Migration Agency says it treats people with respect
President Medina issues decree to control public spending 
Environment: Medina working for safe water over decades
Seed bank at the National Botanical Gardens
US dollar breaks RD$47 to 1 barrier
What’s the explanation on the US dollars scarcity? 
Geography puts DR in the crosshairs 
Conep supports Odebrecht investigation: “No matter who”
New place to obtain Schengen visas to Spain
Cabify.app ups the taxi ante on 9 February 2017
Mob in SFM kills one assailant, wounds two others
First Dominican Film Congress in March 2017
DR names the roster for World Baseball Classic
Pavel Núñez at the Jaragua
Carnival in Boca Chica
Chichí Peralta at Hard Rock Live
Heinz Burger Fest in Santo Domingo



Migration Agency says it treats people with respect
In a written statement, the Migration Agency (DGM) reiterated on Wednesday, 8 February 2017, their respect for human rights and that the entity carries out its duties professionally. Recently there has been criticism regarding operations that aim to verify the legal status of foreigners in the country. 

In the press statement, the agency says that foreigners whose documents are expired are required in a respectful manner to get them up to date by the agents.  The DGM confirmed that immigration inspectors are combing the country, with a focus in tourist areas and their agents have been instructed to give all persons the best of treatment. The official statement says: “It is not true that we are causing panic among foreigners who are illegal he in the country; what is happening is that they have to normalize their status just like what happens in other countries where some Dominicans may be living without proper travel papers.” 

The Migration agency says that when an inspector detains a foreigner because he or she cannot produce valid documentation, the agents are instructed to immediately refer that person to the proper authorities so these may update their papers. The document says that these actions are routine and the agents are performing their duties in the same manner as in other countries.

http://elnacional.com.do/migracion-d...d-de-ilegales/
http://dr1.com/forums/showthread.php...nd-Up-in-Sosua


President Medina issues decree to control public spending 
President Danilo Medina issued Decree 15-17 that applies to the control and fulfillment of public expenditures, as reported in El Nacional. The objective of the executive order is to improve the transparency in government purchases and to ensure the prompt payment of its suppliers. 

According to the Presidential Minister Gustavo Montalvo, the decree is aimed at “eliminating some gray areas or gaps that might allow for situations that are not in accord with the spirit of the established processes to irregularly occur.” 

Among other things, the decree says that government entities must certify the availability of funds before going through a purchasing process. Montalvo explained that the crisis of the 2003-2004 years put into evidence the need to strengthen the legal framework of public finances, from the Treasury and the Budget Office all the way to the handling of the funds and purchasing processes.

http://elnacional.com.do/gobierno-es...a-proveedores/


Environment: Medina working for safe water over decades
The Minister of the Environment stressed that President Danilo Medina is working to guarantee safe water for the island over the coming decades in the face of climate change. According to Minister Francisco Dominguez Brito, the ministry is working in order to provide answers to meet the demand for drinking water, the collection and treatment of sewage and the conservation of the nation’s watersheds. 

He said “at the present time the government is committed above all to the watershed of the Yaque del Norte River.  And in Santo Domingo there is the Roundtable on the Watersheds of the Isabela and Ozama rivers.” He noted that they are eliminating the breaking up of ships in both of these rivers and they are working towards the definitive elimination of the recycling industry and repair industry on the riverbanks because they discharge their waste into the rivers. He noted that the Ozama water treatment plant will soon go into operation and that some 25,000 persons who lived in La Barquita no longer throw their waste into the River. 

In the long article in the Diario Libre the minister said in reference to the entire island, that the protection of water for the island in great measure has to be undertaken by the Dominican Republic, noting that most of the water for human consumption in Haiti comes from the Peligre Dam that is supplied by the Artibonito and Macasia rivers, both of which are born in the Dominican Republic. 

Therefore,” he said, “if we do not establish a framework for the protection of these two rivers, 5 million Haitians will have only two options: a desalinization plant that they are not economically capable of operating or be at great risk of consuming contaminated water,  or be forced to migrate to the Dominican Republic for lack of clean water.”

Domínquez Brito spoke at a high level meeting with members of the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the Inter-American Institute of Agriculture (IICA) that is focusing on the watersheds of the Dominican Republic.


Seed bank at the National Botanical Gardens
With the presence of a senior scientist from the Kew Gardens in London, the Dr. Rafael M. Moscoso Botanical Garden (JBN) unveiled on Tuesday, 7 February 2017, its Seed Bank dedicated to research and conservation of native and endemic plants of the Dominican Republic and the insular Caribbean. 

Ricardo García, director of the Botanical Gardens (JBN), said the project is a tool for important conservation work and the sustainable management of flora in the country and in Haiti. He said it will serve to safeguard the genetic material of the plants of Hispaniola and to a resource for planting material for reforestation and urban greenspace programs. He said especially important is that the project will make it possible to increase the populations of endangered native and endemic species. He said without the seed bank there are several species that could be lost in the next ten years. 

Participating in the announcement was Minister of Environment Francisco Domínguez Brito and Tiziana Ulian, senior research leader of diversity and livelihoods at the Royal Botanic Gardens (Kew Gardens) in London, UK.  
It took six years to build the Seed Bank, from 2010 to 2016, at a cost of around RD$18 million. It has capacity to store millions of seeds in an area that includes a laboratory, research center, cold store, and in vitro cultivation laboratory for the propagation of orchids.  

https://www.metrord.do/do/destacado/...-semillas.html


US dollar breaks RD$47 to 1 barrier
For the first time in over 10 years, those wanting to purchase 1 US dollar need to cough up at least RD$47 Dominican pesos. 

The Central Bank reported that the official rate banks are buying US dollars is 46.91 pesos per one US dollar. To buy a US dollar at a bank the reference price from the Central Bank was RD$47.01, as of 7 February 2017.  This rate had increased to RD$47.03 by Wednesday, 8 February 2017. 

During a meeting with the Association of Commercial Bank, the governor of the Central Bank Hector Valdez Albizu said that the amount of US$ dollars entering the Dominican economy had been increasing. He said in 2016, US$24.3 billion dollars entered the Dominican currency market, and gross international reserved closed at a record of US$6,047.4 million and US$6,046.7 million the international net reserves.  

http://elnacional.com.do/dolar-super...pesos-por-uno/
http://www.bancentral.gov.do/tasas_c...=1486644771967


What’s the explanation on the US dollars scarcity? 
With the peso depreciating to RD$47 to US$1, the Association of Industries of Herrera and Province of Santo Domingo (AEIH) demanded a clear explanation from the authorities concerning the continuing scarcity of US dollars circulating in the free market. 

The president of AEIH, Antonio Taveras said that businessmen are having serious difficulties in securing hard currency to meet their international commitments, replacing inventory and paying invoices in US dollars. 

“We wonder how can an economy that received US$24.3 billion last year, a US$1.6 billion increase over US$ receipts in 2015, could now all the sudden be rationing the sale of dollars,” asked Taveras. “They put us on waiting lists and then they sell us only minimum amounts,” he said. 

“My distinguished colleagues at the Central Bank, if you say the economy is generating sufficient hard currency to honor our nation’s commitments and that there is a US$6 billion reserve, then what is causing the scarcity?” he asked. 

He said that neither banking sector, nor the exchange markets in general can meet the present demand for US dollars. 

There is criticism that some banks are offering dollars at RD$49, that is two pesos more than the spot quote at the Central Bank. 

Circe Almánzar, executive vice president of the Dominican Republic Association of Industries (AIRD) said companies are currently experiencing one week delays in purchasing needed dollars and banks are reporting waiting lists of companies wishing to secure greenbacks.  

http://acento.com.do/2017/economia/8...ez-de-dolares/


Geography puts DR in the crosshairs 
Retired Admiral Sigfrido Pared Pérez, currently the director of the National Department of Investigations (DNI), told reporters on Wednesday, 8 February 2017, that the geographical position of the Dominican Republic makes it highly vulnerable to different types of threats. Pared Pérez mentioned the Dominican Republic has a maritime border with Puerto Rico to the East and South America to the South, where he noted “that is precisely where they produce a lot of cocaine.” 

As he spoke at the Conference on Cyber Security that included the participation of officials from the National Intelligence Center of Spain, Pared Pérez said that since the Dominican Republic welcomes six million tourists a year, security authorities are obliged to work diligently to maintain the country at acceptable standards of security. 

He also observed the country needs to be prepared to deal with what is known as the Fourth Border of Cyber Space. He recalled that there is a law that dates from 2007 (Law 53) that addresses high tech crimes and other issues in cyberspace. He insisted that now it is necessary “to follow the path of other countries such as the case of Spain to make our country safe from cyber attacks.  And thanks to the assistance from our colleagues in Spain, I believe the Dominican Republic is on the right path.”


Conep supports Odebrecht investigation: “No matter who”
The president of the National Business Council (Conep), Pedro Brache said that “no matter who” is involved in the scandal, the government should continue its investigations into the bribes paid by the Brazilian construction company Odebrecht. He said this case must go to the very end, regardless of the consequences. In his opinion, the country must receive reparations from the builder and then the government must investigate those persons who accepted the bribes.

Brache made the comments during a visit to the Central Electoral Board. He also pointed out that his fellow businessmen will abide by the recent resolution of the Labor Ministry to increase maternity leave from 12 to 14 weeks.

So far, the Attorney General Office has announced Odebrecht has signed an 8-year agreement for compensation to the Dominican Republic for double the US$92 million bribe they have admitted to paying to commercial representative Angel Rondón, with a first disbursement of US$30 million made with the signing of the agreement. Rondón had denied the money was bribe money, saying he received the US$92 million in fees for his work in helping Odebrecht secure the contract work with the Dominican government. 


New place to obtain Schengen visas to Spain
The Spanish Embassy in the Dominican Republic reported on 8 February 2017 that since 20 January 2017 Schengen visa appointments need to be made at the offices of BLS International, located on the second floor of Unicentro Plaza, in locale 46, on Abraham Lincoln Ave. at the corner of 27 February in Santo Domingo.

The embassy noted that the VFS Company is no longer accepting appointment requests for Schengen visas. 

For more information, call 809 566-6450. 


Cabify.app ups the taxi ante on 9 February 2017
The Cabify.app company, a competitor to the traditional taxi service in Santo Domingo, announced on Wednesday, 8 February 2017 that all of its clients would be given an automatic RD$500 pesos credit for all the routes that begin or end in Greater Santo Domingo, from 6am until 11:59pm on Thursday, 9 February. 

This credit will be applied automatically (it will not be necessary to enter code in the promotions box) at the end of the trip or service, so that clients will see this as an RD$0.004 for their trip on their receipt (except if it has passed the sum of RD$500 pesos).

It is not necessary to deposit cash to use Cabify, since it immediately charges the fare to your credit or debit card, and immediately sends a receipt to your pre-registered email.


Mob in SFM kills one assailant, wounds two others
A vigilante mob shot and killed one man and one seriously wounded two others after they allegedly had stolen the motorcycle of a “motoconchista” in the northeastern city of San Francisco de Macoris. 

The victim was identified as Jorge Luis Morel Burgos (“Papi”), 30, and the two persons wounded by gunshots were identified as José Anibal Gutierrez, 30, and Leodanny Diaz Severino, 24. The two wounded men received medical attention at the public hospital in San Francisco de Macoris. 

The National Police, in their preliminary report, say that the three men were attacked by a mob that had pursued them, after they allegedly assaulted Cicilio Alvarado Jiménez (“Ariel”), 48, taking his Z 3000 black motorcycle on which he was traveling with his son, Estiven Alvarado Evangelista, 29. Alvarado Jimenez called for help and a mob pursued the alleged assailants, which resulted in some vigilantes firing a weapon and shooting the alleged assailants, causing the death of while wounding the other two. 

The Police say they are trying to identify the members of the vigilante mob who fired the shots.


First Dominican Film Congress in March 2017
The Dominican Film Agency (DGCine) and the Dominican Association of Professionals of the Industry of Films (Adocine) announced the upcoming First National Films Congress and the La Silla Awards. 

In a press conference, Yvette Marichal, director of DGCine, announced the congress will take place 23-24 March 2017 at the Convention Center of the Ministry of Foreign Relations (Mirex). 

She said the congress will be a forum for discussions about a wide range of topics on the country’s film industry, with a particular focus on the Dominican Republic as a destination for international film making. 

The La Silla Awards will honor the professional work of those in the industry in categories including short film, documentary, script, sound design, song track, movie directing, movie editing, best actress and actor, best supporting actress and actor, best producer, best director, comedy of the year and movie of the year. 

There will be discussions, master classes and seminars. Many of these sessions will be free to university students and the general public.  

https://www.metrord.do/do/cine/2017/...les-marzo.html


DR names the roster for World Baseball Classic
The Dominican Republic has announced the roster for the World Baseball Classic. The team is built around power, speed, excellent starting pitching and top-of-the-line relievers. The team will play in Group C together with Colombia, Canada and the United States. The group is known as the “Group of Death.” 

The Dominican team features catchers Wellington Castillo and Alberto Rosario. The list of pitchers includes Dellin Betances, Santiago Casillas, Alex Colomé, Jhonny Cueto, Jumbo Díaz, Jeurys Familia, Héctor Neris, Carlos Martínez, Hansel Robles, Enny Romero, Édinson Volquez, Fernando Rodney, César Valdez and Bryan Rodríguez. 

The infielders and outfielders make up any baseball manager’s Dream Team and nearly all of these players have been Major League’s All Stars.  The team’s infielders are Adrián Beltré, Robinson Canó, Manny Machado, Hanley Ramírez, José Reyes, Carlos Santana and Jhonatan Villar. The outfielders are José Bautista, Nelson Cruz, Gregory Polanco, Starling Marte and Mel Rojas Jr. Tony Peña is the manager of the team. 

The World Baseball Classic runs from March 6-22. ESPN Deportes and WatchESPN will provide the exclusive Spanish-language coverage for the Dominican Republic. 

http://m.mlb.com/news/article/215511...ters-unveiled/


Pavel Núñez at the Jaragua
Dominican contemporary singer Pavel Núñez will be performing on 14 February at the Teatro La Fiesta del Hotel Jaragua, in a St. Valentine’s Day concert. The concert is: “Pavelove.” 


Carnival in Boca Chica
The Hotel Hamaca in Boca Chica presents the Boca Chica “Tierra y Mar” carnival on Thursday, 16 February 2017 at 6pm. The event is organized with the backing of townspeople, businessmen, hoteliers and stores. 

Chichí Peralta at Hard Rock Live
Chichí Peralta, known for his contemporary merengues, is booked for a performance at Hard Rock Live Blue Mall on 16 February 2017. It is part of his ShowCase Tour 2017 where he will play his best hits. The show is set for 9pm. It is a production by ED Live and SkyPro. Peralta is a winner of the Latin Grammy Award and Premios Lo Nuestro Award among others over his 35 years of successful career. Among his best hits are: 
“La Ciguapa,” “Amor narcotic,” “Me enamoré” , “Limón con sal,” “Pa’ otro la’o”, where he combines son, jazz, merengue, pop, Brazilian music, African music for catchy songs.


Heinz Burger Fest in Santo Domingo
Hamburger lovers take note. The Heinz Burger Fest this year will take place 25-26 March 2017 at the La Media Cancha in northern Santo Domingo. La Media Cancha is located taking the road behind Carrefour on Duarte Highway. Calle Santo Domingo Cerro 11, Los Guayabos. Tel 809 530-7335. 

http://lamediacanchard.com/

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http://www.dr1.com/calendar


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