Are you looking for an easy way to ship your cargo to Panama?
Choose the best freight forwarder to transport your goods to Panama safely and on time.

Exporting goods to Panama, whether it is for the first time, or on a regular basis, can be a challenging experience. There are many elements to consider when shipping to a country such as Panama.
If you are in Canada or the US and not entirely familiar with the Latin American market, you should consider a cargo shipping company that knows the business culture, the language, the customs regulations and has a proven track record of success when it comes to shipping to Panama.

WHAT CAN YOU EXPECT IN PANAMA?

Regulations in Panama are not only very different from the ones in the US or Canada, communication methods and business etiquette are also very distinct:
Foreign corporations operating in Panama have had an impact on the style and manners of doing business, thus business practices are very similar to those of Europe or the USA and Canada. Panamanians are very pragmatic and business oriented when working. However, Panama remains a Latin American country and it is still important to develop easy going business “friendships”.
Because of the influence of foreign business established in Panama, punctuality is expected for business appointments as well as for social occasions.
It is also important to consider the language as a possible barrier. Although English is widely spoken amongst the business class, the average person could have more difficulties to use it and would rather speak only Spanish.

QUICK FACTS ABOUT PANAMA (2018)

  • Capital: Panama City
  • Other Large Cities: San Miguelito, Las Cumbres, La Chorrera, Tocumen, Pacora
  • Population: 4,176,873 (Urban Population: 67.7%)
  • Official languages: Spanish
  • Time Zone : GMT - 5
  • Currency: Panamean Balboa (PAB)

ECONOMIC SNAPSHOT ( Source: IMF - World Bank, 2018)

  • Currency: Panamean Balboa (PAB)
  • Inflation Rate: 0.8%
  • Unemployment Rate: 3.9%
  • Total Imports of Goods: 23,00 billion USD
  • FDI Inward Flow: 5.91 billion USD (9,1% of GDP)
  • Ease of Doing Business Score (2019) : 79th / 190

WHY DOING BUSINESS WITH PANAMA IS THE RIGHT DECISION

Panama may be small in size but it is big in stature. It benefits from its strategic location on the world's most important shipping route, the Panama Canal. The country offers unique business opportunities for companies looking to expand internationally.
The Panamanian economy is historically based on trade which has always made it possible to trade a variety of products with this prominent market.

Panama’s currency is the US Dollar, the Panamanian government offers interesting fiscal and tax incentives. Panama is one of the most important trade hubs thanks to the Colon Free Trade Zone (FTZ) on the Atlantic coast. The FTZ allows consumer goods to be imported, stored, modified and re-exported, without having to pass through customs, avoiding unnecessary payment of duties or any taxes. As a result, Panama is the ideal location to base your business operations. Many international companies are already well established in Panama, they are able to access not only the Panamanian market but other markets as well, especially Latin America.

Panama's ambition to be the gateway to the Americas is apparent in the large investments being made, such as infrastructure, both renewable & electric energy, as well as logistics. This presents promising business opportunities for newcomers.
Our experienced professionals are very familiar with the market requirements in Panama which is very important to avoid delays during the importation process. We provide you with all the necessary tools to break into the Panamanian market, headache free.

PANAMA TRADE OVERVIEW

  • MAIN IMPORTS: Medicaments, Footwear, Clothing, Perfumes, Liquor, Beverage, Telecommunication Equipment, Home Appliance
  • MAIN EXPORTS: Medicaments, Footwear, Clothing, Perfumes, Liquor, Beverage, Telecommunication Equipment, Electronics
  • INDUSTRIES WITH STRONG BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES: Consumer Goods, Apparel Manufacturing, Mining, Agriculture, Forestry, Hydropower, Logistics, Infrastructure & Construction
  • PRINCIPAL TRADING PARTNERS: USA, Colombia, Costa Rica, Venezuela, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Ecuador, China, Singapore, Mexico, Vietnam, Europe (Belgium, France, Germany, United Kingdom)

What makes us your ideal logistics partner?

Every country in every continent offers a unique mix of laws, guidelines, customs regulations, documentation requirements, controlled or prohibited goods lists, communication norms, and cultural biases. If you want to be successful in penetrating the Panamanian market, you will need a logistics partner that understands the Panamanian culture, the business landscape and speaks the local language as well.

Our team of experts offer you superior freight forwarding services and the best rates for your cargo shipping to Panama. Our combined experience, extensive knowledge; logistics skills and local connections will help you get started on the right foot and make sure that your goods are transported quickly, safely, and worry-free.

We have your company’s best interests at heart, if you want to be successful in Panama, Latin American Cargo is the best freight forwarding company for you.

IMPORT AND CUSTOM PARTICULARS

If you are sending merchandise to Panama by sea or air for the first time, guidance and support will surely be needed, as there are guidelines, prohibitions and restrictions to consider.

WHAT PAPERWORK IS NEEDED FOR INTERNATIONAL SHIPMENTS TO PANAMA?


Documentation requirements vary depending on the category of goods being shipped, and can get quite extensive. They usually include: Commercial invoice, Bill of lading / Air waybill, Packing list, Insurance certificate, Certificate of Origin (if required). To avoid delays or hassles when shipping to Panama, your packing list must be as detailed as possible. Vague wording like “miscellaneous” attracts negative attention and further inspections.

WHAT ARE THE REGULATIONS AND RESTRICTIONS WHEN SHIPPING TO PANAMA?


Regulations can be strict on certain categories of goods being imported to Panama. Prior authorization or special permits may be needed for certain items such as agricultural products, processed foods, pharmaceutical, cosmetics or antiques. Prohibited commodities include certain used vehicles, used clothing and accessories, used tires, certain used machinery and all types of toxic wastes or dangerous residues.

Duties and tariffs are usually based on the total value of the shipment in question, and depending on how well-documented the cargo is, those values could be determined by the judgment of Customs Officials on the spot.

Shipping cargo to Panama is easier with LAC as we have overcome these obstacles many times and have developed a thorough understanding of the customs procedures.

MAIN OCEAN PORTS AND CARGO AIRPORTS WHEN SHIPPING TO / FROM TO PANAMA

  • MAIN OCEAN PORTS: Balboa, Colón, Panama City, Manzanillo, Cristóbal
  • MAIN CARGO AIRPORTS: Panama City (PTY)

Learn more about our freight shipping services to Panama

Our skills and knowledge in freight forwarding make us your most reliable partner when shipping to Panama.

Looking for the best way to ship to Panama? LAC is your best freight forwarding solution!

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