Economy December 10, 2023 | 9:00 am

Buy car in DR

Dominican Republic bets on expanding trade relations with Caribbean countries in the face of problems with Haiti

Pavel Isa Contreras, Dominican Minister of Economy

Santo Domingo, DR. —Given the diplomatic conflict affecting trade relations between the Dominican Republic and Haiti, the vision of the officials heading the administration of President Luis Abinader is to establish agreements with the other countries of the Caribbean Region.

For this reason, the Minister of Economy Planning and Development (MEPYD), Pável Isa Contreras, considered that the primary strategy to guarantee the development of micro, small, and large enterprises (Mipimes) is to diversify connections with nearby markets.

“The important lesson we have to learn is (about the problem with Haiti) we have to diversify markets. Do not put your eggs in one basket, but in many,” said the official.

Isa Contreras assured us that by applying this parameter, the performance of Dominican economic sectors will not be affected by the fragilities of other nearby markets.

“The Caribbean has a potential for our exports to intensify and not be subject to the uncertainties generated by some markets,” said the economist, referring to the precariousness of the neighboring country.

Contreras explained that the countries with the most fortified markets are Guyana, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, St. Lucia, St. Kitts, and the Bahamas.

These would be a great option due to the number of tourists these countries receive, representing an attractive public for Dominican products.

Pavel Isa Contreras’ statements were made during the “More Caribbean trade-strengthening SME exports to the Caribbean” event at the Dominican Republic Export and Investment Center (ProDominicana).

This activity aimed to promote and inform about the exports of Dominican SMEs to the Caribbean market.

In addition, it disseminates existing initiatives on the subject, highlighting strategic opportunities and addressing the challenges SMEs face in their export efforts in the Caribbean region.

Biviana Riveiro, executive director of ProDominicana, indicated that the Dominican Republic has positioned itself in the last five years as the leading economy, with the most significant trade exchange of the insular Caribbean with the world, accumulating figures over USD$173.4 billion.

Riveiro recalled that in 2019-2022, the country accumulated a trade exchange with the Caribbean for more than USD$9.12 billion, of which Dominican exports represent 78%.

He said a comprehensive strategy had been executed, including participation in 24 trade fairs and missions to continue increasing Dominican export rates.

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December 10, 2023 12:50 pm

Why wasn’t this the plan before?

December 13, 2023 11:03 pm
Reply to  Franco

Simple, its called corruption

Dave Lopes
December 13, 2023 1:55 am

I spoke with some Jamaican friends about this. They are not as dumb as Haitians to allow DR to use their country as a dumping ground for dominican goods.

December 18, 2023 5:36 pm
Reply to  Dave Lopes

On the contrary… Jamaican diplomats have expressed interest in their country engaging in bilateral trade with the DR. And not just DR, they want to increase trade with other countries across Latin America.

Last edited 6 months ago by DCamp21
December 13, 2023 10:30 pm

@Dave Lopes, Unfortunately, this anecdotal evidence/story means very little in the real world. The goal is to increase Dominican exports in general, and not just to find a substitute for the Haitian market. Haiti is an important market. The exports from Dominican Republic to Haiti have increased at an annualized rate of 16.1%, from $23.1M in 1996 to $955M in 2021. You just don’t throw that away! At the same time, this market is susceptible to political whims, poverty, economic development, etc. So, it is understandable and sensible what this official stated.