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The Boston Globe


Juliette Kayyem

Panama’s magic number

A 50-feet deep canal is the only way to compete in global shipping


Rodolfo R. Sabonge, a vice president of the Panama Canal Authority, sits in his office before a 30-foot map of the world. It isn’t the land that interests him, but the water. A huge glass window overlooks the canal that is his livelihood and his country’s future. The scene is the chaotic combination of destruction and construction that marks any massive project, midstream. The authority is overseeing the multi-billion-dollar expansion of the canal to make it wider and deeper so that larger boats can pass through.

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