US$2 billion to be invested in border projects
Participants in the Binational Quisqueya Economic Council (CEBQ) have provided a framework to attract US$2 billion in investments to spur sustainable development all along the Dominican Republic-Haiti border. In a presentation at the Border Development Department (DGDF), Rafael Paz, Executive Secretary of CEBQ, outlined the ambitious binational border development plan that will be launched by the end of this year.
The CEBQ is made up of Dominican and Haitian business representatives. Development projects planned will strengthen manufacturing and industry, farming, energy and tourism sectors in the border area. These investments in sustainable development are desperately needed in the border region, where unemployment is estimated at 60%. The promise of creating jobs in the region is an important weapon to combat poverty in Haiti, eliminating the need for the poor to migrate to the Dominican Republic or other countries to find work.
The project also contemplates funding for the construction of low cost housing for the families working in the region.
The border development plan will assist companies to establish operations in Haiti to take advantage of the Hope and Help legislation of the US government that offers incentives for goods made in Haiti. The plan will emulate the business model for light manufacturing that Grupo M has developed in Haiti.
CEBQ is also focusing on taking advantage of the deepwater port in the Manzanillo Bay (Pepillo Salcedo), in northwestern Dominican Republic to increase commerce in the region.
The promoters of the project say that billions could be invested in border area industries in the next 10 years. “This project will have a positive impact both on the Dominican Republic as well as in Haiti, buffering the migratory pressure,” said Miguel Bejaran, director of Border Development (DGDF).
Dominican representatives of the Binational Quisqueya Economic Council (CEBQ) (CEBQ), Ligia Bonetti, Juan Vicini, Fernando Capellan and Rafael Paz, also spoke to at the Senate about plans to promote a public and private investment plan of around US$5,000 to US$6,000 million over 15 years to develop the border area. The investments would lead to more jobs, more production and more exports.
Vicini said that the increase in investments would be enabled by creating a public-private partnership in which businesses would agree to set aside a portion of their profits to be reinvested in communities in the border region. Vicini specifically targeted the construction of 3,000 homes, expansion of industrial parks and the restoration of the port of Manzanillo.
Source: DR1, Hoy
July 22, 2015
Category: DR News |