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June 17th, 2013 (InsideCostaRica.com) The government of Costa Rica supports Nicaragua’s effort to build a transoceanic canal that would dwarf the Panama Canal, calling it “positive,” so long as the route wouldn’t pose any risk to its territory, officials said on Friday.
“We have no objection and welcome with enthusiasm Nicaragua building a project that contributes to their development and helps the Nicaraguan people become a prosperous people in the future,” told reporters.
Castillo said that Costa Rica has no objection, so long as the canal does not affect the rights of Costa Rica or its territory, especially in regards to the Rio Colorado near the border.
A majority of Nicaragua’s parliament approved on Thursday a measure that gives a Chinese company a concession, which could last up to a century, to build what is being called a “mega canal” between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.
According to Nicaragua, the project will also include railways, pipelines, ports, airfields, and free trade zones on both the Caribbean and Pacific coasts. The work is expected to take 10 years, at a cost of $40 billion.
The Nicaraguan government, however, has not yet revealed the route of the canal.
Castillo said that the Chinese government has given Costa Rica assurances that no Chinese company would be allowed to build a canal through the Rio San Juan, over which Nicaragua holds sovereignty, but on which Costa Rica maintains navigation rights.
Castillo also said that Costa Rica has received official communication from Nicaragua saying that the canal would not be located on the Rio San Juan.