Caribbean News Now!

About Us Contact Us


Jump to your country or territory of interest

Advertise with us

Reach our daily visitors from around the Caribbean and throughout the world. Click here for rates and placements.


Submit news and opinion for publication


Click here to receive our daily regional news headlines by email.


Click here to browse our extensive archives going back to 2004

Also, for the convenience of our readers and the online community generally, we have reproduced the complete Caribbean Net News archives from 2004 to 2010 here.

Climate Change Watch

The Caribbean is especially vulnerable to rising sea levels brought about by global warming. Read the latest news and information here...


Follow Caribbean News Now on Twitter
Connect with Caribbean News Now on Linkedin

News from the Caribbean:

Back To Today's News

Report proposes new road map to promote opportunities for all in Dominican Republic
Published on February 21, 2014 Email To Friend    Print Version

SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic -- A new World Bank report released on Wednesday suggests major institutional reforms in the Dominican Republic as a way forward for accelerating poverty reduction and shared prosperity in the country.

While having one of the fastest growth rates in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) region, above five percent per year from 2000 to 2011, many of the 10 million Dominicans missed out on the benefits of economic development, the reports says.

The report, “When Prosperity Is not Shared,” highlights that GDP per capita rose 50 percent as opposed to a 26 percent increase in LAC in the last decade. Yet, only two percent of Dominicans escaped poverty compared to the 40 percent of poor Latin Americans, close to 80 million.

“While poverty has fallen since the 2003-2004 banking crisis, four out of ten Dominicans are still poor and the middle class has not grown significantly in a decade,” said Louise Cord, World Bank sector manager of the Poverty Reduction and Gender Group in the Latin America and Caribbean Region. "The report aims at promoting a debate on equity issues and identifies priority areas for action that can generate opportunities for all Dominicans."

With the financial crisis, the Dominican population living on about four dollars a day had soared to 50 percent. Though poverty has fallen by 10 percent since 2005, the ability of poor Dominican families to improve their economic and social status over time remains limited compared to the rest of the region.

The report also finds that the number of poor has doubled in cities, rising from 1.2 to. 2.4 million since 2000. This “urbanization” of poverty is not explained by rural poor migrating to big cities, but more by the limited economic opportunities and the slow growth in jobs in urban areas.

Access to health, education and housing, have improved significantly over the past decade. Only 19 percent of Dominicans lack these basic services. Still, quality of services is not strong enough to provide equal opportunities for all Dominicans.

Despite some progress in accessing education, coverage and quality remain limited. While there has been substantial increase in school enrollment, teacher absenteeism, double shifts, and high teacher pupil ratios are affecting children’s education and poor students in particular. More than 40 percent of third graders lack basic math skills and students in the Dominican Republic show some of the lowest academic performance in the region.

The report suggests three strategies to generate a positive cycle of shared prosperity and to close the gaps with the rest of the region:

• Improving the investment climate to boost entrepreneurship and jobs creation while strengthening access of the poor to labor markets: Growing sectors such as tourism, manufacturing, telecommunication and financial services have not generated as many jobs as envisaged initially. Instead most of the job created has been low skilled jobs in the informal sector. Real wages declined by 27 percent in the last ten years, even as labor productivity rose. Improving competition policy and the investment climate would generate more and better jobs.

• Promote equitable, efficient and sustainable fiscal policy: The current tax system is hampered by low revenue collection, and relies heavily on indirect taxes. Making the tax system more progressive would allow more redistribution, as well as more investments in essential public services such as water and sanitation, quality education and health for the most vulnerable.

• Improve public service delivery to reach the poor: Despite significant improvements in service delivery, access to basic public services remains unequal and of low quality, particularly for the poor. Better program targeting, monitoring and evaluation, along with incentives such as performance-based budgeting could help improve service delivery.

The report concludes that a broad consensus in Dominican society is growing which allows moving forward on the right set of reforms, so the country can take the road to a more inclusive growth and promote opportunities for all Dominicans.
Reads: 2462

Click here to receive daily news headlines from Caribbean News Now!



No comments on this topic yet. Be the first one to submit a comment.


Send us your comments!  

Send us your comments on this article. All fields are required.

For your contribution to reach us, you must (a) provide a valid e-mail address and (b) click on the validation link that will be sent to the e-mail address you provide.  If the address is not valid or you don't click on the validation link, we will never see it!

Your Name:

Your Email:

(Validation required)

Enter Code

Please note that, if you are using an AT&T domain email address, e.g.,,, the verification email will likely not be delivered. This is outside of our control and the only remedy seems to be for readers to complain to AT&T

User comments posted on this website are the sole views and opinions of the comment author and are not representative of Caribbean News Now or its staff. Caribbean News Now accepts no liability and will not be held accountable for user comments.
Caribbean News Now reserves the right to remove, edit or censor any comments. Any content that is considered unsuitable, unlawful or offensive, includes personal details, advertises or promotes products, services or websites or repeats previous comments will not be approved.
Before posting, please refer to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

The Caribbean Writer 2014

Other Headlines:

Regional Sports: