Dominican Republic’s said the country is on the path to reach president Danilo Medina’s proposed goal of 10 million tourists for the next 10 years.
Mr. Garcia said tourism grew 6.6 percent, beating forecasts for the country and the region and much of the world, despite the global crisis.
Mr. Garcia said the country has the highest growth in the Caribbean for the second straight year to become the regional leader, a position he affirms will continue in the coming years with the government’s joint plans with the private sector.
The Dominican Republic has long been viewed primarily as an exporter of sugar, coffee, and tobacco, but in recent years the service sector has overtaken agriculture as the economy’s largest employer, due to growth in telecommunications, tourism, and free trade zones.
The Dominican Republic’s economy is highly dependent upon the US, the destination for more than half of exports. Remittances from the US amount to about a 10th of GDP, equivalent to almost half of exports and three-quarters of tourism receipts. The country suffers from marked income inequality; the poorest half of the population receives less than one-fifth of GDP, while the richest 10% enjoys nearly 40% of GDP. High unemployment and underemployment remains an important long-term challenge.
The Central America-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR) came into force in March 2007, boosting investment and exports and reducing losses to the Asian garment industry. The growth of the Dominican Republic’s economy rebounded from the global recession in 2010-12 and remains one of the fastest growing in the region.
By. Edie Gonzales