Bill 5901 Initiative Fair Pricing Medicines Act in Guatemala

The initiative of Bill 5901, the Fair Pricing Medicines Act, is being introduced for consideration. This initiative seeks to regulate the pricing of medicines according to the following formula:

Article 2. Sale of Medicines to the Public: Individuals or legal entities selling medicines to the public shall determine the retail price and shall place and indicate it on the packaging or container of each medicine. This price shall not exceed the average selling price in the Central American and Panamanian region.

To enforce this regulation, the DIACO is tasked with publishing these prices. In our opinion, this regulation presents aspects of unconstitutionality due to price fixing. This, in turn, could lead to shortages of certain medicines that, due to the nature of the local market, may not cover their costs at the same price level as in other countries. This is mainly because the region may have subsidies, less stringent health regulations, and tax exemptions that do not exist in Guatemala.