In the Dominican Republic, 8 out of every 10 dollars earned from tourism remain in the country and 60% of all profits have been reinvested.
These are two of the main conclusions of the study “Dominican Tourism: a decade of contributions 2009-2019”, a research presented by Banco Popular Dominicano and the Association of Hotels and Tourism of the Dominican Republic (ASONAHORES), which provides objective knowledge about the strength and potential of Dominican tourism and its leadership in the region.
According to the research prepared by the economic intelligence firm Analytica, during the study period, the accumulated inflow of foreign exchange generated by travelers’ spending plus investment in tourism reached US$68,217 million, of which 82% remained in the country, taking into account the outflows from imports, foreign advertising and investment profitability.
Accumulated foreign investment in the sector exceeded US$5,207 million, representing 20% of total foreign direct investment in the country during the ten years covered by the research, and 30% for the last five years.
This massive inflow of resources into the Dominican economy is explained by the fact that visitor arrivals during the decade exceeded 65 million, 7.5 million in 2019, with a total expenditure of US$63 billion. This represents an increase of 68% in the period. Meanwhile, cruise activity alone increased by 121%, while air arrivals were double those seen in the rest of the Caribbean.
The increase in visitor flow drove an increase of 16,372 rooms over the last decade, which reached 82,221 in 2019. At the same time, hotel occupancy increased by more than 11 points, rising from 66% in 2009 to 77.5% in 2018, prior to the media crisis.
The growth of the Dominican Republic’s gross domestic product (GDP) generated by tourist demand presented an average growth of 8.01%. Private activities linked directly or indirectly to tourism represent 13% GDP. This figure rises to nearly 16% if public activity and domestic tourism are taken into account.
The research indicates that as a result of tourism activity, 573,000 jobs were generated in the country, directly and indirectly, which corresponds to 12.3% of all jobs in the country.
In terms of taxes, tourism contributed more than RD$400,000 million in taxes, an average of 1.28% of the GDP each year. And it is the mainstay of the balance of payments, contributing to the accumulation of international reserves.
The report was presented during a meeting with representatives of the media and public opinion leaders in which participated the Minister of Tourism, Mr. David Collado; the executive president of Banco Popular, Mr. Christopher Paniagua, the president of ASONAHORES, Mr. Rafael Blanco Tejera, the president of CONEP, Mr. Pedro Brache, the executive vice-president of ASONAHORES, Mr. Andrés Marranzini, among other business leaders.
“This important industry has always focused on maintaining and elevating the prestigious positioning achieved in the region despite the various challenges that this entails. This determination has served as a driving force of inspiration to face the effects generated by COVID-19, the greatest of challenges at a global level,” said the president of ASONAHORES.
“Dominican Tourism: a decade of contributions 2009-2019” is the second sectoral study presented jointly by both institutions, which was preceded by the report, “Dominican Tourism, a sea of opportunities”, released in 2017.