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Offshore Summit, Panama City, Panama

Continuing State Of Emergency?

Back on the job this week in Panama City after a couple of weeks unplugged in Medellin, we’re digging out so we can dig in.

First order of business is preparing for next week’s Emergency Offshore Summit.

“Can we continue referring to it that way?” asked a member of our marketing team when we launched this conference earlier this year. “I mean,” she continued, “it’s our third one. Are we stretching things to suggest that the situation continues to qualify as an ’emergency’?”

Unfortunately, no. We’re not.

Among the multitude of reader e-mails waiting for me in my back-logged in-box this week was the following:

“Kathleen, I am interested in knowing where to find more information related to the legislation and policies that you cited in your article, July 4, 2012, ‘Fiscal Cliffs and Taxageddon.’ In the article you discuss a 30% withholding on monies transferred out of the United States, for example, and I’d like to know where this is in proposed law or policies. The article raises so many questions about who this would affect and how it would work. On one hand, it seems completely implausible, but I understand that no folly is out of the question given what’s going on in the world today…”

We agree. It seems implausible. Hard to process. But it’s the reality. And, as this reader reminds us, it’s a reality that, though it’s been in the making for years, is only just beginning to sink in. In recent weeks, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and others have reported on FATCA, the HIRE Act, and the planned 30% withholding. We’ve been beating this drum for more than two years, trying to alert Americans to the implications and consequences of what amounts to one of the most extra-territorial pieces of legislation in history. Alas, our voices, raised as high as we’ve been able to manage, crying out to exclaim the approaching emergency we’ve perceived, haven’t been loud enough.

The situation is more an emergency today than it was when we first reported on it in early 2010. Thus the need for next week’s Emergency Offshore Summit. If you’re making your way to Panama City over the next few days to be in the room with us Monday morning when this important event kicks off, safe travels. We look forward to seeing you soon.

What else is going on? Our team here at LIOS headquarters, who have kept things moving ahead in our absence these past two weeks, reports the following:

  • We’re nearly ready to launch our first-ever Live and Invest in Ecuador Conference. Latin America Correspondent Lee Harrison, with 10 years’ experience on the ground in this country, is taking the lead in putting this event together. Details are being finalized and will be ready for release within the next couple of weeks.
  • I’ll be traveling out to Panama’s western Azuero coast on Friday with architect Ricardo Arosemena to begin drawing up plans for the construction of the first house at Los Islotes. If you’ve not heard of Los Islotes, this is the master-planned beachfront community that Lief and I conceived some four years ago…and that is finally coming to fruition. Watch for the first installment in my Los Islotes “Construction Diary” following Friday’s site visit. Meantime, go here to take a look at the just-released video we’re produced to give folks an idea what’s in store here…
  • Following next week’s Emergency Offshore Summit, Lief and I will be traveling again, this time to Paris. My agenda for this trip, unlike that for Medellin, is not rest and relaxation…but focus. I’m going to use these two weeks as an opportunity to make some progress on the new book I’m writing for John Wiley & Sons called “How To Buy Real Estate Overseas.” I intend this to be a primer…the complement to the “How To Retire Overseas” primer I wrote for Penguin Books a couple of years ago. I’m counting on Lief’s help (as, in truth, he’s the real global property investing expert in the family)…and I’ll share bits and pieces with you in these dispatches as the manuscript takes shape…

Kathleen Peddicord

P.S. Before leaving Medellin for the return to Panama City, we took another day trip with the kids, this one to Santa Fe de Antioquia. Alas, finally, after nearly three years of looking, I found something in Colombia that disappointed. Not seriously so, but, as Jackson put it that day in Santa Fe, “Well, this is nice, but I don’t think we need to come back…”

Santa Fe de Antioquia was settled in 1541, about 75 years before Medellin. While Medellin has developed to become Colombia’s second-biggest city, home to more than 3.5 million people, Santa Fe’s population today numbers fewer than 25,000. Colombians aren’t fools. Medellin is a way nicer place to be.

Santa Fe is historic and charming…but hot. Driving from Medellin to arrive in Santa Fe, the contrast was striking. While temperatures in the City of Flowers qualify as pleasant most every day of the year, those in Santa Fe put us in mind of Panama City…

Continue Reading: Overland Travel From Mexico To Panama

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