While cost over runs for the Panama Canal expansion have dominated shipping news headlines during the past week, contradictory reports are circulating about plans to build an even larger canal across Nicaragua.
report over the weekend found that the head of the Nicaragua canal authority, Manuel Coronel Kautz, indicated more time is needed to carry out feasibility studies and choose a route
and that construction would probably not begin until next year. It reported President Daniel Ortega had said Nicaragua planned to begin construction in May 2014.
But an Associated Press
article on Monday reported that a statement from Kraus said all the studies needed to start building the canal are being carried out in a timely manner
and that construction will begin this year.
Nicaraguan legislators in June approved granting Beijing-based telecommunications Chief Executive Officer Wang Jing a concession to build and operate the canal.
said the estimated cost of the Nicaragua waterway is $40 billion, 7.6 times more than original $5.25 billion estimated cost of the Panama Canal.