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Frequently Asked Questions

If you have additional questions, please contact us.

What is the U.S. Commercial Service (USCS)? 

The U.S. Commercial Service is the trade promotion unit of the International Trade Administration. The U.S. Commercial Service is a global network of 1,800 trade professionals located in more than 250 cities worldwide, dedicated to assisting U.S. exporters and supporting U.S. business interests abroad. In the United States, the U.S. Commercial Service operates an extensive network of Export Assistance Centers that offer companies easy access and efficient response to exporting and international trade inquiries. Overseas, the Commercial Service is present in nearly 80 countries, representing more than 95 percent of the world market for U.S. exports.

The U.S. Commercial Service in Panama is a section of the U.S. Embassy in Panama. Our mission is to create jobs in the United States by advancing commercial opportunities in Panama, strategically assisting firms export U.S. products and services, and defending U.S. commercial interests. Our office has developed many services designed specifically to assist companies such as yours do business in Panama.

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Who does the USCS serve? 

The U.S. Commercial Service (USCS) primarily serves exporters of U.S. goods and services, particularly small and medium-sized businesses. We have a global network of professional consultants in nearly 300 domestic and overseas offices. Our in-depth counseling includes specific information to help you market your products and services in the global market.

The U.S. Commercial Service Panama team provides a combination of cost-effective basic and customized services to help you obtain market information, participate in trade events, and identify potential partners. Our commercial specialists have extensive local market expertise and can provide you with comprehensive market analysis and matchmaking assistance in all industries.

We also help Panamanian companies source U.S. suppliers and import U.S. goods and services.

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How do I obtain information on the Panamanian market? 

The U.S. Commercial Service in Panama identifies the industry sectors that offer the most potential for U.S. products and services, and prepares market research reports on an on-going basis. If you would like to receive market intelligence about export opportunities for your particular product or service, CS Panama can conduct customized market research for your firm.

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Which industry sectors offer the best opportunities? 

Our Doing Business in Panama Guide lists the leading sectors for U.S. exports and investment in Panama. Since Panama’s economy is largely service-based, however, Panama imports goods in all sectors. Contact us for information on the market of opportunities for your particular product or service.

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How do I find Panamanian buyers/distributors/representatives? 

The U.S. Commercial Service in Panama provides many services to help U.S. companies identify potential Panamanian partners. Our business matchmaking services are designed to help you locate, screen, and meet with potential buyers, representatives, distributors, and joint venture partners.

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Does Panama import my product?  How much? Who are the major potential buyers? 

The U.S. Commercial Service in Panama uses a variety of resources, including in-country databases and local expertise, to provide you with import statistics and a list of the top ten potential importers for your product. You may want to look at our online trade databases like Trade Stats Express to see high-level country-by-country export statistics. Click here for more information.

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How do I establish a company in Panama?

It is relatively easy to do business in Panama. You will find information about establishing a company in Panama in our report on Selling U.S. Goods and Services by clicking here.

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Is there a Free Trade Agreement with Panama?

Yes! As of October 31, 2012, the U.S. – Panama Trade Promotion Agreement (sometimes referred to as a Free Trade Agreement, or FTA) is in effect. It drops 87% of tariffs for U.S. content exports to 0%. Even without the benefits of the FTA, U.S. exporters are already very competitive in Panama and barriers to entry are low – so if you believe that you have a market opportunity in Panama please contact us. For more information on the FTA and how to understand what benefits it has for you as an exporter of U.S.-made goods, please click here.

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Do any import restrictions apply to my product? 

You will find a summary of the most important Panamanian import regulations and import restrictions in our report on Trade Regulations and Standards by clicking here. If you would like to identify import duties and taxes applicable to your specific product, please contact us.

If you need counseling from an expert in customs issues, contact us to request a list of Panamanian customs brokers. Please be advised that the listing of a firm does not imply endorsement by the U.S. Department of Commerce or any other agency of the U.S. Government.

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Which safety regulations and standards apply to my product? 

You will find information about safety regulations and standards in our report on Trade Regulations and Standards by clicking here. If you would like to identify the standards applicable to your specific product, please contact us.

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Where can I obtain financial/commercial references for a Panamanian company? 

The U.S. Commercial Service in Panama can investigate the capabilities, legitimacy and financial strength of your potential Panamanian business partners through a background check. Click here to learn more…

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Where can I find a list of business hotels in Panama? 

For information on hotels in Panama, please contact us. We will be happy to provide you with the information you need for a successful business trip.  

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How can I obtain a list of trade shows in Panama? 

Participating in local trade shows may be a good way to contact Panamanian potential buyers and to gain market exposure. Every year U.S. Commercial Service Panama supports a number of trade shows and events carefully selected by its team of country experts. Click here to view the current list of local events.

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Where can I find a list of business publications to promote my products? 

Advertising in local trade publications is an excellent way to gain market exposure for your product or service in Panama. You will find a brief list of the leading Panamanian newspapers and business magazines in our report on Selling U.S. Products and Services. Click here to access this report.

Please contact us for a list of business publications in your specific industry sector. We can supply detailed information, such as the publisher contact data, circulation, frequency, advertising rates, and more.

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Can USCS help me resolve a complaint against a Panamanian company? 

If your firm is having difficulties with a Panamanian company, please feel free to contact us and provide detailed information about the situation, contact data, and documented proof of unsuccessful attempts at resolving the problem. We will analyze your case and provide assistance accordingly. Please be advised that the U.S. Embassy does not typically intervene in questions arising from private transactions. It does however, attempt to clarify misunderstandings.

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I need legal advice.  Where can I find a list of law firms in Panama? 

If you need legal advice, please contact us.  For business purposes, we suggest that you start with this list of lawyers. For all other purposes, the Consular Section maintains a list of lawyers that you can review by clicking here. Please take into account that the listing of a firm does not imply endorsement by the U.S. Department of Commerce or any other agency of the U.S. Government.

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How do I find information about exporting my agricultural products?

In Panama, the U.S. Department of Agriculture maintains a Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) office. FAS links U.S. agriculture to the world to enhance export opportunities and global food security. You can contact the U.S. Embassy Panama FAS office via email at: agpanamacity@fas.usda.gov; by phone at 011-507-207-7297; or by visiting the FAS Panama website at http://panama.usembassy.gov/fas.html.

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How do I find Panamanian suppliers? 

The U.S. Commercial Service does not help U.S. companies find foreign suppliers. Click here to visit the Panamanian Ministry of Commerce and Industry.

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Where can I find a list of U.S. companies based in Panama? 

The U.S. Embassy in Panama does not maintain a comprehensive list of U.S. companies with a presence in Panama. We recommend that you contact the Panama American Chamber of Commerce, an affiliate of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, for this information. To contact the Chamber, please click here.

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