NEWS FEBRUARY 2008

Stand-By Agreement

The Dominican Central Bank said it received US $122.6 million from the IMF on Thursday, after that entity approved the eighth and last revision in the Stand-By Agreement, and the funds would help “face undesired movements in the rate of exchange.”

It said the Agreement, approved in January, 2005, and included nearly US $695.1 million in loans, was extended until January 30, 2008.

“The funds from the IMF come to strengthen the level of the international reserves of the Central Bank, which represents a greater shield to react before external shocks and to face undesired movements in the rate of exchange,” it said on its Web site.

It said the payments bring the gross international reserves around US $2.92 billion to the close of January, 2008.

“The successful culmination of the Agreement with the IMF reaffirms the commitment of the Dominican authorities with the maintenance of the macroeconomic stability it was able to reach in the Agreement’s three years in vigor,” the Central Bank said.

Dominican Republic Live, 01.02.08

Dominican Republic Will Pay 7 Million US $ in November to Petrocaribe


Logo PetrocaribeAgreement with Venezuela

The Dominican Republic will pay 7.0 million US $ in November to Venezuela for the debt of the Petrocaribe agreement, informed this Monday the secretary of Finances, Vicente Bengoa.

“Petrocaribe is an agreement over 25 years, with two years of tolerance which will expire in October”, the civil servant said.

He explained that during the years 2008 and 2009, the country will have to pay 27 million US $ to Venezuela for the Agreement.

Bengoa added that it will be after 2010 that the payments will be highest for the Dominican Republic.

Dominican Republic Live, 04.02.08

Las Iguanas Golf Course in Cap Cana to Open in November


Cap Cana beach Ambitious residential project

One of the most ambitious residential projects ever undertaken in the Caribbean, Cap Cana is on track to have it’s Jack Nicklaus signature golf course completed on schedule, by October 2008.

The $1.5 billion residential golf project bills itself as “the World’s Next Great Destination”, although Donald Trump might disagree if he manages to get his Scottish version underway.

The Las Iguanas golf course is an integral part of the development’s first phase with Frontier Golf supervising its construction. In executing Nicklaus’ plans for Los Iguanas, Frontier Golf joined a team of international professionals on the development, including club operator Troon Golf.

Construction of Las Iguanas began in June 2007 and is about 25% complete, putting them well on track to open as planned early 2009. Jack Nicklaus made his first site visit in November. He inspected all 18 holes, set forth the design strategy and provided detailed sketches of six putting surfaces and surrounds.

For its part, Frontier Golf expect to complete the course-construction portion of the estimated $40 million Las Iguanas project by November 2008. Frontier Golf expect to move almost one million cubic meters of rock. Some 35% of that has been unearthed since June 2007.

The Cap Cana development includes a state-of-the-art Marina surrounded by three stories residences with four bedrooms, living room, family room, fully equipped kitchen, terrace and swimming level, utility and laundry area, interior elevator, two covered parking spaces, one parking area for golf cart, common green area, and access to Cap Cana’s Marina pier.

Dominican Republic Live, 05.02.08

Rio Group to Meet in Santo Domingo


Logo Rio GroupXX Summit Meeting

The city of Santo Domingo de Guzman, the capital of the Dominican Republic, will be the site of the XX Summit Meeting of Heads of State and heads of Governments next 4-7 March.

The summit will deal with issues concerning energy, development and disaster relief. The meeting will be held at the Ministry of Foreign Relations building.

 

In July 2007, the city was host to the Rio Group’s Ministerial Summit, in a joint effort with the European Union. At that time, some EUR2,700 were pledged in donations and economic assistance to Latin America.

Dominican Republic Live, 12.02.08

If Prices Need Raising, Rise They Will, Dominican Big Business Says


Dominican industryCost analysis

National Business Council (CONEP) president Lisandro Macarrulla said on Monday the cost of basic consumer goods must first be analyzed before speaking of possible increases, but if necessary the prices of those products would rise.

Macarrulla, quoted by the news site clavedigital.com.do, was responding to Industry and Commerce minister Melanio Paredes, who said the Government wouldn’t tolerate price rises for staples and other basic consumer goods by businesses.

 

“Well, the first thing which needs analyzing, to see what’s real is to make a costs analysis and if it merits a price increased it’s necessary to increase them,” Macarrulla said.

The CONEP president also reiterated that his entity approves the signing of a new agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). “We have said a thousand times that we’re in favor of the Government signing a new agreement with the IMF, that topic has been more than discussed,” Macarrulla said.

Dominican Republic Live, 13.02.08

Margarita Cedeño de Fernández to Participate in The Council of Women Leaders Against Human Abuse

The First Lady in the United Nations Global Forum

The first lady, Margarita Cedeño de Fernández, has been chosen to be part of the Women Leaders Against Human Abuse, during a meeting in Vienna, yesterday, informed her press office.

A news release from the office of the first lady explained that Margarita Cedeño de Fernandez has been invited to participate in this initiative by Dr. Antonio Maria Costa, Secretary-General of the United States, and director of the United States Office against Drugs and Delinquency.

It was explained that the Council of Women Leaders includes personalities from the political, diplomatic, artistic and employers aswell as non-governmental organizations worldwide.
The Council has been proposed at the Global Forum of the United Nations to fight human abuse, which met in Vienna, Austria, on 13 and 15 February.

Margarita Cedeño de Fernández spoke in the Forum of strategies that she considers should be adopted at the global level to deal with the human abuse, especially defending the initiatives that strengthen the protection of vulnerable populations in order to avoid victims of human abusing.

Among the actions agreed there is the creation of a website through which we can be aware of the problem and where the denunciation of human abuse is facilitated.

For this implementation, they will continue to work closely with the United Nations from its office.

Dominican Republic Live, 18.02.08

Air Dominicana Will Travel to The USA and to Latin America From the Beggining of May


Air Dominicana airplane Long distance flights for Air Dominicana

Air Dominicana will start its operations from May, with flights to the United States, Mexico and to south America.
Those will extend to other destinations, which the public and private sector consider as a vital importance for the tourism development.

The Tourism Secretary, Felix Jimenez, informed yesterday that the first plane is expected for April, a Boeing 737 with the capacity of 180 passengers. Then will arrive two other Boeing (737 y 767) which will ensure long distance flights from and to Europe.

Arturo Villanueva, vice-president executive of Asonahores, precises the fact that Air Dominicana will participate to the diversification of the touristic offers and by this way increase the number of visitors.

 

Dominican Republic Live, 18.02.08

The Student’s Day

The Education secretariat celebrates the Student’s Day

With the participation of more than 1600 students from different parts of the country, the secretariat of Education celebrated yesterday the Day of the Student, at a ceremony which was attended by officials of this community and dozens of teachers.

The event, which took place in the Class Magna of the “Universidad Autonoma de Santo Domingo” (UASD), and was chaired by the Under-Secretaries of Education and the director of the Academy of State, Roberto Reyna .

The Secretary of Education, Alejandrina German did not attend the reunion because she is suffering from an injury to her left hand after a fall.

The Under-Secretary of Technical and Educational Affairs, Susana Michell, gave the central speech in which she asserts that the Dominican education in a position ever seen so far in the perception of society, “to the point that all measurements and evaluations coincide in a high recovery”

During the activity, the children presented artistic performances and explained the importance of the education and the success of the current management.
She added that students, as principal actors in the education system, hold in their hands the tools for the realization of their dreams and to provide the best of their knowledge and values in this country.

 

She said that the education authorities want to build a society ever more committed to the collective well-being, with respect for the diversity, with the evaluation of individuality and the full development of the environment.

During this meeting have been given certificates of appreciation to 378 students from 18 regions of the country.

Dominican Republic Live, 19.02.08

The evaluation of the International Monetary Fund


Logo International Monetary FundBalance of the IMF for the Dominican Republic

The evaluation of the “International Monetary Fund” (IMF) on the Dominican economy characterized the macroeconomic policies of prudent, but cautions on the fact that the country has one of the indicators of reserve the lowest among emerging markets.

At the same time, according to the IMF, the coefficients of public debt remain substantially above the levels prior to the crisis and a substantial amount of debt in pesos dominated must be restored in a short time.

He stressed that although the vulnerabilities in the financial sector are reduced, they will persist until the consolidated supervision, risk-based, should be fully implemented and that the institutional capacity to be further strengthened.
The directors of the IMF :”the statement added recommended continued vigilance on the growth of consumer loans and mortgage”.

The improvement in the fiscal balance is highlighted during the programme period, which reflects a substantial increase in economic inputs, due in part to a positive external environment, and indicates that the primary spending has remained stable since 2004 even if the grant programs continue to be high and poorly directed.

Dominican Republic Live, 20.02.08

Inauguration of New Telecommunications Company

Logo Wind Telecom Wind telecom arrives to Dominican Republic

With an investment of 3 thousand million pesos, the company Wind Telecom was inaugurated yesterday evening, a ceremony during which the main actors, José Manuel and Bonilla Clase stressed the investment climate in the country.

The inauguration was attended by the Vice-President of the Republic Rafael Alburquerque, a businessman Felix M. C. Garcia , Senator Francisco Domínguez Brito and other personalities of Santo Domingo and Santiago, as well as representatives of communications companies worldwide.

Bonilla, executive director, explained that the telecommunications company is focused to provide comprehensive services of the Internet, television and telephones to personal customers, as well as specialized services to institutions, ensuring the quality, cost, and delivery.

“Our services are based on a 100% IP / MPLS, as a priority by phone, which offers major advantages of cost, quality and safety to our customers. The Internet and telephone will be based on the first Wimax mobile network technology with Nortel” said Bonilla.

He stressed the fact that Wind Telecom relies on two data centers the most modern in the country, located in Santo Domingo and Santiago, which enables them to put at the disposal of enterprises and institutions, public and private, a space for the physical location of its servers.

“This was designed to send a signal digital television without the need to put cables in the city, which contributes to its beautification, without losing the signal due to inclement weather, seamless because of cuts cables , and in order to reach the areas of the population not yet served” he said.

 

Jose Clase informed that since the time or Wind was conceived as a project, he felt assured of achieving positive results, because he believed and still believes in the investment climate enjoyed by the Dominican Republic .

“If we look at economic exercise registered by the country, with successes in macroeconomic stability and a renewed sense of opportunity, we can look towards the future with confidence” said Clase.

Dominican Republic Live, 20.02.08

The Dominican Medical College on Strike


Dominican DoctorDoctors expect compliance from the government

The Dominican Medical College “Colegio Médico Dominicano CMD” has stop working for 24 hours today in 162 public hospitals and the Dominican Institute for Social Insurance (IDSS) in the country, and threaten to extend the movement to a week if the Government fails to agree with the doctors.

“We will continue with the deepening of the struggle, and if there should be on strike for a week, we will. There is no turning back” said the chairman of CMD, Waldo Ariel Suero.

The decision of physicians is a way to ask that the authorities take more of their demands, among other pay raise on average 58,000 pesos, the revision of the quota recovery in the affected hospitals, the call for medical assistance, creations of places for doctors trainees, the preservation of the IDSS and pensions just for the staff.

“We want a dialogue with proposals, not a dialogue in the air, which seeks to gain time to stop the strike. It’s not going to stop it, it will go deeper” said the president of the corporation.

 

He argues that the medical profession has sought to engage with the government in every way to reach an agreement since it is now two months that we dialogue and we stopped the strike in the east and we were misled

Dominican Republic Live, 21.02.08

The ODA Proclaims Leonel Fernandez As its Candidate


Leonel FernandezThe agent said that the next period will be one of consolidation of basic services

Leonel Fernández, Presidential Candidate of the Dominican Liberation Party and the Bloc Progressive said that in the next 4 years he will concentrate his efforts in basic services, many of which, he assured, are in the modernization project.

He has exposed the need to build a political project that turns into a popular hegemony in order to continue to lead the destiny of the country much more after 2012.

At the direction of the act during which he was proclaimed presidential candidate of the left Alliance for Democracy “(Alianza por la Democracia” APD), Fernández said that in August, when will begin the new presidential term, will begin the road until this goal.

Fernández added that the four years of his government were reflected in the recovery of the economy and the stabilization of the various sectors that influence the growth of the country and he insisted that for the four years 2008-2012, it will be question of consolidating the successes, the reaffirmation of democracy and progress.

He argued that during the four years that the country was governed by the PRD, it was hit by a decrease has such that in 2004 growth index was negative, which was not justified since other Latin America’s countries and the world took advantage of the times of sustained growth.

 

Dominican Republic Live, 22.02.08

Rio Group Leaders Headed to Dominican Republic Summit


Leonel Fernandez 10th Grupo Rio summit

Leaders from different countries have confirmed their participation in the 10th Grupo Rio summit to be held in the country from March 4 to 7, to discuss topics which affect Latin American nations such as energy, natural disasters and development.

Among he presidents who have confirmed their participation in the summit is Argentina’s Cristina Fernandez; Bolivia’s Evo Morales; Chile’s Michelle Bachelet; Mexico’s Felipe Calderón; Guyana’s Michael Bagdeo; Nicaragua’s Daniel Ortega; Guatemala’s Alvaro Colom; El Salvador’s Elías Antonio Saca; and Manuel Zelaya, of Honduras.

Foreign minister Carlos Morales Troncoso said Venezuela president Hugo Chávez was invited, but didn’t confirm his participation. He said the Summit is an example of Dominican Republic’s leadership and reflection of its foreign policy.

The conclusions of Summit of Heads of State will be made public in the Declaration of Santo Domingo, on March 7.

Dominican Republic Live, 26.02.08
A photo book reveals the natural richness of the Dominican Republic
Boat, sea, beach of Dominican republicThe Dominican Republic in images

A series of images which show the cultural richness and the diversity of the flora and fauna, as well as landscapes, inhabitants and, obviously, blue sea, compose this photographic book « Dominican Republic in images » , which was presented today in Mexico.

During the XXIX Feria Internacional del Libro del Palacio de Minería (FILPM), which takes place from February 21 to March 2, Andrés F Lora, adviser in charge of the Cultural Affairs of the Embassy of the Dominican Republic in Mexico, explained that this book is the result of two contests which were won by young Dominican photographers in 2005 and in 2006.

He stressed that the publication of the volume was obtained thanks to the initiative of the ambassador of the country in Mexico, Pablo Maríñez, and of the support of the Central Bank of Dominican Republic.

The book presents photos illustrating various topics like the nature, the people, the coasts, the beaches, the mountains and the rivers of this Caribbean country.

Moreover, it offers images of the traditional carnival celebrated every year, as well as cities, historical zones and vestiges of the colonial time.

He stressed the importance of the presentation of this book to the FILPM, which diffuses the culture of the Dominican Republic in Mexico. “It is a rich and joyful culture that we wish to make known to the Mexicans because we have many things and we have some in common with the Mexican people, like the richness of the coasts and the colored carnivals” , announced Lora.

He said that the cultural exchange between Dominican Republic and Mexico is strong and is carried out through cultural and musical activities, which reinforces even more the links between the two nations.

Dominican Republic Live, 25.02.08

Leonel Fernández Speaks of His work, Announces New Challenges and Projects
Government, National Assembly The Opposition answers the Speech By Indicating That They Are Repeated Promises

Leonel Fernández gave an account of the exercise of his last 12 month government

President Leonel Fernández defended yesterday the economic policy of his government after having supported that it was given to him at the end of 2004 “in intensive care”, whereas the Dominican ones live now under better conditions than four years ago and that they eat more and better.

He recognized the low level of investment in the educational, health and social policies sectors, which he allotted to the public expenses, the external debt and the subsidy of the electric sector and the use of liquid gas oil.

In his speech of giving an account in front of the National Assembly, the agent announced investments in the sugar and mining industry for 3,100 million US $, with the creation of more than 30 thousand employments, and the beginning of the Monte Grande dam, the initiation of the days of multiple use of the Camú river and the completion of a series of work.

Fernández identified the electric sector and what relates to the citizens security as the two great challenges of the country, but ensured that at the latest in 2012, the power cuts will be definitively eradicated and that the whole national territory would be protected.

On its side, the employers’ sector evaluated the speech like positive and honest, while the parties of opposition said that the agent did nothing but repeat promises and showed demagogy.

Dominican Republic Live, 28.02.08

The Majority of The Population Does Not Support The Claim of An Increase in The Salaries of Doctors


Dominican HospitalA survey shows that the population does not support doctors

The majority of the population does not like the claims of increased wages ask by the Colegio Médico Dominicano (CMD). The request was the subject of the investigation “almomento.net” during the last four days.
Faced with the answer: “What do you think of the demand for wage increase by the doctor ? ”

The responses were as follows:

Justified: 41%
Injustified: 59%

From his side, the President of the CMD, Waldo Ariel Suero, announced a series of events, which included a walk at the Palacio Nacional.
“We are in the process of organising demonstrations, relying on vigils in the Forum and others who support us” he said.

Dominican Republic Live, 22.02.08

Five Companies to Bid to Evaluate Shell’s stake in Dominican Refinery


Shell stationDominican Petroleum Refinery

Five international and two local today companies showed their interest in the Hacienda Ministry’s called bid to evaluate the company Shell’s shares in the Dominican Petroleum Refinery, after the Dominican Government announced its interest in acquiring the oil company’s other 50 percent.

Representatives of the companies Conecam Central America, Improaval F.C., and PETRA, if Venezuelan capital; CH2 MHILL, of Mexican capital, FTI Consulting, U.S. capital, and the Dominican companies Baker Tilly Dominicana and Incisa, today said they would participate in the bid, by presenting the necessary documents.

Deputy minister Julio Aníbal Hernandez, Fernándo Pou, Adan Bodden, Héctor Lama, Radhamés Jordan and Mateo Inoa will head the bidding commission.

Hacienda minister Vicente Bengoa, who headed the meeting, said the bidding will be done in a transparent manner and the government will give “no more, no less” for Shell’s stake.

The State’s contract with Shell has been in effect for more than 35 years, through which the oil company handles administration, and for that reason many details of the business are practically unknown.

Dominican Republic Live, 29.02.08

 

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