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Regarding the Panama Canal Treaty negotiations, they will find us standing up or dead, but never on our knees; NEVER!

Omar Torrijos Herrera


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Overview: Panama


The name sounded more like a South Korean pop craze, but the reality was very different. The North Korean ship, the Chong Chon Gang was intercepted by the (autonomous) Panama Canal authorities. The ship’s owners were fined in the region of US$1million,  for smuggling Cuban weapons under 10,000 tons of sugar. Technically the fine was for failing accurately to disclose the cargo and putting the canal and canal workers at risk. The 35-member crew remained in the Fort Sherman detention centre in Panama, despite requests from Pyongyang seeking a ‘diplomatic manner’ to resolve the situation. The Panamian authorities raised the possibility of those involved being jailed for up to six years. The ship’s owners also had to put up a US$650,000 bond before it was allowed to leave the canal. Panamanian investigators detained the vessel in July near the Atlantic entrance to the canal after receiving a tip that it was carrying drugs. The Cuban authorities claimed the weapons were ‘obsolete and defensive’ and being sent to North Korea to be updated and then returned to Cuba. An unexpected contribution to the saga was that of former Colombian President  Alvaro Uribe who claimed to have evidence that the arms were not being returned to Cuba, but were due to be delivered to Ecuador. Using Twitter, Mr Uribe claimed that Cuba and North Korea were in fact engaged in the (illegal) business of shipping arms.

To purchase your copy of the World of Information Overview and Profile of Panama: CLICK HERE



Profile: Panama

- Timeline

- Political structure

- Population,

- Education  

- Health

- Welfare

- Main cities

- Languages spoken

- Media

- Economy

- Agriculture

- Industry and manufacturing

- Tourism

- Mining,

- Hydrocarbons

- Energy

- Financial markets

- Banking and insurance

- Time

- Geography

- Climate

- Dress codes

- Entry requirements

- Health (for visitors)

- Hotels

- Credit cards

- Public holidays

- Working hours

- Telecommunications

- Electricity

- Social customs and useful tips

- Security

- Getting there

- Getting about

To purchase your copy of the World of Information Profile and Overview of Panama: CLICK HERE

Key Facts

Key Facts:

Key Facts
Official name: República de Panamá (Republic of Panama)
Head of State: President Juan Carlos Varela (since 1 July 2014)
Head of government: President Juan Carlos Varela (since 1 July 2014)
Ruling party: Cambio Democrático (Democratic Change)
Area: 77,082 square km
Population: 3.93 million (2014)* (3,405,813; 2010, census figure)
Capital: Panama City
Official language: Spanish
Currency: Balboa (B and US$) and US dollar = 100 cents
Exchange rate: B and US$1.00 per US$ (fixed peg)
GDP per capita: US$11,147 (2014)*
GDP real growth: 6.20% (2014)
GDP: US$43.78 billion (2014)
Labour force: 1.65 million (2010)
Unemployment: 4.10% (2014)*
Inflation: 2.63% (2014)
Balance of trade: -US$8.13 billion (2014)
* estimated figure


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