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Biopharmaceutical industry is a pillar of Puerto Rico’s economy


Eight of the world’s top 15 biopharmaceutical companies operate in Puerto Rico, and four of the world’s top prescription drug products are currently produced.

The economic activity of the biopharmaceutical industry is reflected in multiple areas with jobs, tax payments, patents, and investment in community and educational programs, among others, reported the Pharmaceutical Industry Association of Puerto Rico (PIA-PR).

With $10 billion in accumulated capital, $500 million a year in maintenance of this infrastructure, a payroll of over $1.400 billion a year, more than 87,400 direct and indirect jobs, an average salary of $80,000 a year (direct jobs) and a contribution of more than $3 billion in contributions to the Government of Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rico meets the highest world-class quality standards, advanced technology, and distributes medicines to more than 100 countries around the world.

Seventy-five percent of the industry’s employees have a college degree and many have received their education and training in Puerto Rico to safeguard the medicines that reach the homes of the world. The industry provides professional development opportunities with leadership and mentoring programs, scholarships, sponsorship of universities and student organizations, internship experiences, summer camps and others.

The University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez Campus (UPR-RUM) offers a Chemical Engineering degree at its Center for Pharmaceutical Engineering (CPEDaL), a program with practical knowledge in pharmaceutical operations. The Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico also offers new programs in chemical engineering.

High school students can participate in a Pharmaceutical Engineering Camp, known as PESCa, where they are exposed to laboratory processes, formulation of active components and the stages of granulation, sieving, compression, and coating of medicines, led by different mentors and university students from UPR-RUM CPEDaL.

Impact on Communities
The biopharmaceutical industry invests more than $3 million annually in communities. Employees offer thousands of hours of volunteer work and support non-profit organizations such as United Way of Puerto Rico, which receives more than $1 million annually, as part of this collaboration of the industry and employees, ready to aid the community organizations and in emergency situations due to atmospheric events.

Pharmaceutical companies have energy conservation, waste reduction, recycling, and environmental protection programs, among others, as well as independent power generation, aware of not overloading the country’s electrical system in times of crisis, for example, in blackouts.

The industry has a commitment to Puerto Rico, to patients, and it seeks to treat the most complex and challenging diseases to improve people’s lives and anticipate future health needs.

PIA groups the following biotechnology companies: Abbvie, Amgen, AstraZeneca, Baxter, Bristol Myers Squibb, Genentech, Glaxo Smith Kline, Johnson & Johnson, Lilly, Merck, Novartis, Pfizer, and Sanofi.

For more information you can access www.piapr.org

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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