Colon Free Zone activity up 9.5%  but small shops struggle

Commercial activity in the Colon Free Zone (ZLC), including imports and re-exports in the first 11 months of the year rose 9.5%  over the same period last year to $19. 641 billion

Although the ZLC  reports a sustained increase in re-exports and imports, the boom is only seen in companies in the pharmaceutical, telecommunications and technology sectors, warn businessmen from the customs area in Colón.

The small shops that traditionally sell household items, household utensils, plates, chairs, plastic, building materials, hardware, and perfumery, among others, are struggling to survive, say the entrepreneurs.

Puerto Rico, the United States, Panama, Colombia, Costa Rica, and the Dominican Republic are the main destinations for re-exports of the ZLC.

However, the weight in cargo movement contracted 1.7% in the period analyzed. Between January and November of 2018, the commercial empire moved 1.563 billion metric tons in merchandise, 27 million metric tons less than those registered in the first 11 months of 2017.