Haiti PM says Haitian beer and rum will now enter Dominican Republic

Published on by Rachel Belt (author)

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PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (HCNN) -- Haitian Prime minister, Laurent Lamothe,  announced on Wednesday that Haiti will now be able to export its famous beer and rum to the neighboring Dominican Republic's market as part of an effort by government leaders and business CEOs on both sides of the border to improve cooperation relations and ensure trade reciprocity on the Caribbean Hispaniola island shared by both countries.

Prime minister Lamothe said the new development is the result of the high-level bilateral dialogue between Haitian and Dominican counterparts, instituted in the aftermath of the adoption, by the Dominican Republic's constitutional Tribunal, of a ruling that stripped thousands of Dominicans of Haitian decent of their nationality.

"Our Prestige beer and our Barbancourt rum, and all other products made in Haiti will be able to be exported to the Dominican Republic," said Lamothe during a live council of government meeting on Wednesday in the Haitian capital Port-au-Prince.

"This new development is a result of our bilateral dialogue, but we'll have to set up the needed structure to make the product available on the Dominican market," Lamothe explained.

During a working session last week between government and business leaders from both countries, relevant authorities from the DR promised to make sure that all barriers, if any, to the import of Prestige and other Haitian products, are lifted. 

Officials in the Dominican Republic have repeatedly denied any will or measure on the part of the Dominican government to block certain Haitian products from crossing the border. However, Haitian businessmen dealing with the DR often report informal obstacles making it difficult for a number of Haitian products, such as the Haitian beer or rum, to enter the neighboring market.

Some have also blamed the difficulties on companies in the DR that would  hold a position of monopoly and that would fear competition from Haitian-made products. However, relevant entities promised to lift trade barriers where they can be found.  

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