Spanish company to resume Panama Canal works

PHOTO: Flickr/lyng883

Panama Canal

The GUPC consortium led by Spanish builder Sacyr and the Panama Canal Authority (PAC) have reached a “preliminary agreement on a number of issues” regarding the renewal of work on the widening of the waterway, which has been at a standstill for more than a week due to a lack of funds and a dispute over cost overruns.

Despite the progress in negotiations, PAC’s administrator, Jorge Quijano, told Panama’s National Assembly that “there are issues that remain to be resolved,” adding that the two sides “are working in that direction.”

However, the Canal Authority does not rule out resuming the mega-project on its own if a final agreement is not reached, administrator Jorge Quijano told reporters.

He spoke after holding video conference talks on Tuesday with executives of the Spanish-led consortium hired to expand the canal linking the Atlantic and Pacific so it can handle larger ships.

Despite the progress, “that does not mean we have given up on the other alternative, which is to take charge of the project ourselves,” Quijano said.

He gave no details of what points the two sides had agreed on and what the remaining sticking points were.

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