SANTO DOMINGO. The Dominican Republic exports 3,150 different products to 170 countries. Among these products the Dominican Republic is a world leader in cigars, cacao, bananas and textile products.
This was the statement by Jean Alain Rodriguez, the executive director of the Center for Exports and Investments of the Dominican Republic (CEI-RD), who said that the country is trying to become the "hub" of the Caribbean, due to its strategic location.
The official stressed in this way, the facilities that the country possesses with its ports, airports and highways and thousands of acres of production, which can change the Republic into this Commercial Hub.
He cited, moreover, that in spite of the departure of some airlines from the country, there are 14 new routes that have come into the Dominican Republic.
Rodriguez, who was the invited speaker at the luncheon-conference of the Dominican Association of Exporters (Adoexpo), and spoke on "The exports: A state priority," and referred to the fact that the country exported products last year for a value of nearly US$3.6 billion.
He said that the government seeks to push exports as one of the principle supports of its development, citing that at the present time Dominican products reach more than 170 different destinations.
He continued by saying that the direct foreign investments in the Dominican Republic achieved a 57.5% increase over 2011, and was some 45% of the investment market in the Caribbean.
Jean Alain said that the increase in exports has been significant and last year it grew by 16.5%, catapulted by the exports from the national industry and mining, so that they expect that in the next few years they go over US$10.0 billion.
Case of Haiti
In the meantime, the president of the Exporter's Association, Kai Schoenhals, said that while Haiti has the right to defend its commercial interests, it has no right to lie about the Dominican Republic.
He said that "we are partners with Haiti, they are our only land frontier, we are going to help them and we have been supportive, but based on a transparent dialogue."
He recognized the role that the Chancellery has played regarding the bans by Haiti of Dominican products, and he said he felt that the EPA (the agreement on economic cooperation with the European Union) is the best way to negotiatie with "our Haitian brothers."
Exporters and Haiti
The president of the Exporter's Association (Adoexpo), Kai Schoenhals, recognized that Haiti has every right in the world to generate jobs, to worry about its economy, to put their house in order, but "what Haiti does not have any right is to bad mouth, or smudge the good name that the Dominican companies have earned, not only in the Haitian market, but also in more than 100 countries around the world." He cited the fact that Dominican plastic products are exported to more than 70 countries, all of which have the highest quality standards.