The opportunities for commercial alliances between companies of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic are on the table, boosted by the good will that currently exists between the authorities of both countries to facilitate a more fluid and robust economic exchange.
The subject was raised by the secretary of the Department of Economic Development and Commerce of Puerto Rico, Manuel Cidre Miranda, while participating in the Listín Diario Breakfast, where he pointed out that the relation between both countries cannot be of distance, but that a practical approach in terms of business and commerce must be propitiated.
He explained that in his visit to the Dominican Republic his interest is to approach the Dominican entrepreneurial ecosystem to present the advantages offered by the strategic alliances between the Dominican and Puerto Rican companies, which would contribute to their competitiveness.
He emphasized that the theme is to seek how to enhance opportunities to jointly take advantage of the US$56 million that Puerto Rico will receive in federal aid over the next seven years and whose objective is to reestablish its energy, water and communications infrastructure, among others.
At the end of 2021, the governor of Puerto Rico, Pedro Pierluisi, and the Dominican president, Luis Abinader, signed a strategic alliance to promote exchange and cooperation between the two countries.
Cidre Miranda said that it is important for Dominican businessmen to visualize that Puerto Rico can be an instrument of growth in three directions: by taking advantage of its relationship with the United States and its access to the U.S. market, by its experience with bioscience and by the needs of Puerto Rico in terms of food security.
Talking to the director of the Listín Diario, Miguel Franjul and the deputy director, Fabio Cabral, the secretary of Development and Commerce said that this relationship must be really bilateral, encouraging the Puerto Rican businessmen to look towards the Dominican Republic and the Dominican companies to find opportunities in the Island of Enchantment.
“The important thing here is to strengthen the region, that competition between peoples is a thing of the past”, emphasized Cidre Miranda, indicating that after the signing of the agreement between the two countries, the conditions have been created to maximize opportunities and he assured that the “table is set” to begin to take advantage of these processes.
He pointed out that conversations have already been achieved in technology issues, in the energy sector, in food production, in raw materials and revealed that there are negotiations to install an electric cable of 500 megawatts from the Dominican East coast to the West coast of Puerto Rico, to strengthen the electrical system.
Competitor for China
The Puerto Rican official pointed out that the strengthening of the “Dominican-Puerto Rican region could position us as the number one option in the Caribbean, to the extent that we could in the not too distant future be an important competitor for China”, given the experience with the pandemic and the difficulties of maritime transport.
He pointed out that in order to maximize opportunities it is important to visualize what the Dominican Republic has and what Puerto Rico has. “The technological part is more located in PR and the labor part is in the DR,” said Cidre Miranda and insisted on the need to unite the strengths of both economies and that the two countries move in the same direction.
He said that his mission in the country is to present the advantages that Puerto Rico has for investment, as a first effort to then share the benefits of the Dominican Republic to the investments of his country and together to create a strong alliance.
The Secretary of the Department of Economic Development and Commerce of Puerto Rico, during the Listín Diario Breakfast, was accompanied by the executive director of the PR Office in the DR, Nelson Torres Martínez, the executive assistant to the Secretary, José Sánchez, the director of the Business Incentives Office in PR, Carlos Fontán, the Assistant Secretary of Customer Service, Víctor Merced Amalbert and the administrative manager of the PR Government Office in the DR, Ruth Mery Gómez.
What niches can the DR find in PR?
In answering this question, Cidre Miranda pointed out that Puerto Rico has no land to plant, since 70% of its territory is occupied by constructions, but said that they have 135 empty buildings to manufacture agro-industries and that Dominican companies can supply agricultural inputs, know-how to produce, insert the products in the DR and return them to the US market.
The official indicated that there are opportunities in the aerospace and pharmaceutical industries and insisted on the opportunities that a Dominican-Puerto Rican consortium operating in both countries would create.