The Business Year

A combination of public-private partnerships and innovative new sources of financing are enabling novel construction projects to transform and bind together the Panamanian countryside.

Jorge E. Izquierdo B.

General Manager, Amarilo

Amarilo’s CEO Roberto Moreno has long believed Panama is one of the best options to spread Amarillo’s values and achieve what Amarilo Colombia has for two consecutive years. In fact, we now have the best reputation in the market due to the 25 years of experience and, in Panama, this has given us the chance to learn again, but every day we are more convinced that we are doing things well. Our slogan “We create spaces“ says it all. We have a huge responsibility because in Colombia, Panama, and many parts of the world, housing is the most precious asset to which the great majority of people aspire. This is why we are selling an experience and why we create spaces. In fact, we exported this concept to Panama, and we have made a difference. In Colombia, we work with Corporacion Responder, and we found a Panamanian partner Sinergia. With Corporacion Responder and Sinergia, we identified the best way to impact the lives of Panamanians via the Social Support Program (PAS). We had a project in western Panama designed for 25,000 homes. However, when we arrived, there were already 4,000 homes. Part of our work there was to educate the communities living there to maintain these homes and own them. Today, that neighborhood is different from what it was eight years ago. Our current focus is Villas de Arraiján, where we have a project of 25,000 homes, and we have built 2,000.

Juan Raul Moreno

General Manager, Asfaltando Panamá

Asfaltando Panamá is a smaller company born from Asfaltos Panameños eight years ago. Asfaltando Panamá was established to be focused more on commercial projects, while Asfaltos Panameños is focused more on government projects. In 2018, we acquired a third asphalt plant with the new capacity of producing 160 tons of asphalt per hour, compared to the older plants, which could only produce 110 tons of asphalt per hour. We have won new contracts and projects thanks to this innovative asphalt plant, as well as other new equipment recently acquired, such as a new paver, which is yet another example of how we always focus on improving quality control. We will keep expanding by keeping our actual clients satisfied and continuing to acquire new clients, and differentiating ourselves by offering quality control, competitive prices, and continually building trust. Between Asfaltando Panamá and Asfaltos Panameños we cover around 20% of the market in Panama. We plan to increase the former’s market share by gaining more contracts and participating in more bids. We are ready to expand our client portfolio. Besides a few parking lots, we are now developing some rural areas. We are hiring people to visit new potential projects, including areas that are developing new neighborhoods, which will expand our market share.

Carlos Ignacio Hurtado

General Manager, Carlos Ignacio Hurtado

Conalví­as adapted to trends in recent construction, the guild, and national infrastructure investment. The growth of our business portfolio over 20 years is at a good level. We work in the public and private sector. In the latter, we participate in national investment on road infrastructure projects to connect provinces or central roads such as the Pan-American Highway. We also participate in road infrastructure construction for roads that help generate development in the livestock and farming sectors, and even with Panama Ports. This is why we are linked with growth, both for urban companies in the housing and real estate sector. Some companies need infrastructure to provide access to neighborhoods or links between city projects. Regarding the public sector, we work with the Panama Metro on projects such as Panama subway, with its three lines. Our operation in Tocumén started when we first arrived in Panama and built the first parking lots. Central Mix, our sister company, made pavement, but that is an independent operation. We are optimistic that the investment in infrastructure necessary to cover the needs of the country and the population will continue and improve. We want to continue participating in investments of around USD3-5 billion. We can participate in projects of up to USD300 million per year.

Marta Castro

Country Manager Panama, Eptisa

Eptisa is an international engineering company that started operations over 60 years ago in Spain. Now, we have a presence in nearly 55 countries. We have more than 1,800 employees and cover the transport, water, environment, industry, energy, buildings, information technology, and institutional, economic and social development sectors. In Panama, we have started our business working on big land management projects, including as cadastre and cartography. In addition, we cover the entire country and have done projects in Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Peru, Colombia, Chile, Haiti, and many countries in Latin America. For the last two years, we have been part of a Chinese engineering group, JSTI, and are trying to improve business in Latin America. Our main clients usually were government institutions and Spanish and European companies. But now, thanks to our main stakeholders, we are establishing more relations with Chinese companies that have been set up here in Panama, such as Power China, CRCC, CCECC, CHEC, and other Chinese investors. We are now more focused on energy projects and we will continue with our land management projects. Furthermore, we are interested in water management and environment, and the development of the original territories in Panama.

Makoto Nakao

President, Nippon Koei Lac

Nippon Koei has many years of experience at the international level. In fact, 60-70% of the work of Nippon Koei is concentrated in Asian countries. Latin America is a distant region from Japan, so Nippon Koei decided in 2003 to create the subsidiary, Nippon Koei Lac. First, a subsidiary was created in Peru, because there was a lot of cooperation between the government of Japan and Peru. In 2005, Nippon Koei Lac moved its headquarters from Lima to Panama due to the importance of this country as a hub in the region, and we had great interest in its potential economic development. The first projects we approached in Panama were water and sanitation. This is why the government of Japan decided to cooperate with the sanitation project in the Bay of Panama. This city is expanding a lot in all directions, so there is always a need to expand and improve the water and sanitation system. Another important sector is transport. We have been contracted for the implementation of Metro Line 3 Project, one of the most important projects of the current administration. Also, there is a plan to build several metro lines in the future. So there is a great need to improve the public transport system in Panama City. Nonetheless, we are focused on working on the environment, agriculture, ports, airports, and energy.

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