Uruguay's new market for legalized marijuana has attracted nearly 25 companies bidding for the right to supply pot to the country's pharmacies.
An official from President Jose Mujica's office says cannabis regulators will review and pick the best businesses from the nearly two dozen competitors that passed initial scrutiny. It's not clear how many will be granted licenses.
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The government official spoke Thursday on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.
Successful companies must identify everyone involved in their businesses, document the source of their financing and be cleared by Uruguay's anti-money laundering agency.
Uruguay is the first nation in the world to attempt to regulate the cultivation and sale of pot on a nationwide scale.