Panama, April 27, 2020.
On April 23, during a ceremony presided by South Korean President Moon Jae-In, among other South Korean authorities, was officially launched the “HMM ALGECIRAS” – the world’s biggest containership.
The new vessel is registered under the flag of the Republic of Panama, and we are pleased to share that the Ship Finance and Registration team of Morgan & Morgan participated as local counsel in the financing for a total amount of over US$1.75 billion for the acquisition of said ship by the shipping company HMM Co., Ltd. (formerly Hyundai Merchant Marine Co., Ltd.) and eleven (11) other container vessels of the same dimensions. Morgan & Morgan is also responsible for the flagging and representation before the Panama Maritime Authority as Resident Agent of these ships.
“It is a great distinction for Panama to have been chosen as flag registry for these twelve (12) mega container vessels with a capacity of 23,000 TEUs and more. As a law firm, we are very proud to have participated as Panama counsel in this process, which is already a landmark in the history of the Merchant Marine of our country”, said Jazmina Rovi, partner at Morgan & Morgan and head of the Ship Finance and Registration Department.
The HMM ALGECIRAS now joins the fleet of 18 Panama-flagged vessels amongst the 24 largest in the world (according to IHS Markit) and will be employed to connect the trade route between Asia and northern Europe.
Updated on Panama, April 27, 2020.
Lex Latin published an article on the economic and transactional expectations facing the Central American and Caribbean region in the COVID-19 scenario. Partners from important law firms in the region contributed through interviews, including Francisco Arias G., partner at Morgan & Morgan.
Panama, April 27, 2020.
In this guide, produced by the Employment Law Alliance (ELA), tax attorneys from Latin America focus on Tax Relief measures during the COVID-19 pandemic. Amanda Barraza, senior associate at Morgan & Morgan, contributed with the Panama section.Click here to read: COVID-19: Latin America Guide for Employers on Tax Relief
Panama, April 27, 2020.
In this podcast, produced by the Employment Law Alliance (ELA), labor and employment law practitioners from Central America, focus on how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted workplaces throughout the region.
Speakers: Fernando Farrar (BLP / El Salvador), Alexandra Aguilar (BLP / Costa Rica), Cynthia Chavarría (BLP / Honduras), Favio Batres (BLP / Nicaragua), Maria Teresa Mendoza (Morgan & Morgan / Panama), Cynthia Sequeira (BLP / Guatemala)
Click here to listen: The Central America – COVID-19 Guide for Employers
Morgan & Morgan advised Parque Industrial y Corporativo Sur, S.A. in connection with the public offering of revolving corporate bonds for an amount of up to US$100 million
Panama, April 24, 2020.
Morgan & Morgan advised Parque Industrial y Corporativo Sur, SA, in relation to the public offering of revolving corporate bonds (hereinafter the “Bonds”), which will be issued in multiple series, which may be senior series or subordinated series under a revolving program in which the outstanding principal balance of the Bonds issued and owed, in a single moment, may not exceed One Hundred million Dollars (US $100,000,000.00), legal tender of the United States of America. The series A of the Bonds may be guaranteed with a guarantee trust that has the usual assets for this type of transaction, such as monies, assigned rights, mortgages, among others.
Parque Industrial y Corporativo Sur, S.A. is a 42-hectare multipurpose project with high-quality, first-world infrastructure and buildings that serve as a storage and logistics center.
Panama, April 23, 2020.
In this Webinar, María Teresa Mendoza, partner at Morgan & Morgan, covered the topic “Suspension of employment contracts in times of COVID-19”. The discussion was held in alliance with the Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture of Panama.
Click here to view: COVID-19: Suspension of employment contracts (in Spanish)
April 23, 2020
In order to allow the importation of medicines and other products for human health, during the State of Emergency, the National Directorate of Pharmacy and Drugs (DNFYD) of the Ministry of Health, has issued Resolution 280 of April 6, 2020 published in Official Gazette No. 29008 of April 22, 2020, which establishes the temporary procedures for the importation, the release of batches, and the personal use permits for medicines and other products for human health during the state of national emergency.
- For the import process, scanned (PDF) copies of the documents indicated below will be accepted without legalization, provided they come from countries affected by CoVid-19:
- Certificate of Absenceof diethylene glycol or ethylene glycol
- Certificate of Analysis of the biological productbatch
- Lot release certificate from the country of origin
- Certificate of negative result for HIV and Hepatitis
- Magnetic Resonance Certificate
- Certificate of Raw Material Analysis.
The aforementioned PDF documents must be accompanied by an affidavit signed by the pharmaceutical regent or legal representative. The originals must be kept available and available to the DNFYD, which will request them.
- Electronic Documents will be allowed, provided the link for their verification is included.
- For the process of releasing batches of biological products, the following documents should be sent to the email email@example.com, for inventory verification:
- Note to the National Director of Pharmacy and Drugs
- Product Photo, showing the complete labeling (lot number, expiration date, health registry and manufacturer name).
- Quantity of product in the warehouse to be released
- Storage conditions
- Photo of the lot to be released.
The aforementioned documentation is the responsibility of the pharmaceutical manager and / or the representative of the establishment and will be subject to review by the DNFYD.
- Import Permits for personal use, the following documents will be sent by email in PDF format, to firstname.lastname@example.org:
- Note of request and release from liability to the DNFYD.
- Shipping guide
- Commercial invoice
- Copy of the personal identity document
- Prescription by a Panamanian physician
The aforementioned resolution takes effect on April 23, 2020 and will remain in effect for the duration of the national state of emergency.
Ricardo Alemán, Derecho Laboral, Socio de Morgan & Morgan
21 de abril de 2020
Mediante Gaceta Oficial No. 29003-A, fue promulgada la Ley 147 de 15 de abril de 2020 que concede el derecho de una licencia especial remunerada de hasta por 3 meses improrrogables a todo padre o madre que labore en el sector privado y tenga a su guarda o cuidado a un hijo menor de 16 años, que padezca de leucemia, cáncer o enfermedad degenerativa en estado grave o terminal. Durante este tiempo el trabajador no podrá laborar para otro empleador o por cuenta propia.
Para los efectos de la ley, se considera grave una enfermedad avanzada, progresiva e incurable, como resultado de diagnóstico de leucemia, cáncer, enfermedad crónica avanzada de un órgano, enfermedad degenerativa del sistema nervioso central, como evolucionado de causas diversas o cualquier otra enfermedad avanzada en fase evolutiva e irreversible.
También implica que el paciente esté, por lo menos, durante una noche en un hospital, una residencia para enfermos terminales, un centro de atención de salud residencial o cualquier otro tipo de centro médico.
Se trata de pacientes en riesgo de muerte, cuyo tratamiento, a criterio del médico tratante, requiere el concurso de los progenitores que ejercen patria potestad, el tutor, el curador y, en ausencia de éstos, el familiar más cercano del enfermo para su cuidado.
Requisitos del trabajador
El trabajador debe cumplir con los siguientes requisitos:
- Notificar al empleador el nombre, apellido y grado de parentesco de las personas que tengan a su cargo, aportando el certificado de nacimiento respectivo.
- Entregar al empleador un informe expedido por el médico del paciente que indique:
- Nombre completo del paciente, si el estado que se encuentra es grave o terminal y el tipo de enfermedad que padece.
- La justificación de la necesidad de acompañamiento continuo y permanente del paciente menor de 18 años.
La licencia especial será cancelada por el fallecimiento del paciente o por solicitud del propio trabajador o familiar a cargo.
En los casos en que se realice un tratamiento médico planificado o cirugía programada, el trabajador deberá notificar al empleador la decisión de hacer uso de la licencia con una antelación de 15 días. En los casos de urgencia o enfermedades intempestivas, el trabajador deberá en un plazo no mayor de 3 días hábiles desde que tenga conocimiento, notificar al empleador.
En los casos previstos en esta ley, el trabajador tendrá derecho a percibir su salario en un 100%, lo que será soportado por el empleador.
Panama, April 15, 2020. The Thirteenth Month is a special mandatory bonus that was established since 1971, to compensate the employees for their contribution to the benefits obtained by the company.
It was established by two special regulations, Cabinet Decree No. 221 of November 18, 1971, which established it, and Decree No. 19 of September 7, 1973, which regulated its meaning and scope, including the official interpretation of how it should be calculated.
Article 2 of Cabinet Decree No. 221 of 18 November 1971 states that it shall be calculated in the ratio of one (1) day’s salary for every eleven (11) days or fraction of actual work, whether continuous or not. For purpose of this remuneration, the days on which the worker has been unable to render services due to an occupational disease, non-occupational disease, occupational accident, maternity, leave and vacation, duly verified, shall be considered as days worked.
Article 4 of Decree No. 19 of 7 September 1973, which regulates the scope of Cabinet Decree No. 221, clarifies that “the payment or consignment of each of the three installments of the Thirteenth Month bonus must be calculated on the average of the wages received by the worker during the period corresponding to each installment, including base salary, extraordinary working days, working days with legal surcharges, commissions, bonuses, maternity leave, vacations, paid leaves, professional risks and bonuses received during the respective period…”
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic affecting our country, a State of National Emergency has been declared which, among other measures affect labor relations, and gives employers the possibility of requesting the suspension of the effects of labor contracts. The option to suspend adopted by some companies will affect the calculation of the first installment of the thirteenth month bonus, which must be paid on April 15, 2020.
The suspension of the effects of the employment contract relieves both parties of the main obligation incurred in the employment relationship. The employee is not obliged to provide services and the company is not obliged to pay the agreed salary. The impact on the calculation of the Thirteenth Month bonus occurs since no effective work during that period, nor the employee reported income, thus the period of suspension cannot be taken into account for the calculation of the Thirteenth Month bonus.
We reiterate, furthermore, that Decree No. 19 of September 7, 1973, that regulated Cabinet Decree No. 221 of November 18, 1971, is clear in pointing out the specific cases that must be taken into account for the calculation of the thirteenth month bonus, and the suspension of labor contracts due to force majeure or fortuitous event is not one of them.
Panama, April 13, 2020.
Morgan & Morgan advised Alpha Credit ©, a leading technology firm that provides financial services to segments underserved by traditional banking institutions, specialized in consumer lending and financing for small and medium enterprises (SMEs), in the process to complete an equity financing round for more than MXN$2.4 billion (approximately US$100 million), led by SoftBank´s Latin America fund, one of the leading technology investors in the region.
Partners Francisco Arias and Roberto Vidal participated in this transaction.