he snapped his wings into a sort of sharp-angled italicized Z and power-dived into the water. Returning to the surface with his prey, he would slide his prize smoothly into his gullet with a proud shake of his ample beak. I admired these deft acrobatics for an hour or two one sunny day in June 1963, in front of my hotel, the kind of marginal establishment that a nearly broke young vagabond could afford in those days. I can no longer name the hotel, but the pelican scene was firmly fixed in my memory by the time I flew home to the U.S. the following day. Returning to Panama City after more than 42 years, I again found myself overlooking the same shoreline. My previous modest accommodations were long gone. But from the balcony attached to a snazzy air-conditioned room in the Intercontinental Hotel Miramar, I saw that the pelicans had managed to remain on duty. And their aim was as good as ever.
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Panama City stop for Clipper Fleet

Sports Section Liverpool 08 and Cardiff arrived in Panama City on Sunday afternoon, joining New York, Victoria, Uniquely Singapore and Durban. Glasgow is expected at around 5pm local time and westernaustralia.com, Qingdao and Jersey are expected later today. The prizegiving party for Race 8 from Victoria starts at 6pm tonight on the stunning terrace at the Flamenco Marina. Traditional Panamanian snacks and drinks will be served overlooking the entrance to the Panama Canal. The first batch of five boats is scheduled to transit the Canal tomorrow. It is likely to be an early start for the crews but they will be glad to get a daytime slot so that they can appreciate the spectacular scenery. The journey through the Canal takes approximately 8 hours and each boat will have an official Panama Canal pilot on board. For more information about the Panama Canal and to view photo gallery, log onto their excellent website at www.pancanal.com. The rain held off for Liverpool 08 and Cardiff’s arrival earlier today, and everyone is keeping their fingers crossed that it will stay dry for this evening’s al fresco celebrations. There was a familiar face on the pontoon to greet the Cardiff crew this afternoon – their skipper Conor Fogerty, who missed the last race due to his wife’s illness. Thankfully all is now well back at home and he has been able to fly back out to rejoin his crew in Panama. For once he was on the pontoon and took the lines for relief skipper Mervyn Wheatley, who finished 5th in Race 8. www.clipper-ventures.co.uk
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El Rincon Aleman - Just In Time for the World Cup

Food & Drink Chef Willy Diggelmann presents his 5 Restaurants in Panama: the 1985 with French cuisine, the Rincon Suizo with Swiss Specialties, the Caffè Pomodoro with Italian Dishes, The Wine Bar with its extensive selection of wine and gourmet choices, and the recently opened The Wine Bar - Amador, where you can enjoy selections from a world-class wine list and spectacular views of Panama City's skyline. Willy's newest restaruant, just in time for the FIFA World Cup 2006 in Germany is the Rincon Aleman, serving the best of German cuisine.
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Firm seeks investors for Panama forest

Teak & ReforestationBy Caitrýona McBride: Green Belt manages 160,000 acres of forestry across Ireland and plants more than 10,000 acres of new forests each year. Its customers include Irish farmers and private and institutional investors. Maurice Ryan, managing director of Green Belt, said Panama was chosen for its political stability and climate. ‘‘I spent three years researching this project and Panama was by far the most attractive location in Central America,” he said. ‘‘It’s politically stable, the tropical heat is perfect for teak and land is affordable.” Ryan said teak was one of the most sought-after types of wood in the world because of its natural strength and durability. ‘‘Teak is always popular for furniture and floors and we were searching for years for the right plantation. We had to find a foreign location because Irish land will not sustain teak,” he said. Green Belt is looking for investors willing to put up at least €50,000 each. ‘‘That is the least amount that you would need to make it worth your while,” said Ryan. ‘‘This would plant six hectares for the investor, which we then manage.” The company promises a return to investors of more than 12 per cent per annum over the 18-year investment period. Ryan said some people were investing money in the scheme as a pension fund.
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"Futbol" Fever in Panama

Sports Section Panama is going nuts over the start of the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany, which started yesterday. All of the bars and taverns are opening up very early in the morning to cater to patrons who want to see the games on big-screen TVs. Places like Bennigan's on Balboa Ave and Bolas (the old Shula's) in El Dorado are always favorites. At least the games are not at 3:00 am like last time... Panamanians tend to favor Brazil, Argentina, and other regional teams from Latin America. Maybe one of these decades the Panamanian national team will qualify. There's always 2010... Argentina vs. Ivory Coast starts in a few minutes.
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Suicide from the Bridge of the Americas

Panama NewsThis morning an unidentified man drove his car to the middle of the Bridge of the Americas, got out, climbed over the fence and jumped off the bridge. Police units in the area saw what happened but were unable to do anything to stop the jumper. He is presumed to be dead, but authorities have not yet recovered his body.
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"Express Kidnapping" Ring Broken Up

Crime & PunishmentYesterday two men abducted two women at a shopping center in El Dorado in Panama City. The men were armed with a shotgun and the forced the women to use their ATM card to widthdrawl cash. The suspects left the victims bound in their car and fled the scene. Police identified the suspects and searched their home where they found "zip-cuffs" used to tie-up victims and other evidence related to the crimes. This kind of crime is called an "express kidnapping" in which the victims are briefly snatched while they are being robbed.
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So far in 2006 - 198 People Have Died in Traffic Accidents

Cars & TransportationLast night one person died and five were injured in a single-car accident on Calle 50. The car was apparently speeding and the driver lost control and slammed into a billboard sign pillar. So far this year 198 people have died in traffic accidents around the country.
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Flooding in Santiago (Veraguas)

WeatherYesterday afternoon heavy rains caused streams and rivers to overflow and flooded out at least 25 homes. Residents blamed a new road bridge that was recently build as part of an infrastructure upgrade in Santiago for restricting water drainage and causing the flooding. May and June are always heavy rainfall months in Panama, and small streams can turn into raging torrents in short order.
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Land Values Rocket in Calidonia (Lower Balboa Ave.)

Real Estate The increasing value of prime lots along Balboa Avenue in Panama City have taken investors, promoters and government authorities by surprise. Mega-construction projects in Calidonia have shot-up the value of land. "Nobody expected that foreign investors would pay attention to those lands, which has unleashed a transformation in the sector", said Jose Batiste, Director of Development of the Housing Ministry. The Spanish group Olloqui is building the the Palace of the Bay (Palacio de la Bahia), a 97-story steel-framed building that will cost more than $160 million dollars to build. This and other projects have driven up the value of land in the area which now costs more than $1,000 per square meter, more than 10 times what it was worth a year ago. New construction projects will continue to transform the Panama City skyline, and high-rise towers will replace long-standing Balboa Ave. landmarks such as the Boulevard Balboa, La Cascada, and the post office.
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International Attention Needed For The Displaced

Panama News With more than 2 million internally displaced people (IDPs) uprooted by Colombia's decades-long civil war and hundreds of thousands more seeking refuge in neighbouring countries, the United Nations refugee agency is calling for more international attention to be paid to the humanitarian crisis. These numbers, which continue to rise, make the Colombian situation not only the largest UNHCR operation in the Americas but also one of the world's biggest and most forgotten humanitarian tragedies,” UN High Commissioner for Refugees UNHCR) spokesman Ron Redmond told a news briefing in Geneva today. UNHCR Assistant High Commissioner for Operations Judy Cheng-Hopkins has just concluded a four-day mission to neighbouring Ecuador and today is expected to cross the border into Colombia on her way to the city of Pasto in the department of Nariño, which has seen a marked increase in violence and forced displacement since the start of the year.
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"...a problem of political credibility" - IADB

Money Matters BY PABLO BACHELET: WASHINGTON - The 1,100-mile natural gas pipeline was supposed to be a jewel of Latin American integration, connecting Peru's massive Camisea deposit with energy-hungry Chile and then on to Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay. But after months of talks, the $2.5 billion project was quietly shelved earlier this year because governments feared a future leader could simply shut off supplies and leave a neighbor in the lurch, analysts say -- exactly what Argentina has done with Chile and Uruguay. ''They've stopped talking about it,'' said Jaime Millán, a consultant with the Inter-American Development Bank, which was looking to fund part of the venture and hosted some of the discussions. ``It is a problem of political credibility.'' With gas pipelines often touted as the backbones of Latin America's economic and even political integration, the failure to expand the Camisea project shows just how a region made up of seemingly like-minded governments -- operating in a natural-fit environment of energy surplus countries next to energy-hungry ones -- have so far failed to overcome political volatility and grudges that in some cases go back centuries, experts say.
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Teens need help in a hurry for mission trip

Groups & Organizations By Kent Green: ST. CHARLES — A pair of teens from a St. Charles church need to raise $2,000 this weekend, and their church wants to help them do it. Danielle Valdes, 16, and Sarah Ferguson, 19, decided to go on a mission trip to Panama earlier this year. The $2,355 cost for each seemed daunting, but they were sure they could do it. Then they realized the payment schedule required them to have the money in much sooner than they had thought. They have been rushing to raise funds, but so far have only come up with about $2,500 total. Now, their church, St. Charles-based HELPS, is rallying around them with two fundraisers: a car wash that was held on Friday and a donation sale today at Ragamuffin Coffee House in St. Charles today. Church member Steve Bowen said that, when Valdes and Ferguson came to the church for help, he and other members rushed to assist them. "I think it's wonderful. They're so young, and they're doing such positive things with their lives," Bowen said. "We're putting a heartfelt plea to everybody to help."
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U.S. Health Secretary Urges Central America To Plan for Pandemic

Healthcare By Charlene Porter: Washington -- U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Michael Leavitt urged regional cooperation and partnership in preparing for a human influenza pandemic when he spoke to Central American health ministers June 8. At the meeting in Panama City, Panama, Leavitt outlined initiatives already launched to step up the region’s capability to fight infectious disease, anticipating that the highly pathogenic avian influenza virus that already has stricken much of the world soon will arrive in the Western Hemisphere. In late 2003, the H5N1 influenza virus began appearing among birds in Southeast Asia, and since has spread to more than 50 nations, infecting wild birds, backyard poultry and commercial poultry flocks. More than 200 million birds have died or been destroyed to prevent further spread of the virus. In 10 nations, humans also have been infected by this deadly flu, usually after close contact with ailing birds. The World Health Organization has confirmed deaths of 128 people due to H5N1, more than half of those known to have contracted the disease.
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Panama Canal Announces FY 2006 2nd Qtr Metrics

Canal Expansion PANAMA CITY, Panama, June 6, 2006 – The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) announced today second quarter (Q2) operational metrics for fiscal year 2006. During Q2, there was an increase in net tonnage, total transits and transits of Panamax vessels. Additionally, there was a decrease in official accidents. Canal Waters Time (CWT), the average time it takes a vessel to transit the Canal including waiting time for passage, increased in Q2 and booking slot utilization remained steady. These metrics are based on operations from January through March, the second quarter of the ACP's 2006 fiscal year. Panama Canal/Universal Measurement System (PC/UMS) tonnage increased 5.7 percent – to 75.0 million PC/UMS tons from 70.9 million PC/UMS tons. In addition to a spike in tonnage, the Canal realized an increase in traffic. Total Canal transits increased 3.5 percent – to 3,862 transits from 3,730. Moreover, transits of Panamax vessels (100 feet or more in beam and the largest vessels that can pass through the Canal) increased 7.5 percent – to 1,501 transits from 1,396.
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Venezuela's Chavez to Travel to Panama to Broaden Energy Ties

Money Matters June 9 (Bloomberg) -- Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez will travel to Panama on June 22 to broaden energy ties between the two Latin American countries. Talks will center on possible sales of crude and petroleum products to Panama, Venezuelan Deputy Foreign Minister Pavel Rondon said in an interview with the state Bolivarian news agency. Chavez and Panamanian President Martin Torrijos also may discuss building an oil refinery in Panama as well, as the extension of a planned natural-gas pipeline between Venezuela and Colombia to the Central American country, Rondon said. Panama isn't in Venezuela's PetroCaribe initiative, which offers its 13 members petroleum products on preferential terms, cutting out third parties. Countries also are allowed to pay for oil in goods and are offered special financing.
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Influent's Colon, Panama Contact Center Honored

Internet & Technology DUBLIN, Ohio, June 9 /PRNewswire/ -- The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) has selected Influent's Colon, Panama contact center as an exemplary "best in class" facility. Each year, the DMA's Teleservices Council Programming Advisory Committee identifies outstanding facilities which embody industry best practices and demonstrate leadership in teleservices performance. The Colon contact center was featured in a virtual tour presentation to a packed audience at the 22nd Annual DMA Teleservices Conference held earlier this week in Newport Beach, CA. Influent, a leading provider of outsourced customer contact solutions with offices in the U.S., Philippines and Panama, created a truly unique conference experience that allowed teleservices executives from around the world to experience Influent's best practices without leaving their seats. A virtual tour DVD described how Influent has developed the facility, including every aspect from the original vision to construction, hiring, and employee development. The center is established at the former Ft. Davis Army base previously occupied by the American military as part of its management of the Panama Canal.
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AIDS Authority Warns Central America

Healthcare Panama, Jun 9 (Prensa Latina) Elizabeth Rodriguez, HIV/AIDS coordinator for Central America, alerted Friday of the dramatic regional situation of the mortal virus and outlined a series of measures to fight it. Rodriguez, official of the Social Central American Integration Office, told Prensa Latina that the problem has taken on great importance because most of the transmissions of the disease are between heterosexual people. She said there are many still incomplete studies to determine bisexuality, which makes the matter more complicated. AIDS is affecting women and young people in increasing numbers. In Central America, Honduras and Belize have the highest rate of affected people. “The disease has spread quickly in Central America because of migrations, so this makes it much more complex to control,” she said. Integral attention in the region, general care of basic services, especially to those with the disease, and access to public health services in some countries are some of the things that must be done, in opinion of the specialist. High vulnerability studies are being made in El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Costa Rica, including studies of prostitutes and men who have sexual relations with them. She said her office is in charge of the important project of exchanging information and experience.
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"We Are Overdue and Under-Prepared" HHS Secy. Michael O. Leavitt in Panama

Healthcare Last week the Secretary of Health and Human Services of the United States, Michael O. Leavitt, visited Panama and addressed a meeting of the Health Ministers of Central America (COMISCA) at the Caesar's Park Hotel. His remarks and visit were centered around the threat of avian or pandemic influenza, and he announced more than $775,000 in funding for the Gorgas Institute to establish a key monitoring and detection facility for Latin America. Dr. Jorge Motta is now the Director of the Gorgas Institute, and this additional funding will help all of the nations of Central America prepare for the inevitable arrival of the avian influenza virus in this region. Panama's Minister of Health Dr. Camilo Allenye, in his speech before the assembly of his regional counterparts, outlined a plan through which the nations of Central America can work together and pool their resources to obtain advantages of scale with regards to procurement of drugs and equipment. This is the first time a sitting Secretary of Health has visited Central America. Secretary Leavitt's remarks follow below.



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Amphibian Crisis in Panama - It's Not Easy Being Green

Animals & Pets By Joseph R. Mendelson III and Ronald W. Gagliardo: Amphibians are undergoing a mass extinction event on a scale unprecedented in human history. Habitat loss, human exploitation, and environmental contamination are among the main causes of this threat of extinction. A deadly new threat has emerged recently. An infectious fungal disease called amphibian chytridiomycosis is having catastrophic effects on amphibians all over the globe. This disease may well be the result of global climate change. Recent events in Panama illustrate perfectly a pattern of amphibian decline clearly associated with this disease and the power of scientific data to that allows scientist to launch pro-active conservation responses. Recently, Dr. Karen Lips of Southern Illinois University and colleagues offered a model of a wave-like spread of the fungus across Costa Rica and Panama. This model predicted that in 2006 the rich amphibian fauna in the vicinity of El Valle de Antón in central Panama, would suffer a catastrophic decline because of chytrid fungus.
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CAFTA-DR Could Open New markets for Florida

Money Matters By JAMES THORNER: Out by the railroad tracks on Tampa’s Adamo Drive, Calvin Reed’s factory hisses and hums with steelworkers making girders and storage tanks. Heavy industry like steel is supposed to be dying domestically, the victim of cheap foreign labor. Don’t tell that to Reed and his 150 employees. More than a quarter of Reed’s market for petroleum storage tanks is in Latin America. The region is being courted by Florida as the United States pushes for passage of the Central American-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR), which would create a largely tariff-free trading bloc from Hudson Bay to the Panama Canal. Reed’s $50-million company, Tampa Tank Inc., was active in two recent trade missions — to Panama and Guatemala. One notable sale was a $4-million fuel tank to serve ships on the Panama Canal. If CAFTA-DR succeeds, expect the tropics to be on Reed’s itinerary more often. “I was impressed with the Panama trade mission. It was business. There was no tennis, golf or nightlife fooling around. We were in meetings the two days we were there,’’ said Reed, who’s conversant in Spanish from a boyhood spent partly in Argentina.
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Volleyball Men in Quarterfinals

Sports Section The Canadian Men's Volleyball Team have advanced to the quarterfinals of the inaugural Men’s 2006 Pan American Cup in Mexico. They beat Trinidad & Tobago in three straight sets. Scores were 25-17, 25-9, 25-19. Team Canada will now advance to the quarterfinals tomorrow where they will take on 37th-ranked Panama. A win over Panama would see Canada face the USA in the semi-finals on Saturday. http://www.cjob.com/news/index.aspx?src=loc&mc=sports&rem=40022
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Panama's Chief Proves Nimble on High Wire

Politics By Chris Kraul: PANAMA CITY — Not many leaders have the political dexterity to bear-hug Fidel Castro and male-bond with former President H.W. Bush soon after. But it's a balancing act that Panamanian President Martin Torrijos seems to be carrying off with aplomb. Torrijos, the 42-year-old son of the late strongman Omar Torrijos, knows a thing or two about the high wire: He has distanced himself from his father's authoritarianism without rejecting his legacy of winning control of the Panama Canal and reaching out to the country's poor. And he says that accommodating leaders on the left and the right in the region, as well as within Panama's fragmented political scene, is less a matter of personal predilection than of dealing with "geographical and economic reality." "We respect the different views in the region, the different stands of the countries, and we try to get along," Torrijos said, sitting in his ornate Spanish Colonial office in this capital's historic Old City.
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Bellhaven Ventures Reports High Grade Gold Values From its Los Hatillos Concession, Panama

Money Matters PANAMA CITY, PANAMA--(CCNMatthews - June 8, 2006) - Bellhaven Ventures Inc. (TSX VENTURE:BHV - News) is pleased to report on the results of continuing fieldwork on its Los Hatillos concession in the Veraguas Gold Belt of western Panama. The concession is located near two former gold producers: the Santa Rosa open pit mine (105,000 ounces) and the Remance underground deposit (89,000 ounces). Carl Nelson, president of Bellhaven, commented as follows, "Our field crews have confirmed the presence of high-grade gold mineralization at Los Hatillos. The next step will be an aggressive drill program to test 8 kilometers of established vein strike length for epithermal, base and precious metal, bonanza vein deposits." Surface samples collected by Bellhaven from steeply dipping, epithermal quartz veins at Aguacatal (Los Hatillos concession) returned up to 52.5 g/t gold. Sixty-one of 241 samples returned values in excess of 1 g/t gold; fourteen of those samples returned values in excess of 10 g/t gold. Analyses were performed by ACME Labs using standard assay procedures (30 gram sample, fire assay preparation, ICP-MS finish). Michael Druecker, Ph.D., is the Independent Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101 responsible for ensuring that the geological information in this release is accurate..
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Panama as an Incentive Destination

Travel & Tourism By A.E. Smith: Last October, Penny Wing and Ashle Trucano of Incentive Travel Inc. found themselves in a situation planners dread: They were six months deep in designing a Super Bowl-weekend trip for 170 guests to the Fairmont Mayakoba in Riviera Maya, when Hurricane Wilma effectively wiped their destination off the map. The trip was an annual event rewarding CBS Television's top football-season advertisers, and the attendees were well-traveled and hard to impress. But with only six weeks' preparation, the team was able to pull together an itinerary that wowed the client with singular events, stunning scenery, gourmet dining and excellent value. They went to Panama. If all the word Panama conjures are impressions of white linen suits, a canal built despite malarial plagues, Noriegan dictatorship and a mid-80s song by Van Halen, you're not alone; but if you haven't considered Panama as an incentive destination, you should. "Panama to me has everything you always wanted Central America to offer, but never could quite find," says Randolph Snapp, president of DMS Incentives, a Clearwater, Fla.–based DMC that has seen a steady uptick in demand this year.
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Panama Boxing Beat!

Sports Section Christian Giudice: This weekend, Panama will celebrate Saturday's big boxing extravaganza with "Alto Voltage" (High Voltage) an 8-bout card promoted by Promociones y Eventos de Isthmo. Highlighting the ATLAPA card will be Colon's Miguelito Callist (21-5-1, 16 KOs) facing Darien's Juan Mosquera (22-3-1, 14 KOs) over 10 rounds of light-welterweight action in one of the more competitive bouts in Panama City this year. Along with Callist vs. Mosquera (both WBA-ranked), in a do-or-die career match and possibly the most intriguing bout of the evening, William "La Esperanza Blanca" Gonzalez (18-2-1, 5 KOs) faces Wilmer Gomez (20-4, 6 KOs) in a 10-rounder for the WBA Fedecentro Super Lightweight crown. Flyweights Juan Piero Perez (9-1, 7 KOs) and Ronald Ramos (12-5-1, 6 KOs) also battle in a 10-rounder. In light-heavyweight action, Tito Mendoza (32-7, 25 KOs) takes on Ecuador's Washington Grueso (0-1-0) in a 10-rounder. Those fans who recall Mendoza as a 140-pounder, and later middleweight prospect can now see the power in his punch at 175+ pounds. The bout is the aftermath for Friday's much anticipated World Cup matches between Costa Rica and Germany, then Ecuador and Poland. After making the third defense of his WBA Light Flyweight title with a decision win over Venezuela's Noel "El Verdugo" Arambulet, Panama's Roberto "Arana" Vasquez has ended his reign and officially relinquished the light flyweight belt. Noting that his body has grown out of the division, Vasquez will move up in search of more prominent challengers and bigger paydays. http://www.fightnews.com/fightnews_2/headlines//EEuAZAVpklACKkNtPJ.html
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