'We are confident that with the establishment of MSC Cruises in the new Panama cruise terminal, we will strengthen the tourism sector of our country,' the president tweeted on Thursday following a visit from Pierfrancesco Vago, executive chairman of MSC Cruises.
Attractive for Pacific and Caribbean itineraries
'For MSC Cruises, the new cruise port located in Amador is very attractive for the establishment of routes in the Pacific and the Caribbean,' Varela continued.
The Panama president also tweeted pictures of Vago studying a model of the terminal during his visit to the Panama Maritime Administration and of their tour at the construction site.
$166m, two-berth facility
Panama broke ground on the $166m facility in October 2017.
The two-berth terminal will be administered by the Panama Maritime Authority. It was designed and is being built by the Cruceros del Pacifico consortium, consisting of Belgium’s Jan de Nul and Beijing-based China Harbour Engineering Co.
Varela has been a vocal supporter of growing Panama's cruise business. During a visit to Chile's president in 2017, they talked about the two countries working together to develop and promote a new Pacific cruise route. Meetings between officials from both countries followed.