Economy January 20, 2024 | 1:46 pm

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Dominican Republic’s Free Trade Zones see record growth

Santo Domingo.– The Dominican Republic’s free trade zones (FTZs) saw record growth in 2023, with exports reaching US$8.06 billion, up from US$5.89 billion in 2020. The growth of 36.7% was the highest in the history of the FTZ sector, which also created 17.5% more jobs in 2023, bringing the total to 197,674.

“These results are the product of a strategic plan and execution that has involved the public and private sectors,” said Victor “Ito” Bisonó, Minister of Industry, Commerce and SMEs. “The synergy between the Dominican Association of Free Trade Zones, the American Chamber of Commerce in the Dominican Republic, the National Council of Free Trade Zones of Export, and the MICM has been particularly positive for the country.”

In addition to the growth in exports and jobs, the number of companies operating in FTZs increased by 18.5% to 820, and the number of active parks increased by 16% to 87. The total area of occupied warehouses also increased by 15.1% to 49.6 million square feet.

The top four categories of production in FTZs were: metals and their manufactures (45.9% growth), plastics (28.9%), agro-industrial products (11%), and pharmaceutical products and medical instruments and equipment (10.1% growth).

The pharmaceutical sector was particularly strong, accounting for 53% of total FTZ exports. It also saw the largest absolute increase in exports, up $229.7 million from 2022.

The growth of the FTZ sector is a significant boost to the Dominican economy. The sector is a major source of foreign exchange and employment, and it is a key driver of economic growth.

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