Panama: Economic activity eases but remains robust
September 25, 2012
In July, the economy expanded 8.6% over the same month last year, which was below the revised 11.0% increase recorded in June (previously reported: +10.3% year-on-year), according to the monthly indicator for economic activity (IMAE, Indice Mensual de Actividad Economica). Gains in construction, mining, social and personal services as well as in transport were the biggest drivers behind the monthly expansion. A month-on-month analysis, however, does not corroborate the deceleration suggested by annual figures, as economic activity increased 0.50% in seasonally adjusted terms in July, virtually unchanged from the 0.49% expansion observed in June. Despite the softer annual growth in July, the trend continues to point upwards, with annual average growth in economic activity rising from 9.4% in June to 9.6%. Growth in economic activity should remain strong going forward, fuelled by ongoing investment in a project that aims to double the capacity of the Panama Canal by 2014.