The restructuring of digital platforms, tourist promotion caravans and the organization of large convention events reflect a more renewed and active face of Panamanian tourism that aims to be a mark for travel abroad, said an official source Monday.
In the last five years, the Tourism Authority of Panama (TAP) has set out to establish a more digital presence with a view to capturing foreign tourists seeking new experiences, as well as those who envision doing business or investing in the hotel sector or recreational.
In a management report for 2014-2019, the administrator of Tourism of Panama, Gustavo Him, said that the administration focuses on concrete actions to provide an efficient service that guarantees competitiveness and sustainability in tourism offers in the different regions of the country.
"Our vision of work has been to promote Panama as the ideal country to visit and do business, this is achieved by promoting infrastructure projects, products and tourism facilities in different parts of the territory", said Him.
At the same time, he added that they have managed to shore up tourism through digital platforms, national and international fairs, cultural events and the realization of major conventions.
The administrator said that the TAP currently develops heavy investments in terms of tourism structure, reaching more than 213 million dollars.
Among the works delivered are the first Coffee Exploration Center in the town of Boquete, in the western province of Chiriquí; the Frontera de Paso Canoas Building, bordering with Costa Rica; and the conditioning of the boardwalk and tourist facilities of Taboga Island, in the Pacific.
Other projects that are expected to be delivered in the coming months, as the Green Convention Center in Boquete, the modern Amador Convention Center (ACC), on the banks of the Panama Canal; and the revitalization of the Anton Valley.
He assured to Acan-Efe that the TAP also makes investments in information projects, such as signaling plans that include location data and tourist attractions; the billboards on the roads; and photographic wiew points, which are 19 throughout the national territory.
The promotion and celebration of cultural events is another agenda item that the Authority promotes, highlighting among its main the Parade of Las Mil Polleras, Carnival of Panama: a country in celebration and the day of discounts "Panama Black Weekend”.
Without leaving behind the international events, the holder of the portfolio specified that at least 11 macro congresses and conventions on medicine, engineering, sports and food industries will be held in Panama between 2019 and 2022.
Him detailed that another of the objectives that will underpin tourism is the implementation of the International Tourism Promotion Fund, which is endowed with a budget of 20 million dollars.
The funds of the trust created by law are used to promote Panama abroad through public and private management that has contributions from the central government, municipalities and private companies.
"To increase this Fund you also have to resort to private company, given that the Government gives a part, we believe that the Fund has an amount that is not negligible and if the flow of tourists increases I do not think there is any objection that increases its amount for the next budget", he said.
Tourism represents around 10 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP) of Panama, one of the most dynamic countries in the region, which in 2017 experienced an economic growth of 5.4 percent.