Aphria Inc. (TSX: APHA; NYSE: APHA) announced the signing of a letter of intent to supply and distribute medical marijuana in Paraguay via pharmaceutical company Insumos Medicos S.A.

Insumos Medicos S.A. will handle all medical cannabis licensing issues in Paraguay via the country’s Ministry Of Public Health And Social Welfare, as well as distribute cannabis from Aphria through an existing network of patients and hospitals.

Insumos has built up its business distributing pharmaceuticals to hospitals in Paraguay. It has relationships with the pharmacies and the logistical network to deliver Aphria’s products to patients across the landlocked country, which has a population of 7 million people and which legalized medicinal use of cannabis last year.

Cannabis products from Aphria are currently distributed in Colombia and Argentina, with Paraguay to become the company’s third Latin / South American distribution nation once the exclusive deal is finalized.

Jakob Ripshtein – who was promoted from CCO to President of Aphria last month – had this to say about the Paraguay deal:

“Latin America continues to represent an important growth opportunity within the global medical cannabis industry, and we are excited to be among the first to enter the rapidly emerging market in Paraguay.”

Ripshtein went on to say, “Our strategic partner, Insumos, is well-positioned to establish a leading presence for the company’s products throughout the country. Aphria will continue to expand its footprint in the most strategic markets in Latin America and around the world through its diversified approach to innovation, partnerships and expansion.”

The signing of a letter of intent with Insumos is the latest in a string of moves to expand internationally for Aphria, including the acquisition of CC Pharma in Germany, as well as Latin American acquisitions which were recently the subject of a headline-grabbing negative short seller report.

In response to that report, Aphria issued a statement standing behind the LATAM Holdings Inc. purchase and appointed a special independent committee to review the deal. A more detailed response to the report’s allegations is also expected to be released shortly from the company’s upper management and legal team.

Grizzle’s President Thomas George recently teamed up with Civilized.life to discuss the short seller report and its effect on Aphria in an episode of the All Time Highs podcast here.