Monday 4th March 2024.

March 3, 2024


On March 14, the 15 days that the National Directorate of Pharmacy and Drugs of the Ministry of Health (Minsa) has to respond to the reconsideration resources presented by companies dedicated to the manufacture of medicinal cannabis derivatives against Resolution 008 of January 17, in which the Participant Evaluation Commission selected the companies that complied with the process.

These are three appeals for reconsideration presented by the companies IMC PTY , Apothecary Health Corp. and Panama Medical Industrial Corp. , which were admitted on January 30 by the National Directorate of Pharmacy and Drugs.

This was reported by Elvia Lau , national director of Pharmacies and Drugs of the Minsa , who explained that the Participant Evaluation Commission delivered the claims evaluation report to this entity on February 22; From that date, they have 15 business days to respond.

This process to grant medical cannabis licenses began on June 5, 2023, when the Minsa announced the call to interested companies. Subsequently, on June 19, the approval meeting was held in which 20 companies participated. The envelopes were received until September 19, when the period for submitting proposals to opt for a medical cannabis manufacturing license expired.

The Evaluating Commission of the proposals issued its final report on January 15, selecting seven companies that met the requirements to obtain licenses. According to article 21 of Law 242 of October 2023, seven medical cannabis manufacturing licenses may be authorized, and article 19 establishes that said licenses will be granted for a period of 10 years.

The companies and consortia that qualified were those that obtained the highest weighting scores from a 60-point reference and met the established requirements and criteria. These are: Panamericana Cannabis Consortium (60 points) , Green Med Consortium (60 points), Tilray Panama Consortium (55 points), Farma Verde Corp. (50 points), Canna Med Panama (50 points), Adeiwa Pharma Consortium ( 50 points) and Ecovida Consortium (50 points) .

These companies were recommended by the Evaluation Commission to obtain the manufacturing license. The cost of each one is $150,000 non-refundable, as established in article 61 of the law. This means that for granting these permits, the Minsa would receive $1 million 50 thousand.

The Directorate of Traffic Operations of the National Police reported that starting this Monday, March 4, the lane reversal operation will be carried out on at least seven roads, between Panama and Panama Oeste.

The operation will be carried out with the objective of speeding up vehicular traffic from the early hours of the morning for the start of the school year this Monday.

According to the information provided by Transit Operations, these road investments will take place for at least two hours, depending on the sector.

  • 4:00 am to 7:30 am: Arraiján-La Chorrera Highway, from the entrance of Hato Montaña to the Burunga bridge.
  • 4:00 am to 7:30 am: From the Arraiján bridge to the Bridge of the Americas.
  • 5:00 am to 8:00 am: Vía José Agustín Arango, from the Los Pueblos sector to the area known as Balboa (intersection with Via Cincuentenario).
  • 5:30 am to 7:30 am: Via Israel, start in Atlapa until the Mita-ATTT traffic light.
  • 5:30 am to 7:30 am: Boyd Roosevelt Highway, from the entrance of the El Rocío neighborhood to Villa Zaíta.
  • 5:30 am to 8:00 am: Via Martín Sosa.
  • 6:00 am to 9:00 am: Santa Elena Avenue.

Return time

Regarding the lane reversal operation in the afternoon, Transit Operations details that there will be two.

  • 3:00 pm to 7:30 pm: Avenida de los Mártires to Arraiján header.
  • 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm: Santa Elena Avenue.

It is important to highlight that the Ministry of Education reported that this Monday, March 4, classes will begin at the preschool and primary levels nationwide in public schools. On March 11, classes for the pre-middle and high school levels will begin.

Classes in private schools will begin normally this Monday, March 4 at all levels.

The Authority for Consumer Protection and Defense of Competition (Acodeco) asks people to be alert when receiving offers on vacation plans or packages.

In a statement issued this Sunday, Acodeco warns about a company dedicated to offering these plans that has registered a total of 50 complaints filed with the entity by consumers since 2006.

“Based on article 88 of Law 45 of October 31, 2007, Acodeco provides this information to alert potential buyers,” is reflected in the entity’s statement.

It is detailed that among the reasons in the 50 complaints filed against this company there are 17 for lack of information, 14 for abusive clauses, 6 for breach of contract, 4 for return of money, 4 requesting termination of contract, three for breach of service, 1 requesting cancellation of contract and 1 for improper payment.

Acodeco warns that it is not easy to locate this company when notifying it of the actions presented and that this makes it difficult for consumers to take action.

Another aspect that Acodeco highlights is that allegedly the agents selling the vacation plans “offer conditions to the buyers verbally, which are then not included in the contracts, providing unclear or truthful information to the buyers of the plans.”

In addition, the entity reports that the corresponding course of action is currently being taken on the complaints that remain active.

These are the recommendations that Acodeco makes to consumers before hiring any of these services:

  • Read the contract clauses carefully before signing it, as you must check if the information related to the service is included clearly and expressly in the contract.
  • Do not be seduced by wonderful offers, at first sight.
  • When faced with proposals to obtain additional credit, remember that this is up to the consumer and their bank.
  • Do not hand over your credit card if you are not sure about the transaction.
  • Ask acquaintances for references regarding their experiences with the provider that offers this type of service, as well as demand as much information as possible related to said company (exact address in the last year, opinions of other consumers on the Internet, ruling out those companies with bad references, economic problems or even scandals where their clients may have been affected).

So far in 2024, the Public Ministry and the National Police have managed to seize more than $2 million in cash, as part of their operations against organized crime and common crime.

According to the National Police, $2 million 451 thousand 699 and 38 cents, in cash, were seized in January. While in February about $313,370 and 12 cents were taken out of circulation.

These funds were seized during 1,954 raids carried out in different parts of the country, including the provinces of Chiriquí, Colón and the metropolitan region of Panama City, as well as in other strategic sectors.

Deputy Commissioner Guillermo Siuki, executive of the San Francisco police zone, clarified that the confiscated money, the result of various operations against money laundering, drug trafficking and micro-trafficking, has been found in suitcases, transported in vehicles and in other places.

In turn, 461 firearms were seized between January (240) and February (221) and 69 vehicles were seized in operations against organized crime.

Everything seized has been made available to the competent authorities for investigation and corresponding processing.

This figure exceeds the amounts seized the previous year. Between January and July 2023, $924,763 and 79 cents were seized in cash.

The Fourth Civil Court admitted a larger ordinary lawsuit for the sum of $126,829 presented by Corporación La Prensa, SA (Corprensa) against the Municipality of Panama , after said entity failed to pay for the printing service of 22,000 copies of the municipal magazine Urbe .

The lawsuit, admitted by Judge Solange Le Ferrec on November 14, 2023, is based on the fact that the purchase orders were duly accepted and endorsed by the Comptroller General of the Republic, but the Municipality of Panama never paid the account, which corresponds to services provided in 2018.

The Municipality of Panama, whose legal representative is Mayor José Luis Fábrega , requested the printing on glossy paper of 22,000 copies of the Urbe magazine: 11,000 were distributed inserted in the newspaper La Prensa and 9,000, in the newspaper Mi Diario , both edited by Corprensa.

In addition, the municipality’s communications department kept 2,000 additional copies.

The cost of all this was $92,359.19.

The municipality also required Corprensa advertising guidelines services in print and digital media for $37,047.04 and the dissemination of notices in which a report is made of the five years of municipal management 2014-2019 (when the mayor was José Blandón), which were published on June 26, 2019 and had a cost of $1,712.

Therefore, Corprensa demands from the Municipality of Panama the payment of $126,829.31 in capital owed, plus the legal interest generated until the completion of the process.

The lawsuit cites that the aforementioned invoices are overdue, taking into consideration the credit term agreed upon by the parties and that they have generated interest.

The luxurious yacht of Alibaba’s billionaire founder, Chinese Jack Ma , sits off the coast of the Amador Causeway.

The boat called Zen “George Town”, owned by magnate Ma, attracts the eyes of passersby for its spectacular design and naval architecture. This yacht measures 289 feet and has the capacity to accommodate 25 crew members , in addition to the captain, as reported by Superyacht Times magazine .

According to reports obtained by La Prensa , the superyacht Zen has been docked in Amador since last Monday, February 25, in the morning hours. The MarineTraffic site reported that the vessel left the Papagayo marina – in Costa Rica – bound for Panama.

In June 2023, the Chinese businessman went on vacation to the Balearic Islands in Spain. News reports at the time highlighted that the Zen was right next to Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’ $500 million megayacht .

Jack Ma, 59, founded Alibaba in 1999, an online shopping platform that connects buyers with sellers around the world. He retired as president in 2019. In the beginning, this businessman was an English teacher; He maintains interest in the educational area, since in 2014 he created the Jack Ma Foundation , focused on collaborating with education, the environment and public health.


More articles