A Beginner’s Guide to Dominican Republican

Country Facts of Dominican Republic:

Locating on island of Hispaniola in the Caribbean region, Dominican Republican is a

nation with two countries shared island. Dominican Republican is the second largest

Caribbean nation after Cuba both by population and area. Its island is occupied by

Haiti nation. Its motto is “Dios, Patria, Libertad”. In English, “God, Fatherland,

Liberty” is the motto of the country.

History of Dominican Republic:

The Tainos moved towards Hispaniola and they displaced the earlier inhabitants.

Their professions were hunting, gathering, farming and fishing. In the meanwhile,

during 15th century, the Caribs drove the Tainos towards the northeastern

Caribbean. In 1492, the island had been divided into 5 Taino chiefdoms. In 1492,

Christopher Columbus, a Spanish ruler, came in the island, in one of his four

voyages, and claimed the island for Spain and he named it La Espanola. Later on,

Bartholomew Columbus, brother of Christopher Columbus, built up city of Santo

Domingo. The Tainos disappeared from the area. Santo Domingo got its population

increased from 6000 in 1737 to 125000 in 1790. At the end of the 18th century, with

effect of French Revolution, Spain neglected its holdings and ceded area to France.

The slaves, led by Toussaint Louverture, of Santo Domingo took revolt against

France. In 1801, they took the control of the entire island. Later on, Toussaint was

sent to jail and the revolt continued. In 1808, with the aid of Great Britain, Santo

Domingo was given in Spanish control again.

After some failure and discontent, Santo Domingo’s Lieutenant-Governor, Jose

Nunez de Caceres, declared the independence of the colony as Spanish Haiti in

November 30, 1821. The Haitians, like Toussaint, abolished the chains of slavery

and all the private property, in the result of invasion, was nationalized. On February

27, 1844, Dominican Republican got independence by wake of Duarte, Sanchez and

Mella; the founding fathers of the country.

At present, following the democratic system, as a result of election, Fernandez is

leading Dominican Republican since 2004 because he has been re-elected in 2008.

Demographics of Dominican Republic:

The population of Dominican Republican in 2007, estimated by the United Nations,

was 9,760,000. It is the 82nd biggest nation in the world by wake of its population in

193 nations of the whole world. The growth annual rate of population in 2007 was

1.5% and it can increase the population in 2015 to 10,121,000. Moreover, the urban

areas are holding 63% population and Cibao Valley and the southern coastal plainsare the densely populated areas of this nation. In the capital city, Santo Domingo, the population resides above 3,014,000.

Economy of Dominican Republic:

In Central America and Caribbean, according to the U.S State Department, the

economy of Dominican Republican is the second largest economy. It can be called

as middle-income developing country having GDP per cappta of $9,208 in PPP terms

which seems relatively very high in Latin America. It had got exceptional growth in

its GDP of 9.1%. Most of the time, the growth was led by imports, exports, finance

and foreign investment in the country. The inhabitants of the country depend

primarily on natural resources and government services. Agriculture stands at the

second place, after mining, in terms of earning for the Dominicans.

The government service sector has got growth in the recent years and Free Trade

Zones are the fastest export sectors for earnings. In 2007, real estate tourism

accounted $1.5 billion earnings. The economy is getting its rise despite of the fact

of chronic energy shortage. The remittances and tourism earnings have assisted to

build up foreign exchange reserves.

By following different kinds of the turmoil seething in the late 1980s, the Dominican

Republic entered in the period of declining inflation and the upraising of the growth

until 2002 and in this way, the domestic product fell by up to 5% and the economy

of the country entered in the recession. In the same years, the fraud of the

Dominican Republic’s president, Hipolito Mejia, led the country to the loss of $3.5

billion which made the country towards the devastating effect. The inflation

ballooned over 27% by wake of it and all the defendants were convicted.

According to the report of the United Nations in 2005, the country is ranked in the

whole world at 71 for the resource availability. It is No.79 for human development

and No.14 in the world for resource mismanagement. In this way, these statistics

stress the nation government economic interference, corruption and the rift the

between the poor and the rich.

Ethnicity of Dominican Republic:

In the CIA fact book, it is stated that the Dominican Republic consists of 73%

multiracial, 11% black and 16% white population. In the multiracial population, the

people of European and African countries are in higher number and the Taino

element can be seen evidently in the population. In 2010, it is been published that

15% Dominicans have Taino ancestry and more than 70% have African genes.

According to the U.N envoy, in 2007, the racism in Dominicans against black in

general and against Haitians in particular is rampant in the every segment of the

country.

Religion of Dominican Republic:In Dominican Republic, more than 68.9% people are Roman Catholic and 10.6% infidels are there and other 2.3% people have some other religion to follow. In other sources, it has been noted that the ratio of the irreligious people is at 7% and nearly to 10%. The Dominican Republic is the completely independent for following the religion as it provides no restrictions on the population and everyone can follow the religion of its own will in the country.

Languages of Dominican Republic:

In Dominican Republic, Spanish is imposed as the country language and all the

schools are based on the Spanish education model. So, Spanish speaking is the

normal trend of the country, save for some new immigrants. Moreover, schools are

also based on the same language, where English is being taught as secondary

language in all the private schools. Furthermore, the people from the Haitian

ancestors speak Haitian Creole in the country. Dominican Republic is supporting the

inhabitants to learn English to stand at a high position in the modern world.

Crime Ratio in Dominican Republic:

The Dominican Republic has got its popularity by wake of the money laundering

cases and other robbery cases in the country. It has become popular for a

trans-shipment point for the Colombians drugs which are sent to Europe, Canada

and the United States. Moreover, the Colombian drug cartels consider Dominican

Republic as favorite for money laundering for the ease of illicit financial

transactions. In the recent year 2004, it has been noted that 8% cocaine has been

smuggled to the United States through Dominican Republic. In this way, the country

tried to response at the increasing ratio of the crime and money laundering for the

sake of seizing its drug shipments by arresting and extraditing the involved.

The light treatment of the law of Dominican Republic has been a continuous source

for the local controversy as five teenagers, including 2 females, drunken, shot local

area and killed two taxi drivers and they were, later on, sentenced only for 3-5

years prison terms. So, the crime rate is reasonable for the country and the

protective measures are being taken to reduce it.

Electricity of Dominican Republic:

Electricity has been the permanent cause of headache for the country and it is

unreliable since the Trujillo era and 75% equipment used for the production of

electricity is old. The privatization of the electric power company has led the

country grid causes transmission losses. In this way, the country is taking electricity

only from generators now. In the recent years, 95% users have not bill at all to pay

and 2.1 million houses do not have meters for calculation. Therefore, the fixed

amount or price is being taken from the users for electric service. Most of the country parts have better access to the electricity and the tourist areas

are tend to provide better access to it for reliable power services. The electricity

sector is under the influence of politics and it is highly politicized by the politicians.

Moreover, the generating companies always go under-capitalized, most of the time,

to purchase fuel supplies for adequate power supply.

Transportation of Dominican Republic:

The Dominican Republic includes three national trunk highways in it including DR-1,

DR-2 and DR-3. These highways depart from the capital city towards the northern,

southwestern and eastern parts of the Dominican Republic respectively. In the same

manner, these highways have been improved consistently for better roads with the

expansion of many sections with reconstruction. Two other highways including DR-4

and DR-5 work as spur and routes for the country and work as a alternative source

for transportation when the roads are treated in reconstruction process. So, in the

recent years, 106 kilometer toll road has been constructed which connects Santo

Domingo with the Peninsula in the northeastern part of the country.