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Panama : economy statistics and industry reports

  • Updated on : 27 August 2012  Source : The World Factbook


$22.95 billion (2011 est.)
$17.23 billion (2010 est.)
note: includes the Colon Free Zone


$16.95 billion (2011 est.)
$12.68 billion (2010 est.)
note: includes the Colon Free Zone

Inflation rate (consumer prices)

5.9% (2011 est.)
3.5% (2010 est.)

Unemployment rate

4.5% (2011 est.)
6.5% (2010 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP)

$14,300 (2011 est.)
$13,100 (2010 est.)
$12,400 (2009 est.)
note: data are in 2011 US dollars

National product real growth rate

7.5% (2010 est.)
3.2% (2009 est.)
10.1% (2008 est.)

Internet users

959,800 (2009)

Telephones - mobile cellular

6.496 million (2009)

Population growth rate

1.41% (2012 est.)


3,510,045 (July 2012 est.)

Historical background

Explored and settled by the Spanish in the 16th century, Panama broke with Spain in 1821 and joined a union of Colombia, Ecuador, and Venezuela - named the Republic of Gran Colombia.

When the latter dissolved in 1830, Panama remained part of Colombia.

With US backing, Panama seceded from Colombia in 1903 and promptly signed a treaty with the US allowing for the construction of a canal and US sovereignty over a strip of land on either side of the structure (the Panama Canal Zone).

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Economic overview

Panama's dollar-based economy rests primarily on a well-developed services sector that accounts for three-quarters of GDP.

Services include operating the Panama Canal, logistics, banking, the Colon Free Zone, insurance, container ports, flagship registry, and tourism.

Economic growth will be bolstered by the Panama Canal expansion project that began in 2007 and is scheduled to be completed by 2014 at a cost of $5.

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