Dominican Republic, business and paradise

Over the past decade, Dominican Republic has grown at a steady pace, an average rate of 5.6% of GDP per year. The keys of this growth have been the services sector (tourism), supported by the dynamism of the free trade zones, the FDI inflows and remittances from the Dominican diaspora.

Key takeaways

GDP per capita $8,282 (2019)

Population 10.74 million inhabitants

Leading Caribbean tourist destination

Remittances from Dominican diaspora, 8.34% of GDP (2019)

Foreign Direct Investments, $2.82 billion (2019)

Services trade balance surplus, $5.45 billion (2019)

Free zones, with more than 700 international companies and more than 170,000 local jobs

With regard to international trade, DR was the 90 largest exporting economy in 2019, with a total of $9.9 billion according International Trade Centre.

Behind Turkmenistan (89) with $10.8 billion and followed by Bolivia (91) with 8.9 billion. The countries within its geographical area of influence like Colombia, Costa Rica and Panama were placed in positions 55, 86 and 104 respectively.

During the period 2015-2019, exports increased at an average annual rate of 4.7% from $8.3 billion to $9.9 billion.

Imports reached 22 billion in 2019. The trade balance deficit (goods) stood at -$12.2 billion.


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In 2019, the top 5 Dominican exports with 58% out of the total, were:

  • 22 % Natural or cultured pearls, precious or semi-precious stones, precious metals, metals clad
  • 12 % Electrical machinery and equipment and parts thereof; sound recorders and reproducers, television
  • 10 % Tobacco and manufactured tobacco substitutes
  • 9 % Optical, photographic, cinematographic, measuring, checking, precision, medical or surgical
  • 5 % Iron and steel

The following 5 product groups represent 49 % out of total Dominican imports during 2019:

  • 18 % Mineral fuels, mineral oils and products of their distillation; bituminous substances; mineral
  • 8 % Electrical machinery and equipment and parts thereof; sound recorders and reproducers, television
  • 8 % Machinery, mechanical appliances, nuclear reactors, boilers
  • 8 % Vehicles other than railway or tramway rolling stock
  • 7 % Plastics and articles thereof


Exports of services rose by an average annual rate of 5.9% in the period 2015-2019, from $7.5 to $9.3 billion.

During the period 2013-2019, foreign direct investment (FDI) received by DR reached the average annual figure of $2.5 billion.

Its main trading partners are United States, which represents 47% of exchanges, followed by China with 12% and Mexico with 9% of exchanges.

Regarding bilateral agreements, Dominican Republic has 5 existing regional trade treaties (at the date of this publication). In addition to that, China and DR signed a diplomatic agreement in 2018, in order to boost economic ties between countries.

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Data from 2019, other years are stated.


Useful addresses:

Asociación Dominicana de Exportadores




Photo by Joe deSousa on Unsplash

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