Thursday, November 29, 2012

Cuba creates biotech-pharma combine

Cuba creates biotech-pharma combine
Published November 28, 2012

Cuba's government has created a new business group comprising 38
companies involved in the manufacture and sale of medicine and provision
of services in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries.

The new group will operate under the name BioCubaFarma and "will be
guided by business principles," an official statement said.

It was created "by merging entities belonging to the Scientific Pole and
the QUIMEFA Business Group with a mission to manufacture medicine and
equipment (and provide) hi-tech services," the statement added.

Production will be aimed at "improving people's health and generating
exportable goods and services" through "scientific and technical
development" on the island.

The Council of Ministers named Dr. Carlos Manuel Gutierrez Calzado,
previously the director of the National Scientific Research Center, as
president of BioCubaFarma.

Jose Miyar Barruecos, who had been the head of the Scientific Pole, will
"now fulfill other duties directly with (President Raul Castro)."

The government said the newly created group is part of reforms being
carried out to "update" Cuba's socialist model.

Those reforms also include broadening the scope for private business and
plans to lay off 500,000 state employees through 2015.

The reform guidelines approved by Cuba's Communist Party in 2011
underscore the goals of consolidating the pharmaceutical and
biotechnology industry "as one of the (island's) most exportable
activities" and "introducing new products into the domestic market to
substitute imports." EFE

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