Attracting Foreign Investment Will Be Key To Recovery
Panama is not keeping it a secret that attracting foreign investment is a large part of their overarching plan to restart the economy after the COVID-19 pandemic. To that end, the government has passed new initiatives, both large and small, to help roll out the “Welcome Mat” to foreign nationals.
These incentives are attractive, in part for their aggressiveness, but also that they have been designed to provide exceptional opportunity for the investor as well as the country. It is also a somewhat unusual step in that the programs are varied and aimed at several audiences. Long known as being flexible and business favorable, Panama has gone even further to welcome the foreign investor.
Consider the following programs:
- With a more long-term goal, the Panamanian government has develop initiatives aimed at attracting manufacturing companies who wish to carry out product manufacturing and packaging throughout the country. People often think of manufacturing as large installations with smokestacks puffing, but think more along medical instruments, drugs and beauty products. This measure takes advantage of Panama’s exceptional geographic location and the ability to manage more economically logistics aimed deliveries throughout the world. This incentive, which can be flexible and tailored to each company also provides high-paying positions for Panamanians who are a skilled and adaptable workforce. This, in turn, stimulates the housing market, retail, education and basic need items.
- In October 2020 the government developed a plan that would make it easier for individuals to gain permanent residency through investment. Individuals who conduct businesses–from digital nomads to CEOs who control the corner office from Panama–do not pay taxes on money earned outside Panama and now they can quickly become a permanent resident without a minimum stay or visa requirement. Even if you are not interested in conducting business but simply enjoying everything Panama has to offer, know that with a $300,000 real estate investment, residency can be obtained within 30 days. The Permanent Residency For Economic Reasons Act also provides a fast-track program with a $500,000 investment in the Panama stock exchange or opening a local bank account of $750,000 or more.
- Given the environmental diversity of Panama, the film and movie industry has already invested a great deal in setting up attractive locations in Panama for filming and that is now more lucrative with additional incentives. The Panamanian government recently passed an exhaustive list of financial options, rebates and tax rollovers, making Panama attractive to the cinematography industry. During the pandemic, filming was brought to a virtual halt and now Panama is poised to capitalize on the need for movies, reality shows and television productions.
Panama enjoys the highest projected growth rate of Latin America. Even in the pandemic, Panama raised their exports in 2020 and continued to attract multi-national companies. It is projected that Panama will enjoy sustained growth between 8-9% for 2020 with an even greater GDP growth in 2021.
For more information on available properties qualifying for fast-track residency, tax abatements, investment potential in emerging areas and cash-only deals, please do not hesitate to contact one of the sales professionals at Empresas Bern.