This research center for Latin America was previously based out of Brazil, but this year they took advantage of Law 6 of February 10, 1998, by the City of Knowledge, which provides incentives with tax, labor and migration exemptions for carrying out scientific and technological activities.
Now all research and clinical development of new vaccines, medical affairs, epidemiology, safety and pharmacoeconomics will be coordinated from Panama, while medical/scientific interactions are coordinated among GSK vaccines and the Pan American Health Organization.
The country was selected for the advantages offered by its geographical position and ease of communication with research centers in South America, North America and Europe.
From 2005 to 2010, GSK has invested some $30 million dollars in clinical-medical vaccine research, including clinical trials, epidemiological studies and analysis of health economics.
María Mercedes Castrejón, medical director of research and medical affairs for Central America, the Caribbean and Andean regions, explained that GSK operations in the country date back to 1949, when it was known as Sterling Products. Later, the company underwent a series of mergers and did not become GlaxoSmithKline until the year 2000.
Eduardo Ortega, vice president of GSK Vaccines, stated that the renovated operations of GSK Vaccines in Panama provides direct employment to 76 people and employs professionals through clinical research organizations. The team in Panama is comprised of Panamanians, Argentinians, Venezuelans, Colombians and Costa Ricans.
In Panama, the pharmaceutical company that currently exports health products to 15 markets in Latin America maintains four business operations: manufacturing, logistics and distribution, sales force and an operations center for clinical research and medical affairs for vaccines.