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Overview of the Dominican Republic’s Free Trade Agreements

Overview of the Dominican Republic’s Free Trade Agreements

The Dominican Republic is member of numerous free trade agreements. In addition, the country has established more than 50 free trade zones, the “Zonas Francas”. More than 500 companies are still operating actively in these zones, taking advantage of various tax exemption for 15 years. As the country's economy mainly depends on exports, the country primarily designated these zones for export production. Approximately half of the companies engage in textile and clothing production for the US market. Furthermore, the Dominican Republic produces agricultural products, in particular sugar. The Dominican Republic has more than 50 free trade zones, the “Zonas Francas,” where 500 companies are utilizing tax exemptions to support exports. The Dominican Republic was, for a long period, one of the fastest-growing economies in the world. Since 1992, the country has shown economic growth of over 5% per year. After 2001, economic growth has slowed as a result of the recession in the US, high oil prices, and falling prices for its export products. In 2018, the share of the various sectors in the gross national product was as follows: agriculture and fisheries 5.15%, industry 28.81%, trade, transport, finance, communication and other services 58.63%. However, economic growth has recently stagnated due to the credit crisis. In the years 2010 to 2013, the economy grew by an average of 2%. In 2017, growth is around 5%. Tourism and free trade zones generate the most income. The average GDP per capita in 2018 is USD 7750.93 per year. We give an overview of the Dominican Republic free trade...

Business Incentives in the Special Economic Zones of Panama

Business Incentives in the Special Economic Zones of Panama

Find out how special economic zones in Panama can support your expanding business in Central America. Panama supports a number of special economic zones that offer wide-ranging benefits to companies operating within them. Panama has one of the strongest and stable economies of Central America. According to the World Bank, Panama ranks as the second-fastest growing economy in the Caribbean and Latin America with a forecasted growth of 3.7% in 2020. This consistent growth supports increasing business confidence in establishing a company in Panama. If your business is related to import and export goods, Panama is the country you’re looking for to start expanding. Panama supports a number of special economic zones that offer wide-ranging benefits to companies operating within them.  The most important special economic zones in Panama are the following: Colon Free ZonePanama PacificoCity of Knowledge. Choosing the right special economic zone in Panama for your business needs depends on the location where you want to trade goods from, and/or your principal business activity. How do special economic zones in Panama benefit business? The special economic zones in Panama offer benefits related to immigration, labor and fiscal incentives to encourage foreign investment into the country. Depending on your commercial focus, each special economic zone offers a different set of incentives to suit different business models. Establishing your company in the Colon Free Zone in Panama The Colon Free Zone in Panama was the first special economic zone established in the country in 1984....

Uruguay Revamps its Free Trade Zone Regulations

Uruguay Revamps its Free Trade Zone Regulations

Free trade zones have been the catalyst for multinational expansions across the world. By benefiting from the competitive tax and customs exemptions, businesses are able to reinvest profit and grow faster.  Uruguay is home to 12 free trade zones in total. Within these zones, all forms of business activities are permitted: from manufacturing and warehousing, to services and trade. As such, these special economic areas play a key role in attracting foreign investment to Uruguay. Benefits of Uruguay’s Free Trade Zones Free trade zones (FTZs) are put in place by nations in order to draw foreign investment into their countries. Through the mediums of rent, employment, and other secondary spending from large companies, nations are able to generate large income streams.  Well-known companies such as PepsiCo and Sony base operations within two of Uruguay’s zones and, as such, have profited greatly over the last decade. Out of the 12 FTZs, 11 are privately owned whilst one remains owned by the state in the city of Nueva Palmira. Despite private ownership, all zones are monitored by the Free Zone Area which reports to the General Trade Bureau of the Ministry of Economy and Finance. In order to draw attention from foreign investors, Uruguay has set a number of incentives for companies to benefit from when setting up operations in these areas. The most appealing of these is zero tax.  Tax exemptions Tax exemptions are probably the most beneficial part of operating from an FTZ. Operators working in these zones are exempted from all national taxes except social security for their...

Opportunities Awaiting Businesses in Panama’s City of Knowledge

Opportunities Awaiting Businesses in Panama’s City of Knowledge

Panama draws attention worldwide for its stellar economic growth and port facilities, enabling a strong entry point for businesses all over the world into Latin America. Next on the country's economic development list is strengthening the skills of its local and expatriate workforce. Panama's City of Knowledge is opening its doors for expert technological and educational exchange. This special economic zone makes it easier for entrepreneurs, students and educational businesses to connect with Panama's citizens and develop their capability for a tech-focussed, disruptive future. We explore the City of Knowledge, and what it can offer to local and foreign businesses expanding into the area. City of Knowledge in Panama - Economic overview Panama sets the tone for foreign business by offering a covetable range of tax and investment incentives in the country. As a result, the country’s GDP has shown exponential growth over the last 10 years. GDP maxed out at US$65.06 in 2018, an unprecedented record (and up 3.1% from the previous year). To compare, GDP in 1960 reached US$13.54 billion. Since 2009, Panama has gone from strength to strength, with consistently positive economic outputs. Panama is a notoriously strong performer in its logistical facilities, offering world-class port infrastructure and an advantageous strategic location in Latin America to boot. The country prides itself on its ability to position businesses operating within its borders well for trading with and expanding into the rest of the region. As business activity and economic prosperity continue, Panama now...

New President in Panama: What Does This Mean for Business?

New President in Panama: What Does This Mean for Business?

On 5 May, 2019, Laurentino Cortizo was elected as the new President of the Republic of Panama, formally taking office on 1 July. As part of his agenda, the new President-elect has secured through one of his proposals an economic acceleration plan which will encourage foreign investment and the creation of new companies in Panama. Cortizo has plans to increase economic growth in various sectors of the country, further positioning Panama as an ideal commercial launch pad into Latin America. We explore the potential outcomes for commercial actors in Panama. New President in Panama - Who is Laurentino Cortizo? Cortizo’s campaign earned him 33.18% of Panamanians’ votes during the May 2019 elections, only just edging out opposition Romulo Roux. A former legislator and Minister for Agricultural Development, he has set a clear agenda for building strong social mechanisms. Labelled, the ‘sixth frontier,’ President Cortizo aims to combat poverty social issues and corruption during his term. The new President also has a strong focus on promoting Panama’s business environment to both local and international businesspeople. Key agriculture, tourism and finance sectors are stepping into the government’s spotlight for development. Bringing investment to agriculture Agriculture is a key revenue generator for the Central American country, and an area Cortizo is familiar with, thanks to his previous Ministerial role. Cortizo plans to encourage growth in the agricultural sector by: Subsidizing small producers: this involves creating a multi-purpose agricultural trust with the National Bank...

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