The Tico-Panama land border continues to be blocked after almost two weeks, despite the fact that allegedly, some carriers had the intention of forcing the way, even temporarily, to cross the merchandise to Panama. However, confrontations with those who opposed it frustrated the measure.
Costa Rica, characterized as one of the most peaceful countries in the Central American region, has seen multiple protests in rejection of the measures from the Carlos Alvarado government negotiated with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the announcement that taxes would be raised in that country to deal with the loan.
“It is a complex situation because it does not lie in a commercial difference or dispute between the two countries, but rather it is caused by citizen demonstrations,” said the Ministry of Commerce of Panama.
Although on October 5, Alvarado said that he would withdraw from the agreement, the Ticos were not satisfied with the announcement, “they want it in writing,” one of the carriers who is stuck at the border said.
On the border line between Panama and Costa Rica there are approximately 500 containers detained, waiting to cross merchandise of all kinds to Panama. The carrier who spoke, indicated that the situation has become very dangerous due to violent encounters between various groups of nonconformists, and with the authorities.
“They are millions of dollars in cargo, some perishable. There is food, also alcohol for Panamanian hospitals and 18 containers of medicines to alleviate the pandemic in Panama,” said the carrier. Some carriers agreed to open the border, but others were against, which led to clashes and heated spirits. As a result of the events, the Panamanian police cordoned off and reinforced security in the area to protect border businesses.
Great loses and both sides of the border
The blockade has caused economic losses to Panama of more than $ 50 million. For their part, the customs expeditors detained at the border feel impeded and frustrated by the situation; Everyday that passes, the costs for companies that must assume per diem, lodging and food for their representatives are added. “There is a very strong tension because the confrontation is between sides of the same people,” added the stranded carrier.The Customs Authority said that once the border opens, it will be willing to work 24 hours to expedite the loading.