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The expansion of the Panama Canal and its impact in Latin America.

The recent inauguration of the expansion of the Panama Canal, predicts a true economic and social impact that will promote an integral transformation in the productivity and competitiveness of Latin America and the Caribbean, allowing its countries to insert themselves in the global value chains through the development of an articulated and efficient logistic system.

The increase in the volumes of commercial cargo product of this megaproject, has had a very positive effect in terms of innovation and growth of the port infrastructure. The ports of Kingston (Jamaica), Cartagena (Colombia), Valparaíso (Chile), Santos (Brazil), Veracruz (Mexico), El Callao (Peru), Miami, Los Angeles and New York have invested billions of dollars to be able to receive larger vessels and be part of a more efficient route of their goods to Asia and Europe.

Among the benefits that can be seen for the economies, we can highlight an increase in the services of transshipment, insurance, banking and cargo storage, that is, the entire logistics cluster; taking advantage of not only the passage of cargo, but driving logistics chains to add value to that load and generate new business and jobs.

The aforementioned benefits are accompanied by important challenges, which are focused on investment in infrastructure through public-private partnerships and the establishment of trade agreements and treaties with other countries.

Internally, the execution of this work promises to help transform Panama's role for many US companies and other countries that have businesses in Central and South America, given its privileged geographical location, its dollarized economy and the fiscal incentives that make it increasingly attractive as a country for investors and foreign companies.

The main challenge for the country should be to offer more and better logistics services and add value to the goods transported by the Canal, as well as to achieve a synergy between the public and private sectors in the development of complementary infrastructure to improve the current connectivity of the country.