New free zones will generate more than 12,000 jobs in total
With the creation of five new Free Trade Zones specialized in Agroindustry, Trade and Logistics, it is expected to generate 3,620 direct jobs and 8,410 indirect ones, as was announced by Ámbar Ruiz Chaperón, General Director of Free Trade Zones of the Ministry of Commerce and Industries (MICI).
The authorized free zones will be established in the provinces of Panama, Chiriquí and Herrera, with the incorporation of new technologies in production processes, and 3 of them will be dedicated to agribusiness.
Ruiz Chaperón indicated that free zones have a maximum term of 1 year for their installation. "I cannot give an exact date, because they need other aspects such as a security checkpoint and customs personnel who are paid by the promoter."
The jobs will be focused on economic areas such as: “agroindustry, logistics processes, international trade, manufactured processes, processed and semi-finished product procedures, among others.
"Each one of the areas is focused on the productive capacity of the place. This has a catalyst process for investments," said the official.
In Central Panama, Zone 1 of the Juan Díaz Industrial Terminal (Z1 TI Warehouse) will be created, which will consist of a merchandise storage, manufacturing and logistics center, which will provide hundreds of jobs to the Juan Díaz sector.
Regarding the free zones of the provinces, the Las Cabras Free Zone will be carried out in Pesé, Herrera province, focused on agro-industrial activities (fruit processing, production of organic fertilizers, production of high-end liquors, etc.), creation of a productive chain cluster, biomass processing, management and treatment of urban waste as a source of energy.
For Chiriquí, the Global Logistic Free Zone was approved, which will be located in Quebrada Grande, Bugaba district, in front of the Binational or Juxtaposed Customs project. This free zone will have companies related to international trade to Central America, providing more than a thousand jobs.
The other project will be built in the Chepo district, specifically in the Port of Coquira, at the mouth of the Bayano River, providing infrastructure that will boost agro-industrial and logistical growth. And two facilities in the East Panama area, including the Agroindustrial Free Zone, located in Pacora.