Tourism and hospitality sector making steady progress

The hotel industry represents a significant portion of the Panamanian economy, and in the last 24 months it has increased by 40-45%, said Annette Cárdenas, representative of the Panamanian Chamber of Tourism.

Furthermore, the private sector and the Panama Tourism Authority are working to create new business opportunities for the industry by setting up an office to promote Panama abroad as a venue for conventions.

This initiative seeks to increase hotel occupancy rates this year by securing up to 150,000 hotel nights through the 180 international conferences and conventions scheduled.

Tourism continues to grow by leaps and bounds. Industry authorities estimate that at least 3,000 new hotel rooms will become available between 2013 and 2014 as new hotels are opened. In Panama City alone there are 22,000 rooms available.