Local May 11, 2012 | 7:46 am

Presidential candidates play to key sectors 9 days to polls

Santo Domingo.- The presidential candidates of Dominican Republic’s two major parties played to key sectors in separate activities Thursday night, as the electoral campaign swings into the last week.

Ruling PLD party candidate Danilo Medina pledged to sit with business sector leaders to agree on an integral tax reform which includes government spending and revenue, once the elections conclude.

He also said he opposes a higher sales tax (Itebis) and wants to negotiate with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), but “for a precautionary agreement which doesn’t entail disbursement, which doesn’t raise the debt, but does create contingency capacity if international conditions worsen and if they worsen locally amid the global crisis.”

“I’m also against a higher Itebis, I don’t agree with that, to continue transferring taxes to the sector which has the least. I have my own proposal that I will make once we sit down,” Medina said.

Mejía

Opposition party PRD candidate Hipólito Mejía said he’ll construct an economic policy to tackle poverty if he wins the election, and reiterated a commitment to allocate 4% of the GDP to education.

He said he would redirect government spending towards what he considers the country’s true priorities.

In a televised speech Mejía said he will prioritize social policy including elementary education and in alliance with the business sector, create more than 400,000 formal jobs.

The former chief executive also pledged to expand the coverage and benefits of the welfare program Solidarity Card, noting its importance in improving women’s standard of living.

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