Panama Travel Industry Update No. 3

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  • Through these updates and until we meet virtually or in person, we want to keep you informed of the measures taken by Panama and our industry with regards to the worldwide emergency due to the coronavirus.

Panama Industry Update No. 3

June 18, 2020

The Hub of the Americas opens after July 23, 2020

On behalf of PROMTUR Panamá, the country’s Destination Marketing Organization (DMO), we want to keep you informed of the measures Panama takes responsibly to keep residents and visitors safe.

This week, the Civil Aeronautical Authority announced that international air travel restrictions have been extended until July 23, 2020 for precautionary reasons, except for humanitarian flights and those transporting provisions for the medical response. Hence, Copa Airlines will resume operations starting August 7th.

Gradual and safe steps

Labor restrictions are carefully being uplifted through the protocols and phases regulated by the Ministry of Labor, in order to maintain high standards of sanitation for the population, and eventually visitors, whom we are scheduled to welcome in Phase No. 4, date yet to be determined.

1. Phase 1 started on May 13th with e-commerce, mechanical workshops, spare parts, technical services, industrial fishing, and aquaculture.

2. Phase 2 began June 1st including prioritized public infrastructure construction sector, non-metallic mining and industry, religious services and sports activities, under social distancing conditions and following circulation schedules.

3. Phase 3, date to be determined (TBD), includes non-essential wholesale and retail trade, car sales, private construction projects, and general administrative services.

4. Phase 4 includes international air transportation scheduled for July 23rd, COPA Airlines on August 7th, while hotel and restaurants’ reopening date TBD.

5. Phase 5, date TBD includes education centers, recreational transportation and facilities, sporting events.

6. Phase 6 - date TBD, includes reopening of all sectors of the economy with sanitation requirements and social distancing measures, including concerts, conventions, and crowded events (public and private).

High level of testing to identify who is infected

After Canada and Chile, Panama is the country with the most testing per million residents in the region. This practice has allowed early detection and treatment, reducing the mortality rate to 2.6% vs. the global 5.9%.

Although the date to initiate Phase No. 4 is TBD, the tourism industry has continued its preparations to operate safely once it is authorized. The Panamanian Tourism Authority and Tocumen Airport, the Hub of the Americas, have presented their sanitation protocols to the authorities as well as the World Trade and Tourism Council (WTTC). “For us as the Hub of the Americas, restoring confidence for travellers and tourists, will be a key factor for the reactivation of our industry and our economy. The #SafeTravels stamp is a great way of building trust, aligning the protocols we have developed with our Ministry of Health with WTTC standards, so that travellers can have a safe journey through our country", stated Iván Eskildsen, Minister of Tourism of Panama.