Multi-Dimensional Review of Panama

Volume 1: Initial Assessment

image of Multi-Dimensional Review of Panama

Since the beginning of the 21st century, Panama has exhibited remarkable economic growth and has reduced the gap in terms of income per capita with high-income countries. Social progress has also been achieved, mainly through the reduction of poverty and advances in some well-being dimensions. However, challenges remain with regard to overcoming the so-called middle-income trap and consolidating the middle-class. This first volume of the Multi-dimensional Country Review of Panama identifies the main barriers to further inclusive development. It highlights that promoting equitable, inclusive and sustainable economic growth and improving the well-being of all citizens should be at the core of Panama’s development strategies.


Boosting productivity and value-added in Panama to keep up with growth

OECD Development Centre

This chapter focuses on the current drivers of economic performance in Panama and the challenges the country faces to consolidate sustainable growth. It analyses the macroeconomic conditions underlying the rise in income per capita and the shifts in productivity over the past decade, as well as the uneven growth of labour productivity across economic sectors and regions. The analysis further looks at Panama’s export profile, which concentrates on services exports, and assesses the exports’ value-added and the contribution of services to other exports. The chapter also presents the impact of foreign direct investment on specific economic sectors and its important contribution to total investment. After describing two major actors in the economy, the Canal and the Special Economic Zones, this chapter evaluates sectorial policies, such as infrastructures, logistics and innovation.



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