Panama as a business capital continues to get positive press
(Reuters) - A generation after Panama shed a tradition of military rule, canny fiscal management and good stewardship of its emblematic canal have made the tiny country a model of success for today’s frontier markets.
An investor darling that has grown rapidly over the last decade and even managed to dodge recession during the recent global downturn, Panama’s government debt has received a coveted investment grade rating by Fitch and S&P.
Panama will not realize its ambition of joining the world’s most developed nations until it cleans up its murky banking system and narrows a wealth gap that leaves a third of its people in poverty, but economists say it is well-positioned for steady growth.
“What’s striking is that this is such a broad-based economy,” said Boris Segura, an economist with the Royal Bank of Scotland. “Yes, they have the canal but there is also tourism, construction and a growing financial services sector.”
With a population of just 3.4 million, Panama will never be a China or a Japan but local leaders say it can aspire to become like Singapore, an affluent and diverse crossroads for international finance and trade.
“Nobody is going to come to Panama to sell to the domestic market. We tell investors ‘Come to Panama and sell to the world’”, Trade Minister Roberto Henriquez told Reuters. He sees the small isthmus nation’s future as a boutique exporter of high-margin goods and services.
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TAKE A REPROSA FACTORY AND HANDICRAFT SHOW ROOM
When if comes to a unique and beautiful gift that showcase’s Panama’s culture, history and natural beauty- most everyone goes to the REPROSA’s stores- the one in downtown Panama City and one in Casco Viejo. In addition to their unique jewelry, REPROSA is the place to find the finest tagua, carabola carvings and Embera baskets .
Now you can enjoy REPROSA another way. Treasures of Panama Tour at the REPROSA award-winning factory, just minutes away from the ruins of Panama Viejo. We just took this tour and loved it.
An informed guide will demonstrate how the fabulous gold artifacts of Panama’s Museum of Anthropology are reproduced, using virtually the same method as the ancient goldsmiths.
(You can even try your hands at the process!)
$10 admission includes refreshments and “goodie bag”.
For bookings, call 271-0033.