Panama Canal Expects Work Deal Thursday

MarineLink.com
Friday, February 28, 2014
Photo courtesy Panama Canal Authority

By Lomi Kriel, Reuters

The Panama Canal Authority expects to formally sign a deal next week with a Spanish-led consortium to finish work on expansion of the waterway after a dispute over cost overruns held up completion, an official said on Friday.

"We expect that by Thursday we should be signing said document," Panama Canal Administrator Jorge Quijano told reporters a day after announcing a deal with the GUPC consortium, which is led by Spanish builder Sacyr and Italy's Salini Impregilo.

The deal, which was outlined on Thursday, foresees the consortium finishing work by December 2015 and would require both the Panama Canal Authority and GUPC to each inject $100 million for immediate cash flow needs to fully resume work.

The agreement would also extend repayment of advanced payments made by the Panama Canal Authority to the consortium that are worth $784 million until 2018 at the latest.

As part of the deal, the Canal Authority agreed that the consortium could use a $400 million surety bond through insurer Zurich North America as backing to seek financing.

However, the Zurich part will take up to six weeks to arrange, for which reason the $100 million cash injections were necessary to jump-start work, Quijano told a news conference.

Limited work on the project resumed on Feb. 21 after a two-week stoppage. The dispute has fanned fears of delays that could cost Panama millions of dollars in lost shipping tolls.

Holdups in the massive project posed a setback for companies worldwide that want to move larger ships through the waterway that links the U.S. Gulf Coast to Asian markets.

Canal chief Quijano said the newly expanded waterway would begin operating commercially by January 2016.

But he cautioned that if GUPC does not comply with the agreement, the canal will find other ways to complete the work.

"We remain prepared for another option," Quijano said.

The agreement contains safeguards related to the payback of the advances so that if the companies fail to comply they have to return the money straight away, he added.

The overall expansion, of which the consortium is building the lion's share, was first expected to cost some $5.25 billion, but the overruns could increase that to nearly $7 billion.

Sacyr, which receives a quarter of its international revenue from the canal project, reported on Friday a net loss of 496 million euros ($679 million) for 2013.

Maritime Reporter May 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Legal

Lifting of US Crude Oil Export Ban Possible within Year

The U.S. Congress could lift the 40-year old ban on domestic crude oil exports within a year as a drop in gasoline prices and the potential return of Iranian

Israeli Dockworkers End Ports Strike

Israeli dockworkers ended a two-day strike on Thursday that had shut down the country's two main seaports in protest at the creation of new foreign-run ports.   Some 2,

US Orders Owner to Clean Up Ruptured Pipeline

Federal order ensures continued action on Santa Barbara County oil spill   The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Coast Guard issued a joint federal

Ports

Duke Energy to Help Develop Jeffersonville Port Site

Duke Energy Indiana has selected a 140-acre parcel of land inside the Port of Indiana-Jeffersonville in Clark County for the utility's 2015 Site Readiness Program.

Savannah Harbor Expansion Project Update

Lt. Gen. Thomas Bostick, commander of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, visited the Port of Savannah on Thursday, for an update on the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project (SHEP).

Israeli Dockworkers End Ports Strike

Israeli dockworkers ended a two-day strike on Thursday that had shut down the country's two main seaports in protest at the creation of new foreign-run ports.   Some 2,

Finance

Lifting of US Crude Oil Export Ban Possible within Year

The U.S. Congress could lift the 40-year old ban on domestic crude oil exports within a year as a drop in gasoline prices and the potential return of Iranian

U.S.: Stronger Response in South China Sea Needed

By releasing video of Beijing's island reclamation work and considering more assertive maritime actions, the United States is signaling a tougher stance over the

Aramco Offers Rare 1.5 pct Gasoil Cargo

Aramco Trading, the trading arm of oil producer Saudi Aramco, has offered a rare gasoil cargo with a 1.5 percent sulphur content for June lifting from Rabigh, traders said on Thursday.

News

Lifting of US Crude Oil Export Ban Possible within Year

The U.S. Congress could lift the 40-year old ban on domestic crude oil exports within a year as a drop in gasoline prices and the potential return of Iranian

Duke Energy to Help Develop Jeffersonville Port Site

Duke Energy Indiana has selected a 140-acre parcel of land inside the Port of Indiana-Jeffersonville in Clark County for the utility's 2015 Site Readiness Program.

UNOLS Seeks Nominations for Council Positions

The University-National Oceanographic Laboratory System (UNOLS) is an organization of academic oceanographic institutions working in cooperation with agencies of the U.

Government Update

Lifting of US Crude Oil Export Ban Possible within Year

The U.S. Congress could lift the 40-year old ban on domestic crude oil exports within a year as a drop in gasoline prices and the potential return of Iranian

US Orders Owner to Clean Up Ruptured Pipeline

Federal order ensures continued action on Santa Barbara County oil spill   The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Coast Guard issued a joint federal

Suppression of Random Drug Test Results: A Bad and Unnecessary Decision

Last September, an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) unsettled much of the U.S. maritime industry when he dismissed with prejudice a U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) action

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Security Maritime Standards Offshore Oil Pipelines Pod Propulsion Ship Electronics Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.2735 sec (4 req/sec)