Abinader focuses his report on subsidies and economic boost

President Luis Abinader, summarizing last night the Government’s actions during the two years of his administration, highlighted the efforts made to maintain the economic recovery process and to protect the population through subsidies, among other economic actions.

The president indicated that since the war in Ukraine began, the government has deployed a subsidy program for the protection of the working classes, as well as for the most vulnerable, of RD$42.8 billion, an amount that he said has been specially destined to subsidize the fuels, rice, wheat and other products.

“To give you an idea, with all this money you could build 400 kilometers of highways,” Abinader said in a speech that began more than 30 minutes late.

The head of state stated that, given the high inflation that is recorded, he has made a firm commitment to agricultural production, directly subsidizing fertilizers and other components used in production.

Likewise, he pointed out that he has ordered an increase in the direct subsidy to the transport sector to avoid the rise in the price of tickets; and the subsidy of up to 10% on imports of corn, wheat, soy or flour and vegetable fat, as well as the application of 0% tariffs for the most important products in the basket for six months.

He explained that they maintain the policy of targeted subsidies with the Inespre programs, the increase in transfers to the SUPÉRATE card, the Gas Bonus subsidy and the expansion of food rations in the Economic Dining Rooms, for which it has allocated RD$14.54 billion .

Economic growth
Reviewing the economic achievements, President Abinader, as a result of the Government’s actions to quickly overcome the consequences of Covid-19, the economy grew at a double-digit rate last year and according to IMF data and Central Bank projections , will close with a growth of between 5% and 5.5%.

He pointed out that everything achieved in these years has been achieved “without increasing the weight of the debt of the consolidated public sector with respect to our Gross Domestic Product and with a reduction in the debt of the non-financial public sector that has dropped from 49.7% in August from 2020 to 47.5% this June.”

The president admitted that there are specific problems in the Creole economy, but that they are transitory and that the government “attends them with measures and a budget.” He took the opportunity to highlight as strengths “the highest level of reserves in our history with US$14.5 billion; our employment levels are higher than the pre-COVID stage; tourism is experiencing record growth and the free zones will close this year with the best export figures in their history”.

Abinader also mentioned that the agricultural sector will achieve self-sufficiency in products such as rice, with a record harvest of 14.4 million quintals last year, bananas, potatoes and vegetables.

He pointed out that these achievements are due to the financing policy, input subsidies, support for free land preparation, supply of improved seeds, marketing programs, improvement of road infrastructure, maintenance of irrigation systems and the titling program. of land, as part of the attention that our government is paying to the countryside.

Electric power In energy matters, Abinader said that “we have authorized the largest expansion of renewable energies in our history, with an increase of 692 new MW distributed in 12 projects in different regions of the country, of which some 250 MW are already in operation and the rest it is estimated that they will be online by the end of 2023.”

He stated that to ensure the supply of electricity, the government has carried out two tenders, one urgent, for 400 MW that will be generating from September this year and the second is for 800 MW in Manzanillo, Monte Cristi and includes the construction of the first natural gas storage and distribution terminal in the northern region of the country.

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He added that there is another one in the bidding process that will add 800 MW to the network.

“In a few years the country will have 2,000 new MW of firm power apart from the MW of renewable solar, wind, biomass and hydraulic. We are on our way to becoming a true regional power in terms of modern and diversified power generation capacity”, stated the official.

Abinader stated that with these investments “we will cover the increase in demand due to the growth of the economy of around 5% per year”, plus a cold reserve of 700 MW by 2025.

He announced that a plan to purchase 300,000 electric meters will be launched, as well as a large number of power and distribution transformers, as well as networks, and other equipment and accessories, to strengthen the system.

Infrastructure works
The Head of State reported that the Ministry of Public Works is carrying out more than 500 works for an amount of RD$86,000 million and has concluded 87 with an investment of RD$15,400 million.

Among these works, he pointed out that the Duarte highway is being intervened, at different points that include its expansion from kilometer 9 from 6 to 14 lanes and its resurfacing to Monte Cristi to make it safer and more modern.

He also cited the construction of the Azua, Baní, Navarrete, Circuit 3 Santo Domingo, Moca, San Francisco, Santiago, Los Alcarrizos and Malecón de Nagua beltways.

He reported that the construction of the Hípica, San Isidro, and Ecologic avenues continues, from Ciudad Juan Bosch to Juan Pablo Segundo. (Autovía del Nordeste) and the elevated Andrés. In terms of mass transportation, the president said that “we are building the expansion of lines 1 and 2 of the Metro in Santo Domingo and in Los Alcarrizos, the extension of the metro and the cable car.”

As for the Monte Grande dam, he said that it is already 80% advanced, the one that began construction in 2013 and that until 2020 it had only advanced 41%.

In Santiago, Abinader said that the cable car, the monorail, the Cañada de Gurabo are being built; the entrance avenue to Santiago “and we have the Navarrete ring road in tender and the expansion of the Santiago-Licey highway has been budgeted”.

However, he clarified that it has not been possible to start the Ámbar highway because it does not want to carry out “failed or poorly executed operations, such as that of the Samaná highway that condemned Dominicans for years to an unfair and disproportionate shadow toll.”

Investment projects
Abinader also touched on the topic of “transforming” projects that are being carried out in different regions of the country, as is the case of the Pedernales project, which he said will allow for one of the most important tourist centers in the region in the coming years.

He stressed that the infrastructure works and the port of Cabo Rojo have already begun, which is expected to begin disembarking tourists in November 2023. “The construction of the first hotel is already being tendered and the tenders for all of the first hotels will be uploaded monthly. There are 11 phases. The airport designs are almost ready to go up for bid,” assured the president.

He also assured that in the Manzanillo project, the largest power generation plant in the country has already been tendered and awarded with its fuel tank that will provide great energy security to the northern region. In addition, the shipyard project has been awarded and the new dock is in tender.

He also indicated that they have hundreds of private sector projects in tourism, free zones, industries and real estate throughout the territory.

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