Getting Started in the Dominican Republic

Please visit the export.gov page on the Dominican Republic for an overview of economic conditions and opportunities in the region.

I – Exporting to the Dominican Republic

Getting Started

If you are considering doing business in the Dominican Republic, here are some steps you may wish to consider as you get started:

1. Visit the Dominican Republic’s export.gov page to get an overview of economic conditions and opportunities. Access the U.S. Commercial Service Market Research Library containing more than 100,000 industry and country-specific market reports, authored by our specialists working in overseas posts.

2. Contact Information and Links for Assistance:

  • Contact your local U.S. Export Assistance Center for advice and support on exporting to the Dominican Republic. Contact a Trade Specialist Near You
  • Contact your local Small Business Development Center (SBDCs)
    Starting a business can be a challenge, but there is help for you in your area. Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) are partnerships primarily between the government and colleges/universities administered by the Small Business Administration and aims at giving educational services for small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs.
  • Contact in-country business support organizations
    Make use of business matchmaking services:
    Whether you’re looking to make your first export sale or expand your business in this market, we offer the trade counseling, market intelligence, business matchmaking, and commercial diplomacy you need to connect with lucrative business opportunities.

II – Investing in the Dominican Republic

This section provides information for current and potential investors in the Dominican Republic.

1. Potential investors: Getting Started.

If you are considering investment in the Dominican Republic, here are some steps you may wish to consider as you get started:

2. Current Investors: Staying Connected

If you are a current U.S. investor in the Dominican Republic, the U.S. Embassy wants to stay in touch. Here are a few steps you can take to keep the channels of communication open:

  • Register with the U.S. Embassy: if you are active in the Dominican Republic, let us know by sending an email to the contact addresses at the top of this page.
  • Add Commercial and Agricultural Specialists to your mailing lists: we are always happy to stay informed. Send emails to contact addresses at the top of this page.
  • Subscribe to our embassy Facebook page at facebook.com/EmbajadaUSASantoDomingo or Twitter feed @embajadausaenrd.
  • Set up a meeting with our economic or commercial team to discuss any issues that arise. Contact information is listed at the top of this page.

3. Working in the Dominican Republic

In this section you will find information on business visas, travel advisories, and anti-corruption tools.

Business Visas

For information on obtaining a visa to visit the Dominican Republic, visit the website of the Dominican Embassy in the United States. 

Travel Advisories

Make sure to check the current State Department travel advisory for the Dominican Republic

FCPA

The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) is an important anti-corruption tool designed to discourage corrupt business practices in favor of free and fair markets. The FCPA prohibits promising, offering, giving or authorizing giving anything of value to a foreign government official where the purpose is to obtain or retain business. These prohibitions apply to U.S. persons, both individuals and companies, and companies that are listed on U.S. exchanges. The statute also requires companies publicly traded in the U.S. to keep accurate books and records and implement appropriate internal controls.

More information on the FCPA can be found here: http://www.justice.gov/criminal/fraud/fcpa/

A party to a transaction seeking to know whether a proposed course of conduct would violate the FCPA can take advantage of the opinion procedure established by the statue. Within 30 days of receiving a description of a proposed course of conduct in writing, the Attorney General will provide the party with a written opinion on whether the proposed conduct would violate the FCPA. Not only do opinions provide the requesting party with a rebuttable presumption that the conduct does not violate the FCPA, but DOJ publishes past opinions which can provide guidance for other companies facing similar situations.

More information on the DOJ opinion procedure can be found here: https://www.justice.gov/criminal-fraud/fcpa-opinions

The U.S. Commercial Service offers U.S. companies services tailored to their needs and objectives. Whether you are developing an international business strategy, trying to promote your company in a new market, or looking to expand your business through new partnerships, we can help you.

Trade Counselling

  • Planning and strategy
  • Legal and regulatory issues
  • Documentation and product requirements
  • Business procedures
  • Financing and commercial insurance

Market Intelligence

  • Business statistics and analysis

Business Matchmaking

  • Contact lists
  • Search for partners
  • Custom business matchmaking
  • Promotional events
  • Trade missions
  • Industrial exhibitions

Commercial Diplomacy

  • USG Advocacy
  • Unfair trade practices
  • Non-tariff barriers
  • Customs Issues

The U.S. Commercial Service can help Dominican companies locate US products and services or business partners, establish contact with thousands of US companies at international events, and identify investment opportunities to establish or expand their operations in the United States.

Trade Counselling

  • Determine the best areas in the United States to find the products and services you are looking for.
  • Evaluate international competition.
  • Know about cultural differences and business protocols.
  • Receive information about companies in the United States that are interested in doing business with local businesses.

International Buyer Program

International Buyer Program supported shows are excellent opportunities to identify and meet with motivated U.S. exporters exhibiting at the shows. Join a U.S. Commercial Service-organized buyer delegation and receive member’s benefits, including: assistance of a trade specialist during the fair, access to the International Business Center, translation services, meeting rooms, among others.

NUSA Program “Networking with the United States”

A fee-based membership program for Dominican companies interested in establishing business relationships with U.S. exporters and investors. It is especially targeted for service companies such as travel agencies, customs agencies, couriers, law firms, and translation and interpretation services.

SelectUSA Program

The mission of SelectUSA is to promote and facilitate Foreign Direct Investment in the United States. The initiative is a function of the U.S. Department of Commerce represented abroad by the Commercial Service at US Embassies and Consulates in 75 countries.

Learn more about SelectUSA.