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<strong>PANAMA</strong> <strong>MARITIME</strong> <strong>AUTHORITY</strong><br />


vol. 1 N° 1 April 2008<br />


list of contents<br />

A message from the Administrator<br />

Panama Register: A tradition of excellence<br />

Panama participates at Sea Japan 2008<br />

Panama goes 24/7 2<br />

Maritime legislation reforms to benefit<br />

customers<br />

Panama and Canada to develop<br />

maritime cooperation<br />

Cargo volume increased by 32%<br />

in Panamanian ports<br />

PSA International to build container<br />

port in Panama<br />

AAPA to hold Latin American meeting in<br />

Panama<br />

Panama Maritime Authority meets<br />

Classification Societies 4<br />

1<br />

1<br />

2<br />

3<br />

3<br />

3<br />

4<br />

4<br />

We are pleased to introduce the first edition of the<br />

Panamanian Vessels Registry Newsletter. Through<br />

the Panama Maritime Authority, we wish to establish<br />

a liaison with our users, carry an update on progress,<br />

plans, statistics and events in which our industry actively<br />

participates.<br />

The Panamanian Vessel registry has mantained its<br />

World Leadership in vessels registry. Proof of this<br />

is shown by the Secretary general of IMO, Efthimios<br />

Mitropoulos, when expressed in the framework of<br />

Panama Maritime VIII: “As a pioneer of the concept<br />

in Open Ship Registry, Panama was the guiding force<br />

of change in the structure of the maritime industry,<br />

which has accelerated globalization of the industry,<br />

among other purposes and has seafaring, as a source of<br />

employment and income for hundreds of thousands of<br />

people in developing countries.”<br />

Our Registry has a proven recognized background, wide<br />

reputation and is one of the most safe and reliable. It<br />

is endorsed by the international financial community<br />

and has more than 60 consulates around the world with<br />

regional offices in New York, London and the Philippines.<br />

It is supported by a group of highly experienced maritime<br />

lawyers, who handle the international maritime language<br />

and possess mechanisms to serve as an effective liaison<br />

with the Panamanian Maritime Administration,<br />

recognized organizations (ROs) and the shipping<br />

community. According to digits of the Lloyd’s Register,<br />

the Panamanian fleet bears the first place sustaining<br />

7,605 vessels of over 168M gt, therefore maintaining<br />

leadership around the<br />

globe, of the merchant<br />

fleet.<br />

Another pivotal<br />

achievement of the<br />

Panamanian registry<br />

is the recent opening<br />

of the Panama<br />

Maritime Safety<br />

Office (SEGUMAR,<br />

for its acronym in<br />

Spanish), functioning<br />

on a yearly basis<br />

24/7, as part of the<br />

modernization and<br />

automation being brought forth by the institution, in order<br />

to offer a much better service upon our users to expedite<br />

their registry procedure. Panama, additionally to the<br />

registering of ships, offers the users an array of services<br />

such as, navigational patents, marine radio operator’s<br />

permit, extensions and exemptions, special permits,<br />

renovations, technical evaluations, flag inspections,<br />

Port State Rector inspections and certifications. In<br />

fulfillment to international agreements, we have<br />

strengthened the accident investigations department, as<br />

well as telecommunications.<br />

We reiterate our compromise to continue offering a<br />

service of excellence, treasuring your support and<br />

confidence deposited over us for our register.<br />


Panama has maintained constant leadership<br />

in the registration of vessels since it became<br />

the world’s first largest merchant fleet<br />

in 1993. Thanks to friendly registration<br />

procedures, the Panama Register increased<br />

by 5.87% during 2007 bringing the total fleet<br />

to 7,605 vessels at December 2007, up from<br />

7,183 a year ago growing by 8.38% to 168M<br />

gt, up from 155M gt at December 2006.<br />

The AMP’s Directorate of Merchant Marine<br />

has set the goal of “increasing our figures by<br />

10% in 2008 and reducing the age of the fleet<br />

to 17 years, down from the present 19 years”,<br />

says its director Alfonso Castillero. But the<br />

most important “for us at the Registry is to<br />

offer the best service to our customers and<br />

improve our daily services”, he adds.<br />

The registration of vessels, initiated in the<br />

1917 by Law 63, has been constantly improved<br />

by a series of financial incentives as well as<br />

the implementation of all the international<br />

conventions related to safety, pollution<br />

and security. All major Class Societies and<br />

members of IACs are authorized by Panama<br />

to survey Panama-flagged vessels in order<br />

to assure compliance with international<br />

agreements and regulations in addition to<br />

its worldwide network of Flag inspectors<br />

who perform and carry out the Flag’s annual<br />

inspection program.<br />

In October 2007, Panama hosted the IMO’s<br />

Legal Committee 93th session, the first<br />

time that an IMO Committee meeting took<br />

place in one of the Americas countries. The<br />

Panama Maritime Authority (AMP) has<br />

also requested an IMO Voluntary Audit<br />

which is scheduled to take place during the<br />

second semester of this year and for which<br />

the AMP’s Directorate of Merchant Marine,<br />

which has more than 60 Merchant Marine<br />

consulates round the world and regional<br />

centers in New York, London and Manila,<br />

has taken important steps to upgrade its<br />

services.<br />

Telephone Exchange +507 501-5100 24/7 Segumar Panama Office: +507 501-5350<br />


<strong>PANAMA</strong> <strong>MARITIME</strong> <strong>AUTHORITY</strong><br />


<strong>PANAMA</strong> PARTICIPATES AT SEA JAPAN 2008<br />

The Panama Maritime Authority (AMP)<br />

participated, for the first time, at Sea Japan<br />

International Maritime Exhibition and<br />

Conference held April 9-11 in Tokyo with<br />

a substantial delegation headed by the<br />

AMP Administrator Fernando Solorzano,<br />

the Director of Merchant Marine Alfonso<br />

Castillero and Panama’s Ambassador to<br />

Japan, H.E Alfredo Martiz. They were<br />

accompanied by Panama’s Chamber of<br />

Shipping Vice President Santiago Torrijos<br />

and several members of the Panama Maritime<br />

Law Association (PMLA) who attended the<br />

different conferences and exhibitions held at<br />

the Tokyo Big Sight Exhibition Center.<br />

The event, with 364 exhibitors from 25<br />

countries and regions, drew over 17,000<br />

visitors and was organized by CMP Business<br />

Media. Sea Japan 2008 was supported by a<br />

number of leading Japanese organizations<br />

including the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure<br />

and Transport; the Japanese Shipowners’<br />

Association; the Shipbuilders’ Association<br />

of Japan; Japan Ship Exporters’ Association;<br />

Japan Marine Equipment Association and<br />

Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO).<br />

Panama hosted the reception offered to Sea<br />

Japan participants in the Hotel Le Meridien<br />

Grand Pacific Tokyo’s Palais Royal lounge<br />

which was decorated with Panamanian flags<br />

and posters while the attendees were presented<br />

with leaflets in English and Japanese and CD-<br />

Rs on the Ship Registry.<br />

Traditionally, the Japanese fleet has been<br />

the largest customer of the Panamanian<br />

Register, so “it was an excellent opportunity<br />

to meet with the Shipowners’ Association<br />

and various Japanese companies”, said AMP<br />

Administrator Fernando Solorzano. During<br />

meetings with Japanese Authorities, companies<br />

and associations, the AMP Administrator<br />

briefed them on the coming reforms to the<br />

maritime legislation, future tax incentives<br />

for shipowners and labor conventions. In<br />

addition, Mr.Solorzano said that the AMP will<br />

open a technical international office in Tokyo<br />

in August of this year, with officials fluent<br />

in Japanese that will serve as a link between<br />

Japanese companies and Segumar-Panama. A<br />

similar office will be opened in July in Greece<br />

with Greek-speaking officials.<br />

<strong>PANAMA</strong> GOES 24/7<br />

The Panama Maritime Authority is now<br />

offering access to the Bureau of Maritime<br />

Safety (SEGUMAR) on a continued basis,<br />

24 hours a day seven days a week (24/7) for<br />

the users of the Panama Registry. SEGUMAR<br />

services and offices, previously located in<br />

New York, have been relocated in Panama, in<br />

the new headquarters of the Panama Maritime<br />

Authority.<br />

However, SEGUMAR New York will<br />

continue to attend technical inquiries from<br />

the costumers’ area, act as liaison between the<br />

General Directorate of Merchant Marine and<br />

the customers of the geographical area, follow-<br />

up on PSC detentions and the liaison with<br />

PSC authorities of the geographical area, print<br />

and deliver the Technical Certificates issued<br />

and approved by the Segumar Panama Office<br />

and receive the payments by Recognized<br />

Organizations (ROs) related to the issuance of<br />

statutory certificates.<br />

SEGUMAR Panama Office is composed by 25<br />

technicians (available 24/7), all fully bilingual<br />

in English and Spanish who will receive all<br />

consultations about authorizations, issuances<br />

of certificates and will answer on the spot<br />

to the queries. They will process requests<br />

immediately.<br />

The Duty Technical Supervisor can be reached<br />

at: + 507-501 53 50, available on 24/7 basis,<br />

for the specific functions required by the<br />

customers. SEGUMAR can be contacted<br />

at (tel) +507 501 5348, (e-mail) jortega@<br />

segumar.com<br />

2<br />

PanCanal Plaza Building, Albrook, Omar Torrijos Herrera Avenue, Panama, Republic of Panama

<strong>PANAMA</strong> <strong>MARITIME</strong> <strong>AUTHORITY</strong><br />



The National Assembly has begun the<br />

approval process of reforms to Bill 342 on<br />

Merchant Marine which could be approved<br />

into law during the next month.<br />

The reforms which have been in the<br />

making for some time have been consulted<br />

with the Panama’s Chamber of Shipping,<br />

the Panama Maritime Law Association<br />

and have received support from the Inter<br />

American Development Bank (IDB).<br />

They include the modernization of<br />

merchant marine laws, resolutions and<br />

other legal matters and new incentives for<br />

the ship registry. The reforms will improve<br />

the Register competitiveness, implement<br />

maritime safety and security and will<br />

allow more flexible adaptation to the<br />

international maritime industry ingoing<br />

changes. There will be new tax incentives<br />

for vessels registering as a group and<br />

another on naval financing that will give<br />

tax breaks to vessels registered under the<br />

flag of Panama if the loan is burst and<br />

managed from Panama as well as tax free<br />

transactions.<br />

The reforms will go along with a package<br />

of reforms to the legislation on maritime<br />

commerce (Bill 340) and a general<br />

port law (Bill 341) that will govern the<br />

administration of future national and<br />

international port concessions.<br />



<strong>PANAMA</strong>NIAN PORTS<br />

Panama Maritime Authority (AMP)<br />

Administrator Fernando Solorzano<br />

announced that containerized cargo moved<br />

in Panamanian ports grew by 32.2% in<br />

2007 to 4,003,731 teus, compared to<br />

3,027,562 teus in 2006. It was the first<br />

time that cargo volume passed the record<br />

figure of 4m teus.<br />

Colon Container Terminal (CCT)<br />

throughput grew by 14.9% to 705, 252<br />

teus; Manzanillo International Terminal<br />

(MIT) volume decreased by 3.9% to<br />

1,279,903 teus; Panama Ports Co Balboa<br />

cargo increased by 85.5% to 1,833,778<br />

teus; Panama Ports Cristobal throughput<br />

increased by 106.2% to 166,641 teus.<br />

“The excellent performance of Panamanian<br />

ports is mostly due to the expansion<br />

carried out at all the terminals during the<br />

past two years and by the constant growth<br />

of transshipment business”, said AMP<br />

Administrator, Fernando Solorzano.<br />

<strong>PANAMA</strong> AND CANADA<br />


The Panama Maritime Authority (AMP) and<br />

Canada’s Marine Transportation Board have<br />

signed an accord to develop cooperation for<br />

the investigation of maritime accidents.<br />

Canada’s Marine Transportation Board and<br />

Panama Maritime Authority’s Directorate of<br />

Merchant Marine will investigate maritime<br />

accidents in both countries and will cooperate<br />

in providing human resources and laboratory<br />

assistance.<br />

Canada has the means to recreate accidents<br />

and the necessary laboratories with which<br />

investigators can probe or reject working<br />

hypothesis through scientific analysis which<br />

are a vital component of all investigations<br />

in human life loss or contamination of the<br />

environment, said AMP Director of Merchant<br />

Marine Alfonso Castillero.<br />

“This type of accord [between two countries]<br />

is essential to support our investigations and<br />

to help us draw lessons for the future which<br />

could lead to improve the existing legislations”<br />

added Mr. Castillero.<br />

P.O. Box 0816-01548 Panama, Republic of Panama<br />


<strong>PANAMA</strong> <strong>MARITIME</strong> <strong>AUTHORITY</strong><br />




<strong>PANAMA</strong><br />



<strong>PANAMA</strong><br />

Panama’s National Assembly approved,<br />

early April, the Contract-Law for the<br />

construction by Port of Singapore Authority<br />

(PSA) International of a container terminal<br />

in the former Rodman Navy Base where<br />

Parque Industrial Maritimo de Panama<br />

(PIMPSA) operates a bunker facility.<br />

PSA International plans to invest some<br />

$150M to transform the terminal into a<br />

facility with a 330m container and rollon-roll-off<br />

berth that will be able to<br />

handle about 450,000teus per year. The<br />

construction is expected to begin within<br />

the next months.<br />

From June 17-21, Panama will host the American<br />

Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) XVII<br />

Congress of Latin American Ports under the<br />

theme “How to prepare our ports according to the<br />

global trend of maritime traffic”. The country’s<br />

strategic location, the Panama Canal expansion<br />

project and the highly successful transshipment<br />

operation at terminals on both sites of the Isthmus<br />

make of Panama the ideal location for that event.<br />

Topics will include: Latin America’s role in global<br />

container traffic, the benefits of the Panama<br />

Canal expansion in international and regional<br />

commerce, regional transshipment, port finance<br />

and maritime training, amongst others.<br />

The XVII Congress of Latin American ports<br />

will be inaugurated by the President of Panama,<br />

the Hon. Martin Torrijos jointly with Mr. Ken<br />

O’Hollaren, Chairman of the AAPA Board,<br />

on Tuesday evening June 18. On the next day,<br />

Panama Maritime Authority Administrator, Mr.<br />

Fernando Solorzano will address the attendees<br />

during the first session, Wednesday morning<br />

June 19.<br />

For further information,<br />

visit www.aapa-panama.com<br />

contact us at, infoaapa@amp.gob.pa<br />

<strong>PANAMA</strong> <strong>MARITIME</strong> <strong>AUTHORITY</strong> MEETS CLASSIFICATION SOCIETIES<br />

The Panama Maritime Authority (AMP)<br />

held its fourth reunion with IACs and<br />

ROs as part of its regular meetings with<br />

classification societies. The workshop,<br />

that took place in Panama City, Panama,<br />

was inaugurated by AMP Administrator<br />

Fernando Solorzano, with the participation<br />

of Panama’s Ambassador to the UK and IMO<br />

permanent mission, Ms. Liliana Fernandez,<br />

Alfonso Castillero, Director of Merchant<br />

Marine, Napoleon Smith from Segumar -<br />

New York and representatives of 10 IACs and<br />

16 Recognized Organizations (ROs).<br />

Topics of the technical meetings [one day<br />

with the IACs and the next day with the ROs]<br />

addressed future Class audits and verification<br />

on how IACs and ROs carry out their<br />

responsibilities over the Panamanian fleet,<br />

the adoption of IMO conventions, including<br />

the implementation of SOLAS and Load lines<br />

1988 protocols, the Antifouling Convention<br />

and Marpol Annex VI, as well as the Flag<br />

inspections, detentions and Port State Control,<br />

amongst others. It is important to promote<br />

mutual cooperation between the ROs, in<br />

particular for the transfer of information<br />

and to give them permanent feedbacks on<br />

the IMO committees and subcommittees’<br />

debates, and review ROs [IACs and non<br />

IACs] performance on Very Serious / Serious<br />

casualties and detentions, said AMP director<br />

of Merchant Marine Alfonso Castillero.<br />

Port State Control’s rules have to be ‘tightly’<br />

implemented, said Mr. Castillero who added:<br />

“The IMO Secretary General and IMO<br />

members have made great effort to develop<br />

the regulations with follow up procedures,<br />

such as the PSC detention statistics, Audit<br />

results and casualties already in place”. Last<br />

September, Panama’s National Assembly<br />

ratified Protocol 1988 which enters force in<br />

September 2008 and “it was necessary for the<br />

AMP to introduce the new norms to improve<br />

safety standards on the vessels and establish<br />

a direct line of communication with all the<br />

Classification Societies,” said Mr. Castillero.<br />

Panama Maritime Authority officials also<br />

briefed Classification Societies and ROs<br />

representatives on the modernization process<br />

and digitalization of all AMP systems and<br />

Consulates around the world, including the<br />

digitalized seafarer identification (ID) to<br />

be issued by the Directorate of Merchant<br />

Marine. The ‘seafarer passport’ is to<br />

incorporate 20 security features including<br />

fingerprints, biometrics, digital photographs<br />

and bearers signature making it impossible to<br />

be duplicated or forged.<br />

4<br />

www.amp.gob.pa<br />

www.segumar.com<br />

We welcome our customers’ suggestions and comments.<br />

Please contact us at: marketing@amp.gob.pa

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