Photos of Dominican Republic

Introduction

Background

The Taino - indigenous inhabitants of Hispaniola prior to the arrival of Europeans - divided the island into five chiefdoms and territories. Christopher COLUMBUS explored and claimed the island on his first voyage in 1492; it became a springboard for Spanish conquest of the Caribbean and the American mainland. In 1697, Spain recognized French dominion over the western third of the island, which in 1804 became Haiti. The remainder of the island, by then known as Santo Domingo, sought to gain its own independence in 1821 but was conquered and ruled by the Haitians for 22 years; it finally attained independence as the Dominican Republic in 1844. In 1861, the Dominicans voluntarily returned to the Spanish Empire, but two years later they launched a war that restored independence in 1865. A legacy of unsettled, mostly non-representative rule followed, capped by the dictatorship of Rafael Leonidas TRUJILLO from 1930 to 1961. Juan BOSCH was elected president in 1962 but was deposed in a military coup in 1963. In 1965, the US led an intervention in the midst of a civil war sparked by an uprising to restore BOSCH. In 1966, Joaquin BALAGUER defeated BOSCH in the presidential election. BALAGUER maintained a tight grip on power for most of the next 30 years when international reaction to flawed elections forced him to curtail his term in 1996. Since then, regular competitive elections have been held in which opposition candidates have won the presidency. Former President Leonel FERNANDEZ Reyna (first term 1996-2000) won election to a new term in 2004 following a constitutional amendment allowing presidents to serve more than one term, and was later reelected to a second consecutive term. Following the two-term presidency of Danilo MEDINA Sanchez (2012-2020), Luis Rodolfo ABINADER Corona was elected president in July 2020.

Visit the Definitions and Notes page to view a description of each topic.

Geography

Location

Caribbean, eastern two-thirds of the island of Hispaniola, between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, east of Haiti

Geographic coordinates

19 00 N, 70 40 W

Map references

Central America and the Caribbean

Area

total: 48,670 sq km

land: 48,320 sq km

water: 350 sq km

comparison ranking: total 131

Area - comparative

slightly more than twice the size of New Jersey

Area comparison map:
Area comparison map

Land boundaries

total: 376 km

border countries (1): Haiti 376 km

Coastline

1,288 km

Maritime claims

territorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 24 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin

measured from claimed archipelagic straight baselines

Climate

tropical maritime; little seasonal temperature variation; seasonal variation in rainfall

Terrain

rugged highlands and mountains interspersed with fertile valleys

Elevation

highest point: Pico Duarte 3,098 m

lowest point: Lago Enriquillo -46 m

mean elevation: 424 m

Natural resources

nickel, bauxite, gold, silver, arable land

Land use

agricultural land: 51.5% (2018 est.)

arable land: 16.6% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 10.1% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 24.8% (2018 est.)

forest: 40.8% (2018 est.)

other: 7.7% (2018 est.)

Irrigated land

2,980 sq km (2018)

Major lakes (area sq km)

salt water lake(s): Lago de Enriquillo - 500 sq km

Population distribution

coastal development is significant, especially in the southern coastal plains and the Cibao Valley, where population density is highest; smaller population clusters exist in the interior mountains (Cordillera Central)

Natural hazards

lies in the middle of the hurricane belt and subject to severe storms from June to October; occasional flooding; periodic droughts

Geography - note

shares island of Hispaniola with Haiti (eastern two-thirds makes up the Dominican Republic, western one-third is Haiti); the second largest country in the Antilles (after Cuba); geographically diverse with the Caribbean's tallest mountain, Pico Duarte, and lowest elevation and largest lake, Lago Enriquillo

People and Society

Population

10,790,744 (2023 est.)

comparison ranking: 86

Nationality

noun: Dominican(s)

adjective: Dominican

Ethnic groups

mixed 70.4% (Mestizo/Indio 58%, Mulatto 12.4%), Black 15.8%, White 13.5%, other 0.3% (2014 est.)

note: respondents self-identified their race; the term "indio" in the Dominican Republic is not associated with people of indigenous ancestry but people of mixed ancestry or skin color between light and dark

Languages

Spanish (official)

major-language sample(s):
La Libreta Informativa del Mundo, la fuente indispensable de información básica. (Spanish)

The World Factbook, the indispensable source for basic information.

Spanish audio sample:

Religions

Roman Catholic 44.3%, Evangelical 13%, Protestant 7.9%, Adventist 1.4%, other 1.8%, atheist 0.2%, none 29.4%, unspecified 2% (2018 est.)

Age structure

0-14 years: 25.92% (male 1,422,186/female 1,374,991)

15-64 years: 67.09% (male 3,675,934/female 3,563,597)

65 years and over: 6.99% (2023 est.) (male 355,069/female 398,967)

2023 population pyramid:
2023 population pyramid

Dependency ratios

total dependency ratio: 53.8

youth dependency ratio: 42.2

elderly dependency ratio: 11.6

potential support ratio: 8.6 (2021 est.)

Median age

total: 28.9 years (2023 est.)

male: 28.7 years

female: 29 years

comparison ranking: total 144

Population growth rate

0.73% (2023 est.)

comparison ranking: 122

Birth rate

17.3 births/1,000 population (2023 est.)

comparison ranking: 91

Death rate

7.3 deaths/1,000 population (2023 est.)

comparison ranking: 112

Net migration rate

-2.7 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2023 est.)

comparison ranking: 177

Population distribution

coastal development is significant, especially in the southern coastal plains and the Cibao Valley, where population density is highest; smaller population clusters exist in the interior mountains (Cordillera Central)

Urbanization

urban population: 84.4% of total population (2023)

rate of urbanization: 1.64% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

total population growth rate v. urban population growth rate, 2000-2030

Major urban areas - population

3.524 million SANTO DOMINGO (capital) (2023)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.04 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.03 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 1.03 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.89 male(s)/female

total population: 1.02 male(s)/female (2023 est.)

Mother's mean age at first birth

20.9 years (2013 est.)

note: data represents median age at first birth among women 25-49

Maternal mortality ratio

107 deaths/100,000 live births (2020 est.)

comparison ranking: 67

Infant mortality rate

total: 22.7 deaths/1,000 live births (2023 est.)

male: 25.4 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 19.9 deaths/1,000 live births

comparison ranking: total 70

Life expectancy at birth

total population: 71.9 years (2023 est.)

male: 70.3 years

female: 73.5 years

comparison ranking: total population 164

Total fertility rate

2.13 children born/woman (2023 est.)

comparison ranking: 94

Gross reproduction rate

1.05 (2023 est.)

Drinking water source

improved: urban: 98.3% of population

rural: 91.7% of population

total: 97.2% of population

unimproved: urban: 1.7% of population

rural: 8.3% of population

total: 2.8% of population (2020 est.)

Current health expenditure

4.9% of GDP (2020)

Physicians density

1.45 physicians/1,000 population (2019)

Hospital bed density

1.6 beds/1,000 population (2017)

Sanitation facility access

improved: urban: 97.4% of population

rural: 91.3% of population

total: 96.3% of population

unimproved: urban: 2.6% of population

rural: 8.7% of population

total: 3.7% of population (2020 est.)

Major infectious diseases

degree of risk: high (2023)

food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever

vectorborne diseases: dengue fever

Obesity - adult prevalence rate

27.6% (2016)

comparison ranking: 37

Alcohol consumption per capita

total: 5.56 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

beer: 3.15 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

wine: 0.17 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

spirits: 2.18 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

other alcohols: 0.06 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

comparison ranking: total 78

Tobacco use

total: 10.6% (2020 est.)

male: 14.6% (2020 est.)

female: 6.5% (2020 est.)

comparison ranking: total 135

Child marriage

women married by age 15: 9.4%

women married by age 18: 31.5% (2019 est.)

Education expenditures

4.6% of GDP (2020 est.)

comparison ranking: 93

Literacy

definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 95.2%

male: 95.1%

female: 95.3% (2021)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)

total: 14 years

male: 13 years

female: 15 years (2017)

Environment

Environment - current issues

water shortages; soil eroding into the sea damages coral reefs; deforestation

Environment - international agreements

party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Climate

tropical maritime; little seasonal temperature variation; seasonal variation in rainfall

Land use

agricultural land: 51.5% (2018 est.)

arable land: 16.6% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 10.1% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 24.8% (2018 est.)

forest: 40.8% (2018 est.)

other: 7.7% (2018 est.)

Urbanization

urban population: 84.4% of total population (2023)

rate of urbanization: 1.64% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

total population growth rate v. urban population growth rate, 2000-2030

Revenue from forest resources

0.03% of GDP (2018 est.)

comparison ranking: 133

Revenue from coal

0% of GDP (2018 est.)

comparison ranking: 176

Air pollutants

particulate matter emissions: 7.59 micrograms per cubic meter (2019 est.)

carbon dioxide emissions: 25.26 megatons (2016 est.)

methane emissions: 8.1 megatons (2020 est.)

Waste and recycling

municipal solid waste generated annually: 4,063,910 tons (2015 est.)

municipal solid waste recycled annually: 333,241 tons (2015 est.)

percent of municipal solid waste recycled: 8.2% (2015 est.)

Major lakes (area sq km)

salt water lake(s): Lago de Enriquillo - 500 sq km

Total water withdrawal

municipal: 860 million cubic meters (2020 est.)

industrial: 660 million cubic meters (2020 est.)

agricultural: 7.56 billion cubic meters (2020 est.)

Total renewable water resources

23.5 billion cubic meters (2020 est.)

Government

Country name

conventional long form: Dominican Republic

conventional short form: The Dominican

local long form: República Dominicana

local short form: La Dominicana

former: Santo Domingo (the capital city's name formerly applied to the entire country)

etymology: the country name derives from the capital city of Santo Domingo (Saint Dominic)

Government type

presidential republic

Capital

name: Santo Domingo

geographic coordinates: 18 28 N, 69 54 W

time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

etymology: named after Saint Dominic de GUZMAN (1170-1221), founder of the Dominican Order

Administrative divisions

10 regions (regiones, singular - region); Cibao Nordeste, Cibao Noroeste, Cibao Norte, Cibao Sur, El Valle, Enriquillo, Higuamo, Ozama, Valdesia, Yuma

Independence

27 February 1844 (from Haiti)

National holiday

Independence Day, 27 February (1844)

Constitution

history: many previous (38 total); latest proclaimed 13 June 2015

amendments: proposed by a special session of the National Congress called the National Revisory Assembly; passage requires at least two-thirds majority approval by at least one half of those present in both houses of the Assembly; passage of amendments to constitutional articles, such as fundamental rights and guarantees, territorial composition, nationality, or the procedures for constitutional reform, also requires approval in a referendum

Legal system

civil law system based on the French civil code; Criminal Procedures Code modified in 2004 to include important elements of an accusatory system

International law organization participation

accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction; accepts ICCt jurisdiction

Citizenship

citizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of the Dominican Republic

dual citizenship recognized: yes

residency requirement for naturalization: 2 years

Suffrage

18 years of age; universal and compulsory; married persons regardless of age can vote; note - members of the armed forces and national police by law cannot vote

Executive branch

chief of state: President Luis Rodolfo ABINADER Corona (since 16 August 2020); Vice President Raquel PENA de Antuna (since 16 August 2020); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government

head of government: President Luis Rodolfo ABINADER Corona (since 16 August 2020); Vice President Raquel PENA de Antuna (since 16 August 2020); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government

cabinet: Cabinet nominated by the president

elections/appointments: president and vice president directly elected on the same ballot by absolute vote in 2 rounds if needed for a 4-year term (eligible for a maximum of two consecutive terms); election last held on 5 July 2020 (next to be held on 19 May 2024); note - the 2020 election was rescheduled from 17 May to 5 July 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic

election results:
2020: Luis Rodolfo ABINADER Corona elected president in first round; percent of vote - Luis Rodolfo ABINADER Corona (PRM) 52.5%, Gonzalo CASTILLO Terrero (PLD) 37.5%, Leonel Antonio FERNANDEZ Reyna (FP) 8.9% other 1.1%

2016: Danilo MEDINA Sanchez reelected president; percent of vote - Danilo MEDINA Sanchez (PLD) 61.7%, Luis Rodolfo ABINADER Corona (PRM) 35%, other 3.3%; Margarita CEDENO DE FERNANDEZ (PLD) reelected vice president

Legislative branch

description: bicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional consists of:
Senate or Senado (32 seats; 26 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote, and 6 members indirectly elected based upon province-wide party plurality votes for its candidates to the Chamber of Deputies; all members serve 4-year terms; note - in 2019, the Central Election Commission changed the electoral system for seats in26 constituencies to direct simple majority but retained indirect election for the remaining 6 constituencies; previously all 32 members were indirectly elected; the change had been challenged by the ruling and opposition parties)

House of Representatives or Camara de Diputados (190 seats; 178 members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by closed party-list proportional representation vote using the D'Hondt method, 5 members in a nationwide constituency and 7 diaspora members directly elected by simple majority vote; members serve 4-year terms)

elections:
Senate - last held on 5 July 2020 (next to be held 2024)
House of Representatives - last held on 5 July 2020 (next to be held in 2024); note - the 2020 election was rescheduled from 17 May to 5 July 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic

election results:
Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PRM 17, PLD 6, PRSC 6, BIS 1, DXC 1, FP 1; composition - men 28, women 4, percent of women 12.5%
House of Representatives - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - PRM 86, PLD 75,  PRSC 6, PRD 4, Broad Front 3, FP 3, AP 2, APD 2, BIS 2, DXC 2, other 5; composition - men 137, women 53, percent of women 27.9%; note - total National Congress percent of women 25.7%

Judicial branch

highest court(s): Supreme Court of Justice or Suprema Corte de Justicia (consists of a minimum of 16 magistrates); Constitutional Court or Tribunal Constitucional (consists of 13 judges); note - the Constitutional Court was established in 2010 by constitutional amendment

judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court and Constitutional Court judges appointed by the National Council of the Judiciary comprised of the president, the leaders of both chambers of congress, the president of the Supreme Court, and a non-governing party congressional representative; Supreme Court judges appointed for 7-year terms; Constitutional Court judges appointed for 9-year terms

subordinate courts: courts of appeal; courts of first instance; justices of the peace; special courts for juvenile, labor, and land cases; Contentious Administrative Court for cases filed against the government

Political parties and leaders

Alliance for Democracy or APD
Broad Front (Frente Amplio) [Fidel SANTANA]
Country Alliance or AP [Guillermo Antonio MORENO Garcia]
Dominican Liberation Party or PLD [Danilo MEDINA Sánchez]
Dominican Revolutionary Party or PRD [Miguel VARGAS Maldonado]
Dominicans For Change or DXC [Manuel OVIEDO Estrada]
Institutional Social Democratic Bloc or BIS
Liberal Reformist Party or PRL (formerly the Liberal Party of the Dominican Republic or PLRD)
Modern Revolutionary Party or PRM [Luis ABINADER]
National Progressive Front or FNP [Vinicio CASTILLO, Pelegrin CASTILLO]
People's Force or FP [Leonel FERNANDEZ Reyna]
Social Christian Reformist Party or PRSC [Federico Augusto "Quique" ANTUN Batile]

International organization participation

ACP, AOSIS, BCIE, Caricom (observer), CD, CELAC, FAO, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO (correspondent), ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), LAES, LAIA, MIGA, MINUSMA, NAM, OAS, OIF (observer), OPANAL, OPCW, Pacific Alliance (observer), PCA, Petrocaribe, SICA (associated member), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHRC, UNIDO, Union Latina, UNOOSA, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US

chief of mission: Ambassador Sonia GUZMÁN DE HERNÁNDEZ (since 18 January 2021)

chancery: 1715 22nd Street NW, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 332-6280

FAX: [1] (202) 265-8057

email address and website:
embassy@drembassyusa.org

http://drembassyusa.org/

consulate(s) general: Boston, Chicago, Glendale (CA), Mayaguez (Puerto Rico), Miami, New Orleans, New York, San Juan (Puerto Rico)

consulate(s): San Francisco

Diplomatic representation from the US

chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Chargé d'Affaires Alexander TITOLO

embassy: Av. Republica de Colombia #57, Santo Domingo

mailing address: 3470 Santo Domingo Place, Washington DC  20521-3470

telephone: (809) 567-7775

email address and website:
SDOAmericans@state.gov

https://do.usembassy.gov/

Flag description

a centered white cross that extends to the edges divides the flag into four rectangles - the top ones are ultramarine blue (hoist side) and vermilion red, and the bottom ones are vermilion red (hoist side) and ultramarine blue; a small coat of arms featuring a shield supported by a laurel branch (left) and a palm branch (right) is at the center of the cross; above the shield a blue ribbon displays the motto, DIOS, PATRIA, LIBERTAD (God, Fatherland, Liberty), and below the shield, REPUBLICA DOMINICANA appears on a red ribbon; in the shield a bible is opened to a verse that reads "Y la verdad nos hara libre" (And the truth shall set you free); blue stands for liberty, white for salvation, and red for the blood of heroes

National symbol(s)

palmchat (bird); national colors: red, white, blue

National anthem

name: "Himno Nacional" (National Anthem)

lyrics/music: Emilio PRUD'HOMME/Jose REYES

note: adopted 1934; also known as "Quisqueyanos valientes" (Valient Sons of Quisqueye); the anthem never refers to the people as Dominican but rather calls them "Quisqueyanos," a reference to the indigenous name of the island

National heritage

total World Heritage Sites: 1 (cultural)

selected World Heritage Site locales: Colonial City of Santo Domingo

Economy

Economic overview

surging middle-income tourism, construction, mining, and telecommunications OECS economy; major foreign US direct investment and free-trade zones; developing local financial markets; improving debt management; declining poverty

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$207.082 billion (2021 est.)
$184.447 billion (2020 est.)
$197.735 billion (2019 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

comparison ranking: 66

Real GDP growth rate

12.27% (2021 est.)
-6.72% (2020 est.)
5.05% (2019 est.)

comparison ranking: 17

Real GDP per capita

$18,600 (2021 est.)
$16,800 (2020 est.)
$18,200 (2019 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

comparison ranking: 97

GDP (official exchange rate)

$88.956 billion (2019 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices)

8.24% (2021 est.)
3.78% (2020 est.)
1.81% (2019 est.)

comparison ranking: 193

Credit ratings

Fitch rating: BB- (2016)

Moody's rating: Ba3 (2017)

Standard & Poors rating: BB- (2015)

note: The year refers to the year in which the current credit rating was first obtained.

GDP - composition, by sector of origin

agriculture: 5.6% (2017 est.)

industry: 33% (2017 est.)

services: 61.4% (2017 est.)

comparison rankings: services 111; industry 57; agriculture 124

GDP - composition, by end use

household consumption: 69.3% (2017 est.)

government consumption: 12.2% (2017 est.)

investment in fixed capital: 21.9% (2017 est.)

investment in inventories: -0.1% (2017 est.)

exports of goods and services: 24.8% (2017 est.)

imports of goods and services: -28.1% (2017 est.)

Agricultural products

sugar cane, bananas, papayas, rice, plantains, milk, avocados, fruit, pineapples, coconuts

Industries

tourism, sugar processing, gold mining, textiles, cement, tobacco, electrical components, medical devices

Industrial production growth rate

15.89% (2021 est.)

comparison ranking: 13

Labor force

5.027 million (2021 est.)

comparison ranking: 83

Unemployment rate

8.5% (2021 est.)
6.13% (2020 est.)
6.36% (2019 est.)

comparison ranking: 139

Youth unemployment rate (ages 15-24)

total: 20.6% (2021 est.)

male: 16.6%

female: 27.9%

comparison ranking: total 78

Average household expenditures

on food: 26.8% of household expenditures (2018 est.)

on alcohol and tobacco: 3.8% of household expenditures (2018 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: 1.9%

highest 10%: 37.4% (2013 est.)

Remittances

11.4% of GDP (2021 est.)
10.57% of GDP (2020 est.)
8.34% of GDP (2019 est.)

Budget

revenues: $12.804 billion (2019 est.)

expenditures: $14.511 billion (2019 est.)

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)

-3% (of GDP) (2017 est.)

comparison ranking: 130

Public debt

37.2% of GDP (2017 est.)
34.6% of GDP (2016 est.)

comparison ranking: 144

Taxes and other revenues

12.39% (of GDP) (2020 est.)

comparison ranking: 173

Fiscal year

calendar year

Current account balance

-$2.689 billion (2021 est.)
-$1.337 billion (2020 est.)
-$1.188 billion (2019 est.)

comparison ranking: 167

Exports

$20.509 billion (2021 est.) note: data are in current year dollars
$14.889 billion (2020 est.) note: data are in current year dollars
$20.509 billion (2019 est.) note: data are in current year dollars

comparison ranking: 85

Exports - partners

United States 51%, Haiti 7%, Switzerland 7%, India 5%, Netherlands 3% (2021)

Exports - commodities

gold, medical instruments, cigars, low-voltage protection equipment, iron alloys, clothing (2021)

Imports

$28.541 billion (2021 est.) note: data are in current year dollars
$20.302 billion (2020 est.) note: data are in current year dollars
$24.526 billion (2019 est.) note: data are in current year dollars

comparison ranking: 75

Imports - partners

United States 42%, China 19%, Spain 3%, Brazil 3%, Mexico 3% (2021)

Imports - commodities

refined petroleum, cars, natural gas, jewelry, vaccines and cultures (2021)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

$13.125 billion (31 December 2021 est.)
$10.845 billion (31 December 2020 est.)
$8.871 billion (31 December 2019 est.)

comparison ranking: 76

Debt - external

$23.094 billion (2019 est.)
$21.198 billion (2018 est.)

comparison ranking: 90

Exchange rates

Dominican pesos (DOP) per US dollar -

Exchange rates:
57.221 (2021 est.)
56.525 (2020 est.)
51.295 (2019 est.)
49.51 (2018 est.)
47.534 (2017 est.)

Energy

Electricity access

population without electricity: (2020) less than 1 million

electrification - total population: 98.1% (2021)

electrification - urban areas: 98.7% (2021)

electrification - rural areas: 94.8% (2021)

Electricity

installed generating capacity: 5.674 million kW (2020 est.)

consumption: 16,330,980,000 kWh (2019 est.)

exports: 0 kWh (2019 est.)

imports: 0 kWh (2019 est.)

transmission/distribution losses: 2.576 billion kWh (2019 est.)

comparison rankings: installed generating capacity 82; transmission/distribution losses 140; imports 198; exports 197; consumption 78

Electricity generation sources

fossil fuels: 93.4% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

nuclear: 0% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

solar: 1.5% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

wind: 3.2% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

hydroelectricity: 0.7% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

tide and wave: 0% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

geothermal: 0% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

biomass and waste: 1.2% of total installed capacity (2020 est.)

Coal

production: 0 metric tons (2020 est.)

consumption: 1.791 million metric tons (2020 est.)

exports: 0 metric tons (2020 est.)

imports: 2.359 million metric tons (2020 est.)

proven reserves: 0 metric tons (2019 est.)

Petroleum

total petroleum production: 0 bbl/day (2021 est.)

refined petroleum consumption: 148,200 bbl/day (2019 est.)

crude oil and lease condensate exports: 0 bbl/day (2018 est.)

crude oil and lease condensate imports: 24,900 bbl/day (2018 est.)

crude oil estimated reserves: 0 barrels (2021 est.)

Refined petroleum products - production

16,060 bbl/day (2015 est.)

comparison ranking: 92

Refined petroleum products - exports

0 bbl/day (2015 est.)

comparison ranking: 206

Refined petroleum products - imports

108,500 bbl/day (2015 est.)

comparison ranking: 52

Natural gas

production: 0 cubic meters (2021 est.)

consumption: 1,602,759,000 cubic meters (2019 est.)

exports: 28.657 million cubic meters (2019 est.)

imports: 1,586,449,000 cubic meters (2019 est.)

proven reserves: 0 cubic meters (2021 est.)

Carbon dioxide emissions

26.808 million metric tonnes of CO2 (2019 est.)

from coal and metallurgical coke: 4.713 million metric tonnes of CO2 (2019 est.)

from petroleum and other liquids: 18.951 million metric tonnes of CO2 (2019 est.)

from consumed natural gas: 3.144 million metric tonnes of CO2 (2019 est.)

comparison ranking: total emissions 77

Energy consumption per capita

39.016 million Btu/person (2019 est.)

comparison ranking: 109

Communications

Telephones - fixed lines

total subscriptions: 1,143,893 (2022 est.)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 10 (2021 est.)

comparison ranking: total subscriptions 70

Telephones - mobile cellular

total subscriptions: 9,735,351 (2021 est.)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 88 (2021 est.)

comparison ranking: total subscriptions 94

Telecommunication systems

general assessment: the Dominican Republic’s telecom sector continued its solid form throughout 2020 and into 2021, shrugging off the economic turmoil unleashed by the Covid-19 pandemic to maintain a decade-long run of low but positive growth across all areas of the market; the Dominican Republic remains behind most of its counterparts in the Latin American region, especially in terms of fixed-line network coverage; mobile subscriptions are on par with the regional average, but at subscription levels of around 88% there is still ample opportunity for growth; in terms of growth, the standout winner was once again the mobile broadband segment; the market is expected to see close to 8% growth in 2021, building further on the gains it already made in 2020 when lock downs and work-from-home rules encouraged many people to find ways to upgrade their internet access and performance; the limited coverage of fixed-line broadband networks makes mobile the first, if not only, choice for most people in the country (2021)

domestic: fixed-line teledensity is about 10 per 100 persons; mobile cellular subscriptions 88 per 100 persons (2021)

international: country code - 1-809; 1-829; 1-849; landing point for the ARCOS-1, Antillas 1, AMX-1, SAm-1, East-West, Deep Blue Cable and the Fibralink submarine cables that provide links to South and Central America, parts of the Caribbean, and US; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean) (2019)

Broadcast media

combination of state-owned and privately owned broadcast media; 1 state-owned TV network and a number of private TV networks; networks operate repeaters to extend signals throughout country; combination of state-owned and privately owned radio stations with more than 300 radio stations operating (2019)

Internet users

total: 9.35 million (2021 est.)

percent of population: 85% (2021 est.)

comparison ranking: total 62

Broadband - fixed subscriptions

total: 1,031,858 (2020 est.)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 10 (2020 est.)

comparison ranking: total 72

Transportation

National air transport system

number of registered air carriers: 1 (2020)

inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 6

Airports

32 (2024)

comparison ranking: 116

Heliports

4 (2024)

Pipelines

27 km gas, 103 km oil (2013)

Railways

total: 496 km (2014)

standard gauge: 354 km (2014) 1.435-m gauge

narrow gauge: 142 km (2014) 0.762-m gauge

comparison ranking: total 113

Roadways

total: 19,705 km (2002)

paved: 9,872 km (2002)

unpaved: 9,833 km (2002)

comparison ranking: total 115

Merchant marine

total: 40 (2023)

by type: container ship 1, general cargo 2, oil tanker 1, other 36

comparison ranking: total 124

Ports and terminals

major seaport(s): Puerto Haina, Puerto Plata, Santo Domingo

oil terminal(s): Punta Nizao oil terminal

cruise port(s): La Romana

container port(s) (TEUs): Caucedo (1,265,459); Haina (495,243)

LNG terminal(s) (import): Andres LNG terminal (Boca Chica)

Military and Security

Military and security forces

Armed Forces of the Dominican Republic: Army of the Dominican Republic (Ejercito de la República Dominicana, ERD), Navy (Armada de República Dominicana or ARD; includes naval infantry), Dominican Air Force (Fuerza Aerea de la República Dominicana, FARD)  (2024)

note 1: in addition to the three main branches of the military, the Ministry of Defense directs the Airport Security Authority and Civil Aviation (CESAC), Port Security Authority (CESEP), the Tourist Security Corps (CESTUR), and Border Security Corps (CESFRONT); these specialized corps are joint forces, made up of personnel from all military branches in addition to civilian personnel; these forces may also assist in overall citizen security working together with the National Police, which is under the Ministry of Interior

Military expenditures

0.4% of GDP (2023 est.)
0.7% of GDP (2022 est.)
0.7% of GDP (2021 est.)
0.8% of GDP (2020 est.)
0.7% of GDP (2019 est.)

comparison ranking: 162

Military and security service personnel strengths

information varies; approximately 60,000 active personnel (30,000 Army; 13,000 Navy; 17,000 Air Force); approximately 35,000 National Police (2023)

Military equipment inventories and acquisitions

the military is lightly armed with an inventory consisting mostly of older US equipment (2023)

Military service age and obligation

16-23 years of age for voluntary military service for men and women (ages vary slightly according to the military service; under 18 admitted with permission of parents); recruits must have completed primary school and be Dominican Republic citizens (2024)

note: as of 2023, women made up approximately 18% of the active duty military

Military - note

the military is responsible for defending the independence, integrity, and sovereignty of the Dominican Republic; it also has an internal security role, which includes assisting with airport, border, port, tourism, and urban security, supporting the police in maintaining or restoring public order, countering transnational crime, and providing disaster or emergency relief/management; a key area of focus is securing the country’s 217-mile (350-kilometer) long border with Haiti; the Army in recent years, for example, has assigned three of its six infantry brigades and some 10-12,000 troops to assist with security along the Haitian border; these forces complement the approximately 700 troops of the Border Security Corps permanently deployed along the border; the Air Force and Navy also provide support to the Haitian border mission; the Army has a brigade dedicated to managing and providing relief during natural disasters; the military also contributes personnel to the National Drug Control Directorate, and both the Air Force and Navy devote assets to detecting and interdicting narcotics trafficking; the Navy conducts regular bilateral maritime interdiction exercises with the US Navy (2023)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international

Dominican Republic-Haiti: unauthorized migration and smuggling from impoverished and unstable Haiti has led to occasional border tensions and increased security by the Dominican Republic, including the construction of a fence and the deployment of military troops

Refugees and internally displaced persons

refugees (country of origin): 115,283 (Venezuela) (economic and political crisis; includes Venezuelans who have claimed asylum or have received alternative legal stay) (2021)

stateless persons: 133,770 (2016); note - a September 2013 Constitutional Court ruling revoked the citizenship of those born after 1929 to immigrants without proper documentation, even though the constitution at the time automatically granted citizenship to children born in the Dominican Republic and the 2010 constitution provides that constitutional provisions cannot be applied retroactively; the decision overwhelmingly affected people of Haitian descent whose relatives had come to the Dominican Republic since the 1890s as a cheap source of labor for sugar plantations; a May 2014 law passed by the Dominican Congress regularizes the status of those with birth certificates but will require those without them to prove they were born in the Dominican Republic and to apply for naturalization; the government has issued documents to thousands of individuals who may claim citizenship under this law, but no official estimate has been released

Trafficking in persons

tier rating: Tier 2 Watch List — the Dominican Republic does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking but is making significant efforts to do so; more traffickers were convicted, two police officers were investigated for trafficking crimes, and cooperation with international law enforcement increased; officials identified more victims and implemented new protections for vulnerable domestic workers; however, the government did not demonstrate overall increasing efforts, compared with the previous reporting period, to expand its anti-trafficking capacity; the government systemically and persistently failed to screen vulnerable migrant or undocumented populations, failed to refer victims to services, and did not provide these groups with justice in trafficking crimes; officials investigated and prosecuted fewer traffickers, did not adequately investigate labor trafficking cases involving migrants and children, and did not identify victims; the government did not adopt draft amendments to improve anti-trafficking laws, did not adequately fund or provide resources to anti-trafficking efforts, and did not complete a new National Action Plan; therefore, the Dominican Republic was downgraded to Tier 2 Watch List (2023)

trafficking profile: human traffickers exploit domestic and foreign victims in the Dominican Republic, and victims from the Dominican Republic are exploited abroad; Dominican women and children, particularly from impoverished areas, were victims of sex trafficking throughout the Dominican Republic, the Caribbean, South and Central America, Europe, the Middle East, and the US; a 2022 study found family networks, social media recruiting, domestic servitude, inequality, gender-based violence, lack of information and education, and corruption were the primary causes of trafficking of Dominican women and girls in Costa Rica, Spain, and Switzerland; foreign victims, especially from Colombia, Haiti, Venezuela, other parts of the Caribbean and Latin America, and Asia, were trafficked in the Dominican Republic; the Dominican Republic is a destination for sex tourists – primarily from North America and Europe – for child sex trafficking; traffickers increased recruiting of Colombian and Venezuelan women to dance in strip clubs and later coerce them into sex trafficking; children are forced into domestic service, street vending, begging, agricultural work, construction, robbery gangs, and movement of illicit narcotics; traffickers reportedly operate along the Haitian-Dominican border, sometimes with assistance of corrupt government officials who accept bribes to allow undocumented crossings; LGBTQI+ individuals face high levels of violence, which may increase vulnerability to trafficking (2023)

Illicit drugs

major transshipment point for cocaine shipments to the United States and Europe in the Caribbean; some drugs are consumed locally.