The Dominican Republic is the second largest economy in the Caribbean, member of the Association of Caribbean States and of the Central American Integration System (SICA). The Dominican Republic currently holds the Presidency pro tempore of CELAC (Community of Latin American and Caribbean States).
Since 2002, a series of high-level visits has reflected the deepening of the relationship between Brazil and the Dominican Republic. The then President Leonel Fernández visited Brazil in four opportunities: (i) in June 2004 (participation in the Rio-Group Summit, as President elect); (ii) in June 2007; (iii) in December 2008 (First Latin America and Caribbean Summit – CALC), and (iv) in April 2011. The then President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva attended the inauguration ceremony of Fernández in 2004.
The current Dominican President, Danilo Medina, visited Brazil on July 9, 2012. President Medina stablished, from the early stages of his Presidency, a very close relationship with Brazil, considered a reference in the formulation of social inclusion policies, which increases the range of receptive positions for the Brazilian image.
A relevant aspect of the bilateral relation is the Technical Cooperation Program, in areas as diverse as the environment, health, security, capacity training, public policies and education. During the visit of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mauro Vieira, to Santo Domingo, in June 2015, new projects were drafted in the areas of agricultural development, human rights, education, planning, social security and health. Under the scope of cooperation in culture, the Brazil-Dominican Republic Cultural Center, created in 2009, has already graduated 600 students in Portuguese language courses.
Educational Cooperation between the two countries has a long tradition: at the beginning of the 1960s, the first group of University students from the Dominican Republic traveled to Brazil, starting an exchange program within the framework of the 1942 Brazil-Dominican Republic Cultural Covenant. During the visit of Minister Mauro Vieira to Santo Domingo, in June 2015, a Commemorative Postage Stamp for the Fiftieth Anniversary of the "Dominican-Brazilian University Cooperation" was launched. Currently, educational cooperation with the Dominican Republic takes place under the Program for Undergraduate and Post-Graduated Students (PEC-G and PEC-PG).
The tourism sector is also noteworthy in the relationship: Brazil was the second largest South American source of tourists to the Dominican Republic in 2014. The Brazil-Dominican Republic trade flow is around USD 550 million, having grown 75% in the last fifteen years.
Chronology of bilateral relations
1911 – Opening of the Consulate of Brazil in the Dominican Republic, in Santo Domingo
1943 – Opening of the Brazilian Embassy in the Dominican Republic
1955 – Juscelino Kubtschek visits Santo Domingo as President-elect of Brazil, on his way to the United States
2002 – President Fernando Henrique Cardoso visits the Dominican Republic, on the occasion of the Ibero-American Summit
2002 – President Lula visits the Dominican Republic to take part in the Presidential Inauguration Ceremony
2004 – Leonel Fernández visits Brazil as President elect of the Dominican Republic (2004-2012)
2007 – President Leonel Fernández (2004-2012) takes a tour of more than a week through Brazilian cities
2011 – President Leonel Fernández (2004-2012) visits Brazil to participate in the World Economic Forum on Latin America, in Rio de Janeiro
2011 – Danilo Medina, campaigning to the Presidency, visits Brazil
2012 – Danilo Medina visits Brazil as President elect and is received by President Dilma Rousseff