Shipping company wants to link Dominican Republic with Puerto Rico

Spanish shipping company, Balearia, is interested in connecting the Dominican Republic with Puerto Rico, said the Dominican Chancellor, Miguel Vargas, who has met with executives of that company to discuss the issue.

“I have held meetings with the top executives of Balearia, a large Spanish shipping company that offers services in the Mediterranean and also in Florida and the Bahamas,” said Vargas during a conference he gave a few days ago at a lunch organized by the Association Of Shipping Companies of the Dominican Republic (ANRD).

Balearia wants to connect Dominican Republic with Puerto Rico.

Balearia wants to connect Dominican Republic with Puerto Rico.

In his speech, released by the Foreign Ministry, Vargas was confident that “very soon that company will be operating in the country” which, in his opinion, “will be the starting point for new investments that interconnect the entire Caribbean and open new possibilities for integration and trade”.

While noting the “privileged” geographical position of his country, which he said has “extraordinary” port facilities, the Dominican Foreign Minister also referred to the challenges facing maritime transport.

For example, he noted, “that the expansion of the Panama Canal, a geographical point close to us, requires adaptations essential to capture new demands for maritime services.

“The reactivation of international cargo transport has imposed a greater and better port infrastructure on us to receive the ships called Neo-Panamax,” he added.

Nevertheless, he was convinced that “the dynamism of the shipping industry will continue to generate great investment opportunities and will force the transformation of other ports, which will contribute to the economic and social development of the nation.”

According to data from the World Bank (WB) and quoted by the chancellor, in 2000 the Dominican Republic had a traffic of 566,479 containers of 20 feet, which reached 1,795,221 in 2014.

“This has opened up new prospects for international trade,” he said, noting that in the past 10 years local exports have increased 36% from $6,183 billion to $8,384 billion. In contrast, imports increased 155% from $6,804 billion in 2005 to $17,348 billion in 2015.

According to the official, the Dominican Republic had, in 2015, a significant flow of goods to and from the country’s ports totaling $26,261 million.

In that same year, 75% of the total merchandise of the nation’s international trade was transported by sea, he said.

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