|Consuls General of Haiti and DR urge for closer collaboration|
|Friday, 15 June 2012 10:25|
A closer partnership was the overall message at the recent meeting in Miami between newly appointed Consul General of Haiti, François Guillaume II, and Consul General of the Dominican Republic, Manuel F. Almanzar.
The two officials met in Miami to discuss the current state of diplomatic affairs between both countries. Taking cue from Haitian Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe's policy for Haiti's diplomats to focus on "Business Diplomacy," Guilliame advocated for closer ties through stronger economic partnerships.
"Further strengthen the business diplomacy included in the General Policy advocated by the Chancellor Laurent Lamothe, would allow economic development much more reliable and durable for Haiti and the Dominican Republic," explained Guillaume.
Both officials pledged to organize events promoting economic ties between the two countries and the respective Diaspora communities in their consulate regions.
Currently, Haiti is the third largest trading partner of the Dominican Republic, after the U.S. and South Korea. Recently elected president of the Dominican Republic, Danilo Medina, also publically called for a free trade agreement between both nations. There has been mixed support for the proposed agreement among Haitian businesses however, concerned that Haitian-made products would suffered from the unrestricted competition.
The Dominican Republic's new work permit regulations have sparked much protest among advocates for the one million Haitian workers living in the DR, who make up 80 percent of all workers in the Dominican rice industry, 60 percent in the banana industry and over 50 percent of the construction industry. Advocates argue that the new regulations, which require high fees and extensive, difficult to obtain documents, may force out thousands of workers.