Panama Canal News

Panama Canal map

Read news and analysis on the Panama Canal, including discussions of development and reports on tolls and traffic, including ocean carrier strategies involving use of the Panama Canal for all-water service from Asia to the U.S. East Coast.

The Panama Canal Authority is currently much of the way through a multi-year expansion program that involves the construction of two new sets of locks, on the Pacific and Atlantic sides of the canal, to accommodate larger ships. The project also involves the widening and deepening of navigational channels in Gatun Lake, as well as the deepening of Culebra Cut.

For specific updates and insight into the expansion project slated for completion in 2015, readers should also consult the JOC’s Panama Canal Expansion special topic.

Commentary

Canals used to be a sleepy topic. Suddenly, times have changed.

News & Analysis

19 Apr 2016
Container lines can reserve transits for vessels of up to 14,000 twenty-foot-equivalent units through the Panama Canal, providing carriers with the ability to gain greater economies of scale, which may or may not be passed onto shippers.
24 Mar 2016
The Panama Canal Authority said its new locks will be inaugurated June 26, more than two years after the original completion target.
22 Mar 2016
The Panama Canal Authority will set draft restrictions on shipping using the vital east-west waterway as the El Nino weather phenomenon causes water levels to fall well below average for this time of year.
22 Feb 2016
The Panama Canal Authority warned that the El Nino weather phenomenon could result in draft restrictions on the waterway as soon as April.
09 Feb 2016
The Panama Canal cast fresh doubt on the planned Nicaragua canal on Monday, saying there isn’t enough cargo to support two canals, that the price tag is far above what Nicaragua says it will cost and that necessary tolls to pay for it would need to be three times what the Panama Canal charges today.
25 Jan 2016
The Panama Canal Authority is shooting to open its third set of larger locks that can handle post-Panamax ships in May, but it doesn’t expect the larger locks to attract new services for several months.
22 Jan 2016
The Panama Canal Authority is betting its future on more than a third set of massive new locks that can handle post-Panamax ships and attract more container services. It is counting on construction of a large new container terminal that will serve as a transshipment hub for North and South America and the creation of a new logistics zone along the canal that will attract assembly and light manufacturing activity.
21 Jan 2016
When the Panama Canal’s third set of larger locks open to commercial traffic this spring, the massive expansion project will be more than a year and a half behind the original target date of October 2014 and an estimated $150 million over the $5.25 billion budget set 10 years ago.
18 Jan 2016
The opening of larger Panama Canal locks, already postponed several times by construction delays, has been pushed back again and now is expected early in the second quarter, a canal official said.
14 Jan 2016
The world’s fifth-largest container line, Hapag-Lloyd, expects no major tonnage changes on all-water container services through the Panama Canal before the end of this year.