Cuiabá, Brazil, March 15, 2018 – The Panama Canal signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in Cuiabá, Brazil that will promote the Panama Canal’s position as a route for grain shipments traveling from northern Brazil to ports accessed in the Pacific Ocean.
The agreement, signed with the Association of Soybean and Corn Producers of Mato Grosso (Aprosoja), will allow the two groups to conduct joint marketing activities and exchange market studies and information on trade flows to support modernization and improvement programs.
“The increased capacity afforded to us by the Expanded Canal has had far-reaching positive impact across segments, and allows us to access new markets, which could include freight from ports such as those in northern Brazil,” said Administrator Jorge Luis Quijano in Brazil. “The Panama Canal is proud to partner with this organization and unleash an exciting opportunity for Brazilian exporters.”
With this agreement, the Panama Canal looks to promote the use of the Panamax locks for soy and corn grain transits originating in northern Brazil and traveling to markets in Asia. These shipments typically transit on Panamax vessels given the similarity between the drafts in the Amazon River ports and the Panamax locks.
“As the Panama Canal continues finding new and innovative ways to address the ever-changing needs of the global maritime community and international trade flows, this agreement with the Mato Grosso Association of Soybean and Corn Producers further strengthens the common goal of promoting regional trade growth,” added Administrator Quijano. “This agreement allows us to maintain our commitment to serving our dedicated customers in an informed, strategic and practiced way, and better positions the Canal in its role as the logistics hub of the Americas.”
Partner group, Aprosoja, created in February 2005, is a non-profit organization comprised of producers linked to the soybean and corn crops in Mato Grosso, Brazil who work to create initiatives to drive sustainable growth in the sector. The agreement was signed by the president of Aprosoja, Antônio Galvan, and Administrator Quijano.
The MOU’s signing comes at a time when exporters of grains from Brazil are enjoying considerable increases in shipment volumes from the year before. Dry bulk, including grains, accounted for roughly 24 percent of the waterway’s total transits during its 2017 fiscal year. Since beginning its 2018 fiscal year on October 1 of last year, 21.6 percent of Panamax and 7.9 percent of Neopanamax transits have consisted of dry bulk.
The Panama Canal has signed MOUs with 36 commercial associations, ports and maritime organizations, the majority of which are in the United States. This agreement with a Brazilian organization is the first MOU between the Panama Canal and a Latin American country.
Administrator Quijano signed the agreement in Cuiabá, Brazil as a part of a broader visit to the country. During his trip, the Administrator spoke at the Logistics and Innovation Solution to Suit Forum in Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil.
About the Panama Canal Authority
The Panama Canal is run by an autonomous agency of the Government of Panama in charge of managing, operating and maintaining the Panama Canal. The operation of the Panama Canal Authority (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 website: http://www.pancanal.com or follow us on Twitter @thepanamacanal .
About the Panama Canal Expansion
The Panama Canal Expansion is the largest enhancement project since the Canal’s opening in 1914. Considered and analyzed for a decade with more than 100 studies, the Expanded Canal provides the world’s shippers, retailers, manufacturers and consumers with greater shipping options, better maritime service, enhanced logistics and supply-chain reliability. The Expansion included the construction of a new set of locks on the Atlantic and Pacific sides of the waterway, creating a third lane of traffic and doubling the cargo capacity of the waterway. While the expanded locks are 70 feet wider and 18 feet deeper than those in the original Canal, they use less water due to water-savings basins that recycle 60 percent of the water used per transit. In line with its commitment to customer service, the Panama Canal will continue to provide the world with value for another century and beyond.