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Wednesday, October 18 2017 @ 02:20 PM EDT

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Philadelphia, Panama to Build Traffic

Canal ExpansionBy Peter T. Leach for the Journal of Commerce Online - The Philadelphia Regional Port Authority and the Panama Canal Authority signed a memorandum of understanding on Friday that is aimed at increasing all-water container traffic from Asia to Philadelphia through the canal. Philadelphia does not now get many calls by container ships that use the all-water route from Asia because it does not yet have the channel depth. But the PRPA and the state are planning to build a large new container terminal called Southport at the former Philadelphia Navy Yard on the Delaware River that would be capable of handling the larger post-Panamax ships that will be able to transit the canal after it completes a third set of locks in 2014. The PRPA is also sponsoring a five- to seven-year project by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to deepen the Delaware River’s main channel from 40 feet to 45 feet, which will better position the port to accommodate the next generation of vessels with deeper drafts that will be able to transit the canal after 2014. The MOU was signed June 12 by PRPA Board Chairman John H. Estey and Panama Canal Administrator/CEO Alberto Alemán Zubieta. Under the agreement, which is renewable after two years, PRPA and ACP will conduct joint activities and share best practices. Specific areas of focus will include marketing, research and data interchange, technical advancements and personnel training programs. The agreement demonstrates each organization’s dedication to meeting the anticipated increased levels of international trade. In 2008, PRPA cargo transiting the Canal, either on its way to or from its destination, totaled 1,906,343 long tons and represents half of all cargo handled by PRPA. Moreover, this number is up nearly 17,000 long tons from the year before.
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Impregilo says Panama bid tops in tech appraisal

Canal ExpansionSANTA MARGHERITA, Italy (Reuters) - A consortium including Italy's Impregilo SpA has obtained top marks in the technical appraisal of bids to expand the Panama Canal, Impregilo's chairman said on Friday. Impregilo has said the whole Panama expansion project is worth $3.7 billion and it has a potential 37 percent stake in any contract. "The (tender) envelopes will be opened on June 29," Chairman Massimo Ponzellini said during a conference at a meeting of the Confindustria employers association. "We know we have obtained the maximum technical points. We hope to win the contest," he said, without elaborating. Brokers have cited order news, including the Panama project, as supporting a rise in Impregilo's shares. They closed on Friday up 4.17 percent at 2.56 euros. Impregilo's consortium partners are Spain's Sacyr Vallehermoso SA, Portugal's Somague, Belgium's Jan de Nul and Panama's Cusa. Two other consortiums are on the short list. The first is the CANAL grouping including Spain's ACS SA, Acciona SA and Germany's Hochtief AG. The second is a Japanese-U.S. group led by the privately-held Bechtel. (Reporting by Cristina Carlevaro; writing by Nigel Tutt; Editing by Hans Peters)
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ACP Wins "Best International Project Award" For Canal Expansion

Canal ExpansionPANAMA CITY, Panama, June 8, 2009 – The Panama Canal Expansion Program received its 11th international award to date at the 2009 International Logistics and Material Handling Exhibition (SIL 2009) in Barcelona, Spain June 4. Judges unanimously bestowed the “Best International Project” award to the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) for its management of the Canal’s expansion, the “largest infrastructure initiative in Latin America.” Expansion will build a new lane of traffic along the Panama Canal through the construction of a new set of locks, which will double capacity and allow more traffic and longer, wider ships. During the awards ceremony, judges of SIL 2009 recognized the original construction of the Canal as “one of the engineering wonders of all time.” Judges also acknowledged the efforts of the more than 9,000 dedicated Panamanians employed by the ACP who help facilitate the transit of ships through the Canal every day. (more)
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Panama Ready to Award Main Contract for Canal, L.A. Times Says

Canal Expansion
Expansion of the Panama Canal
Expansion of the Panama Canal
By James Kraus (Bloomberg) -- Panama is ready to award the main contract to enlarge the almost 100-year-old canal that traverses the isthmus as early as this month, the Los Angeles Times said, citing Alberto Aleman, chief executive of the Panama Canal Authority. Aleman discounted reports that construction on the $5.25 billion project might be delayed because of the global economic slowdown, the newspaper reported. Bechtel Group Inc., in alliance with Taisei Corp. and Mitsubishi Corp., has bid for the contract, the newspaper said. The two other groups that placed bids in March include one led by Spain's Grupo ACS, and another by Sacyr Vallehermoso SA and Italy's Impregilo SpA, the Times reported.
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Panama Canal expansion is chugging along

Canal Expansion
Dredge in the Pacific Approach
Dredge in the Pacific Approach
By Chris Kraul Reporting from Panama City for the Los Angeles Times - The economic downturn has stalled big construction projects across the globe, but here in Panama, smoke-belching steam shovels and dredges work around the clock on what people here call simply la ampliación, or the expansion. This month, officials will award the principal contract for the $5.25-billion expansion of the landmark Panama Canal, a project that will probably alter global shipping patterns and cement this Central American nation's place as a center of global logistics. "This is a financial crisis, and there has been a decline in ship traffic. But we are very much on time and on target," said Panama Canal Authority head Alberto Aleman, addressing rumors that the global recession could cause the project to miss its 2014 scheduled completion date. (more)
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Panama Canal Expansion Bids Overshoot Budget 35%, Cinco Reports

Canal ExpansionBy Gianluca Baratti May 25 (Bloomberg) -- Three bids to widen the Panama Canal are as much as 35 percent over the budget set by the canal’s administrators and may delay building, Cinco Dias reported, citing an unidentified executive at a Spanish company involved in the bidding. Bids from partnerships that include Mitsubishi Corp., Hochtief AG and Sacyr Vallehermoso SA are higher than the $5.2 billion valuation of the project by the Panama Canal Authority and may push the award of the project beyond a July deadline, the paper said. (See Comments)
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Panama canal sees contract by July

Canal ExpansionBy Sean Mattson PANAMA CITY (Reuters) - The Panama Canal Authority expects to award the biggest contract for its $5.25 billion expansion project in June or July, the head of the authority said on Tuesday. Experts are reviewing the technical aspects of the bids of three consortia received in April before the bid prices are formally unsealed, Authority President Alberto Aleman said at the Reuters Latin American Investment Summit. "The bids are in a vault in a bank and we expect that some time in June or July when we are finished with all the technical analysis we will have a public opening of the bids," said Aleman. "By the end of the year we should have around 96 percent of the contracts awarded and working. The expansion is proceeding very well, very much in the time that we intended." (more)
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Panama Canal expansion could facilitate crude flows to Asia

Canal ExpansionYour Oil And Gas News - The expansion of the Panama Canal could play a key role in the shipment of South American crude oil to Asia, especially as Venezuela has announced deals with Japan and China to increase exports to the region, according to an official with the Panama Canal Authority. "Today, through the Panama Canal, we see cargoes of crude oil and products that originate in Venezuela, Colombia and the Caribbean with destinations on the west coast of the Americas," Silvia de Marucci, an official with the authority, told BNamericas. "These shipments are done in Panamax vessels, which are the maximum size allowed by present locks," she continued, adding that the route was used mostly for regional trade. (more)
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Impregilo consortium on Panama Canal short list

Canal Expansion MILAN, April 21 (Reuters) - An international consortium including Italy's biggest builder Impregilo (IPGI.MI) is among the three shortlisted groups for a contract to expand the Panama Canal, Impregilo's vice chairman said on Tuesday. "There is a shortlist of three groups. Envelopes are expected to be opened in May," Antonio Talarico said on the sidelines of Milano Assicurazioni's ADM.MI shareholder meeting. Talarico said the contract was worth $3.7 billion and that Impregilo's share was 37 percent. (Reporting by Gianluca Semeraro)
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T&T tapped for Panama construction projects

Canal ExpansionBy Louis B Homer for the Trinidad & Tobago Express - Almost 100 years after they helped build the Panama Canal, Trinidadians may be returning to help widen and deepen it. The project, earmarked for completion in 2015, could bring economic benefits to local construction industry contractors. Cesar Gomez, Consul General of the Republic of Panama, last week told members of the South Trinidad Chamber of Industry and Commerce that they should establish new economic ties with the authorities involved in the project. He said there will be several aspects of the project that will require the type of expertise and experience that many contractors in Trinidad can get involved in. He referred specifically to the construction of some 14 power plants and several other facilities. Gomez said there will also be the need for skilled labourers. He reminded chamber members that when the canal was first built, over 23,000 workers from Trinidad were employed on the project. He explained that the work to be carried out was intended to allow more and larger vessels to use the canal, and the decision to improve shipping facilities in Panama followed a national referendum approved in 2006. In addition to opportunities in Panama, Carlos Mauricio Pineda Cruz, Ambassador to El Salvador, said several developmental projects will soon be started in El Salvador and local contractors could benefit from a multi-million-dollar road development programme which will link the capital to various parts of the country. Both foreign ambassadors addressed the South Trinidad chamber at a breakfast meeting held on Tuesday at Paria Suites Hotel, La Romaine, as part of the chamber's programme to find alternative contracts for the local business community.
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Three groups bid for $3.35 bln Panama Canal project

Canal ExpansionPANAMA CITY, March 3 (Reuters) - Three consortia placed bids on Tuesday for the biggest job of a planned $5.25 billion expansion of the Panama Canal, the canal authority said. The groups are seeking the estimated $2.73 billion contract for two new locks on the Atlantic and Pacific sides of the canal that will double capacity and allow larger vessels to use the waterway. Another $620 million project will build water saving basins for the canal. The three bidding groups include the CANAL consortium, led by Spanish companies Actividades de Construccion y Servicios SA (ACS.MC) and Acciona SA (ANA.MC) and Germany's Hochtief AG (HOTG.DE); a Japanese-U.S. group led by privately-held Bechtel; and a third comprised of Sacyr Vallehermoso SA (SVO.MC) and Italy's Impreglio. (more)
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Panama Canal Dredging Bids Sought

Canal ExpansionMaritime Global Net - THE Panama Canal Authority (ACP) has announced a Request for Proposals (RFP) to dredge the Canal's Atlantic entrance. The contract includes the dredging of approximately 15 million underwater cubic meters and 800 thousand cubic meters of dry excavation. It also includes deepening the Canal's Atlantic entrance to 15.5 meters to allow the transit of post-panamax vessels through the new set of locks that will be constructed under the expansion programme. With the announcement of the RFP, potential contractors will be allowed a period of three and a half months to evaluate site conditions and one month to submit their proposals. The ACP says: “The contract will be awarded under the lowest price model. Proposals are expected to be submitted on July 15, 2009 with the project completion expected sometime in the second quarter of 2013.” (more) (See Comments)
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Panama Canal lock bids received

Canal ExpansionMarineLog.com - The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) continues to press ahead with the start of the bid process for the most important project in its Expansion Program -- construction of the new set of locks. Today, the ACP received proposals from three consortia competing to design and build the new locks on the Pacific and Atlantic sides of the Panama Canal. The three consortia that submitted bids included: Consorcio C.A.N.A.L; Consortium Bechtel, Taisei, Mitsubishi Corporation and Consorcio Grupo Unidos por el Canal. ACP will evaluate the proposals in a fair, rigorous and transparent process, and will award the contract on the basis of "best value" -- 55 percent for the technical aspect and 45 percent for the bid price. "As we welcome bids for the design and construction of the new locks, we mark yet another historic milestone in Canal expansion," said ACP Administrator/CEO Alberto Alemán Zubieta. "This is an exciting time for the Canal and for Panama as we move forward with the single most important expansion project. We stand committed to hiring a consortium that meets all technical requirements and provides the best value for the project. We are honored and pleased to receive submissions from leading firms in the industry and we will start reviewing the proposals immediately." (more)
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Panama Canal Experts Selected to Evalute Bids

Canal ExpansionMaritime Global Net PANAMA CITY, February 15, 2009 – Today, the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) announced the final composition of the ACP Evaluation Committee that will review proposals submitted by consortia vying to win the largest contract under the $5.25 billion Canal Expansion Program – the design and construction of the new set of locks. The Committee is comprised of 15 Canal employees selected through a rigorous progress launched in October 2007. “The selection of the Evaluation Committee is the next step in the fair, rigorous and transparent process to award the locks contract,” said ACP Contracts Administration Manager Francisco Miguez. “Since releasing the request for proposals in August 2007, we have received interest from some of the world’s most renowned companies to construct the new set of locks. We are now ready to evaluate the proposals and award the most important contract under the Canal Expansion Program.” (more)
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Bidding process starts for new SPA terminal's first project

Canal ExpansionBY ALLYSON BIRD for The Post and Courier Moving ahead with its plan to built a new container terminal at the former Navy base in North Charleston, the State Ports Authority is seeking bids for the terminal's first major construction project. Fourteen companies have already expressed interest in constructing a 5,000-foot containment wall. The project, estimated at $60 million, will require dredging 880,000 cubic yards of material, installing pipe and sheet pile and constructing a rock berm. The containment wall will prepare the tideland area of the 280-acre terminal to receive fill material. Construction should begin this summer and will take about 15 months to complete. The terminal is set to open in 2014 to coincide with the Panama Canal expansion.
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ACP Selects Deloitte as Auditor for New Set Of Locks Contract

Canal ExpansionPANAMA CITY, February 10, 2009 – In a move to ensure a fair, open and transparent process in the awarding of the largest contract under the Panama Canal Expansion Program, the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) today selected Deloitte as the ACP’s new third set of locks contracting auditor. In that capacity, Deloitte will oversee the technical aspect for the new third set of locks contract. Specifically, Deloitte will work closely with the ACP to audit, verify and certify that the ACP’s Evaluation Committee follows the rigorous analysis process to evaluate the technical proposals to be submitted by the qualifying consortia. “All ACP contracts undergo a very rigorous process to ensure fairness and transparency,” said Panama Canal Authority (ACP) Administrator/CEO Alberto Alemán Zubieta. “As the most important contract under the Canal Expansion Program, the ACP has taken additional measures to ensure that the contracting process is airtight, complies with Panamanian law, and is managed by experts and audited by a third party to certify thoroughness and transparency.” (more)
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In Florida - Fighting Over New Panama Canal Business

Canal ExpansionFlorida Shipper - Worried that the Florida panhandle Port of Panama City could swipe container ships from the Port of Miami, Miami-Dade commissioners last month passed a resolution urging the Florida Legislature “to make infrastructure investments in the Port of Miami and other existing large seaports in Florida, rather than provide funding for the substantial expansion of the Port of Panama City in Florida’s Panhandle.” Commissioner José “Pepe” Diaz told the local papers he fears the Panama Canal Authority plans to point cargo through the soon-to-be-expanded Panama Canal straight to the Panhandle. Panama Canal officials cornered Diaz during a recent visit and convinced him the improbable emergence of Panama City was a real threat. Diaz said the canal authority gave a presentation in which “they expressed that they have created a new link that will go straight up to the Panhandle, and that it will be in their opinion more efficient and better, and they’re going to make a lot of revenue.” (more)
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Panama Canal expansion: world’s best stimulus project

Canal ExpansionBy Jeremy Schwartz for the Statesman.com - Uncovering Mexico is journeying south to Panama for a couple of stories and our wanderings have of course led us to the Panama Canal, currently undergoing a $5.2 billion expansion. The project, approved by voters in 2006, is serving nicely as perhaps the world’s best stimulus package: a massive construction project that is worth nearly a fourth of the country’s yearly budget and which will create about 40,000 jobs. FDR would be proud. The expansion, which will build a new set of speedier, water-saving locks at either end of the country, is expected to be finished by 2014 (it will be quite a bit shorter, and one would hope safer, than the original project, in which some 27,000 workers perished). Seeing the Canal firsthand, I finally understood just what these mysterious locks are. Engineers needed to find a way to move ships up from sea level to the level of Panama’s inland lakes, which actually make up the majority of the Canal. The locks are a series of sealed chambers in which boats are raised with incoming water or lowered (as they leave the country) as water is released from the locks. The ships then float up or down in several stages. I never realized just how long the process takes. Passing through the three chambers at the Miraflores Locks took about a half-hour to 45 minutes per ship. And ships go through two at a time in the two parallel lanes (switching direction at midnight), meaning there is often quite a line of mega-freighters waiting to get through. Out in the Pacific we saw boats lined up for miles waiting to squeeze through the Canal and learned that traffic jams of up to a week aren’t unheard of. The expansion will not only build a set of wider locks, allowing the biggest of today’s super-freighters to pass through, it will also speed up the process. And the new locks will save the water from Panama’s inland lakes, currently used to power the lock sytem, meaning it can be used by local communities, some of which lack drinking water.
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Some in Miami-Dade see competition in Panama-to-Panhandle shipping route

Canal ExpansionBy Risa Polansky for Miami Today - Some Miami-Dade commissioners are warily eyeing the Florida Panhandle as competition for international trade. They last month passed a measure urging the state "to make infrastructure investments in the Port of Miami and other existing large seaports in Florida, rather than provide funding for the substantial expansion of the Port of Panama City in Florida's Panhandle." Commissioner José "Pepe" Diaz, spearheading the push, said he fears the Panama Canal Authority plans to point cargo through the soon-to-be-expanded Panama Canal straight to the Panhandle, a route that avoids the loop around Cuba that trips to South Florida require — potentially siphoning jobs and money from Miami-Dade. (more)
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Panama Canal outlines dawn of new panamax era

Canal Expansion Seatrade Asia - Hong Kong: The Panama Canal Authority has issued a circular to all agents, owners and operators, seen by Seatrade Asia Online, outlining the precise details of the new locks under construction and by extension the dimensions for the next era of panamax ships. The expansion program, which will nearly double the canal’s tonnage capacity, consists of the construction of two new lock complexes, one on the Pacific and one on the Atlantic side of the waterway, in order to provide a third lock lane capable of handling vessels of greater beams, lengths and drafts. The program also entails the widening and deepening of existing navigational channels in Gatun Lake, Culebra Cut, and the Pacific and Atlantic Entrance Channels. Each of the new lock complexes will have three chambers, and each chamber will have water-saving basins that will permit the reutilization of up to 60% of the water employed in the lockage of a vessel. The chamber dimensions of the new locks will be 427 meters long, 55 meters wide and 18.3 meters deep. The corresponding maximum dimensions for vessels that will transit these locks are 366 meters LOA, 49 meters in beam and 15.2 meters in tropical freshwater (TFW) draft. These dimensions are being used to define the New Panamax size vessel. When the expansion is completed in 2014, the navigational channels will allow the transit of present post-Panamax containerships; Suezmax liquid-bulk tankers; Capesize dry-bulk carriers; and larger sizes of liquefied natural gas carriers, passenger ships and other vessel types within the established dimensional limits identified above. Details on the Panama Canal Expansion Program are available on the Panama Canal website at www.pancanal.com.
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Third Panama Canal expansion contract awarded

Canal Expansion By Richard High for khl.com The US$ 5.25 billion expansion of the 77 km-long Panama Canal, is the largest infrastructure project currently underway in Latin America (see www.khl.com/features for more information on this project). The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) has awarded Costa Rica's Constructora MECO the third of four dry excavation contracts to help create an access channel linking the new Pacific locks with the Canal's existing Gaillard Cut (the narrowest stretch of the Panama Canal). Commenting on the contract award, the ACP's executive vice president of engineering and program management, Jorge L. Quijano, said, "This pivotal step in the process to build the new lane represents just one more example of the Expansion Program's steady progress. Constructora MECO is a leading construction company in Latin America with expertise in the execution of infrastructure projects such as this one. (more)
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IS THE EXPANSION OF THE ‘BIG DITCH’ JUST A ‘BIG PITCH’?

Canal Expansion ROBERT R. FRUMP for the Gulf Shipper - Plans proceed, but the economy and “Freight Pain” beg the question: Is the world still flat? Gulf ports say the containers will come. The expansion of the Panama Canal — the “Big Ditch,” as it is affectionately called — is on schedule. To curb any doubters, the canal authority affirmed financing in early December for the $5 billion-plus project. Still, even in an era where government-sponsored “infrastructure” projects seem to be popular, critics question whether the new “Big Ditch” will really re-order the world of U.S. and Gulf shipping as prophesied. Could it be just a “Big Pitch” for port expansion — with little underlying economic reality? Why would Gulf ports not expand? (more)
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Panama Canal awards third dry excavation contract

Canal ExpansionThe JOURNAL of COMMERCE ONLINE - The Panama Canal Authority has awarded the third of four dry excavation contracts to Constructora MECO, to help create an access channel linking the new Pacific locks with the waterway's existing Gaillard Cut, which is the narrowest stretch of the Panama Canal. The authority selected Constructora MECO from among six bids, and said that the Costa Rican firm was the lowest bidder. The scope of work included in the contract encompasses the excavation, removal and disposal of 8 million cubic meters of material, which will further reduce Paraiso (Paradise) Hill from 46 meters to 27.5 meters above sea level. It also calls for the construction of approximately 2.5 kilometers of access roads and the clearing of 190 hectares of land bearing munitions and explosives, remnants from former U.S. military training in Panama.
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Panama Canal Authority To Award New Locks Contract In May

Canal ExpansionBOGOTA (Dow Jones)--The Panama Canal Authority will likely award the contract to build a new set of locks in late May, the authority's top official said Wednesday. The four groups selected by the authority have until March 3 to submit a bid and the authority will award the contract to one of the bidders by late May taking into account technical aspects and pricing, the Canal Authority's chief executive, Alberto Aleman, said Wednesday in a conference call. The winner will build two new locks, one on the Pacific and one on the Atlantic side of the canal. Each lock will have three chambers and each chamber will have three water reutilization basins. (more)
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ACP: Multilaterals likely to play bigger role in project finance

Canal ExpansionBy Renzo Dasso, Business News Americas - The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) foresees that multilateral agencies will play a bigger role in the project finance industry, ACP financial management head Enrique Márquez told BNamericas. "It would not be surprising if such a trend develops, since the origin of these agencies thrives on common issues and interests around the world," Márquez said. "Given the current economic crisis, they represent a source of funding which is readily available to the project finance industry," he added. The credit crunch caused by the global financial crisis at the beginning of the third quarter has prompted multilateral agencies to fill the space left by commercial banks, which have withdrawn from the market by restricting credit. (more)
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Financial crisis doesn't affect Panama Canal widening project

Canal ExpansionXinhua - The head of the Panama Canal Authority said Wednesday that plans to widen the canal have not been changed because of the global financial crisis. Alberto Aleman Aleman told Xinhua the project will benefit the world economy for years to come. "The Panama Canal and the world have suffered recessions before. That is nothing new," Aleman said, adding the project has "all the support and guarantee" from financial institutions. Panama President Martin Torrijos said Tuesday during a meeting to sign loans worth 2.3 billion U.S. dollars for the canal project that it was not affected by the financial uncertainty. Funding for the project was given to the Panama Canal Authority by five international financial agencies. It is estimated that the project will cost around 5.25 billion dollars, of which 43 percent is to be covered by loans, the rest by user fees. The project, which started in September 2007, is expected to be completed by 2014. The 81-kilometer waterway linking the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans was opened in 1914 but now is too narrow for large modern freighters. Source: Xinhua
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ACP Obtains $2.3 Billion for Canal Expansion

Canal ExpansionPANAMA CITY, Panama, December 9, 2008 - Amid a strained and uncertain global economy, one historic construction project continues to reinforce Panama's economic growth and political stability: the expansion of the Panama Canal. Today, on the heels of Panamanian President Martín Torrijos' recent expansion financing structure announcement, senior leaders of five multilateral and development agencies convened at Panama's Ascanio Arosemena Theater with Canal officials to sign an agreement on the financing for the waterway's expansion. Representing Asia, Latin America, Europe and the United States, the agency leaders joined President Torrijos, ACP Administrator/CEO Alberto Alemán Zubieta and the ACP Board of Directors for the special expansion financing event, culminating months of extensive negotiations. (more)

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West Coast ports face struggle to maintain relevance

Canal Expansion LA Times Blogs Ronald D. White reports: The slowdown in international trade has left the docks at the nation's biggest seaport complex quieter than they've been in years. Some workers, particularly non-union "casuals," at the Los Angeles and Long Beach ports wait for shifts that never come. Automobiles and other merchandise pile up as consumers dig in for a long economic winter. But the problems at the twin ports, along with smaller West Coast harbors, extend beyond the nation's economic woes, maritime experts say, and changes on the horizon could leave the seaports struggling to keep customers. That's the assessment of a recent report by London-based Drewry Supply Chain Consultants, a maritime industry research firm that has about 3,000 clients in more than 100 countries. West Coast ports will see increased competition from the Panama Canal, which is undergoing a bigger-than-expected expansion due to be completed in 2014, Drewry said. In addition, rising Chinese labor costs will push some manufacturing back to Mexico and South America.
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Panama Canal, Miami Port ratify strategic alliance

Canal ExpansionPANAMA CITY, Nov. 26 (Xinhua) -- Panama Canal and the United States' Miami Port have renewed their strategic alliance in a bid to boost international trade, the administrator of the Panama Canal Authority, Alberto Aleman Zubieta, said Wednesday. Miami Port, an internationally recognized trade center, is a key ally of the Canal, Zubieta said after signing a memorandum of understanding with the director of Miami Port, Hill Johnson. Zubieta said the document, which is ratified every year by both sides, represents the attention given by the Canal and Miami Port to the growing demands of the world maritime industry. Johnson affirmed that his port terminal has been "set at the level of the (expansion) works" of Panama Canal, whose modernization will be finished in 2014 at a cost of 5.2 billion U.S. dollars. "Our port is the nearest to the canal, so we will be at a strategic position to place bigger cargo vessels as a result of the expansion," Johnson said. During 2007, Miami received around 2.1 million tons of freight from Panama. The terminal is also used by more than 20 maritime lines with connections to 100 countries and 250 international ports.
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Tampa Port Authority to host global shipping conference

Canal ExpansionTampa Bay Business Journal - Marine shipping executives will descend on Tampa in January for the American Association of Port Authorities’ Shifting International Trade Routes workshop. Alberto Aleman Zubieta, chief executive officer of the Panama Canal Authority, will be the featured speaker. He will provide an update to the Panama Canal expansion and discuss the impact of the expansion to global trading partners. The $5.25 billion expansion of the Panama Canal is due for completion in 2014. The Tampa Port Authority and the Maritime Administration will co-host the workshop. Included in the discussions will be changing global trade patterns, impacts of improving “all water” shipping routes, anticipated waterside and marine terminal development needs, increased road and rail capacity requirements, and infrastructure financing challenges in the coming decade. “Expanding this crucial trans-ocean shipping lane [Panama Canal] to accommodate more and larger vessels will certainly change the status quo, resulting in increased trade opportunities for seaports in the Western Hemisphere, while making it necessary to make major investments in water- and land-side transportation infrastructure,” said Jean Godwin, AAPA’s executive vice president, in a release. The conference will be held Jan. 15-16, 2009, at the Grand Hyatt Tampa Bay. Founded in 1912, AAPA today represents public port authorities in the United States, Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean as well as sustaining and associate members, firms and individuals with an interest in the seaports of the Western Hemisphere.
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