2010-05-12

Venezuelan immigrants restart their lives in Panama

A growing number of Venezuelans have left the Andean nation to live in Panama, which has welcomed them with open arms. (Elmer Martínez/AFP/Getty Images)

A growing number of Venezuelans have left the Andean nation to live in Panama, which has welcomed them with open arms. (Elmer Martínez/AFP/Getty Images)

By Luis Jiménez for Infosurhoy.com — 12/05/2010

PANAMA CITY, Panama – Jean Paul Van Den Brande never forgets the day he nearly died.

“I can still remember, like it was yesterday, the time I almost lost my life,” he said. “It was in a Caracas parking lot, where criminals stabbed me several times to steal my car.”

Van Den Brande, 31, said his near-death experience prompted him to close his event-planning business, sell his home and property and move with his wife and 5-year-old son and 1-year-old daughter to Panama City, Panama.

Van Den Brande has started the same type of business in Panama, where he is among 3,500 Venezuelans legally residing in the Central American nation, according to Panama’s National Migration Service. But there also are 86,815 Venezuelans who arrived in the country in the past six years and haven’t left, according to the newspaper Panamá América.

Van Den Brande said he didn’t have a choice. Caracas, with a murder rate of 140 per 100,000 residents, has the second-highest murder rate in the Western Hemisphere, surpassed only by Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, according to the Venezuelan Observatory of Violence (OVV). He also said President Hugo Chávez, who has expropriated businesses, rationed electricity and water and devaluated the national currency, has created an atmosphere of instability and uncertainty nationwide.

But Venezuelans have thrived in Panama, where immigrants have opened businesses, bars and restaurants, where arepas – a Venezuelan staple of cornbread – are common on menus. There are about 140 companies owned by Venezuelans nationwide, according to the online directory venedirectorio.com. The Venezuelan community also has its own publication, El Venezolano, which is published biweekly.

Mónica Gyugny, 37, owner of Venezuelapana.com, Panamanian and Venezuelan news website, said Venezuela’s economic crisis 2003 was a major reason why she left the Andean nation.

“Right in the middle of the oil strike there was nothing to do and I started chatting over the Internet,” she said. “That’s how I met a Panamanian who was living in Spain.”

After living for a while in the Iberian nation, Gyugny married and moved to Panama with her Panamanian husband seven years ago.

There were about 3,000 marriages between Venezuelans and Panamanians between 2004 and 2009, according to the National Migration Service of Panama.

The rapid migration to Panama has hurt the country’s tourism industry, said Manuel Ferreira, director of economic affairs and assistance of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture of Panama.

“The number of Venezuelan tourists has gone down at least 20% [in the past year],” he told website Reportero24.com. “This is due to Venezuelans being slightly more limited [financially], given the economic situation” in Venezuela.

Traveling outside Venezuela is difficult because it’s hard to get the necessary paperwork, Van Den Brande said.

“We couldn’t get an identity card, or a passport, because they told us there wasn’t any paper,” he said. “I had to bribe the officials [to be able to travel].”

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43 Comments

  • yade | 2014-04-19

    I am Venezuelan and definitely there will be no future here as long as these dictators are in power…It pains me terribly because of my family, but I have no other option but to leave my country in search of freedom and peace. I would like to go to Panama.

  • norma porrello | 2014-03-28

    With the greatest pain in my heart, I will leave my homeland. Even though we don’t have rafts to use to emigrate, we have fear, hurt and terrible experiences that force us to escape, swimming in a sea of hope and to be able to breathe air cleansed of so much cruelty. I am 77 years old and I am not willing live the last years of my life under a Communist regime. I am hurt by the deaths, by the young Chavistas who live under a deception fed by resentment and hatred. I hope they don’t forget that bullets, just like cancer, show no respect.

  • Juan Trujillo | 2014-03-01

    Hi, to whoever is reading this comment, well I think it has been good that my countrymen are doing well since every day political, social, economic life in my country is bad the least that can happen to these people who are living in Panama is success. I wish them the best.

  • Omar | 2012-10-14

    It is interesting to read all the comments, I am from Panama and this is a country like others that has been built by immigrants, I think that is where its greatness lies, Venezuelans and people from any nation are always welcomed and I hope better days come for our brothers in the south, regards!

  • Destry | 2012-10-09

    Mr. Jean Paul Van Den Brande, you are correct, it is not easy to leave one's homeland. My daughter is very frightened, since now that Cha... has won, things are going to get worse. She is thinking about moving. That is a deep wound to the soul. I was born in Colon, but of U.S. citizenship. I am going to see what I can do to help her. It hurts a lot, but you have to look for a better future and sadly it is not in Venezuela. Kind regards, Destry

  • Javier T. | 2012-08-17

    What a forum participant said here is true: I hope the Venezuelans who come to our homeland integrate without forgetting their Venezuela, don't be like the Colombians, they bite the hand that feeds them like rabid dogs, they're vulgar and insolent, they're here, and they have absolutely no shame in saying that Panama belongs to them because they still have it on their national emblem, motherfuckers... If I were the president of my country, I would take them all by the neck and I'd throw them over the border to the other side so they can continue to do well with the drug guerrillas that they have... They talk so much, we don't want them here, they'll have to go over our dead bodies before a soldier of theirs steps on our sacred national land.

  • hillarypaola | 2012-04-24

    HMMMM WELL I DISAGREE YOU HAVE TO BE A GOOD CITIZEN TO BE ACCEPTED BY SOCIETY AND THAT'S THAT. IF I WERE TO GO IT WOULD BE BECAUSE I WOULD LIKE THE COUNTRY I WOULD LIKE TO GO TO! PROUD TO BE A VENEZUELAN!!!

  • Jorge Van Den Brande | 2012-02-14

    It is quite sad when one has to decide to leave the homeland where we were born. As with my cousin, I, too, left Venezuela, way before he did. Those who aren't mentally or analytically able to put themselves in our shoes and ask themselves why we left find it very hard to think that we were possibly ROBBED, HURT, LOST OUR BUSINESSES, ETC. It must be that these people who call us RETREAD because we have a foreign last name makes them more Venezuelan. Those of us with foreign last names are just as Venezuelan as those whose last names are not foreign. Our parents came from other countries in search of a life in Venezuela after the war and to give their future families the life that they did not have. UNFORTUNATELY I see there are still people who think because we have foreign last names we are a bunch of ingrates without looking at themselves in the mirror first...We are Venezuelan workers and we fill our hands up with dirt, grease, sweat and even excrement to be able to get ahead, we put our lives at risk of a bullet or a knife to be able to feed our families. So, for those people who don't understand this, who haven't had to go through a family or personal tragedy that forces them to leave Venezuela in search of a better future, well stay and keep living in conformity that our is turning into every day. It's not easy to move away and of course it doesn't happen overnight, but if you want an explanation of how it works day by day, then send an email to my cousin Jean Paul so he can explain it to you if you don't get it. Cousin, I support you from Ecuador, let's keep moving on because NO ONE can take away our being Venezuelan.

  • Marie | 2011-09-17

    To Ivon... Your comments are ridiculous and totally out of line!!!... What are you going to do when you end up like Cuba?? Or maybe your position in the world doesn't allow you think? The person who will have to think about what she's going to eat before global warming kills her is you!! If the world ends, or if Panama winds up under water, that's what fate has decreed. Regardless, I would prefer to live well during my remaining years instead of living a life of misery where, if I don't die of hunger, some criminal will kill me. You're the one who doesn't understand. They say each country has the government it deserves. People like you definitely deserve a president like Chavez and all of the misery he brings! Good luck with everything, because while your compatriots are living the good life, you're still living in misery, swallowing nationalism... As for the fate of the world, well, only God knows and his will will be done! If you stop to think about what might happen, then it's best not to study or work, or do anything, because it will only be in vain... Don't you think? Or do you think that if something like what you said happens, Venezuela won't be affected??... The truth is you and your comments can go to Chavez's house (aka, Hell).

  • Jorge Higueras | 2011-07-16

    Venezuelans, Colombians, Mexicans, Gringos, Canadians, Europeans, it doesn't matter, Panama is the gateway to the world, it is the heart of the universe, it is the melting pot of races and nationalities, so it was, so it is and so it will be, welcome to all those who are oppressed, persecuted and discriminated, have a seat, sit down in a hammock next to the ocean on the solitary island of Kuna Yala or Pedasí in Azuero, let anyone come who wants to improve themselves and work honestly because Panama will offer you her warmth and humanitarianism, regards to all the Venezuelans in Panama.

  • Fernando | 2011-04-18

    I agree with you, Miguel, I am second generation and when my grandparents on my mother's side came to Panama they became Panamanian even though they never forgot Colombia and on my father's side French, and the same thing. Panama is a country of immigrants but to have them insult us and feel superior to us doesn't fly!!! Welcome to all ...

  • emma | 2011-03-11

    Bravo Leo Alexis J. Bravo Leon for regal life My name is Ramon Eduardo Argote I live in Japan and at this moment I am in a military refuge and I want to report ... http://tmi.me/7zAWG 7 hours ago Favorite ReTweet Respond

  • florange | 2011-03-04

    Compatriot Haydee I don't know what country you live in, tell me what good has this government done where they are killing us like animals, taking away all sources of employment, where the nouveau riche and powerful are Chavez' family and closest friends, where if you differ with his ideology that was a failure in other countries and we the Venezuelans rejected it and the leader we have sticks it to us by force, where there are kidnappings, where the basic food basket doesn't give you anything, where MERCAL is a focal point of corruption, the hospitals don't work and they send us Cuban doctors who are looking for the chance to escape or ask for help from other countries, Haydee, I think you are one of the few who are really in with the current government, I am not political but I am a realist....tell me, do you go out onto the streets, do you go to the market, hospitals, have you gotten on a bus, tell me what part of Venezuela do you live in, liar? Or successful Chavez supporter

  • Liliane | 2011-03-01

    I have read all your comments and I am still amazed to see the narrow-mindedness of certain people... Human history is cyclical, when there is starvation, tragedy, insecurity, lack of food, work, etc., it is logical that people will immigrate, to look for a better life, there is no sin in this, and Panama is a place that has a mind set similar to Venezuela's, now living here legally is not cheap, because the investment to become a resident is high $300,000 to buy an apartment, that allows you to become a resident automatically, there are other kinds of investments like those of retirement and others. What is most difficult is to find work even if you have the education, why? because in Panama there is a quota of only 10% of foreign workers, which leaves little margin. The Venezuela of prior years no longer exists, nor will it ever come back, "they" have taken it upon themselves to change the mind set of those who support the regime, so the decision is yours alone... Liliane

  • José Miguel Araújo Inácio | 2011-02-28

    Hello dear Venezuelans, I was in Venezuela (Margarita) on august/2010, I was enchanted by the country and its people, but the population is very oppressed by Chavez administration. We Brazilian are willing Venezuela to return to democracy. The big complaint of Brazilian that go to Venezuela by car is about the police and national guard who's been extorting them. In my case it was only bs 100 or R$ 25.00 (reals) but I met many nice and welcoming policemen. The lack of security is generalized and corrupt policemen are everywhere. While some Venezuelans fled their country I dream on moving to Venezuela, maybe Mérida or Punto Fijo. God bless the Venezuelan nation and all its inhabitants.

  • humberto viloria | 2011-02-27

    Above all, my regards, truly it the comments are not at all encouraging since in and of themselves they don't say anything positive and what is positive is said from a personal standpoint and I think you don't touch on what is supposed to go on in the forum. 1. you should tell what to do to emigrate 2. I am not a Chavez supporter, but here the opposition is taking over the program without reporting that it is not from the government since that is an obligation of Hispanic culture as an objective of equality, here the government took it on as a program of its own and that is false. There are lots of things.

  • Jenny Rincón | 2011-02-26

    Panama is for the Venezuelans, like Miami is for the Cubans. Panama is the escape hatch for the Venezuelans since you don't need a visa anymore. It is true that Panama is a country in the midst of economic growth, but just like in Venezuela, it has a problem that it is economically dependent on the Canal and on "tourism." With 3.5 million inhabitants, Panama has 1/10 the population of Venezuela; that comparison is to Panama's advantage. I have lived in Colombia, Panama, Guatemala and Venezuela for work. And ALL those countries SUFFER from poverty and crime. When you find something slightly better, you start to talk about how terrible the place before was. Venezuela was the country of opportunity 40 years ago for all the foreigners (above all Europeans), now Venezuela has gone from a country that received emigrating foreigners to a country that exports people who emigrate. Let's be clear that Panama is no world panacea, its minimum wage is $450, and (at any exchange rate) that is a very tight budget for housing, food and basic services. What we have to copy is the planning and execution of good public policies, such as the expansion of the Avenida Balboa that was done in 8 months. Venezuelan youth need to LEAVE to be nourished with experiences abroad and COME BACK to bring the best to Venezuela so it can become again the Country everyone wanted to come to, and no one wanted to leave, as happened long ago. Those Venezuelans who are out of the country (and not just in Panama), I wish you the best. I hope you are very successful and never forget your beloved homeland.

  • haydee | 2011-02-24

    Look, I'll tell you something, I don't think there is a better country than Venezuela, the problem is that people want to have money without working, they're very lazy, and since Chavez arrived and took away their freebies, and you Mr. Den Drande, I think you are a foreigner from Venezuela, because neither your name or your last name seem familiar to me, and since everyone who doesn't like Chavez speak ill of him. But I'll tell you one thing that with regard to education, we're a lot better than other countries, because we have the best schools we've ever had, the MERCAL stores, the CDIs that we never had before, God bless you.

  • angel palacios | 2011-02-21

    It is so sad to see Venezuelans like me defending the interests of other countries, as if we were sorry to be Venezuelan, have you ever thought whether truly you are going to be defended in other countries like you would be in Venezuela? PLEASE VAN DEN BRADE why don't you tell your friends on this portal the damage the Fourth Republican history left in Venezuela because you must know it very well. When Venezuela was a completely bankrupt state because our wealth was distributed by one small group, and the criminality we suffer today is part of that social problem that doesn't stem precisely from 11 years ago, because it comes from 40 years ago.

  • rfuenmayor | 2011-02-11

    It is hard for anyone who is getting dollars from the extreme corruption that exists in Venezuela to acknowledge how badly we live here, social and legal insecurity, unemployment, lack of food, lack of spare parts for vehicles, mafias who dominate the sale of new vehicles. They boast of the millions invested in our country's welfare and more than half of it ends up in the accounts of public officials and their relatives, PDVSA in debt, every day there is less oil production, millions of companies closed, daily expropriations. What revolution are they talking about with equal opportunities for all, who manages the contracts for the most relevant projects, just a small group controlled by the one with the pretty eyes according to the president, be sensible, they are putting an end to Venezuela.

  • JOSE JAVIER | 2011-02-05

    GOOD AFTERNOON FRIENDS, I AM FROM PERU I LIVED IN VENEZUELA FOR 2 YEARS IN TRUTH IT IS A BEAUTIFUL COUNTRY ITS PEOPLE AND EVERYTHING ELSE, THE PROBLEM IS ITS GOVERNMENT THE SAME PEOPLE SUCKING UP TO CHAVEZ TO GET AN AREPA IS VERY TASTY, UNFORTUNATELY THERE IS NOTHING TO EAT IN THAT COUNTRY BASIC FOODS ARE NOT AVAILABLE THE SUPERMARKETS ARE IN A PRECARIOUS INSECURE STATE, THERE ARE NO EGGS, NO MILK, TOILET PAPER, CHICKEN, RICE, THE BEEF LOOKS LIKE IT'S BEEN THERE A MONTH UNFORTUNATELY IT IS THE GOVERNMENT'S FAULT BUT THIS WILL END AT SOME POINT, THOSE WHO KNOW PERO WILL SURELY SEE HOW THE SUPERMARKETS HAVE EVERYTHING ESPECIALLY THE THINGS THEY DON'T HAVE IN VENEZUELA BUT ANYWAY MAY GOD BLESS ALL OF YOU THE PEOPLE FROM VINO TINTO WITH THIS I WANT TO SAY BECOME AWARE SINCE IN 2012 CHAVEZ AND HIS PEOPLE'S CAREER MUST END. REGARDS I KNOW PANAMA IT IS A VERY BEAUTIFUL CITY JUST AS OTHER COUNTRIES ARE.

  • vittorio arias | 2011-01-27

    Wow!! You are all such liars, WE were robbed in Panama coming out of a nightclub a few days later I was mugged by the cabdriver himself he mugged me with a revolver he stole everything I had bought, also in Miami in broad daylight my mother was robbed, please don't pay attention to nonsense like this, when you go out at night in Panama, Miami, Colombia, Paris, ANYWHERE YOU ARE GOING TO BE ROBBED please countrymen it's a LIE THAT THERE ARE NO MUGGINGS, YOU ARE GOING TO BE ROBBED IF YOU GO OUT AT NIGHT OR DURING THE DAY WITH EXPENSIVE THINGS IN PLAIN VIEW, PLEASE TAKE PRECAUTIONS, WHAT'S MORE I KNOW SEVERAL PEOPLE WHO WERE KIDNAPPED IN PANAMA UNTIL ALL THEIR CREDIT CARDS HAD BEEN USED UP PLEASE HIDE YOUR CREDIT CARDS IF POSSIBLE IN YOUR SOCKS

  • maria mosquera | 2011-01-21

    Who can ignore the expropriations, the crime, the lack of justice, the protests against not being paid, the collective contracts, the lack of housing, the throwing away money, the lack of basic foods in the supermarkets, please open your eyes, they are putting an end to the country, why criticize the one who wants to improve it, certainly we are tired, there is no evil that lasts one hundred years nor a body that can stand it, we are at our limit.

  • NORELYS MATTA | 2011-01-20

    HI,I AM VENEZUELAN AND I LIVE IN THIS BEAUTIFUL AND STUNNING COUNTRY CALLED P A N A M A. SINCERELY IT HAS EVERYTHING AND IT IS VERY MODERN AND IT HAS A VERY LATINO-NORTH AMERICAN STYLE AS IF YOU WERE IN MIAMI. YOU CAN FIND EVERYTHING HERE AND YOU HAVE LOTS OF OPPORTUNITIES TO INVEST, TO LIVE, TO STUDY, TO SIGHT-SEE, IT'S A PARADISE. I INVITE ALL THE VENEZUELANS TO COME LIVE IN THIS PARADISE. VENEZUELAN YOUTH HAVE OPPORTUNITIES IN THIS LAND, THERE ARE GOOD UNIVERSITIES AND SCHOOLS AND EVEN EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES. OUR VENEZUELAN IDIOSYNCRASIES ARE THE SAME AS THE PANAMANIANS'. PANAMANIANS ARE HOSPITABLE AND NICE. PANAMA IS A COUNTRY THAT IS GROWING GREATLY ECONOMICALLY, ITS CITY IS BEAUTIFUL IT'S AS IF YOU WERE IN THE UNITED STATES, THE WEATHER IS GOOD.

  • monica fruto | 2011-01-18

    Hello friends and Venezuelan compatriots I am a woman from the Venezuelan Andes, I've been living in Panama for 5 years I am married to a Panamanian and I have put down roots here I have my daughter who was born here and I am happy I miss my country and my family very much it's not easy when you leave everything and go somewhere else but in a way I feel safe, it hurts me to talk to my mother and hear about everything that's going on in the country, the rise in prices for basic groceries, unemployment, crime, there is too much insecurity my Venezuela wasn't like that my dear homeland but God willing it will improve for the welfare of future Venezuelans and that so much ambition in the government ends soon.

  • Peter | 2011-01-17

    Venezuelan like Panama, because it is near and has nearly the same mentality. Eveybody runs away to save his money from Hugo and Hugos friends run to Panama to save the stolen money. Panama has a boom like never before -it is a small country. They should not dream too much: the day Venezuela returns to democracy and Venzuela gives security again, NO money goes more toPanama and thousands of apartments will be empty, since no Panamanian can pay them. The gentleman who suggested ARGENTINA as a country for immigration, must have some other dreams: Argentina owes everybody, has no credit, last time Hugo saved his friend and Venezuela paid forit,has the second highest inflation after Venezuela.Argentina was NEVER in good shape after 1945.

  • Alejandro Javier | 2011-01-16

    Hi, I lived in both countries and I can tell you that both have great beauty, their people are beautiful, Venezuela unfortunately is in a very precarious situation governed by people who, for lack of a better word, have only stolen and destroyed the essence of their people...they have put the old saying of: Divide and conquer a people, and govern the ignorant majority, into practice and well, the rest is history. On the other hand, Panama, I went there a year ago and truly it is really great, the biggest hope you can have is that you can see a future for it and there are lots of places to put down roots and have a family, I am very happy in my country (Chile), but if I had the need, like the Venezuelans do now, without thinking twice I would go to Panama to live, I recommend it in every way, good luck to all, a hug to my friends in both countries.

  • panamavisas | 2011-01-16

    Well my country opens its doors to all immigrants, no matter their social class or background, here Venezuelans are welcome as well as all the immigrants, we reach out to them so they can build a legal life in my little Panama, regards and we'll see you in my country. panamavisas.blogspot.com

  • EDUARDO ALEJANDRO CUBEROS LESSMANN | 2011-01-12

    YOU HAVE YOUR REASONS, BUT I WILL STAY IN MY HOMELAND UNTIL I DIE, EMIGRATING IS COWARDLY, ACCOMMODATING AND LIKE SELLING THE DIVAN. ARE YOU SURE YOU ARE HAPPY THERE? BOLIVAR SAYS "I PREFER DANGEROUS FREEDOM TO PEACEFUL SLAVERY," AND YOU STILL HAVE VENEZUELA IN YOUR HEART. YOUR FAMILY? YOUR FRIENDS?

  • [email protected] | 2011-01-11

    Hi VAN DEN BRANDE, Your name tells me that you are a of very EUROPEAN ancestry, you sound to me like a retread and thankless foreigner, if you didn't feel safe in our HOMELAND VENEZUELA, why didn't you go live in your parents' native city? If it's going well for you in PANAMA, Congratulations, don't talk for talk's sake, I know PANAMA and I loved it too, especially its people, the lower class, I saw CHORRILLO, massacred by the murderous bombs exclusively to depose a President who didn't sympathize with the YANKEES, Lack of safety? It's that way all over the world, read serious, honest newspapers, Expropriations? Yes, from the mafia members who fled the country, greedy, exploitative, causing starvation in the poor class, I wish you luck, stay there, I am sorry for the honest friends I have in PANAMA, they're getting filled up with people from here who we don't want to EVER come back.

  • jesus | 2011-01-08

    To all the Chavez followers who defend the government of the people so much . I remind you that the country that mistreats the poor the most is Venezuela with the highest inflation rate on the continent the hospitals are useless, criminals kill more people than the war in Iraq, they don't let you work in peace, everything they expropriate they destroy, they have not built housing for the poor everything they build are slums in the forced settlements those are the new revolutionary urbanization projects so what benefit do the people get

  • claudia | 2011-01-03

    Mr. Jean Paul Van Den Brande I wish it were so easy to move away because of the chaos in Venezuela, but to say you sold everything and went to Panama creates doubts, because how were you able to sell everything and leave with your money in bolivares??? The story sounds nice but there is something called exchange rate controls in my country. Please, it would be really helpful to know how you sold everything and the next day got on a plane with your wife and daughter. I would like you to please explain the real way someone can leave, not just to Panama but to anywhere in the world and take your money with you. I have goods and properties and if I don't do it with black market dollars, which we well know is very very expensive, and where we lose a bunch of money if we take it to be exchanged, you can't leave just like that. I respect and admire infinitely those who have left and who have been able to to do it, but it is more helpful if you can tell us how to achieve it, thank you.

  • Manuel J. | 2010-12-24

    They are such gossips, traitors, silly politicians, they don't know that insecurity or criminality is found among themselves or among their relatives and among their closest friends who fill their ideological thoughts with garbage out of a lack of political, philosophical religious knowledge.

  • miguel toto | 2010-12-23

    As a Panamanian, I hope that the Venezuelans integrate into society. That they not be like the Colombians who come but who don't integrate. For the Colombians, everything Colombian is better than what they find here. Such an obtuse mentality. People have begun to complain already because they have filled Panama City with Colombian flags and they are so insolent that they insist that Panama was taken away from them and that it will be Colombian again. To the Venezuelans: integrate. If you're going to put down roots, feel like you're Panamanian of Venezuelan origin. As the second generation descendant of Italian immigrants that I am, I don't feel any connection to Italy. My father would say to me that he knew he had a new homeland, that he wouldn't forget Italy, but he knew that his new adopted homeland was Panama and that he would be buried here. That is what happened. Peace and goodness.

  • Rodriguez | 2010-12-22

    Argentina seems to be a good option to emigrate to given its excellent economic and social conditions. Its broad cultural tradition (the land of theaters, dance and tango) and its excellent integration with other Latin Americans make it a better destination than European countries. All this on top of it being a nation that constantly stays in style with its cosmopolitan capital that is full of cultural attractions.

  • IVON | 2010-12-10

    THE LADY SAID SHE COULDN'T GET PASSPORTS BUT THERE ARE THOUSANDS OF PASSPORTS THAT HAVEN'T BEEN PICKED UP AT SAIME, SOMEONE ELSE SAYS THAT HE HAS HIS PASSPORT HOW DID HE DO IT? HAHAHAHA HERE THEY'LL GIVE PASSPORTS TO ANYONE LIARS. EVERYONE LEAVE WHO DOESN'T WANT THE PEOPLE TO BE ATTENDED TO WITH MEDICINE FOOD AT A LOW COST, RETIREMENT PENSIONS DISBURSED ON TIME AND NOT LIKE BEFORE WHEN ONE DIED WAITING FOR HIS PENSION GO AWAY, IF YOU'RE USELESS DON'T BOTHER US... WHAT GOOD IS IT GOING TO BE TO LIVE IN PANAMA WHEN CLIMATE CHANGE MAKES IT SINK INTO THE OCEAN?, WHEN YOUR DOLLARS CAN'T BUY A LITER OF WATER? EVO SAID IT VERY WELL (I KNOW YOU DON'T UNDERSTAND THAT) BUT EITHER CAPITALISM ENDS OR THE EARTH ENDS, DON'T YOU EVEN THINK ABOUT WHAT'S COMING BECAUSE OF THE EXPLOITATION OF NATURE? DON'T YOU WORRY ABOUT YOUR CHILDREN? YOU ARE POOR SPIRITUALLY, BUT ABOVE ALL YOU DON'T KNOW THE TRUE CAUSE OF THE WORLD'S CURRENT SITUATION...

  • angelo cumpa | 2010-10-17

    If you leave Venezuela for a better future, good for you, but if it is because you disagree with the administration of Hugo Chávez and you run from your beloved homeland, then in my opinion only the cave-dwelling right wing will flee out of feelings of hate toward Chávez and those are the right wingers, those who hate a socialist government, a government at the service of the people a government at the service of the unprotected class because of many cave-dwelling right wing governments who governed since the republic was installed in America. Today with the installation of the rapacious, cruel and inhuman neo-liberalism, the exploitation of man is more visible, and the exploitation of the natural resources by the transnational companies is to prey on the environment to benefit their coffers, not to mention the labor sector with poorly paid workers without insurance, always the last wheel on the cart. These atrocities must change, I am sure Chávez will do it by defending the people, that was seen in the September 26 elections when the people supported him, good for him. LONG LIVE SOCIALISM, LONG LIVE CHAVEZ, LONG LIVE FIDEL, FREEDOM FOR THE 5 CUBAN HEROES IMPRISONED IN THE YANKEE DUNGEONS HUMANITY’S MURDERERS. DOWN WITH THE ECONOMIC, COMMERCIAL AND INHUMAN SANCTIONS AGAINST CUBA.”

  • angel blanco | 2010-10-01

    It is very beautiful and sad at the same time but it is true that we should form a club only of Venezuelans to be able to remember things about our country and be able to be more united outside our homeland be able to drink a Polar smoke a Beltman and share a meal on the weekend try to be a Venezuelan community like it is done in other countries because for as much or as little as we might have we are VENEZUELANS MY FRIENDS

  • german gustavo tarazon martinez | 2010-08-30

    Hi I am Venezuelan now the situation in Venezuela is insufferable I am a doctor our future is getting worse we are waiting for parliamentary elections to see what happens I have decided to think of Panama as an option to emigrate

  • José Martínez | 2010-08-26

    Cordial greetings to all the Venezuelans who live in Panama. I went to that country months ago and I did not want to leave, I loved everything there. What is happening in Venezuela, and who knows for how long, is sad and lamentable, every day that goes by things get worse: lack of safety all over the place, high unemployment rates, trash, inefficient public services, the high cost of living, among other things are killing OUR COUNTRY. I wish you the best of the best and may you continue to reap unlimited and well deserved success. I am also a University professional, I want to try life in Panama, work, etc. Please, if anyone could tell me what paperwork needs to be done, I would be very grateful. Thank you very much.

  • cesar molina | 2010-08-06

    GENTLEMEN IT IS SAD. YOU CAN LEAVE VENEZUELA, BUT VENEZUELA DOES NOT LEAVE YOU. MR. VAN DEN BRANDE HOW IS PANAMA, CAN YOU FEEL THE FUTURE? TELL ME

  • Faio Ramirez | 2010-07-04

    How are you: Van Den Brande, let me tell you that I am in a situation very similar to yours, I left Venezuela in December 2009, I arrived in Mexico I am working here but I leave for Panama in August of this year, could you explain to me what the procedures are for immigrants, I am a Civil Engineer, my email is [email protected] Regards

  • Roso P. Briceño G. | 2010-06-07

    HI: Van Den Brande. I congratulate you for the decision you made to go to Panama, since it is a country in full growth and developing enormously. I can tell you I am almost at the same point as you I want to go to Panama, but I don't know what procedures to follow. Now, if you could explain it all to me, I would be happy with that explanation and would follow the steps like you. Tell me how. It is sad to leave but I have to go. I await your response. I already have my passport, so that is not a problem.