Panama reviews logistic for Syrian refugees

 
664Views 20Comments Posted 11/09/2015

PANAMA’S Foreign Ministry reported Wednesday September 9, that it has started preparing for meetings to discuss accepting refugees from Iraq and Syria.

Meetings have been established, with the International Committee of the Red Cross, civil defense agency Sinaproc and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees to assess all the implications in terms of costs and logistics, said Sandra Lombardo, director of International Cooperation.
On Tuesday, President Juan Carlos Varela offered Panama's assistance to European countries overwhelmed by immigrants displaced by violence in the Middle East.
At the local level, Varela's statements have been interpreted as a "show of solidarity." However, there are concerns about how the country would handle an influx of refugees.
Immigration official Tayra Barsallo said that the issue of integrating refugees into Panama's society must be carefully analyzed.



Comments 20

user
tiopirata

I also note your comment in a previous post that Cuba will open to US soon. It has always been open to everyone else, I have been there a few times. The only difference will be that Cuba won't be able to blame the US embargo for its poor economic performance anymore. It will have no effect on Latin America whatsoever. As for the Caribbean, it is already on its ass, again just bad management, nothing to do with the theme of this discussion which is migration and Panama's ability to deal with it.

6 years ago
user
tiopirata

I am a migrant to Panama, I have mentioned that in my various previous posts, apparently you cannot read so I will repeat the relevant facts. I am a New Zealander, married to a lady of Syrian and Lebanese descent. I have 2 degrees, one of which encompasses economics, I know a hell of a lot more about that then you do. I have been a professional mariner for 44 years and have been sailing the world for 52 years. I have probably seen more of it then most. In the post to which you reply I outline some of Panama's revenue streams, emphasizing just how wealthy Panama is. Please read it again. To respond to your attack I must point out I am not fat and I ride a Harley, not a Prado. Panama has less 'debt to GDP then USA or any European nation except Germany, does not rob its residents with high taxes like US does. The foreign economists you refer to have given it a AA rating in fact, do your homework before you shot your mouth off. As for a $500 million loan, so what? That is tiny compared with GNP, the canal alone can pay that off in 6 months. Can you pay off your mortgage in 6 months? Can US, Greece, Italy, Spain, Australia, Argentina, Venezuela, pay off their national deficits? Ever? Panama is one of the few nations able to do that. You are plainly ignorant of matters fiscal. In this day and age of internet and Google I am astonished you can get it so wrong. As for the locals still riding donkeys were it not for foreigners and the knowledge and education they bring, is that not the whole point of this article, to add to the pool of knowledge and energy, which migration does. Look at USA, New Zealand, Australia, all immigrant nations. Panama is a real melting pot, we already have 350,000 Arabs here, mostly Syrian and Lebanese, and they are great citizens. As for foreign investment, all nations trade, that is the idea. We welcome it, as do almost all other nations. In whose pocket is the money? Generally in the pockets of the rich and powerful, but how is that different to any other nation? That said, we have a lifestyle here not equaled elsewhere, not even New Zealand, no wonder we have the most favored retirement nation status and were recently nominated the happiest nation.

6 years ago
user
jh

Oh you have money, in whom´s pocket. You are looking to finance bridges, subways, etc. All they do is pay off loans, next one is over 500 million. You are so ignorant, if you are a panamanian, I am sure your fat ass sits in a Prado, and all it is for show. If it was not for foreign investments, foreign educated management, you still would be eating banana´s and riding a donkey. Please open your eyes, and try to listen to foreign economist, and try to save your beautiful country.

6 years ago
user
tiopirata

Where on earth did you go to school? Who else's money? Panama's economy is solid. Panama has the world's second biggest free zone, only Hongkong is bigger, has some of the biggest copper and gold deposits in the world, now being developed and already $6 billion invested, has 87 banks domiciled here, has the world's biggest ship registry and of course the Panama Canal which now runs at a profit and contributes more then 2 billion per year to the local economy. When the canal extensions are finished in 2017 this will double. Accordingly the tax burden is very low so Panama is attractive to investors and we who live here get to keep most of what we earn. Pretty good for a population of only 3.4 million, and a lot freer then the USA. The recent recessions had no effect here whatsoever and unemployment is functionally zero. Add strong nature, The climate to grow just about anything, seismic stability, no hurricane history and an agreeable and very mixed population you can see that for us the boom times continue, we have not experienced recession because we have better management. Your ignorance is appalling. Do share with us where you got your info. As for banana republic, lobbying is illegal here, think upon that.

6 years ago
user
jh

The fastest growing economy with someone else his money. Panama has no money, its total GNP is about the same or smaller then a company like UNILIVER from the Netherlands and UK. It looks great on the outside, building, construction, and offcourse your economy will boom, again wth someone else his money, and then, WHEN THAT CONSTRUCTION STOPS, the Chinese economy slows down, Cuba will soon open completly to US citizens, and the Caribbean incl Panama will be on its ass. Stop spending, no more sunways, stop spending if you have no money, start saving. If not , the country will for sure fall back on its reputation all over the world as a banana republic.

6 years ago
user
tiopirata

It is apparent to me that even those who purport to know Panama are unaware of some important facts. Panama does have a rudimentary social welfare system, open to those who pay in to it, which may include immigrants. There is no unemployment benefit, but there are currently 29,000 jobs available with no one to fill these. No problem there then. There are about 350,000 Arabs here already, living and doing business peacefully. There are about 45,000 Pakistani Muslims here, also peacefully ĉo existing. There are about 200,000 Jews here, no friction there either. There are in fact immigrants from all over the world coexisting well here. The populace is the most politically savvy I have ever experienced in my decades of travel. Panama is the fastest reliably growing economy in the world up until 2 years ago and is far from broke. The proportion of hungry and homeless people here is less then the US. The US gov't has not that much influence here. There is a very equitable tax system here, it is easy to prosper. There is no reason that someone seeking a new life would not find Panama attractive, as I have done. There is no reason to expect that middle eastern migrants cannot be easily assimilated here, thousands already have. In the interests of disclosure I state that I am a 60year old New Zealander of Samoan and Jewish descent, married to an Arab lady, have been associated with Panama for 20 years and been here full time for the last 8 years, an atheist and not a paranoiac. I have 2 degrees and additional professional qualifications. My atheism does not prevent me from applauding President Varela's very Christian stance here, he has plainly asked himself 'What would Jesus do?'

6 years ago
user
Garlicball

It is extremely difficult to believe that allowing mass immigration of Islamic people willnot eventually bite the country that 'feeds' them. Their silence during the well publicized public head chopping was remarkable. I do not trust this group with my last bit of optimism.

6 years ago
user
jh

The most important issue for a Panamanians is a fancy cellphone, most prepaid, a big car, with shiny wheels, a wife and kids and several girlfriends, pushbuttons and that is it. I have never seen anything else. Varela should consentrate on the problems the people of Panama have.

6 years ago
user
jh

All I read is about moslim hate , Obama, lets get real and focus on the real issue, Panama want to help some of these people, moslim oe not. Like I read below, yes the cosmopolotan look is a front and a joke. Most apartements are empty, owned by people from Venezuela and Colombia. A country that a third of its people have no running water, septic services, live in poverty and a GNP that is a joke. Panama can not offer anything, and should stop comparing itself to countries like Germany, Belgium the Netherlands, the UK, and like they think MIAMI. Prado,s, highrises, but it still is a third world country!

6 years ago
user
US warrior

Muslims hate non Muslims , why would you bring them here. The President needs to say sorry cant handle any more than our own and move on . Send them all to the US . they created ISIS out of Langley , let them deal with there own mess

6 years ago
user
crbob1

What is your point?

6 years ago
user
Garlicball

Dr Dias, thank you. Respectfully, please weigh in.

6 years ago
user
Garlicball

What is your point?

6 years ago
user
crbob1

Keep your head stuck in the sand........knowledge is dangerous for you........

6 years ago
user
drdias

Why are the Islamic dominated countries not paying their fair share of this crisis they created?? Yet Saudi Arabia can offer to build 200 mosques in Germany, yet has not taken in one Syrian or any other Islamic refugee or asylum seeker! When your country is over run and invaded by this hoard of Islamic invaders, you are required to feed them, house them, give them free medical care by the UN and other civilized counties?? Just who pays for all of Madness and this Insanity! You and me, the citizens and taxpayer of these countries that are being invaded and overrun by this Islamic hoards!

6 years ago
user
Garlicball

"Panama does not have the resources to become a European-style welfare state ..." " ... they want to get all the way to Germany because it offers the most generous welfare." Panama represents a perfect example of a country no victim of any catastrophic social unrest should entertain going to. An economy based on services, one that cannot offer world-class education, one which stumbles delivering basic services, is not one to immigrate to. Your so-called Panama 'cosmopolitan character' is a Hollywood stage front. There are many reasons this country should not become host to these unfortunate people. The ones you write are racially suspect and I concur with other reasons you cite. An issue of this magnitude is one you cannot resist commenting about. There is nothing you have nothing to say about. You are the Panama Newsroom chief common tater.

6 years ago
user
Garlicball

" ... apparently Obama wants Panama to suffer as much as the U.S. is suffering today under his leadership.." It is apparent that you, crbob1, believe it necessary to "Plead the Obama" and invoke this redneck constitutional right at any time. The POTUS has no influence regarding Panama government affairs. In fact the POTUS has shown very little interest in Panama. What is your point?

6 years ago
user
Candid Curmudgeon

Nothing good can come of this. In all the news coverage of this using emotional visual images, the truth is almost never discussed. Very few of these people are war refugees. They are immigrants driven by economic reasons. How is this obvious? It's because they are not content to get out of the battle zone, or even a safe neighboring country. No, they want to get all the way to Germany because it offers the most generous welfare. Panama does not have the resources to become a European-style welfare state, so presumably Varela is not going to go completely mad and attempt to lure this people to Panama with crazy handouts to economic migrants. Further, one of the unique aspects of Panama is its cosmopolitan character. However, we know that in Europe muslim immigrants do not generally assimilate into the population. Of course, there are exceptions, but overall this is true. There is simply no good reason to import a disaffected minority into Panama who considers the rest of us as infidels. Remember, these are NOT battlefield refugees. Those people are in true refugee camps in Turkey and Jordan.

6 years ago
user
crbob1

I am very sure this is being pushed by the Obama administration, he is now allowing tens of thousands of Syrian "refugees" into the country when the country is broke.....how are they going to be fed, housed, and integrated into the country?......apparently Obama wants Panama to suffer as much as the U.S. is suffering today under his leadership.......

6 years ago
user
jh

This breaks my shoe, again just a publicity stunt to try to get the world to see panama through different eyes. A country that can not even feed its own people, has no social or unemployment system, what a joke. Example, in a western European country they will get welfare, approx Euro 1400 for a family of four plus child support, two children another Euro 250 plus free medical and house rental subsidition, possibly another Euro 240 This totals to approx Euro 1950 is approx US Dollar 2200 per month. This is more then most people make in Panama, what in the hell are they going to do in Panama. Realy, does Varela think these people are stupid!

6 years ago
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