Investing in Panama Real Estate
Stable and Growing Economy
Panama’s dollar-based economy rests primarily on a well-developed services sector that accounts for more than three-quarters of GDP offers a perfect environment for investing in Panama Real Estate. 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 estimated to be completed by 2015 at a cost of $5.3 billion – about 10-15% of current GDP. The expansion project will more than double the Canal’s capacity, enabling it to accommodate ships that are too large to traverse the existing canal. The United States and China are the top users of the Canal. Panama is also constructing a metro system in Panama City, valued at $1.2 billion and scheduled to be completed by 2014. Panama’s booming transportation and logistics services sectors, along with aggressive infrastructure development projects, have lead the economy to continued high growth in 2012.
Foreign investment, at around 10% of GDP in both 2011 and 2012, has continued to be a source of growth. Strong economic performance has not translated into broadly shared prosperity, as Panama has the second worst income distribution in Latin America. About one-fourth of the population lives in poverty; however, from 2006 to 2012 poverty was reduced by 10 percentage points, while unemployment dropped from 12% to 4.5% of the labor force in 2013. The US-Panama Trade Promotion Agreement was approved by Congress and signed into law in October 2011, and entered into force in October 2012. Panama also achieved removal from the Organization of Economic Development’s gray-list of tax havens by signing various double taxation treaties with other nations.
The Panamanian government encourages foreigners investing in Panama Real Estate by offering various incentive programs such as property tax exonerations on new construction from 10 to 20 years. Some other notable incentives for foreign investors include: foreign and local investors are guaranteed equal rights; foreign investors do not require special authorizations, permits or prior registration; one of the lowest tariffs in the region; special tax, import, and operational incentives in the construction, infrastructure, tourism, reforestation, mining, insurance and petroleum free zones sectors; no tax or government reporting requirements on any foreign earned income as-well-as many incentive programs that offer immediate residency, visas and passports.
World-Class Modern Infrastructure
Panama features one of the world’s most sophisticated telecommunications networks and first-world countrywide road infrastructure. The country’s modern shopping malls, banking center and hospitals will easily rival any of those in North America. With a purified tap water system, high-speed Internet access, cable TV, international restaurants, clubs, casinos and much more, you’ll find that making the transition to Panama is easy when all the luxuries of back home are within arm’s reach.
Truly Affordable Real Estate
Many 1,000 square foot condominium units featuring 2 bedrooms with maid quarters cost well under $100,000. At the other end, there are abundant spectacular 5,000 square foot and up units to choose from. In addition, a great selection of master-planned beachfront, island and mountain communities are available that present excellent lifestyle opportunities and just one more reason for investing in panama real estate.