Global overview of tech opportunities in promising sectors in Panama

Maritime & Logistics: 6% of world trade passes through the Panama-Canal and the Ports & Logistics sector contributes 30% to Panamanian GDP. The port infrastructure (e.g. the 22 sea ports) needs to be modernized and connected to various digital platforms, using business analytics and data. This creates opportunities for big data, AI and software companies in logistics. Port security is also an area of high potential: traceability & cybersecurity solutions.

Health Tech / Digital Health: Panama is resuming works to build a Health City which will house 43 operating rooms, 1,235 beds and offices for various medical specialties, robotic surgery, a research center and international vaccine center. This development is expected to drive demand for state-of-the-art medical devices and digital health solutions. Health sector growth is forecasted at 6% per year.

Banking: Panama is the financial center of Latin-America with over a 100 banks. Mergers and acquisitions, use of digital technologies, entry of fintech and an increased cybersecurity risk represent opportunities for Dutch companies that offer IT solutions for this sector.

Fintech is seen as an opportunity to further strengthen Panama’s position as an international financial center and recently new legislative proposal was launched by the Panamanian Parliament to promote the use of crypto currencies and Blockchain.

E-Government: Panama has an active digital transformation strategy (Agenda Digital 2021), promoting digitization of procedures and processes, digital identity solutions, means of digital payments and easier access to services through digital platforms. The agenda contains over 100 digital transformation projects, government wide up to municipality level.

E-Commerce / Retail: the e-commerce market in Central America & the Caribbean increased with 40% from 2019 to 2020. Panama has the largest e-commerce proportion of total retail sales in Latin-America, even surpassing markets such as Brazil where e-commerce represents around 7.8% of total sales. This creates e-commerce opportunities for digital marketing, e-commerce platforms and big data (analytics) companies. The BPOS Panama Digital Free Zone is tailored to E-commerce companies providing special benefits.