The Government of Panama is preparing to present its last report of the five-year period that began in July 2014 before the Legislative Assembly.
The Panamanian president, Juan Carlos Varela, after the formal start of the solemn session will be invited by a delegation of deputies to present his report of 2018, which is expected to highlight the development of infrastructure works.
On July 1, the new government, that will be elected on May 5, will take office.
"This 2018 was a year of great achievements and historic moments for Panama, thanks to all the Panamanians who have been an important part of the construction of this great nation," Varela said in his personal Twitter account.
A brief summary of the Panamanian presidency recalled that the government built in 2018 at least 100,000 new homes, 3,000 new classrooms, 2,000 kilometers of roads and lowered the price of the ticket for mass transit through the capital's express roads.
Also, that the natural gas plant built in the Caribbean city of Colon by the US company AES was launched, the start of the Amador convention center, on the shores of the Panama Canal by the Pacific, the opening of new hotels and the advances in the expansion of Tocumen International Airport and Metro Line 2, which should start operating this year.
Varela also advanced as an achievement last year "the historic visit of the President of the Popular Republic of China, Xi Jinping, this meeting strengthened the basis of the relationship between # PanamaChina, always working hand in hand for the development and welfare of our people."
Varela in 2018 faced the economic slowdown that affected the country, due to international factors, such as the trade war between the US and China, and internal ones, such as the fall in civil construction, which anticipates annual economic growth of 4.3 percent, more than one point below what was initially projected.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF), which projected this growth for the last year after completing its evaluation of chapter IV on Panama on December 12, however, anticipates that the country will grow by 2019 "to 6.3 percent, thanks to the beginning" of the exploitation of a huge copper mine.
In addition, he predicts that this year "the outlook is still positive, although in the face of greater risks to the downside," but there will be "a recovery in construction."
Although by 2018 it is estimated that inflation does not exceed 1 percent, the IMF anticipated Varela that this year this indicator will be around "2 percent."
Panamanian Vice President and Foreign Minister Isabel De Saint Malo said in a message that "we are starting a new year with the priority of consolidating the efforts of the last 54 months to achieve sustainability."
The diplomat highlighted in a tweet the international projection achieved in 2018 by Panama in the field of human rights and cooperation, through modern mechanisms as "a tool that systematizes the monitoring of international commitments."
"Today there is greater transparency and traceability of the country's progress in the matter, with better coordination between institutions," he said.
The National Assembly, controlled by the opposition, will begin tomorrow its last session of the current legislature with pending issues, such as its lack of accountability, the non-approval of the appointments of senior officials, as two judges of the Supreme Court of Justice, and its confrontation with the other powers of the State.