President Medina will begin his second four-year Administration on August 16. During his first term, President Medina fully supported the country’s thriving tourism industry. President Medina has said many times that the tourism industry is one of the country’s most important economic sectors.
Danilo Medina, the candidate of the Dominican Liberation Party, won his second term in office during the last electoral process held in the country this past May.
Ten Million Tourists
During the electoral campaign, President Medina continuously mentioned that one of his main goals is to raise the number of international tourists visiting the Dominican Republic to 10 million by 2022.
In order to reach this important goal, the Dominican government announced that it will launch an innovative communication strategy at the national and international levels to promote the country’s thriving tourism industry. One of the goals of the campaign is to also attract international investors to the D.R.
More than Sun and Sand
The second Medina Administration, which will be sworn-in this August 16, will promote the country as more than a destination featuring only “sun and sand.” The authorities will also promote other important aspects of the Dominican Republic, such as adventure, cultural, health, convention, religious, rural and tourism options for the elderly, to name but a few.
In addition, the authorities will also work to bring in cruise ships to Dominican ports by creating the National Council on Cruise Ships, as well as encourage high-end tourism.
More Cruise Ships
An important step in this direction was the recent construction of a cruise ship terminal in the Bay of Maimon, by the Carnival Cruise Corporation. The terminal is situated some 15 minutes from Puerto Plata, the north coast’s most important city. The port began operations in October 2015 and by July of this year some 75 cruise ships brought 168,000 international tourists to the north coast region.
The country also has cruise ship ports in the eastern region city of La Romana, the capital city of Santo Domingo and in Samana, on the country’s northeast region.
Another important project which will be carried out during the second term of President Medina and Vice President Margarita Cedeño, is the continued refurbishing and remodeling of Santo Domingo’s Colonial Section, the oldest in the Western Hemisphere.
The Colonial Heritage
During the first Medina Administration the authorities launched the Tourism Development Program for the Colonial Zone, funded by the Inter-American Development Bank. The project included the reconstruction of the Zone’s streets and plazas, elimination of overhead wires, stronger security measures, the introduction of special tourism routes and the construction of a community center.
In this new Administration, the authorities will focus on the promotion of activities that will complement the overall industry, such as the development of arts and crafts programs, cultural development, theme parks, golf courses, marinas and private airports, to name but a few.
A New Destination
However, one of the most ambitious plans to be launched by the new authorities will be the Pedernales Integral Development Program, which includes the construction of some 12 thousand hotel rooms (during the next 20 years), in the border region province of Pedernales, situated in the country’s southwest region.