Panama Canal low water delays
The Panama Canal Authority (PCA) announced new operational measures, following “41% less rainfall than usual”. Shipping lines are facing more disruption and delay at the Panama Canal, owing to the “driest October in 73 years”, as well as anti-mining protests in the region. Since the beginning of the 2023 dry season, the Panama Canal adopted several water saving and conservation measures in the transit operation, including the use of water saving basins in the Neopanamax Locks and cross-filling in the Panamax Locks. Lack of precipitation in the Canal watershed has obliged the Canal to reduce the transit capacity to approximately 32 vessels per day since July 30, 2023.
From November 3, 2023, to November 6, 2023, the number of booking slots will be reduced to 25. From December 1 to December 31, 2023, the number of booking slots will further be reduced to 22. Delay of transit time and increase of Panama Canal surcharges to be expected.