According to EFE, Panamá's Tocumen International Airport is positioned to surpass even airports in México and Argentina in terms of passenger and freight traffic.
As a result of such volume, the Panama City airport is expected to surpass all other nations in the region in terms of both passenger and freight volume, influenced heavily by the Colón free trade zone.
COMMENT: The Colón Free Trade Zone (CFTZ) is a large entity at the Atlantic gateway to the Panama Canal and is focused on re-exporting a wide variety of merchandise to Latin America and the Caribbean. It is a free port, the largest such port in the Americas and second largest in the world.
The CFTZ began operations in 1948 and occupies about 600 acres. It is located near the Atlantic entrance of the Panama Canal. Today, the CFTZ receives over 250,000 visitors a year and is home to 1,751 companies. It generated exports and re-exports valued at over US$6.5 billion in 2005, which are able to harness the services and facilities offered by the free zone for importing, storing, assembling, repacking and re-exporting products from all over the world.
The Zone is an important transshipped supplier of goods to other free zones such as Hong Kong, Taiwan, the US, Japan, Korea, France, México, Italy, Switzerland, the UK, Malaysia and Germany. These countries supplied nearly 87% of all Colón Free Zone imports in 2004. Colombia is the largest buyer of merchandise, buying nearly 16% of Colón Free Zone exports.