• Panama becomes the Spanish Viceroyalty of New Andalucia.

  • Panama becomes independent of Spain, but joins the confederacy of Gran Colombia, which also comprises Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia.

  • Panama becomes part of Colombia after the collapse of Gran Colombia.

  • A treaty with the United States is signed allowing them to build a railway across the Isthmus.

  • France attempts to build a canal linking the Atlantic and Pacific oceans but fails due to financial difficulties and the death of more than 20,000 workers from tropical diseases.

  • Panama splits away from Colombia and becomes fully independent. The US buys the rights to build Panama Canal and is given control of the Canal Zone in perpetuity.

  • The Panama Canal is completed which dramatically boosts to both Panama's and the US's economies.

  • Panama is no longer a US protectorate.

  • Panama takes full control of the Panama Canal, which is one of the world's most strategic waterways after the US agreed to give them rights for the canal in 1977.

  • After failing to make its tax system more transparent, Panama is removed from the international list of uncooperative tax havens. 

  • Panama and the US agree on a free trade deal, however, it is not approved by the US Congress until 2011.

  • Workers end a strike on a project to expand the Panama Canal after the consortium in charge agrees to increase the minimum wage. The $5.25 billion project to widen the Panama Canal and double its capacity is due to be completed in 2014.

  • France decides to place Panama back on the international list of uncooperative tax jurisdictions as Panama fails to comply with the international tax standards. President Varela announces creation of international panel of experts to help Panama improve transparency of its offshore financial industry.

  • Panama cuts long-standing ties with Taiwan and recognises China, in a major diplomatic coup for Beijing. China is a major user of the Panama Canal.


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