- Sebastian Piñera, Presidente de Chile - EFE
Chilean President Sebastián Piñera will meet next week with Panamanian President Juan Carlos Varela and will travel through the interoceanic canal, of which Chile is an important client, the government of the Central American country announced today.
The vice president and Panamanian chancellor, Isabel de Saint Malo, said at a press conference on Wednesday the bilateral meeting between the two leaders will be held next Monday and it will address tourism, security, logistics and trade issues.
"Part of the bilateral agenda with Chile has been to offer counseling to Panama on matters of judicial investigation, but also the possibility of providing cooperation to Central America for the training of its security forces in Panama," she explained.
De Saint Malo said the presidents will also talk about the possibility of increasing cooperation in matters of "agrologistics".
"Our logistics platform is an ideal space to help, for example, Chilean fruits reach Panama, have an added value in Panamanian facilities and can be shipped from here to other markets," she said.
Next Tuesday, added the head of Panamanian diplomacy, Piñera will travel on board a Chilean ship to the Panama Canal, through which about 6 percent of world trade passes.
Panama will receive next Saturday school ships from 8 countries as part of the Velas Latin America naval stop, including Chile's "Esmeralda", an event that began last April and will end next September after touring several ports in the region, according to official information.
Chile is the third user and the first Latin American customer of the interoceanic route, whose expansion became operational in June 2016.
Panama is also the main destination for Chilean exports in Central America and in 2016 it became one of the 10 countries to which the South American nation sells the most products.
That year, Chile exported a total of 152 million dollars to Panama, of which 60% were manufactures, according to figures from the Chilean embassy.
The Panamanian president made an official visit in April of last year to Chile, when that country was still ruled by former president Michelle Bachelet.