The international tourism promotion of Panama has generated an estimated economic impact of $902 million from January to June of 2023 leading the Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture (Cciap) to call for more of the same after several years when the country's tourism potential remained limited by the institutional weakness of the sector, as a result of the lack of planning, dispersed investment and little coordination with the private sector.
The efforts led by the Panama Tourism Promotion Fund (Promtur Panama) and the Panama Tourism Authority (ATP),
have resulted in a significant increase in trips from priority markets and a significant extension in the length of stay of tourists in Panama. The flow has been driven by the nine priority source markets: the United States, Colombia, Brazil, Canada, Costa Rica, Argentina, Spain, France, and Germany, which generated the highest volume of tourist arrivals by air. That is, 58.7% more compared to 41.3% in other markets.
Another important indicator of tourist activity highlights the business association, is the stay of tourists from these countries, which has increased from 8 to 10.9 days.
On the other hand, the tourism industry shows more and more signs of recovery, says the Cciap.
From January to April 2023, for example, 98% of the levels registered in 2019 were recovered according to figures from the Panama Tourism Authority.
Promtur estimates a 105% recovery in the arrival of tourists at the end of the year (2023 versus 2019), through all ports.
“Beyond these very good results, what we are seeing today are the fruits of management continuity, better government-private sector coordination, and the professionalization of our international tourism promotion. In addition, an agreed strategy is to strengthen a unified international tourism brand that is consistently promoted at the local level. It is vital to understand that the way forward is to continue the investment made and never return to inexplicable decisions with which at the time resources were cut for the promotion of tourism in Panama," says the Chamber.