The Center for Economic Studies of the Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture of Panama (CEECAM) adjusted its projection of the GDP growth of the country in 2018 and left it at 4 percent, far from the 5.4 percent it had predicted last April.
The economic development of Panama "is impacted in a pre-election year, which generates some kind of uncertainty in the business community, the increase in oil, and the increase in the interest rate, to mention a few factors," the Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture (CCIAP) said today.
The director of Economic Affairs of the Chamber, Manuel Ferreira, said that according to CEECAM data, in the second quarter of this 2018 the Panamanian economy expanded 3.1 percent, far from the 5.2 percent of the same period of 2017.
The economist and also director of CEECAM said that the amount of foreign direct investment (FDI) fell by 13.2 percent in the first half of 2018, when it reached 2,320.8 million dollars.
However, it can be observed that the reinvested earnings continue to be a component of weight in the values of this indicator, which is positive, Ferreira said, according to a public declaration of the CCIAP, which groups 1,800 companies from 15 Panamanian economic
"Even if at this moment there is a slowdown in the economic activity of the country, the CCIAP has positive growth expectations, which will be strengthened as of 2020," the Chamber indicated.
The growth opportunities are based on the strengthening of key economic sectors, including tourism, logistics, construction and the agricultural sector, which will contribute to the generation of employment sources and greater investment opportunities, Ferreira said.
He indicated that by 2019 Panama's economy is expected to grow at close to 5 percent GDP.
According to the updated projections of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), released on Tuesday, Panama's GDP will expand this year by 4.6 percent and in 2019 by 6.8 percent.
The IMF had already announced in June a downward revision, by about one percentage point, of Panama's growth outlook in 2018, due to the effects of a one-month strike in the neuralgic construction sector and a slowdown of economic activity in the first quarter of the year.