It seems like everything has changed and much has stayed the same since the COVID-19 pandemic descended on us a year ago. When things first started closing and quarantines were enacted, it never occurred to me we would still be grappling with the pandemic a year later. Nonetheless, a year in and Panama continues to aggressively vaccinate everyone–including foreign nationals–and stay-at-home orders are just now being lifted. Beaches, pools, and gyms have opened. The international airport has been open since October 12.
What Kind Of Traveler Are You?
The Panamanian government, under the leadership of Laurentino “Nito” Cortizo, has introduced a number of initiatives to restart the economy. Tourism is being pushed as a sector that will bring jobs and foreign dollars. The American magazine, Travel + Leisure highlighted a recent campaign touting Panama’s diversity in terms of types of vacations offered. According to a recent article: “In February Panama launched the “Discover Your Panama” campaign aimed at helping travelers discover the iconic experiences the Central American nation has to offer. With the campaign, the company also launched a quiz to help travelers find out just what kind of travel experiences they may love the most.” Then individuals are directed to answer a few short questions about their ideal vacation.
Once people have taken the quiz and told which Panama experience would be ideal for them, they are entered into a contest to win Panama vacations! The contest is open until March 15 and three trips will be awarded–one to someone in the United States, one in Canada, and a third to someone from Argentina.
You can check out the article here and register to win! https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/discover-your-panama-dream-trip-giveaway. This “What Kind of Traveler Are You,” is part of the government’s tourism campaign that is expected to eventually create thousands of new jobs. The government is providing tax credits for any company advertising tourism and hotels, such as the Westin Playa Bonita and the InterContinental Miramar Panama. These properties are already open or are scheduled to open in April.
The Third Metro Line
In addition to developing a more robust tourism program in Panama, ground was broken last week on the third line of the subway/metro system. This line will connect the capital city with Panama Oeste which is the western region just over the Pacific side of the Panama Canal. The Bridge of the Americas was completed in 1962 and designed to carry 9,500 cars daily. Today the bridge is overworked with approximately 70,000 vehicles crossing the bridge daily.
The third subway line will share space on the fourth bridge over the Panama Canal which will also help ease traffic congestion. The subway line is especially important to local employees who live and work in Panama City, Panama Pacifico and Veracruz as well as other western suburbs. Everyone from domestic help, to resort workers and nannies along with professionals staffing the multinational companies will be able to easily and inexpensively commute. This $3 billion project will substantially change the face of Panama City and open up the areas to residents and employees.
Copper Demand At All-Time High
As an outcome of the pandemic First Quantum Minerals, which operates the massive copper mine in Panama has been well-positioned to capitalize on the pent-up need for copper. According to a recent article published for Seeking Alpha, the world’s largest investing community, “with copper trading over $3, First Quantum Minerals is printing cash.”
With cooperation from the Panamanian government, First Quantum has been able to increase production and fill a void left by a Chilean mining company, which has been forced to drop production because of labor disputes. The article goes on to note that ”First Quantum is firing on all cylinders in Panama with strong copper production and the ability to take advantage of the strong copper price.”
Time For Real Estate?
Like almost every other country in the world, Panama has struggled with COVID-19, but the vaccine is being administered throughout the country and the economy has started to recover. The government is open to providing incentives to restart the economy and the current time to capitalize on outstanding real estate deals has never been better. Seeking foreign investment to work with the US dollar-pegged economy, Panama is offering a number of quality programs to attract foreign nationals including tax abatements.
When the fourth bridge and third metro line are completed, the residences of Casa Bonita will be perfectly situated for both executives and vacationers. Sharing amenities with the Westin Playa Bonita Resort makes a condo there perfect for AirBnB or long- and short-term rentals. For people seeking a permanent residence, the location is ideal for easy trips into the city via subway. A fabulous meal in Casco Viejo can now include a couple of glasses of wine since the metro will be driving you home!
What The New Metro Line Will Mean For Casa Bonita!
Casa Bonita residences are well-priced and mainly qualify for the fast-track permanent residency program. After a minimum purchase of $300,000 in real estate, the legal paperwork can be started immediately and from a home country and then completed in 30 days!
Costa del Este continues to attract multi-national companies with trailing employees and families. These companies have been able to capitalize on the advantageous governmental programs, tax incentives and the location in the hub of the Americas in terms of transportation and logistics. Properties there continue to escalate and rentals are in demand.
The new Johns Hopkins International Hospital has made great progress during the pandemic and is now taking shape next to Town Center in Costa del Este. Once the Joint Commissioned facility is on-line the need for condotels to accommodate families of the patients will be in high demand. On-site property management will make the investment a turn-key possibility.
The medical procedures offered to expats at much lower costs than they can find in other countries will include vision, dental and procedures such as hip and knee replacements. Cutting-edge stem cell replacement already attracts an international market.
Royal Palm’s Location Is Compelling
The beach properties of Royal Palm continue to be in high demand and can be purchased for as low as $150,000 if it is a cash transaction. With an on-site restaurant, five pools, and a long list of amenities investors are finding the smaller units very compelling. The larger units with front-facing ocean views and wrap-around balconies are almost completely sold-out.
In an effort to restart the economy, developers are offering incredible deals on real estate including financing, inventory close-out deals and cash prices. If you are considering moving to or investing in Panama real estate, let me discuss with you the various options and what makes Panama such a good place to invest. Contact me via my website: https://www.lizlarroquette.com/. or call 1-507-6981-1717 or in the United States 502-630-0318. I’d love to hear from you.