The Spanish company Sacyr, responsible for the Panama Canal expansion, promised to process claims and negotiate with the management to address the threats of paralyzing the works.
“The commitment of the consortium is that all claims will be addressed within the contract (…),thus there is an initial agreement. Also, they will meet to talk to try to solve all problems,” said Spanish Development Minister Ana Pastor, after a meeting with President of Panama, Ricardo Martinelli.
Last week, Grupo Unidos por el Canal (GUPC) reported that the expansion will be suspended on January 20, after the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) did not recognize the overruns of more than $ 1,600 million.
Furthermore, the ACP said the clause cited by the contractor to stop the work does not apply to the case, because the economic claim is not properly justified, and urged the GUPC to continue the work and present their requests in parallel through the means provided in the contract.
Jorge Quijano, ACP Administrator, said that the Authority will not be “held hostage” by a contractor and said the contract provides mechanisms for the Authority to culminate the work.