Export Development Canada (EDC) and the Republic of Panama have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to facilitate Canadian participation in the future expansion of the Panama Canal and other large-scale projects in that country.

The MOU assists EDC in planning a multi-million dollar credit facility with Panama that will facilitate the purchase of Canadian goods and services for Panama’s infrastructure development. Key among these projects is the planned expansion and modernization of the Panama Canal, representing one of the world’s largest infrastructure projects at an estimated cost of more than US$5bn.

“EDC will help Panama finance projects that contribute to the social, environmental and economic fabric of the country,” says Robert Forbes, vice-president of EDC’s International Business Development Group. “Our participation will increase opportunities for Canadian exporters and investors in Panamanian transactions in areas such as water management, natural resources, transportation, energy and information technology.”

EDC will work with Canadian companies and the Panamanian government to identify projects of mutual interest and offer financing. EDC acts as a direct lender in government-sponsored projects or works in partnership with other export credit agencies or financial institutions. EDC also offers finance and insurance solutions for Canadian investors and exporters working with the private sector in Panama.

Canadian companies have developed world-class capabilities in many industry sectors, including infrastructure, power, oil and gas, mining, information technology, environmental technologies and skills training. Most recently, several Canadian companies have invested in mining and engineering projects in Panama.