Panama’s economy is one of the most stable and among the fastest growing and best managed in America. Panama’s dollar-based economy rests primarily on a well-developed services sector being financial, tourism and logistics the main ones which represent nearly 75% of the GDP (Gross Domestic Product).

Its transportation and logistics services sectors, infrastructure development projects along with high foreign and domestic investment, coupled with the tourism and logistics industries, have boosted economic growth.

Services include operating the Panama Canal, the Colon Free Trade Zone, insurance, container ports and flagship registry.

According to the Bank, the IMF and the UN, the country has the highest per capita income in Central America; it is also the largest exporter and importer at the regional level, according to ECLAC.

The country is classified in the category of investment grade by Standard and Poor’s, Moody’s and Fitch Ratings.

Taxes in Panama

According to Act 8 of March 15, 2010, which amended the Fiscal Code, the air, sea and land transportation companies, as well as passengers, shall pay ITBMS tax. In Panama, 7% of ITBMS is charged on public entertainment, events, seminars, conferences, lectures and artistic, professional and sport presentations in general.

The importation and sale of alcoholic beverages, as well as hotel or lodging services, jewelry and weapons will pay 10 percent of ITBMS. Tobacco derivatives (such as cigarettes, cigars, and snuff) will pay 15% of ITBMS. Cable TV, microwave, satellite and mobile phones will pay 7% of ITMBS.

Economic activities Not subject to ITBMS tax:

Exoneration on logistics and similar services rendered in ports, free zones and special economic areas: Loading, unloading, transfer to or from ports, logistics and ancillary services rendered to cargo in ports and free zones or special economic areas , as well as repair services, maintenance and cleaning supplied to ships in transit within the territorial waters.

Electricity: 110 volts; 60 cycles.