WASHINGTON, May 13 — A 6.1-magnitude earthquake hit Panama yesterday, injuring one person and causing minor damage to businesses and homes, the Central American country's president said.

The strong quake struck at a depth of 37 kilometres in the far west of the country near the Costa Rican border, about five kms from the town of Santa Cruz, according to the US Geological Survey.

"Due to the magnitude of the event there has been minor damage in homes and shops. So far we only have news one woman injured when the roof of her house collapsed in Puerto Armuelles," President Juan Carlos Varela said on Twitter.

There was no tsunami alert issued from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center.

In November 2017 a 6.5-magnitude quake on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica left buildings swaying in the capital San Jose and contributed to the deaths of two people who had heart attacks.

Further north, two months earlier in September 2017 a 7.1-magnitude earthquake killed more than 300 people in Mexico. — AFP