To help mitigate the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Panama Canal has announced a temporary adjustment to its reservation system that will provide customers with added flexibility and relief.
Effective May 4, he waterway will implement temporary changes to the requirements for the placement of booking guarantees and advance payment of reservation fees when the reservation is confirmed. Customers will be allowed to place the guarantee for the payment of the booking slot prior to the vessel initiating transit.
“The Panama Canal has served customers for over a century’s worth of ebbs and flows, and so we know the importance of adaptability and partnership during this time,” said Panama Canal administrator Ricaurte Vásquez Morales. “The months ahead will be challenging across our industry, but we aim to help reduce the financial burden for our customers today so we can all stand ready for a brighter future tomorrow.”
The measure will be in place for 120 days, lifting on September 1.
Shipowners will now be watching to see how the Suez Canal responds to the pandemic crisis with an increasing volume of ships opting to avoid the waterway and head via the Cape of Good Hope.