International Cooperation and Development

Dominican Republic

Situated in the Caribbean region, the Dominican Republic has the largest economy of both Central America and the Caribbean. The country has maintained steady economic growth for nearly 3 decades and a stable democracy. Progress towards the Millennium Development Goals has also been made, with decreases in extreme poverty.

Still, the Dominican Republic faces significant government challenges when it comes to efficiency, accountability and transparency, as well as persistent corruption. Additionally, the country’s general poverty rate remains close to 40%.

The Dominican Republic is a member of the Central American Integration System (SICA), the Caribbean Forum (CARIFORUM), and the Association of Caribbean States. The country is actively engaged in finding regional solutions to regional challenges.

Our priorities

As part of the Africa, the Caribbean, and the Pacific, the Dominican Republic is a signatory of the Cotonou Agreement. In 2007, the EU signed an Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the 15 member countries of the CARIFORUM, liberalising most trade between the 2 regions.

Our support in the Dominican Republic is framed by the 11th European Development Fund (EDF) for 2014-2020. Our cooperation with the Dominican Republic centres on our shared strategic objectives, the local political and socio-economic context, and the priorities set out in the national development strategy. The aims of the financial support for the country build on:

  • inclusive, productive and qualitative employment

  • reforms of government institutions and public administration

We coordinate our efforts through regular meetings with EU Member States, as well as general donor coordination meetings organised by the World Bank. We also have ongoing contribution agreements with the United Nation Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Bank.

Our impact

  • 1,300 families benefitted from 13 new renewable energy systems, generating 188 kilowatts per month

  • Over 2,500 Haitian migrants or persons of Haitian descent (677 women and 604 men) concluded professional training courses aimed at integrating them in formal sectors of the Dominican economy

  • 11,000 Haitian migrants (4,100 women and 6,900 men) proceeded with the adjustment of their legal status in the framework of the National Regularisation Plan for Foreigners

  • 3,700 Haitian migrants (800 women and 2,900 men) were accompanied in legal proceedings to defend their rights

  • 19 small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) improved and implemented quality management systems and obtained quality certifications

Our programmes

The 11th EDF National Indicative Programme’s (NIP) 2 focus sectors in the Dominican Republic have been motivated by various factors. The rationale to support inclusive productive development and capacity building for quality employmentis based on the reorientation of the Dominican economic model towards stronger poverty reduction and social inclusion. The Dominican government has additionally declared employment and social inclusion as its priorities.

Promoting institutional consolidation and reforms of public administration is motivated by the goal to reduce poverty and enhance sustainable growth. This requires increasing the efficiency of the Dominican administration, by addressing many structural deficiencies in key areas. These include the professionalisation of civil service, streamlining of structures and processes, and strengthening transparency, accountability and the rule of law.

Regional and sub-regional cooperation

Between 2014-2020 the Dominican Republic will benefit from the EU sub-regional programme for Central America (€120 million). The programme responds to the emerging needs of the region, namely security and impunity, climate change and private sector development as a vehicle for generating employment opportunities.

The Dominican Republic-Haiti Binational Cooperation Programme spanning between 2018-2023 reinforces mutually beneficial and sustainable development processes in both countries. It fosters improved relations and integration processes in key areas.

The Dominican Republic benefits from EU-CARIFORUM Regional Cooperation in:

risk management of natural disasters

public security, mainly oriented to drug trafficking

the implementation of the EPA in tax reforms, statistics, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, technical barriers to trade, services, and institutional capacities