Panama City, Panama, June 14, 2019 – The Panama Canal published today a proposal to modify its current tolls structure for the dry bulk, passenger, containership and vehicle carrier and RoRo segments, as well as tankers, chemical tankers, LPG and LNG vessels, the intra-maritime cluster(local tourism segment) and minimum tolls (small vessels). Today’s announcement marks the beginning of a 30-day formal consultation period for industry feedback, which will close on July 15, 2019.
“With this proposal, we aim to better serve the global maritime
industry,” said Panama Canal Administrator Jorge L. Quijano. “Our proposed
modifications will increase transparency and flexibility, among other
improvements, to ensure the Panama Canal remains competitive and optimal for
the industry today and moving forward.”
For the dry bulk segment, the proposal offers matching the tolls charged to
Neopanamax vessels carrying iron ore with the tolls assessed for grains and
“other dry bulk” cargoes, as well as a tariff increase for Neopanamax dry
bulkers transiting in ballast.
The proposal also aims to add transparency to the tolls structure of the
passenger segment by charging based on the maximum passenger capacity that can
be carried by each specific passenger vessel. To that end, the Canal is
proposing to change the unit of measurement from a “per berth” to a “per
passenger” basis, making it easier for cruise lines to transfer transit costs
to their customers.
For the containership segment—the main user of Neopanamax Locks—the proposed
toll modifications will help retain and incentivize increased cargo volumes
through the Panama Canal. Specifically, the proposal offers more attractive
rates for customers who benefit from the Panama Canal Loyalty Program by adding
new levels with reduced rates in the capacity charge for shipping lines
deploying between 2 million to 3 million TEUs, and additional reductions for
lines deploying an incremental over 3 million TEUs. The incentive implemented
in the last toll modification of fiscal year 2018 for total TEU loaded in the
return voyage (TTLR) will remain in effect.
To add further transparency to the toll structure for the Vehicle Carrier and
RoRo segment, the proposed modifications include—for the first time–a new
tariff category or range precisely designed for Neopanamax vessels to account
vessels sizes and capacity. Additional modifications for this segment include
slight increments in tolls tariffs for Panamax-sized vessels, as well as minor
adjustments based on vessel size ranges.
Toll structures for tankers, chemical tankers, LPG and LNG vessels remain
unchanged, but tolls adjustments are proposed to more closely align with the
value of the route.
Tolls for small vessels (minimum tolls) and for the local tourism market are
being revised upwards to take into account the resources used in the transit
and the complexity of accommodating these vessels within the locks’ chambers.
The last tariff adjustments for small vessels were implemented in 2012.
Lastly–and based on comments submitted by clients during the 2017 public
consultation and hearing process–the Canal proposes to review the rates
charged to vessels carrying containers on deck, which do not belong to the
container shipping segment, to allow for differentiated charges for containers
that are empty, dry or refrigerated.
The complete proposal is available at www.pancanal.com/peajes. All interested
parties are invited to participate in the consultation process as well as the
public hearing to be held in Panama City, Panama, on July 24, 2019 at 9:00 a.m.
(local time). In accordance with established rules, the Panama Canal will
consider all correspondence received by 4:15 p.m. (local time) on July 15,
2019, as well as comments and opinions presented during the public hearing.
After a careful evaluation and analysis of the comments received, and once any
pertinent changes are incorporated in the proposal, the Cabinet Council of the
Republic of Panama will officially approve the modifications. The date for
implementation of the modifications to the tolls structure is planned for
January 1, 2020.
About the Panama Canal Authority (ACP)
The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) is an autonomous legal entity of the Republic of Panama in charge of the operation, administration, management, preservation, maintenance, and modernization of the Panama Canal, as well as its activities and related services, so that the Canal may operate in a safe, continuous, efficient manner. For more information, please refer to the ACP’s website: http://www.pancanal.com or follow us on Twitter @thepanamacanal.