Farmacia y Drogas announces the process to obtain a license for the manufacture of derivatives of Medicinal Cannabis

Judith Pena | June 5, 2023

The national director of Pharmacy and Drugs of the Ministry of Health (Minsa), Elvia Lau referred on Monday to the process of calling companies interested in obtaining the license to manufacture derivatives of Medicinal Cannabis.

He indicated that as of today companies or individuals can access the page Web of the Minsa where they will withdraw the bases that contemplate the indications to participate and seek to be selected, previously explained that the call had been made in three local newspapers for 5 days as established by the norm.

He explained that within the bases there are 11 forms including a “Check list” that mentions all the requirements that the applicant must provide to obtain the license.

He stressed that on June 19 they will hold an approval meeting where they will have the opportunity to ask questions regarding the manufacture and marketing of cannabis-derived products.

“They also have until August 29 to request clarifications, questions on the Minsa website and we have until September 5 to answer those clarifications,” Lau said.

He indicated that the interested parties will deliver their documents in sealed envelopes and will remain so until September 18, when the 75 days are fulfilled as established.

He maintained that by September 19, envelopes will be opened in front of the participants and it will be verified if they meet all the requirements to be selected. He reiterated that the opening of envelopes will be from the one that delivered first to the last one.

Selection of licensees

The Medicinal Cannabis Committee will be in charge of reviewing the documentation and will recommend to the Department of Pharmacy and Drugs of the Ministry of Health (Minsa), the 7 licensees (the norm dictates up to 7 licenses), who met all the requirements.

He made special emphasis that only the 7 licensees who, through a public and transparent procedure, will be able to carry out the entire production chain, from planting, controlled environment, harvest, drying, to dispensing.

Lau stressed the importance to those who aspire to the license to read Law 242 of October 2021 and Decree 121 of September 2022 that regulates the Law.

Last September, after the regulation of Law 242 that regulates the medicinal and therapeutic use of cannabis and its derivatives in Panama, President Cortizo Cohen stated that the commercialization of the products will be done under strict import control with a program of traceability that includes monitoring, from the cultivation areas to the laboratories and final points of sale.

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