PANAMA CITY, Panama, October 21, 2008 – The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) Board of Directors and Advisory Board convened in Panama this week to discuss Canal Expansion Program progress, operational developments at the waterway, and other industry issues and trends.

The sixteenth Board meeting kicked off Monday with opening remarks by ACP Board of Directors Chairman and Minister for Canal Affairs Dani Kuzniecky.

ACP Administrator/CEO Alberto Alemán Zubieta briefed both Boards on the fiscal year 2008 (October 2007-September 2008) operational results, highlighting the Canal’s record $2 billion earnings.

“The Canal Expansion Program is moving ahead as planned – on time and on budget and we feel very confident in the strides that we have made in the past weeks to ensure its successful execution,” said Mr. Kuzniecky. “With the financing structure in place, we can now shift our attention to other critical areas of the project; we will continue to look to the Advisory Board for their sound judgment and expert advice as the program moves forward.”

During the two-day meeting, the Boards evaluated the advancement of the Canal’s expansion, including the project’s recently announced $2.3 billion financing structure approved by the Cabinet Council and the ACP Board of Directors.

The Advisory Board meets twice a year with the Board of Directors to keep the ACP abreast of maritime industry developments and related activities at the international level. The ACP established the Advisory Board to serve as a consultative body for the Canal enterprise to provide guidance and recommendations to the Board of Directors and the Canal administration.

The following Advisory Board members attended the sixteenth meeting:

  • William O’Neil, former Secretary-General of the International Maritime Organization (IMO)
  • Gerhard Kurz, former President of Seabulk International, Inc. and Mobil Shipping
  • Flemming R. Jacobs, former President and Chief Executive Officer of Neptune Orient Lines Ltd. Group and maritime consultant based in London
  • Albert H. Nahmad, President of the Board of Directors and CEO of Watsco, Inc.
  • Tommy Thomsen, President/CEO of Clipper Wonsild Tankers
  • Salvador Jurado, President of Building Components Group
  • C. C. Tung, Chairman and CEO of Orient Overseas (International) Ltd. (OOIL)
  • Andrónico Luksic Craig, vicepresident of Banco de Chile
  • Stephan Schmidheiny, President of AVINA Foundation
  • Philip Embiricos, Director of Embiricos Shipbrokers, member of the BIMCO executive committee and former Intertanko director
  • Joe R. Reeder, partner of Greenberg Traurig LLP (attorneys at law) and former Panama Canal Commission Board Chairman
  • Admiral William J. Flanagan, US Navy (Ret), previous Commander In Chief, U.S. Atlantic Fleet and NATO’s Commander In Chief, Western Atlantic, and President of Skarven Enterprises Inc.
  • Dr. Ernst G. Frankel, professor emeritus of Oceanic Systems and Administration for Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
  • Dr. Aaron Gellman, Administration and Strategy professor for the Transportation Center for Northwestern University.
  • Mikio Sasaki, president of the Board of Directors of Mitsubishi Corporation.
  • Capitán Wei Jiafu, president of the Group/CEO of China Ocean Shipping Company (COSCO).
  • Koji Miyahara, president of Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK Line).
  • L. Francis Rooney III, president of Rooney Holdings.

About the Panama Canal Authority (ACP)
The ACP is the autonomous agency of the Government of Panama in charge of managing, operating and maintaining the Panama Canal. The operation of the ACP is based on its organic law and the regulations approved by its Board of Directors. For more information, please refer to the ACP’s Web site: https://chiowa.edelman.com/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.pancanal.com/.