Manufacturing in Costa Rica
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Costa Rica is one of Latin America’s most prodigious producers of medical devices.
Costa Rican Medical Device Industry Overview
The Central American Group can help you to establish operations in Costa Rica
The Central American Group’s Green Park is a prime location at which international companies can initiate and maintain operations in the field of medical device manufacturing in Costa Rica. Since 1987, when Baxter opened up its operations in the country, Costa Rica has been successful in expanding the size of its medical device manufacturing sector. Today, there are seventy companies producing healthcare industry products in the country. Prominent among them are firms such as Allergan, Boston Scientific, Cooper Medical, Hologic and Medtronic.
Medical device manufacturing in Costa Rica has become the shining star of the nation’s economy. Historically, the country has been known for its agriculture product exports such as sugar, coffee, and tropical fruits. Today medical device manufacturing in Costa Rica leads the way. The export of products such as therapeutic devices, medical and surgical instruments, disposables and diagnostic equipment comprise a sizable portion of Costa Rica’s exports to its trading partners. In 2017, medical devices surpassed agricultural products as the country’s most exported items. Shipments of these products combined to be valued at just below US $3 billion and comprised 27% of all of Costa Rica’s export trade.
The only Latin American country that exports more medical devices and related products is Mexico. Medical device exports from Costa Rica have tripled since 2007.
Medical device manufacturing in Costa Rica has grown and will continue to grow at a healthy pace in the future for several reasons:
- Costa Rica has one of the most educated labor forces in Latin America. The country made the decision in 1949 to disband its army and to invest 8% of its GDP into workforce education, development, and training. Education in Costa Rica is generally free, and every citizen is obligated to receive instruction by law. The literacy rate is one of Latin American’s highest for people between 15-24. Overall, the country has a literacy rate of 98%, Specific to medical device manufacturing in Costa Rica, in recent years the country established its first master’s degree in medical devices in conjunction with the University of Minnesota.
- Medical device manufacturing in Costa Rica benefits from the country’s geographical location, as well as from the openness of its economy. From its location in between both North and South America, medical device exporters have advantageous access to both areas’ medical device markets. Costa Rica also has an economy that benefits from seventeen trade agreements that govern the terms of commercial exchange with over fifty trading partners. Some of the nations that Costa Rica enjoys free trade with include: the United States, Canada, Mexico, the European Union, and China.
- Medical device manufacturing in Costa Rica benefits from the tax regime that has been implemented in the country’s economic free zones. To qualify for free zone tax benefits, companies which set up operations within them must make an investment that has at least US $150,000.00 in fixed assets. Activities that are permitted in Costa Rican free zones include; manufacturing, storing, assembling, processing, refining, purifying, mixing and handling a diversity of merchandises. Companies that engage in medical device manufacturing and other appropriate activities in a free zone are exempt from income taxes for a period of the first eight years. After this qualifying companies are eligible to receive a fifty percent reduction over the following four years. Things such as the customs duties on imports and exports; the withholding taxes on royalties, fees, and dividends; sales tax on local purchases and stamp taxes are exempt from payment for the life of the project.
For further information regarding the initiation of medical device manufacturing Costa Rica, get in touch with the Central American Group by filling out the form that is below.
Medical Devices in Costa Rica
The medical device industry had its beginnings in Costa Rica in 1987, when Baxter Healthcare opened a facility in the country. In 2017, the export of medical devices surpassed the overseas sales of Costa Rican agricultural products for the first time in the history of the nation.
Quality human resources and manufacturing have made Costa Rica an excellent place in which to manufacture medical devices. Today there are 96 firms operating in this sector.
Over 50% of medical device suppliers with a presence in Costa Rica are headquartered in the United States, while the remaining manufacturers are from France, Japan, China, Colombia, Germany, Costa Rica, and Venezuela.