January 15, 2021

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PRFAA comments on productive visit by White House Special Representative to Puerto Rico – Caribbean Business

Intended to help position island as manufacturing center

SAN JUAN – Amid a visit to Puerto Rico by the White House's Special Representative to the island, Rear Adm. Peter J. Brown, the Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration (PRFAA) issued a news release commenting on the activities held to promote the manufacturing industry federally.

The visit was coordinated in partnership with the island’s resident commissioner, Jenniffer González-Colón, and officials on the island.

Brown, and officials from the White House, the Development Finance Corporation, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) were shown what the PRFAA called “Puerto Rico’s capabilities and potential to become a Caribbean hub in the pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturing industry.”

Brown participated in meetings joined by PRFAA Executive Director Jennifer M. Storipan, Esq. And Deputy Director Juan Leonardo Negrón Díaz; Resident Commissioner González-Colón; Chris Abbott, senior policy analyst at the White House; Juan Caro, special adviser of the White House and Department of Energy; Eric Jones of the U.S. Development Finance Corporation; Alex Amparo, Federal Disaster Recovery coordinator, Federal Management Emergency Agency (FEMA); Alejandro De La Campa, acting deputy Federal Disaster Recovery coordinator, FEMA; Doug Benevento, associate deputy administrator, EPA; and Peter D. López, regional administrator, EPA.

“This visit builds upon Admiral Brown's trips over the past year to discuss the revitalization of the island, ongoing federal projects, preparedness and readiness for the 2020 hurricane season, and economic development for Puerto Rico. As the island continues to recover from the 2017 hurricanes, Irma and María, the recent earthquakes that continue to impact the island, and the ongoing Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, will all be issues at the forefront of this trip, ”the news release reads

The visit has included meetings with the GK Pharmaceutical, Honeywell Industries, Lufthansa Technik, Copan Industries, Pfizer, Skalar, and GSK.

A pharma industry roundtable and a “virtual working section” with the manufacturing industry were held, the PRFAA said.

On Friday, officials are expected to visit environmental sites with the EPA and discuss disaster recovery efforts, as well as “engage in a dialogue with several communities on the drinking water system, and the recycling industry,” according to the release.

“As we continue to battle the COVID-19 pandemic, it is vital that our Nation reestablishes US biomedical production to reduce its dependence on the foreign supply chain. PRFAA has been working with White House officials and federal agencies so that together we can bring back manufacturing to Puerto Rico and the island can become the Caribbean hub in the pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturing market, ”said PRFAA’s Storipan. “Puerto Rico is a leader in biomedical production, and it is important for us that federal officials and stakeholders experience firsthand the potential our island has to offer.”

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