These details were announced yesterday during a tour organized by the Ministry of Public Works, which was attended by President Ricardo Martinelli.
"This airport, which will open in July 2013, will convert Coclé into one of the most booming provinces of Panama, generating thousands of jobs in the tourism, agriculture and real estate sectors," said Martinelli.
The airport terminal should be able to provide for 300 arriving and departing passengers and permit the landing of Boeing 757-200 aircraft. In addition, more hotel projects are expected to be built to attract tourists. Lodgers would only have to travel around 20 to 25 minutes by road from the airport to reach the nearby and all-inclusive resorts.
It was reported that travel agencies are already promoting the packages in destinations such as the United States, Europe and South America.
The Panama Tourism Authority has also already begun to discuss the advantages of the new airport in countries like Spain and Germany.
Copa Airlines recently formed an alliance with the domestic airline Air Panama to make connecting flights between Tocumen and Bocas del Toro. If the project is found successful, more direct flights would be created to the country's interior, including destinations like Río Hato, Colón and the province of Chiriquí.
Experts on the topic believe that initially the airport will be effective for charter flights coming from North America and Canada. The second step will be to initiate direct international flights.
But much will depend on the rate that beach hotels are being built in that region, they say.
The plan to turn Panama into an 'air hub' implies linking various destinations within the country that would otherwise be very difficult to reach in just a few hours. The immediate benefit will be reflected in connecting flights for touristic routes, in addition to savings in travel time.
It is hoped that once airports in David, Colón and Río Hato are up and running, direct flights can be made to connect these Panamanian sites with the Caribbean, South America, Europe, Asia, North America and Central America.
The Civil Aviation Authority is building the runway control tower, the airport terminal in Río Hato and the parking lots, which are 30% completed.