Tijuana maquiladora ‘allowed’ to keep making ventilators


Baja California Governor Jaime Bonilla Valdez. (Courtesy: State of Baja California)

Smiths Healthcare, a company based in Minnesota, has been given permission to resume operations at its Tijuana plant producing ventilators. It was ordered closed last week when it announced none of its ventilators would be sold to Mexico.

TIJUANA (Border Report) — After almost of week of “battle,” the state of Baja California is allowing American company Smiths Healthcare to reopen and continue building badly-needed ventilators.

Baja California Gov. Jaime Bonilla had declared the plant as “non-essential” and ordered it closed when management said none of the ventilators would be sold to Mexico.

On Sunday, after days of negotiations, Bonilla agreed to let the plant resume operations when Smiths Healthcare, based in St. Paul, Minn., said it would sell ventilators to Mexico as well as other countries.

The governor did not indicate how many ventilators would be provided to Mexican interests or how much Mexico would pay for them.

Smiths Healthcare did not comment about the squabble with Baja California lawmakers, but on its website, the company claims its ventilators “are trusted by first responders and emergency medicine physicians worldwide.”

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