By Anaya & Luna 
Bocas del Toro Lawyer 

Procedure and Regulations for Maritime Concessions in Panama

It is very important for every Bocas del Toro resident and investors to understand the steps, procedure and regulations in order to acquire a Maritime Concession over the water for the construction and development of maritime infrastructures, such as shipyards, docks, dry docks, floating docks, dock berths, sea ramps, marinas, landfills, and any other improvements built within public property beach and fronts or coastal territories where the Maritime Authority has jurisdiction.

On January 21st, 2008, the Board of the Panamanian Maritime Authority issued the Resolution No. 026-2008, which modifies certain articles of Rules and Regulations Agreement No. 9-76, issued on March 24, 1976 related to Maritime Concessions.

The Article 8º from the aforementioned Agreement No. 9-76, was modified as follows: The length of time for Concession over Seabed, River floors, docks, beach and river front concessions and for any other type of concessions where the Panama Maritime Authority has competence will be granted for a period of twenty (20) years, according to the area and investment.  This period may be extended according with compliance of the original contract for another twenty (20) years.

The Article 27º will be as follows:

The concession contracts will include:

a)    Description of the granted concession area and amount of investment agreed.
b)    Value of assets granted in the Concession
c)    Monthly fee and its increase which shall not be less than 5% annual.
d)    The obligation of the concessionary to pay the concession fee and any penalty for late payment
e)    All conditions, time periods, restrictions and any other terms,
f)     Description of the only activity that will be allowed on the granted concession area,
g)    Power/Faculty kept by the State, in relation with the concession area granted
h)    The concessionary obligation to guarantee the payment of the set forth payments, such as guarantee and/or insurance policy, and the obligation to come before the Maritime Authority office to deliver the payments.  These Guarantees to be provided by the petitioner shall remain valid during the term of the contract,
i)     All the obligations according to the Law, this regulation, and any other Regulation by the Maritime Authority that may apply.


  1. Power of Attorney from the Legal Representative of the Corporation, granted to a Panamanian License Attorney or Law Firm,
  2. Formal Application prepared by a Panamanian Lawyer or Law Firm. (The Application should contain specific information requested by the Maritime Authority of Panama)

Besides the Formal Application, the petitioner should present the following documents:

            a.    Certification of Public Registry, that can prove the existence of the Petitioner Corporation,
            b.    Certification of Possession (Title Deed, Right of Possession, etc.
            c.    Chronogram of the investment, which shows the stages, investment and time of project construction,
            d.    Based on the Resolution J.D. No. 014-2009, of April 16th, 2009, published on the Government News (official gazette) No. 26300 of June 10th, 2009, which states that the Applicant must pay the inspection cost based on the investment amount.
            e.    One (1) Original Survey of the Area and three (3) copies * This survey must be prepared by a License Surveyor and the Survey must comply with requirements and specific size.
            f.     Environmental Impact Study, approved by the National Environmental Authority (ANAM). Or a Certification from the ANAM whereof estates if it is necessary or not.
           g.    When the Concession is assigned to developments which require authorization from any other Government Official Authority, it should also be presented along with the application.


           h.    Feasibility Study
            i.     Blue Prints of Project,
            j.     Performance Bond,
           k.    Payment Insurance,
           l .    Civil Liability Insurance,
          m.   Fire Insurance