An alternative to the outdated Panama Canal

This past December the construction of a new, modern canal to make front with the Panama canal has been announced  The Nicaragua Canal, a transatlantic alternative canal has been to move forward in the next five years.

The creation of the canal has been assigned to HKND, a Chinese company specialized in construction and infrastructure. The designated budget for the project is of US $ 50,000 million, for the creation of a 278km canal. The principal aim is to connect the Caribbean Sea, the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific through Nicaragua and facilitate trade.

For the past 100 years the Panama Canal has been one of the key means for the development of international trade. However, with the new demands of world trade, the realization of a larger, modern route, an alternative waterway is necessary, to meet the needs of a globalized world.

This canal will attract many advantages, among them, larger ships will be able enter the area for the global transportation of goods. The route is estimated to save up to 900km on the way from coast to coast, compared to the Panama Canal.

Dr. Telémaco Talavera, spokesman of the Commission of Grand Interoceanic Canal of Nicaragua urged to the U.S and the nations of Europe to join the BRICS on the construction of the canal:

“I would say that not only can join, I would say to be joined in this initiative because we really can not live in the world of confrontation.”

Location proposal for the Nicaragua canal (BBC Mundo)

This jointed project will change the geopolitical balance and future of Latin America and the BRICS. The overall goal is to strengthen the role and the relationship the of BRICS, especially Russia and China, this will allow these countries to create an effective front against the Panama canal.

The dispute for the control of the Western Hemisphere and trade has led to a speculative reaction of the US government. The US embassy in Nicaragua expressed their dissatisfaction of the construction of the canal.

This past February the defense military, gave Russian warships permission to patrol the waters of the Caribbean Sea. “As for the military agreements we have signed today are a continuation and legal registration of our traditionally friendly relations,” said Sergey Shoigu.

The United States has had the control of Suez and Panama canal and has historically been the superpower of the area. The new ties between Russia and Nicaragua and the presence of China could be seen as a threat to the position the United States has traditionally held in the area. The U.S. embassy in Nicaragua expressed their concern and skeptical position towards the construction of the project.

“The lack of information and transparency that has existed, and continues to exist, over many of the important aspects of this project” stated the U.S. embassy in Panama.

The negotiation between HKND and state of Nicaragua agreed that Nicaraguan government will receive minority share and receive revenue of some of the profits produced by the canal.


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