About Panama

The  best country to invest in.
 
Official Name: Republic of Panama.
Capital: City of Panama
Nationality: Panamanian(s)
Local time: GMT-5
Land area: 75,517 square miles.
Territorial sea boundaries: 200 nautical miles
Population: (Census 2000): 2,839,177
Density of Population: 81 per sqm
Literacy Rate: 90% 

Distribution by Age (%):

  • 0-14 years: 37%,
  • 15-59 years: 56.3%,
  • 60+ years: 6.7%

Official Language:
Spanish, but many Panamanians are bilingual (English/Spanish).
 
Climate:
Tropical with uniform temperature all year. Average temperature: 27°C. There are two seasons: rainy and dry (also called "summer"). The rainy season is from May to mid-December. The dry season covers mid-December to April. During the dry ("summer") season, pleasant trade winds blow throughout the day and night.

Taxes :
All purchases (excluding medicines, foods and scholastic equipments) are taxed with a 5% of Personal Properties Transference Tax (ITBM),.

Currency : 
Balboa (Balboas -- plural); 1 balboa = 100 centimes. The circulating paper money is the U.S. dollar. Exchange rate : 1 Balboa = 1 Dollar.

Electrical Current :
120V and 240V

Gratuity :
Not included in the restaurant prices. It is customary to tip between 10% and 15% of the total bill amount.

Driving license :
A foreign license is valid for 90 days. Passport may be required as validation of identity.

Commerce Schedules :

  • Monday to Sunday  - 9:30 am to 7 pm.
  • Banks: 8:00 am. to 3:30 pm. ATM availability is 24 hours.
  • Public offices: 8:30 am, to 4.30  pm.

Borders :
555 km total; Colombia 225 km, Costa Rica 330 km.  Coastal: 2,490 km.

Limits:
Caribbean Sea to the North, the Pacific Ocean to the south, the Republic of Colombia to the east, and the Republic of Costa Rica to the west.

Ethnic Groups:
70% racially mixed, 10% whites, 12% mulattos, 8% native indigenous.

Constitution:
Adopted October 11, 1972; reforms adopted in April 1983.

Religion:
No state religion. More than 93% Roman Catholics, 6% Protestants.

Independence:
Independent from Spain: November 28, 1821; from Colombia: November 3, 1903.

Public Holidays :
January 1 - New Year, January 9 – Martyrs Day, February 8 - Carnival Tuesday, March 25 – Good Friday, May 1 – Work Day, November 3 - Independence from Colombia, November 10 - First Cry of Independence, November 28 - Independence Day, December 8 – Mother's Day, December 25 - Christmas.

Government:
Constitutional Democracy Centralized Republic.

Political division:
9 provinces: Chiriquí, Bocas Del Toro, Coclé, Colón, Darién, Herrera, Los Santos, Panama, Veraguas, and 5 comarcas: Emberá-Wounaan, Kuna Yala, Madugandí, Ngobe-Buglé, Wargandí. Total Area: 78.200 square km (30,193 square miles).

Legal System:
based on the system of civil law, judicial revision of legislative acts in the Supreme Court of Justice; accepts the jurisdiction of international courts in all but some cases.