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Panama Canal expansion project: Have American fears come true?
BBC ^ | 13 Jan 2014 | Thomas Sparrow

Posted on 01/14/2014 7:28:00 AM PST by Theoria

More than four years ago, when Panama awarded the lucrative contract to expand its inter-oceanic canal to a mostly European consortium, the United States was not pleased.

An American company whose bid was unsuccessful, Bechtel, thought the winning tender would barely pay for pouring the concrete and that the consortium would probably try to renegotiate the price at some stage during the construction process.

Some might argue that those American doubts have been justified, especially in view of the ongoing economic row between the European consortium and the Panamanian government agency that runs the waterway. The spat has threatened to bring work to a grinding halt, unless the two parties manage to resolve a $1.6bn (£1bn) dispute over cost overruns.

A series of WikiLeaks cables from the US embassy in Panama that were revealed by the Spanish daily newspaper El Pais in 2010 provided an inside view of the frustration that was felt in the US at not having been able to get that contract. Bechtel had been strongly backed by the US embassy, which was fully aware that the deal would have meant millions of dollars' worth of business for US suppliers.US ports expanding

Instead, the contract was secured by the GUPC consortium (co-led by Spanish company Sacyr and Italian Impregilo), which had offered considerably less money than other bidders but whose proposal, in the opinion of the canal authority, had the best value. GUPC stressed that the project would be built to the highest quality standards, but even so, the decision did not go down well in the US.

The cables also revealed that the US has retained a "fundamental interest" in the expansion project.

(Excerpt) Read more at bbc.co.uk ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Extended News; Foreign Affairs
KEYWORDS: canal; panama; panamacanal
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1 posted on 01/14/2014 7:28:00 AM PST by Theoria
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To: Theoria
With sincere thank yous to Jimmy Carter the architect of the Panama Canal deal.
2 posted on 01/14/2014 7:33:06 AM PST by Mouton (The insurrection laws perpetuate what we have for a government now.)
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To: Theoria

The Chinese will come to the rescue...bet on it! They have their eyes on that strategic ditch anyway.


3 posted on 01/14/2014 7:33:49 AM PST by Don Corleone ("Oil the gun..eat the cannoli. Take it to the Mattress.")
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To: Theoria

Do you want high quality, fast delivery or cheap? I can give you two out of three. You pick the two and you can’t change your mind later.


4 posted on 01/14/2014 7:34:29 AM PST by Tenacious 1 (Liberals can afford for things to go well, to work, for folks to be happy. They'd be out of work.)
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To: Don Corleone

I thought China was backing an entirely new canal, north of Panama...


5 posted on 01/14/2014 7:35:25 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks ("Say Not the Struggle Naught Availeth.")
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To: Theoria

“The bitter taste of poor quality remains long after the sweet taste of low price is forgotten.”

John David Stanhope


6 posted on 01/14/2014 7:35:47 AM PST by headstamp 2 (What would Scooby do?)
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To: Don Corleone
The Chinese will come to the rescue...bet on it! They have their eyes on that strategic ditch anyway.

The Chicoms have their eye on it alright, they want the project to fail or/and damage the canal. they have started work on their own ditch further north in Nicaragua.

7 posted on 01/14/2014 7:39:32 AM PST by fella ("As it was before Noah so shall it be again,")
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To: Theoria

I have a feeling that this project is going to go the way of the original Panama Canal.

It went bankrupt and was abandoned by European interests and sent the man in charge into an insane asylum while American engineers stepped up and finished the project.


8 posted on 01/14/2014 7:41:28 AM PST by Uncle Chip
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To: Don Corleone

China is already building in Nicaragua a new canal


9 posted on 01/14/2014 7:42:21 AM PST by bestintxas (Obamacare = Obamascrewed)
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To: Don Corleone

The ChiComs already have a deal to build that sea-level canal through Nicaragua that would render the Panama Canal an interesting museum relic.


10 posted on 01/14/2014 7:44:13 AM PST by Buckeye McFrog
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To: FReepers

Click The Pic To Donate

Support FR, Donate Monthly If You Can

11 posted on 01/14/2014 7:46:07 AM PST by DJ MacWoW (The Fed Gov is not one ring to rule them all)
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To: Uncle Chip

Interesting thought!


12 posted on 01/14/2014 7:49:11 AM PST by AEMILIUS PAULUS (It is a shame that when these people give a riot)
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To: Uncle Chip

and that lead engineer would be Col George Goethals who was appointed chief engineer of the project.


13 posted on 01/14/2014 7:51:15 AM PST by Mouton (The insurrection laws perpetuate what we have for a government now.)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

For as long as there has been talk about a canal through Central America, there has been talk about the route through Nicaragua. It’s longer, but lower. It would be easier to build a wider canal; it’d even be possible to build a sea-level canal.

Whether it is economically feasible, though, is something else entirely. I’d expect not.


14 posted on 01/14/2014 7:51:25 AM PST by jdege
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To: jdege

It would be one hell of a dig.


15 posted on 01/14/2014 7:54:32 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks ("Say Not the Struggle Naught Availeth.")
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To: Mouton

Yep between him and Slick Willie giving away our technology to the Chinese it is apparent why we have a hard time competing anymore.


16 posted on 01/14/2014 7:54:39 AM PST by Resolute Conservative
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To: Resolute Conservative

When I was a lad, my grandmother’s new husband, a socialist hungarian, was arguing with me because I was a conservative pro business person. He said your party, the GOP was different then, will kill this country. They will get us all hung and will have sold the rope to the commies to do it with.

I guess he was off the mark on whom will give it away but the end result will be the same.


17 posted on 01/14/2014 7:59:26 AM PST by Mouton (The insurrection laws perpetuate what we have for a government now.)
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To: Mouton

I was thinking more of Ferdinand de Lesseps.

Was there another one???


18 posted on 01/14/2014 8:05:35 AM PST by Uncle Chip
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To: Theoria
An American company whose bid was unsuccessful, Bechtel, thought the winning tender would barely pay for pouring the concrete and that the consortium would probably try to renegotiate the price at some stage during the construction process.

This is the world playing field for U.S. companies. I worked for a company that was part of a U.S. consortium to build a nuclear power plant. At the last minute we were low-balled by a French-German consortium because the French government guaranteed the consortium wouldn't lose money. The project is way over budget and way behind the schedule.

19 posted on 01/14/2014 8:09:26 AM PST by Starstruck (If my reply offends, you probably don't understand sarcasm or criticism...or do.)
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To: Theoria
The Panama Canal is a perfect illustration of the degeneration of America, its "leaders" and people.

We took the territory and built the canal. America and its people in those days were young, energetic, happy, glorious, expanding and did lay down the law to foreign nations.

Today Jimmy Carter filled with Love and Tolerance, the American people living a life of eating, drinking, drugging, copulating, evacuating their bowels and snoring did not even notice what the decadent Carter and a bankrupt Congress did in surrendering the Canal to foreigners. There is a price to pay for degeneration and the Canal symbolizes , in part, that price.

20 posted on 01/14/2014 8:16:09 AM PST by AEMILIUS PAULUS (It is a shame that when these people give a riot)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks; jdege

I have a map of the survey made by the US Engineer office “Nicaragua Canal Survey 1929-1931” scale 1: 253,440.

The route Begins at Brito on the west on the Rio Grande and traverses east not far north of the Costa Rican Border, through Lake Nicaragua thence along the Rio SanJuan to just North of Grey Town. For much of the distance , the San Juan river is the international border.


21 posted on 01/14/2014 8:20:43 AM PST by bert ((K.E. N.P. N.C. +12 ..... History is a process, not an event)
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To: Don Corleone

What happened to the Monroe doctrine — is it still in the books?

I forgot — no nads to support or enforce it.


22 posted on 01/14/2014 8:24:14 AM PST by 353FMG
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To: AEMILIUS PAULUS
There was no “Panama” until we created it.
23 posted on 01/14/2014 8:28:24 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks ("Say Not the Struggle Naught Availeth.")
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To: Theoria

Thanks to Amazon we don't need no STINK' CANAL!
24 posted on 01/14/2014 8:34:30 AM PST by Kartographer ("We mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.")
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To: Theoria; All

So the Free Trade Communists...who support Free Trade with Communist China...thought that by aiding the Communist Chinese financially...would mean they would give US companies contracts to work on the Chinese Canal in Panama?

The Chinese Canal in Panama is basically owned by the Communist Chinese....

Free Traders once again proving to be the most ignorant people on the planet....this nonsense is direct result of Free Trade Communists


25 posted on 01/14/2014 8:34:58 AM PST by SeminoleCounty (Amnesty And Not Ending ObamaCare Will Kill GOP In 2014)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
We took "Panama" from the Colombians and gave it to the "Panamanians" with an important provision - that we have a 10-mile wide swath through the isthmus for 99 years with an option (ours) for an additional 99 more.

Thanks Jimmy for giving Panama back to the "Panamanians" so that Latin America would finally start to love us.

Why the Colombians make a huge stink about that is hard to understand.

26 posted on 01/14/2014 8:37:31 AM PST by corkoman
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To: AEMILIUS PAULUS

But wasn’t the original deal between the US and Panama, that the US would control the canal for something like 75 years, after which the US would relinquish control of the canal to Panama?


27 posted on 01/14/2014 8:37:58 AM PST by Age of Reason
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To: Age of Reason

See # 26.


28 posted on 01/14/2014 8:40:57 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks ("Say Not the Struggle Naught Availeth.")
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To: corkoman

29 posted on 01/14/2014 8:43:11 AM PST by Theoria (End Socialism : No more GOP and Dem candidates)
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To: bestintxas
China is already building in Nicaragua a new canal

Look for Van Hallen's new hit, "Nicaragua"

30 posted on 01/14/2014 8:44:20 AM PST by dragonblustar (Psalm 37:7 ~~~~~Obama is the 12th Iman~~~~~~~)
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To: 353FMG

The Monroe doctrine was never “on the books”. It was a foreign policy doctrine espoused by Monroe that was essentially the idea that the entire western hemisphere was an American sphere of interest and that European intervention in the Western Hemisphere would be opposed by the US. Obviously, Monroe lacked the power to implement this. There was still plenty of European intervention in the Western US, the Carribean, Alaska, and Latin America at that time. It became more of a reality after the Latin American countries gained independence, but even then was never really fully implemented, as the French invasion and occupation of Mexico in the 1860’s as well as Soviet actions in Cuba and Nicaragua attest.


31 posted on 01/14/2014 8:49:08 AM PST by stremba
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To: Mouton

My fury with Carter over this is tempered by the fact the Canal would have gone to Panama in 2002 if he had done nothing at all. We only had a 99-year lease on it.

This is very similar to Hong Kong, UK and China. Eventually Hong Kong was going to be repatriated to China no matter what the UK did.


32 posted on 01/14/2014 8:54:54 AM PST by Cyber Liberty (H.L. Mencken: "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule.")
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To: corkoman

First I’d heard about the option for another 99 years....


33 posted on 01/14/2014 8:56:22 AM PST by Cyber Liberty (H.L. Mencken: "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule.")
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To: Theoria

http://www.pancanal.com/eng/photo/camera-java.html

Enjoy these live views of the canal.

If you pick the Miraflores Hires view, you can see the expansion canal to the far left.

The view is to the northwest towards the Atlantic(!?)

(some are surprised that the canal runs from the Atlantic souteast to the Pacific)


34 posted on 01/14/2014 9:00:59 AM PST by Conan the Librarian (The Best in Life is to crush my enemies, see them driven before me, and the Dewey Decimal System)
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To: Uncle Chip

You’re correct = the “French Cut” was the abortive attempt pushed by De Lesseps. Col Goethals did an admirable job. “Path Between The Seas” by McCullough is a terrific story of how the Canal was built and the amazing advances in malaria and yellow fever control and treatment that came out of it by people like Dr. Gorgas. My daughter was born at Gorgas Army Medical Center in the old Canal Zone.


35 posted on 01/14/2014 9:05:18 AM PST by jagusafr (the American Trinity (Liberty, In G0D We Trust, E Pluribus Unum))
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To: stremba

Thanks for the well-reasoned dissertation.


36 posted on 01/14/2014 9:06:35 AM PST by 353FMG
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To: AEMILIUS PAULUS

You forgot induced vomitting so one could do these things all over again.


37 posted on 01/14/2014 9:17:03 AM PST by certrtwngnut (')
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To: Mouton
On who will give it away.
38 posted on 01/14/2014 9:17:39 AM PST by arthurus (Read Hazlitt's Economics In One Lesson ONLINEhttp://steshaw.org/economics-in-one-lesson/)
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To: corkoman
We took "Panama" from the Colombians and gave it to the "Panamanians" with an important provision - that we have a 10-mile wide swath through the isthmus for 99 years with an option (ours) for an additional 99 more.

On February 26, 1904, the Isthmian Canal Convention was proclaimed. In it, the Republic of Panama granted to the United States in perpetuity the use, occupation, and control of a zone of land and land under water for the construction, maintenance, operation, sanitation, and protection of the canal.

source: Wikipedia (I know!)

Regards,

39 posted on 01/14/2014 9:20:41 AM PST by alexander_busek (Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.)
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To: Cyber Liberty
We only had a 99-year lease on it.

I believe with an option for another 99.

40 posted on 01/14/2014 9:21:23 AM PST by arthurus (Read Hazlitt's Economics In One Lesson ONLINEhttp://steshaw.org/economics-in-one-lesson/)
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To: Cyber Liberty

Liberals are great a making empty gestures that are appreciated only by themselves, aren’t they?


41 posted on 01/14/2014 9:21:35 AM PST by Boogieman
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To: Cyber Liberty
The PRC was the most surprised nation on earth when the Brits decided to honor the Hong Kong give-back.
42 posted on 01/14/2014 9:23:09 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks ("Say Not the Struggle Naught Availeth.")
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To: arthurus

So I see. And there was also reference to “In Perpetuity” that I remember being argued in the Senate back in the ‘70’s.


43 posted on 01/14/2014 9:29:04 AM PST by Cyber Liberty (H.L. Mencken: "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule.")
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

I was surprised too. I wonder what the back-story is on that? China promised not to kill the goose laying the golden eggs, and it appears they have not. Commie purists were not happy about that, and they expected Capitalism to spread like a disease if Hong Kong were left alone.


44 posted on 01/14/2014 9:33:10 AM PST by Cyber Liberty (H.L. Mencken: "The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule.")
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To: Theoria

Bechtel Corp. The ones who were hired for the “Big Dig” in Boston and had almost 800% in cost overruns ... that Bechtel?

I wouldn’t hire them to do a brick walkway to my front door.


45 posted on 01/14/2014 9:37:21 AM PST by CapnJack
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To: CapnJack

At least with this project you can see the hole where the money is being thrown into....


46 posted on 01/14/2014 9:44:55 AM PST by minnesota_bound
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To: Theoria

Just went through the Panama Canal in November. The new dig is impressive and will be much wider than the current canal. Estimated completion date is April 2015.


47 posted on 01/14/2014 9:46:38 AM PST by TADSLOS (The Event Horizon has come and gone. Buckle up and hang on.)
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To: 353FMG

At a time when the Middle East, Afghanistan and
China monopolize U.S. foreign-policy, Latin
America hasn’t received much attention. Until
today, that is, when Secretary of State John
Kerry declared the expiration of the nearly 200-
year old lodestar of U.S. diplomacy in the
Americas.
“The era of the Monroe Doctrine is over,” Mr.
Kerry said in a speech at the Organization of
American States in Washington, D.C.-Nov 18 2013


48 posted on 01/14/2014 9:51:28 AM PST by pluvmantelo (The thing of it is, we must live with the living- Michel de Montaigne)
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To: Don Corleone

I thought I had read that somewhere.


49 posted on 01/14/2014 10:01:03 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: jdege
I would think that a sea-level canal would have some horrendous currents.
50 posted on 01/14/2014 12:14:11 PM PST by chopperman
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