MADRID (Reuters) — A consortium led by
Spanish builder Sacyr is still in contact with the Panama Canal
Authority with the aim of restarting talks over a deal to expand the
canal, two sources said on Thursday.
The project to expand the Panama Canal, one of the world's most
important shipping routes, was in doubt on Wednesday after
negotiations between the canal administrator and the Group United
for the Canal consortium broke down.
"There is correspondence between both parties, inviting each other
to dialogue," a consortium source said on Thursday.
A separate source familiar with the matter said lawyers from the two
sides were continuing to work to resolve the situation, even though
formally talks had stopped.
The two sides are at odds over who should pay for more than $1.6
billion in cost overruns to build a third set of locks for the
canal, the main part of the expansion of the 50-mile cargo route
that connects the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.
The breakdown of negotiations was the latest setback to a project
mired in disputes since the consortium, which also includes Italy's
Salini Impregilo and a Belgian and Panamanian firm, won the bid in
Shares of Sacyr, which lost 7 percent on Wednesday on fears of a
failed deal, rose 2.2 percent to 2.69 euros by 0920 GMT. Salini
Impregilo's shares were down 0.47 percent at 4.268 euros.