New regulations for the International Tourism Promotion Fund

New regulations for the International Tourism Promotion Fund

Austin Hess 2020-10-14 11:11:54

Recently, the President of the Republic, Juan Carlos Varela, signed the internal regulations of the International Tourism Promotion Fund that gives the country a financial structure that will improve policies and projects to encourage the arrival of more tourists to Panama.

The Chief Executive highlighted the contributions that the government has made to the tourism sector in the last four years. Varela mentioned the investment of more than 40.3 million dollars in the construction of the Convention Center in Chitré; the new Convention Center in Amador with an investment of 300 million dollars; the Cruise Project in Amador with an additional investment of more than 165 million dollars, which will place Panama as an important cruise destination, thus expanding the tourism offer of the country.

For his part, the administrator of the Tourism Authority of Panama, Gustavo Him, pointed out that this fund is an investment that will have a return. "This step will allow all our actions to be faster, for tourism to grow and benefit the entire sector and for private companies, which are the driving force of this industry, to have a strong presence in all the decisions that are made," he remarked. He added that "by signing this document the fund has been consolidated, and this creation was supported from the beginning by President Varela". This initiative guarantees the continued presence of the country’s tourism promotion abroad and away from any impasse that the change of government could generate.

In accordance with Law 9 of March 14, 2017, which has created the fund, the board of directors had to start functions in August 2018, when the Law came into force. This fund started with a patrimony of 20 million dollars per year. This amount will be split into two terms, from August to December 2018, will be available 8 million dollars; while the remaining 12 million dollars would be delivered from January to July 2019. The Law also creates a trust, whose funds will be used to promote Panama as a tourist destination abroad, through a public-private formula that will receive all contributions from the Central Government, municipalities, and private sector.

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