In late February, the National Customs Authority (ANA, for its acronym in Spanish) held a meeting with Canadian representatives to explore a possible update to the Memorandum of Cooperation between the Canada Border Services Agency and the ANA. The aim was to improve customs exchange between the two countries by strengthening security controls. Also, on March 11, Ireland’s Ambassador to Colombia, Alison Milton, announced that she intends to strengthen trade links with Panama in the context of the digital economy. Negotiations in this regard could make progress in the short term.
After the meeting to update the Memorandum with Canada, the ANA announced that efforts were being made to revisit issues related to “security and information exchange” in order to “detect risks in both areas” and “establish proposals to prevent illicit acts from taking place.” The meeting was chaired by the Director General of the ANA, Tayra Barsallo who hosted Benoit Chiquette, current Regional Director of the Americas for the Canadian Border Services Agency.
Meanwhile, the Irish ambassador to Colombia announced that Ireland was keen to “establish commercial relations with Panama” to exchange financial and digital technology knowledge. The Ministry responded that they were interested in drawing up “plans for bilateral cooperation in a committed manner and that any opportunity that arises will be analyzed.” The statements were made during the opening ceremony of the Irish Embassy in Colombia, as part of the Irish government’s “plan” to expand the country’s trade in the region. Milton considered that it would be possible to open an Irish embassy in Panama some time in the future.