Dominican republic

The economy of the Dominican Republic is the eighth largest in Latin America, and is the largest in the Caribbean and Central American region. The Dominican Republic is an upper-middle income developing country primarily dependent on mining, agriculture, trade, and services. The combined import market including the free-trade-zones amounts to a market of $20 billion a year in 2019. The combined export sector had revenues totaling $11 billion in 2019. The consumer market is equivalent to $61 billion in 2019.

The following tables and chart will tell the change details in last 5-10 years:

Dominican Republic Distribution of workforce from the last 5 years:

Sector20152016201720182019
Agriculture10.05%9.28%9.58%9.31%9.02%
Industries18.48%17.59%19.43%19.73%19.86%
Services71.47%73.13%71%70.95%71.12%

Dominican Republic Distribution of GDP across economic sectors:

Sector20152016201720182019
Agriculture5.48%5.51%5.34%5.15%5.16%
Industries28.5%27.58%28.07%28.81%26.93%
Services59.06%59.85%59.43%58.63%60.33%

Here attached the last 10 years chart of Dominican Republic GDP: (amount in billion USD):

3 Sectors of the Economy – Agriculture, Industry and Services:

  • Agriculture:

Agriculture is an important part in the Dominican Republic’s economy. It employs almost 9.02% of the total workforce and contributed almost 5.16% in GDP.

After Cuba, the Dominican Republic is the second-largest Caribbean producer of sugarcane, the nation’s most important crop. The State Sugar Council operates 12 sugar mills and accounts for about half of total production. Other large producers are the privately owned Vicini, with three mills, and Central Romana Corporation, whose mill is the largest in the country.

Agriculture in the Dominican Republic is a very important sector in terms of food, revenue, and employment. The main export crops are bananas, coffee, cocoa, mangoes, coconuts, sugar, lemons and oranges, while vegetables are particularly important for the domestic market.

Major products in this Sector:

Sugarcane: The first sugarcane plantations were introduced in the Dominican Republic by the Spanish colonizers in the beginning of the 16th century. In 219 545,515 metric tons of sugar were produced. The three private sector companies of the Dominican Sugar Industry accounted for more than 96 percent of all the sugar produced; Central Romana, CAEI, and CAC. The U.S. market remains the most important one for the Dominican Republic.  In 2019, sugar and sugar confectionary exports from the Dominican Republic to the United States amounted to almost U.S. $112 million.

Fruits: In 2019, the Dominican Republic produced 644 thousand tons of avocado (it is the 2nd largest producer in the world 1 million tons of papaya (it is the fourth largest producer in the world), 2.1 million tons of banana. In 2019 Dominican Republic exported almost $USD 599 million worth of fruits which represented almost 5.8% of total country’s export.

Agriculture Subsidy in Dominican Republic:

The Dominican Republic invests too little in agro-food research and development (R&D) Estimates indicate that agricultural expenditures in R&D as a share of agricultural value-added in the country are around 0.19%, in 2018, below top-performing agro-food exporters and other countries in the region as Chile (2.41%), Brazil (1.82%) and Costa Rica (1.1%). A greater effort in R&D and innovation could boost productivity as well as the quality of production.

Dominican Institute of Agricultural and Forestry Research (IDIAF) and Innovation in Biotechnology and Industry (IIBI) operate with a limited budget to promote R&D and innovation. In 2019 the IDIAF had a total budget of USD 6 million; the IIBI had a budget of USD 3 million. Although they have grown on average 2.5% each in constant terms since 2017, their share of the total national budget remains 0.04% and 0.02% respectively. 

  • Industries:

Industry is an important part in the Dominican Republic’s economy. It accounts for 26.93% of GDP and employed almost 19.86% of the workforce.

Major Industries in this Sector:

Mining: In 2019, the country was the 9th largest world producer of nickel. The country had almost zero production of gold until 2011, where it grew exponentially. In 2019 the country produced almost 28.3 tons. The country had almost zero production of silver until 2008, where it grew exponentially. In 2017 the country produced 109 metric tons. This is the biggest source for Dominican Republic almost 18.8% of the total country export which was USD $1.9 billion.

Medical Devices: The Dominican Republic has worked to position itself as a major player in the medical device and pharmaceutical product global supply chain. Currently, 33 medical device and pharmaceutical product manufacturers are operating under the Free Zones platform, generating more than 24,000 direct jobs and an accumulated investment of $1.3 billion USD. 5 of the world’s top 10 global medical device manufacturers are located there. Some of our top products include: Ostomy Appliances, Surgical Drapes, Electro Medical Instruments.

  • Services:

Service sector is an important part in the Dominican Republic’s economy. It contributes almost 60.33% in the GDP and employed almost 71.12% of the total Dominican Republic’s workforce.

Major Industries in this Sector:

Finance: The Dominican Republic’s banking sector is one of the largest contributors to the country’s GDP development: the industry fosters the production and export of products and services through traditional financing and capital market structures. Digitalization offers banks numerous opportunities to increase financial inclusion by providing customers with better access to financial services. Digital innovations can facilitate broader financial education in the community and help provide formal credit to a greater number of people. This can have a significant impact on the economy and the productive development of the country.

Tourism: Tourism in the Dominican Republic is an important sector of the country’s economy. More than 8 million tourists visit the Dominican Republic, making it the most popular tourist destination in the Caribbean and putting it in the top 5 overall in the Americas. The industry accounts for more than 16% of the nation’s GDPand is a particularly important source of revenue in coastal areas of the country. The nation’s tropical climate, white sand beaches, diverse mountainous landscape and colonial history attracts visitors from around the world.

Top Companies in Dominican Republic

RankingCompany NameSector
1Direccion General de Impuestos InternosFinance
2Banco BHDFinance
3ERCBusiness Process Outsourcing
4Edward LifesciencesHealthcare
5BanreservasBanking
6PwCAccounting
7Philip Morris InternationalConsumer Products Manufactering

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