The Panama Canal handled around 300 million tons of goods for the fiscal year 2016, according to reports.
More than 13,000 vessels traversed the water way during the fiscal period from October 1, 2015 to September 30, 2016.
“Despite the international shipping downturn this past year, we recorded one of the highest annual tonnage figures since the opening of the original canal 102 years ago,” Jorge L. Quijano, Panama Canal Administrator, told reporters.
“This latest success reinforces the continued strategic importance of the route and the growing value that recent investments in the canal will bring to the maritime industry,” he further said.
Since its opening in June this year, major liners have been redirecting traffic to the expanded canal to make use of the route’s significant time savings, authorities said.
Container vessels continue to be the leading source of traffic in the canal, accounting for more than 36% of the total cargo received.
As fiscal year 2017 begins, authorities say the Canal will continue to focus on enhancing infrastructure through projects, such as the Corozal Container Terminal, which is currently undergoing bidding.