THE BIGGEST cruise ship scheduled to pass through the Panama Canal during the 2017-2018 season is still under construction.
The Norwegian Bliss has a capacity for 4,200 passengers and will be one of 235 cruise ships that will pass through the expanded locks during the season says the Canal Authority (ACP).
The Island Princess, which will leave the US city of Los Angeles, will inaugurate the season.
The expansion of the canal, which cost more than $5.6 billion, allows the passage of neopanamax, ships with the capacity to transport up to 14,000 containers, three times the load that passes through the century old route.
Container transport is still the main business of the waterway route, but the new locks have allowed the canal to open to other products, such as liquefied natural gas (LNG) and large cruise ships.
On April 29 The Disney Wonder, carrying almost 2,800 passengers, became the first cruise ship to use the new locks.
The Canal built by the United States. at the beginning of the last century was transferred to Panama on December 31 December 1999, and accounts for about 6% of world trade and connects more than 140 sea routes and 1,700 ports in 160 different countries.