The governor of the Central Bank of the Dominican Republic (BCRD), Héctor Valdez Albizu, announced that the preliminary results of the performance of the economy in the first half of this year revealed growth of 13.3%.
“According to the updated estimates of the monthly indicator of economic activity (IMAE), the Dominican economy registered a notable 12.7% year-on-year expansion in June, accumulating a 13.3% growth during the first six months of 2021, exceeding expectations than we had projected for the close of the first half of 2021. This result corresponds to the interannual variation of 3.1% in the January-March quarter and of 25.4% in April-June of this year”, said Valdez Albizu.
In a virtual press conference addressed to the nation’s media, economic agents, and the general public, the governor stated that “using the year 2019 as a reference and comparing the IMAE of June 2021 with the pre-pandemic period June 2019, a real increase of 4.7% is observed in a said month. These results reflect, my friends, that the process of recovery of aggregate demand is increasingly taking hold”, he said.
Regarding the forecasts for the end of 2021, Valdez Albizu reported that, according to the forecasting models, growth was expected for the end of 2021 between 8.0% and 9.0%. “However, the faster-than-expected recovery allows us to update the projection upwards to a range between 9.0% and 10.0%, that is, we would be seeing an expansion of the economy around a double-digit figure”, he announced.
When analyzing the detail of the behavior of economic growth in the first semester of 2021, it is verified that the economic activities that registered the most significant interannual expansions compared to 2020 were: construction (42.2%), free zones (31.7%), local manufacturing (14.3%), transportation and storage (13.7%), mining (11.4%) and commerce (10.7%). Similarly, positive interannual variations are observed in energy and water (3.9%), communications (3.5%), hotels, bars and restaurants (2.9%), agriculture (2.4%), real estate and rental activities (2.2%), and other service activities (1.0%).
The hotels, bars, and restaurants’ activity continue on the road to recovery, registering an interannual increase of 133.5% in its added value in the April-June quarter of 2021. This performance reflects the higher international traffic of non-resident passengers who visit the Dominican Republic, which in the month of June reached 462,536 tourists, which corresponds to approximately 80% compared to the same month of 2019, which is an extraordinary achievement.
“We make the comparison with respect to 2019 because in 2020 the airports were closed in that month. There has been a sustained trend towards the reactivation of the sector, much faster than expected. This rhythm would be reaffirming even more with the recent resumption of flights from Canada and Russia”, informed the governor.
In accumulated terms, during the period January-June 2021, the total flow of tourists was close to 1.9 million, which means a growth of 36.1%, with 503,553 additional passengers arriving compared to the same semester of the previous year, therefore it projects that the total number of non-resident visitors could be around 4.0 million by the end of this year.
The dynamism exhibited in the arrival of non-resident passengers is largely due to the combination of the strategies implemented by the Tourism Cabinet led by the President of the Republic, Luis Abinader, in conjunction with the Minister of Tourism, in close collaboration with the private sector.