Juan Bulnes, president of the Asociación Panameña de Exportadores (APEX) – Panamanian Association of Exporters, told Prensa.com that “… ‘For exporters, the National Customs Authority (ANA) and the Ministry of Health (MoH) are a thorn in their side’.”
“… Delays in getting signatures for issuing a certificate from the Department of Food Protection (DEPA) recently cut short the sending of a shipment of fresh fish to Europe. The recipients were one established client and one potential customer. Now, this Panamanian exporter is negotiating the second one in order to keep the business relationship. ”
Exporters have denounced not only problems and delays in issuing documents such as certificates for plants or sanitation records, but also customs border points, mainly in Paso Canoas, “… for the paperwork that has to be submitted and controls that are done there.”
Prensa.com adds that “…The Ministry of Trade and Industry (MITI) said it is aware of the need to streamline processes in the issuance of these documents, especially those required of the export sector. ” In order to resolve the problems, the VUCE platform has been created which is currently in the “… first stage of implementation”.