Panama country brief
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Expanding relations based on growing trade and cooperation on international issues.
Largest trading partner in Central America with growing commercial interests.
Panama's economy has been one of the fastest growing globally in the last decade.
Opportunities exist in education, mining, infrastructure and clean energy.
Australia and Panama established diplomatic relations in 1974. Australia has an Honorary Consul in Panama. Australia’s Ambassador to Mexico holds non-resident accreditation to Panama.
Panama opened an embassy in Australia in 2018 and has a Consulate-General, headed by an Honorary Consul, in Sydney.
Australia and Panama are members of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), World Trade Organisation (WTO), United Nations (UN), and United Nations organisations. Both participate in the Forum for East Asia-Latin America Cooperation (FEALAC).
Panama is a member of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS), the Organization of American States (OAS), Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), Central American Integration System (SICA) and other regional organisations.
Australia is an observer of SICA.
Panama is an observer of the Pacific Alliance and has FTAs in force or under negotiation with all Alliance members.
In 2017, Panama cut ties with Taiwan and switched its recognition to the People’s Republic of China.
Foreign Policy White Paper: Foreign Policy White Paper
- Panamanian visitors to Australia (2019 Dept of Home Affairs) #
- Australian visitors to Panama (primary destination (2019 Dept of Home Affairs) # *
- Resident Australian population born in Panama (2016 Census))
- Australian residents of Panamanian descent (2016 Census)
- Panamanian Working Holiday Makers (2019 Dept of Home Affairs)
- Panamanian students in Australia (2019 Dept of Education)
# This data is owned by Home Affairs. It provides quarterly updates to this data on its website.
* Panama reports the number of Australian visitors as 9,619 (Oceania) in 2019 (migracion.gob.pa).
Agreements with Panama
There are currently no bilateral agreements between Australia and Panama
High level engagement
2017 June –Minister for Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop, visited Panama.2017 May – Australia's Special Envoy for Human Rights, Philip Ruddock, visited Panama.
In 2020, the Australian Embassy hosted a webinar on Australia’s biosecurity expertise to combat Fusarium wilt of bananas. The event attracted over 150 participants from 13 different countries, including Panama.
Through the Direct Aid Program, the Australian Government provides financial support to a range of projects in Panama. In 2019-20, the Direct Aid Program supported projects that targeted education outcomes for at risk youth.
The Australian Government supports Australian investors in Panama by providing support and advice on political, economic and regulatory environments.
Through the Department of Agriculture, Australia and Panama collaborate on areas of mutual interest, including bio-security and livestock identification and traceability.
Further economic and trade information can be found in our Economic Factsheet for Panama.
Austrade aims to attract foreign direct investment into Australia. It also identifies market opportunities and promotes the capabilities of Australian exporters and education providers.
Australian Embassy in Mexico
Ruben Dario 55
Mexico City 11580
See Smartraveller for Information on travelling to Panama: smartraveller.gov.au