Panama Canal: the Green Route
To ensure that the Canal remains an environmentally friendly
route, the ACP conducted preliminary studies to measure the
Expansion Program's impact on global C02 emissions. The
findings show that upon the completion of the project, the
waterway will continue to be a "green route" that reduces C02
emissions, while providing essential benefits to the maritime and
trade industries, including time savings and lower fuel
By the very nature of its operation, the Canal is highly
dependent on water. For this reason, the ACP has an ongoing
Environmental Management Program aimed at preserving the
watershed's natural resources.
The expansion project is being undertaken with the
commitment to follow the highest environmental performance
standards, protecting habitat and infrastructures, recovering
archaeological and paleontological findings and rescuing
wildlife. As of July, more than 250 animals including several
species of mammals, reptiles, and amphibians have been
rescued from the expansion construction site and relocated to
similar habitats. In addition, as part of its environmental
management, more than 30 hectares in protected areas will be
reforested with the help of the Panamanian environmental
Royal Caribbean's Newest Homeport
Beginning December 2008, cruise lovers will be able to sail
from the City of Colon, in Panama's Caribbean Sea, on Royal
Caribbean's Enchantment of the Seas which will offer seven
day cruises calling exotic destinations in Cartagena, Santa
Marta, Aruba, Curagao and Bonaire.
The itineraries are available from December 2008 through April
2009, during Panama's summer season and will mainly target
Latin American passengers. Panama's tourism has seen a
boost in the last few years, and in 2007 the number of visitors
grew to almost 1.4 million, a 17.4 percent increase from the
previous year. Daily flights via COPA, Panama's flag airline, are
now available to 45 destinations in the Americas.
By establishing a homeport in Panama, Royal Caribbean is
taking advantage of the country's connectivity, its superb
geographic location and the many attractions it offers in
entertainment, dining and shopping.
Cruise Vessel sails through the waterway.
The Panama Canal Expansion Program, which will double Canal
capacity by 2014, continues according to schedule. As recently as July,
Panamanian company Constructora Urbana, S.A., contractor for the first
dry excavation project, had completed 57 percent of the excavation
work with the removal of 4 million cubic meters of unclassified material.
Panamanian-Mexican Consortium Cilsa Panama Minera-Marfa, awarded
the second dry excavation contract, had removed 1.1 million cubic
meters of material, registering 12 percent progress. Combined, the dry
excavation projects will create the new Pacific locks access channel.
This new channel will link a new, third set of locks on the Pacific end of
the Canal with the existing Gaillard Cut (the narrowest stretch in the
In a move that will result in better bids for the "design-build" contract for
the new locks under the Expansion Program, the ACP provided an
extension for the locks proposal due date. The global consortia in the
running for the contract will now have until December 10 to submit their
bids for what will be the largest and most important project under the
$5.25 billion expansion. The extension will not affect the timeline of the
New Maritime Legislation Adopted
On August 6, 2008, His Excellency Martin Torrijos Espino, President of the Republic
of Panama, approved the legal framework that will regulate the merchant marine,
Maritime commerce and port activities in the country.
Nin The new legislation is geared toward improving the competitiveness of the Panama-
nian Registry, the largest in the world, by giving the Panama Maritime Authority (AMP)
Increased flexibility to respond to the demands of the shipping sector in a more
The new Port Law enacted by the President establishes clear rules that regulate port
Si l b d r, concessions and allows the government to audit port operators. The law promotes
the development of auxiliary maritime services and imposes rules that prevent
commercial discrimination and monopolistic practices.
The legal framework sets the pillars for a more integrated logistics platform that would
Panama continues its development as a Logistics Hub. facilitate transactions and make available a wide variety of shipping-related services
to clients in the maritime industry.
Maritime Strategy Being Updated
Panama is in the process of updating the country's maritime strategy to adapt to the ever-changing shipping industry, particularly in light of the Canal
Expansion Program. Initially developed in 2004, the revised strategy will maximize the country's geographical position by implementing the conditions
that will further transform Panama into a transportation and logistics center capable of providing value-added services to the ships transiting the
Canal or calling Panamanian ports.
Its objectives include: fostering the socioeconomic growth of the country by strengthening and integrating the maritime and logistics hub; consolidat-
ing Panama as the logistics platform of the Americas; developing processes based on excellence and promoting the communication among the
members of the cluster; developing the workforce that will guarantee the sustainable growth of the maritime and logistics center; and guaranteeing
the environmental sustainability and security in all activities related to the cluster.
ACP's Human Resources Department Earns ISO 9001-2000 Certification
On August 12, the ACP's Human Resources Department received ISO 9001-2000
certification resulting from an audit of its Quality Management System, performed by
Det Norske Veritas (DNV). The recognition underscores the ACP's commitment to
quality and validates the procedures that help make the Canal safe, reliable and
The ACP sought the certification because of its firm commitment to innovative,
first-rate management. Moreover, receiving this recognition confirms that the ACP is
implementing robust management procedures. ISO 9000 standards are implemented
by more than 610,000 organizations in 160 countries. These standards help to enrich
quality management at organizations, including enhancing customer satisfaction and
continually improving performance.
The certification will be valid for a period of three years, during which quality standards From left to right: Messrs. Volodymyr Mamdyev and C4sar
will be audited every six months to ensure that performance remains at optimal levels. Corcueraherom DNV Francisco Loaiza and Jos Rivera from
the ACP's Human Resources Department, andACP
AdministratorAlberto Alemin Zubieta.
Panama Canal Authority Tel. (507) 272-7961
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SEE THIS NEWSLETTER ON THE ACP WEB SITE AT: www.pancanal.com
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