According to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), Panama continues to be a leader in the flag ship business in terms of dead-weight tonnage (DWT), although it has not recorded any further increase for the last four years. On the other hand, the Marshall Islands have recorded the strongest increase in registrations over recent years. In 2018, they superseded Liberia as the world’s second largest registry.
The Panamanian registry of ships is open, this means that it does not require the owners of the ships to have Panamanian nationality or residence. The procedure for registration is under by Law 57 of 2008.
In 2018, 1,919,175.28 thousand dead-weight tons (DWT) were registered internationally, representing a growth of 3% compared to 2017.