Guatemala seeks to become a regional leader on international laboratory services
AGEXPORT’s Laboratories Commission joined hands with the Structural Reforms Fund of the German Cooperation (GIZ) and the More Competitive Cooperatives and SMEs project of the European Union to allow Guatemalan labs to import laboratory samples into the country. With this, more international laboratories are expected to establish in the country and increase the services offered abroad, consolidating Guatemala as the regional hub on laboratory analyses.
The implementation of this strategic project to allow the entrance of foreign lab samples to Guatemala will also allow national labs to receive a variety of samples of products like fresh food, processed foods, environmental evaluations and industrial samples from any country, increasing lab analyses exports.
Allowing the possibility for Guatemalan firms to import lab samples is one of the main achievements of our Laboratories Commission in AGEXPORT on 2018. Added to that, we also established an alliance with the Central Bank to start measuring our exports, which are estimated at US$7.21 million on 2018. This allows us to display the importance and impact of this industry in the country, as well as our technological and scientific progresses, said Mr. Zsolt Gerendas, coordinator of AGEXPORT’s Laboratories Commission
Lab companies in Guatemala export their services to markets like Central America, Belize, Panama, the Caribbean and South America. As well, environmental analyses are exported also to Colombia, Mexico, Peru, Chile and Canada.
Mr. Gerendas also remarked that on 2019, the Commission plans to work on improving all required conditions to establish research and training contracts for Guatemalan laboratories to aid other industries such as pharmaceuticals, chemicals, health, food and environment, among others.
One of the key challenges we have for 2019 is the approval of all the legal framework needed to import samples, not only in terms of the laws and regulations but also with the authorities and institutions needed to surveil this. We also plan to promote “contract research organizations” for the health industry, which will bring new opportunities to start research and development projects for national and international pharmaceutical companies, said Mr. Gerendas.
The development of these services is key for Guatemala, as people would have access to special medicines, knowledge on health sciences would spread across professionals participating in this sector and it would also ease the registration of new drugs and medicines for generic production. It also generates a higher influx of foreign currency to Guatemala and creates new employment opportunities.
The Commission also plans to launch an event called “Guatelabs Expo” on March 2019, focused on increasing the competitiveness of small and medium companies and explain the services offered by laboratories in Guatemala. Some of the topics that will be covered in the event are: compliance with international regulations, minimizing risks on international markets, among others. To know more about “Guatelabs Expo” please write an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call (502) 2422-3409