By: Anaya & Luna
Attorneys in Bocas del Toro

The only Bank on Isla Colon, Bocas del Toro is Banco Nacional De Panama (BNP) which is the National Government Bank. BNP requires that all foreigners who want to open account must have a “cedula” (Panamanian ID card). In order to obtain a “cedula” you will have to apply for Panamanian Residency and after five years of permanency in Panama you will be able to apply for a Panamanian ID card.

Opening a Bank Account for Expats who want to have their own business or want to relocate in Bocas Del Toro has become a very difficult task and almost impossible,  however with an accurate advice, a professional bank  introduction and good conduction of business; our Law Firm has assisted many foreigners ’ investors to open Personal and Corporate Bank Accounts with Banks in Bocas del Toro.

Changuinola is the closest town from Bocas del Toro Island, where you can find three more private banks of your choice: Global Bank, HSBC, and Multicredit Bank.

Below is a General List of Documentation required by most banks when opening a Bank Account

Documentation Required:

  1. Copy of complete Passport.
  2. Copy of second Identification card: Could be a Driver License.  
  3. Two (2) original Bank Reference Letters: Each of the signatory of the Account and directors of the Corporation must provide two original bank reference letters. Please make sure to attach a business card from the Bank or Institution that issued the Letter. Write us an email in case  you need an example of Reference Letter.  
  4. Two (2) Commercial or Professional Reference Letters:  Each of the signatory and director must provide two original commercial (from any Company you actually are or have done business in the past) or professional (from any professional person you are doing business or have done business in the past).  Please make sure to attach a business card from the Commerce or Professional that issued the Letter. Write us an email in case you need an example of Commercial or Professional Letter.
  5. Panama Business License: Most Panamanian Banks require that the Panamanian Company must have a business license.
  6. Company Profile Letter:  This Profile letter should be prepared explaining the business activity of the Company and purpose of the account, also an estimate of the account activity (deposits, withdrawals, average balance, etc.), and origin of initial deposit and future deposits. Write us an email in case you need an example of Company Profile Letter.
  7. Personal Interview with the Bank officer: The Signatory of the Account must be present when opening Bank Account.

After all documentation has been presented, the file will be revised and references will be verified by the Bank, it normally takes 10 to 15  business days to approve the Account.