Panama Canal Ship Agent

Increase in the Number of Slots in the Panamax Locks

PANAMA FLASH! Panama City – March 9th, 2024

Increase in the Number of Slots in the Panamax Locks

Based on the present and projected level of Gatun Lake, the Panama Canal announces an increase in the number of daily slots in the Panamax Locks. An additional slot will become available for supers in Booking Period 2 (14 days prior to transit date), and two additional slots will be offered through auction at the opening of Booking Period 3 (seven days prior to transit date). Of the four daily slots to be auctioned, three slots will be offered to supers and one slot to regular vessels.

If the auction for regular vessels closes without interested vessels, the slot may be auctioned to supers. The criteria that participating vessels must meet to be awarded the slot, including the groups per market segment announced in Advisory to Shipping A-51-2023, will be notified when the auction is published.

The following table summarizes the slot distribution that will remain in effect until further notice:

The additional slot offered in Booking Period 2 for supers will become available for transit dates beginning March 25, 2024. Applications for this additional slot will begin on March 11, 2024, at 0900 hours.

Additional auction slots will be offered starting on March 11, 2024, for transit dates beginning March 18, 2024. The ACP may also increase the number of slots offered through auction, depending on the Gatun Lake´s level projections.

Additional information regarding procedure to follow after the installation and configuration of the fixed antenna (non-portable) piloting unit with real time kinematics  (RTK).

In response to several inquiries regarding the process that customers must follow after the installation of the fixed (non-portable) piloting unit with real time kinematics (RTK), the Panama Canal announces the following steps to be taken:

a. Download Form 7579 (NPU/PPU Certificate) through the following link It is no longer necessary to send an email to

b. Complete the required fields (only the top gray area) of the form and paste a copy of your piloting unit QR Code on the indicated space. Remaining fields are only for official Panama Canal use.

c. Proceed to print, sign, and stamp the certificate and antenna installation diagram (if available). The Panama Canal Boarding officer will request it upon inspection to verify equipment connectivity.

d. Always keep a copy of the certificate available for pilot use during all visits to the Panama Canal. In addition, keep in mind when announcing a visit, that it is necessary to include the following in the visit remark through the Panama Maritime Single Window (VUMPA for its Spanish acronym): NPU Completed.

The list of evaluated and approved equipment, specifications, installation guide and the frequently asked questions are available through the following web link:

For additional information, please reach out to our operators at

Norton Lilly International (Panama) S.A.

Bldg. 3825  – Office 204

Howard – Panama-Pacifico

Panama, Rep. of Panama

Tel: (507) 304-4600

Main email:  (24 hours)


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Panama Canal informs Modifications to the Auction Rules

The Panama Canal Authority informs that effective January 20, 2024, vessels from all categories (Neopanamax, Supers and regulars) that obtain a slot for a particular date through the auction process, and subsequently obtain a slot for an earlier date –also through the auction process–, will not be assessed a fee for the change to the new date, provided that the vessel was rejected for that date in previous periods due to unavailability of slots.

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