Medina on relations with China: It had to be decided
Taiwan could help out university students
Dominican Republic agreement with China makes headlines around the world
Dominican ambassador has 30 days to clear embassy in Taipei
Francisco Javier García: More joint Central American tourism promotion
Ozama River cable car should begin operating this month
Intervention in Barahona following newborn deaths in public hospital
More smuggled cash found at Haina Port
Police will not be pressurized
Army cadets admitted to hospital
No cooking gas leads to deforestation
Illegal charcoal seized in Boca Chica
Border community blames EnviroGold for water contamination
UASD protests close Ortega y Gasset tunnel
PAWA owes millions
US Coastguard repatriates 12 illegal Dominicans arrested in Mona Channel
Emely Peguero’s father arrested for illegal firearm possession
Giannina Azar gets world press coverage for her JLo designs



Medina on relations with China: It had to be decided
President Danilo Medina said during the inauguration of the remodeling of the public hospital in Puerto Plata that the only thing the Dominican Republic asked the People’s Republic of China for when switching relations from Taiwan was for it to transfer the Dominican university students in Taipei to similar university programs in continental China, recognizing the credits the students had already accumulated. “There is no more,” said Medina in Puerto Plata. Around 20 Dominicans study in Taiwan on Taiwan scholarships.

The President denied the government had been won over by offers of funding for local projects. "It's being said that money will come. No. I think they want to discredit the relationship before it is born. Of course, when two countries establish diplomatic relations they do so on the principle of cooperation between the two," he acknowledged. He spoke of expectations that cooperation would be widespread and beneficial for both countries and mentioned a letter received from China President Xi Jinping mentioning this point.

Medina explained the signing with China would have happened sooner or later. He said: "It was not possible for the Dominican Republic to continue to not have relations with the second world economy, which is China. Those relationships had to be established at some point in history and I had the responsibility to decide and decided it.”

Center for Export and Investment of the Dominican Republic (CEI-RD) statistics reveal trade between the DR and the PRC for 2008-2010 was US$2.57 billion. Of that amount, the Dominican Republic exported US$373.46 million (15%), while it imported US$2.15 billion from China. The DR primarily exported copper, static converters, medical devices, machine parts and electrical apparatus.


Taiwan could help out university students
Around 90 Dominicans are carrying out studies in Taiwan. Of these, around 20 have scholarships funded by the Taiwan government. The government of Taiwan has announced that all cooperation programs would end after the Dominican government announced it had signed for diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China on 30 April 2018.

There may be hope for the Dominican students in Taiwan. Taiwan News reported that the Ministry of Education of Taiwan was open to help the Dominican students to continue their studies, but each case would be treated differently by each university.

President Danilo Medina said on 1 May 2018 when in Puerto Plata for the inauguration of the remodeling of the Puerto Plata public hospital that the only request his government had made to China when signing for diplomatic relations was that it assist Dominicans studying in Taiwan to transfer their credits and continue their studies in continental China.

Nevertheless, the helping hand announced by the Ministry of Education in Taiwan may be a godsend to many. Education Minister of Taiwan Yang Shu-ya reportedly says it would help Dominicans to continue their studies, but these must talk to the universities. Diario Libre reports that when Panama switched from Taiwan to China, students who transferred to China found themselves with innumerous problems, many having to start their careers from zero.

The Administrative Minister of the Presidency José Ramón Peralta, and the director of communications of the Presidency Roberto Rodríguez Marchena, had announced by way of their respective Twitter accounts that China has promised that all of those Dominican students studying on scholarships at universities in Taiwan can transfer to universities in China to continue their studies. This will include studying on the same terms and their previous studies will be recognized. China says that they will also provide whatever assistance is necessary to the students and their families, currently in Taiwan.

https://www.diariolibre.com/noticias...iwan-AD9775442
https://www.taiwannews.com.tw/en/news/3419327
https://listindiario.com/la-republic...ados-en-taiwan


Dominican Republic agreement with China makes headlines around the world
The establishment of formal diplomatic relations between China and the Dominican Republic has been a hot news topic throughout the world.

Officials from the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and the Dominican government signed a joint agreement at an event in Beijing, China on 30 April 2018 announcing the establishment of formal diplomatic ties. According to Foreign Minister Miguel Vargas, the Dominican Republic “breaks diplomatic relations with Taiwan (known as the Republic of China – ROC) which is an inalienable part of China, and will not maintain any kind of official relations or contacts [with ROC].”

The Dominican Republic is not the first country in the Central American and Caribbean to sever ties with Taiwan. Panama dropped its longtime ties with Taiwan in 2017. Costa Rica was first in the region to do so in 2007.

The People’s Republic of China insists that Taiwan is part of PRC territory. With the announcement of the Dominican Republic’s breaking of diplomatic relations with Taiwan, the island nation is now recognized as a sovereign country by only 19 nations: 10 in Latin America and the Caribbean, two in Africa, six small island states in the Pacific and the Vatican.

Taiwan government officials, expressing their deep dismay of the Dominican Republic’s decision, criticized what it called China’s “dollar diplomacy” and announced that Taiwan would immediately terminate ties with the Dominican Republic. As a result of the break in diplomatic ties between Taiwan and the Dominican Republic, the Taiwanese government has suspended all projects and assistance it provides to the country.

It has been reported that China has offered US$3 billion in assistance to the Dominican Republic. Of this money, it is speculated that US$220 million will be to build affordable housing; US$400 million to build roads; US$1.6 to build railroads and US$50 million to set up an IT system for the Civil Aviation Institute. Another US$300 million will be used to build a natural gas electrical plant. US$350 million will be invested in a hydroelectric plant and US$174 million for an incineration plant.

However, Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Joseph Wu warned that Beijing has failed to deliver on hundreds of millions of dollars in pledges to some of Taiwan’s former diplomatic allies and said that the Taiwanese government was “deeply upset by China’s actions.”

He said that China did not comply with its promises of US$1 billion for a refinery and US$400 million for roads in Costa Rica.

Flavio Dario Espinal, legal advisor to the Executive Branch, said at a news conference on Monday, 30 April 2018, that the change in foreign policy was based on the “needs, potential and future prospects” of the country and that the decision had been made due to history and socioeconomics and that it would be extremely positive for the future of the Dominican Republic. He went on to say that even without formal diplomatic relations with China, trade between the two countries “has grown year after year to the point that today China is the second biggest supplier of our imports.”

Espinal said the government informed Taiwan of its move earlier Monday and thanked the Taiwanese for their cooperation including the development of very important programs. Over the last few weeks Taiwan has given assistance to the Dominican Republic to the tune of US$35 million and two helicopters, 90 military trucks and 100 motorcycles.

Beijing announced yesterday, Tuesday that it would exchange ambassadors with the Dominican Republic “as soon as practicable”.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-c...-idUSKBN1I22LN
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world...=.acec9d3616c3
https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...ure-from-china
https://international.thenewslens.com/article/94710
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/01/w...recognize.html
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...blow-to-taiwan
http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/latamcaribbea...ntral-america/


Dominican ambassador has 30 days to clear embassy in Taipei
Dominican ambassador José Miguel Soto Jiménez was given 30 days to close down to Dominican Embassy in the Republic of China (Taiwan). The order came after the government announced it was switching to holding diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China and severing relations with Taiwan. Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Wu announced the immediate suspension of all cooperation agreements to preserve national sovereignty and dignity.

http://www.7dias.com.do/portada/2018...da-taiwan.html


Francisco Javier García: More joint Central American tourism promotion
Tourism Minister Francisco Javier García called for more integration and sharing of experiences among the member countries of the Central American Integration System (SICA) to contribute to the regional development of the tourism industry. The regional block is made up by Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala in Central America and the Dominican Republic.

García spoke during the recent meeting of the Council of Directors of the Agency for Central American Tourism Promotion (CATA). García called for joint policies to promote the region and attract tourists from far away countries. The Dominican Republic is the regional country with the highest hotel occupancy, number of visitors and direct foreign investment in the region.

"I believe that the Central American and Caribbean countries have to see each other more, and exchange our experiences," said the head of tourism in the country. He remarked that the success of the region is the success of the Dominican Republic and each country. The Dominican Republic received 6.1 million tourists and generated US$7.2 billion in hard currency in 2017, said García.

https://www.metrord.do/do/destacado/...gion-sica.html


Ozama River cable car should begin operating this month
The government is planning to inaugurate the Santo Domingo cable car during this month of May. Domingo Contreras of the Special Projects of the Presidency Office announced a 15 May 2018 inauguration date. The cable car crosses the Ozama River, linking east and west Santo Domingo.

At present final adjustments and tests are being carried out on the RD$3 billion transport. Pending still is the relocation of families affected by the work in Gualey.
Locals think that this new form of transport will make their lives a lot easier as previously they had to take several transport modes to reach the center of Santo Domingo. Many now will be able to take the cable car and then the Metro to get around with significant cost, time and comfort gains.

According to published studies, the cable car will benefit around 300,000 people in 30 neighborhoods in the National District, Santo Domingo East and Santo Domingo North. It will connect with the Metro from Charles de Gaulle Avenue to the Eduardo Brito station, located in Gualey at the head of the Francisco del Rosario Sánchez Bridge.

https://www.diariolibre.com/noticias...-mes-LD9764863
http://www.elcaribe.com.do/2018/05/0...-bellas-artes/


Intervention in Barahona following newborn deaths in public hospital
The Ministry of Public Health and the National Health Service (SNS) will take immediate corrective action at the Jaime Mota Hospital in Barahona as a result of the deaths of seven newborns at the hospital last week. Health Minister Altagracia Guzmán Marcelino and the director of the National Health Service (SNS), Chanel Rosa Chupany, made the announcement following an investigation to determine if newborn care protocols were being fully applied at the hospital.

The investigation also identified problems in the clinical laboratory and the imaging department and that on the day the babies died there were no specialist doctors at the hospital. As a result, the death reports were prepared by nurses and not by doctors. It was also found that the hospital did not comply with the bio-security norms and that the clinical files did not use the basic tools for neonatal care.

The Ministry of Public Health investigation also identified the deaths occurred because medical neonatal protocols were not applied, the lack of specialists on call at the hospital 24 hours a day, absence of adequate equipment in the neonatal care areas. The Ministry announced the hospital was being intervened and new specialists would be appointed and training provided to staff, and equipping of the laboratory and neonatal area would be carried out.

The Ministry of Public Health also called attention to the high number of C-section births. These are 46% of all births in public hospitals and 87% in private hospitals. The World Health Organization standard is 10%.

http://almomento.net/tras-muerte-7-n...cion-hospital/


More smuggled cash found at Haina Port
The Customs Agency announced yesterday a second important seizing of US$745,180 found hidden in a vehicle used spare parts shipment. These were being shipped to the same persons as a money contraband for US$1.4 million that was seized in April 2018.

The shipment was sent by Francisco Vargas to Marcos Peña. It was packed in 96 rolls of bills. The tanks containing the spare parts were shipped from Brooklyn, New York City, the Customs Agency (DGA) reported.

http://www.aduanas.gob.do/noticias/a...s-de-repuesto/


Police will not be pressurized
According to police director, Major General Ney Aldrin Bautista Almonte, “the police do not have a magic wand or a crystal ball to tell them where criminals are to be able to arrest them”. He made the statement in reference to the ultimatum by the family of a farmer murdered by machete last week in Azua, supposedly by three Haitians who then fled.

Ruddy and Juancito Castro Filpo, the victim’s brothers gave the police 24 hours to arrest those responsible, saying that if that did not happen they would shoot and kill all of those who might be suspects.

Bautista Almonte said that they would not be pressured by citizens and reminded that there had to be a process of investigation before arrests were made, including a series of steps to uncover the truth. He assured that the investigation was ongoing and once they knew who was responsible they would go after the perpetrators but in a civil manner.

http://almomento.net/director-pn-acl...resar-a-nadie/


Army cadets admitted to hospital
At least 29 young people who began training at the 16 August Army Academy located at kilometer 25 on the Duarte Highway, have been admitted to the Armed Forces Hospital suffering from sunstroke and dehydration.

The cadets began to be admitted a week ago on Tuesday 24 April 2018 and to date, 22 have been released and seven are still in hospital, three of them in the Intensive Care Unit.

Four of the cadets have had to undergo dialysis due to kidney problems.
It is thought the source of the problem was their intensive military training under a hot tropical sun.

https://listindiario.com/la-republic...a-16-de-agosto


No cooking gas leads to deforestation
Residents of Arroyo Caña, La Colonia, La Vigía and Comederos in the municipality of Rancho Arriba in the province of San José de Ocoa have stated that they are fed up of having to live as people did in years gone by, cooking using wood and charcoal. They complain the closest propane filler station is 30 kilometers away on a very poorly maintained road. Residents in the area have held protests to call attention to their plight.

https://www.diariolibre.com/economia...-gas-JC9765496


Illegal charcoal seized in Boca Chica
Officers of the Ministry of Environment and its military division (SENPA) dismantled over the Labor Day weekend four ovens used to illegally manufacture charcoal in the communities of La Piedra del Toro de Guerra and Tierra Alta in Boca Chica municipality. The military seized 31 bags of charcoal. The manufacturers of the charcoal quickly fled to avoid capture. The operations were carried out by the recently appointed director of the provincial office of the Ministry of Environment in the Santo Domingo Province, Francisco Portes Bautista.


Border community blames EnviroGold for water contamination
Residents in La Piñita, La Cerca, El Naranjo, and Las Lagunas town of the municipality of Cotuí, located in the central province of Sánchez Ramírez in the Dominican Republic, protested that EnviroGold (Las Lagunas) is polluting several water sources in the area instead of remedying environmental problems as expected.

In statements to CDN TV station, the protestors said the running water is no longer fit for human consumption. They say the company is providing them with bottle water. The residents want to be relocated. They say the water pipes are instead releasing toxic water from the mining operation to the Maguaca river that then goes downstream to the nearby farms causing serious health problems to humans and animals.

As reported in Mining.com, the EnviroGold says that the discharges are legal and authorized by the Ministry of Environment as they are done at a slow pace to minimize the impact. EnviroGold (Las Lagunas) is in charge, since 2012, of treating the high-sulfur tailings that were previously deposited in the Las Lagunas Dam by Rosario Dominicana.

As reported in Mining.com, the protesters say the subsidiary of Australia’s Panterra Gold only cares about extracting gold from the waste and that, currently, it is planning to install a new pipe that will discharge part of the tailings into the river. They say the facility where the tailings are stored is completely full and that once the rainy season starts, there is a risk of collapse.

http://www.mining.com/dominicans-pro...ds-operations/
https://born2invest.com/articles/env...ican-republic/


UASD protests close Ortega y Gasset tunnel
Commuters should be aware that protests are happening at the state university. This resulted in the shutdown on Tuesday, 1 May 2018 of the Ortega y Gasset Avenue tunnel. The tunnel is a fast way to commute from north to south Santo Domingo.

http://eldia.com.do/cierran-el-tunel...as-en-la-uasd/


PAWA owes millions
The Dominican airline PAWA was suspended from operations on 30 December, 2017. It has several creditors, for around US$38,131,848 both in the Dominican Republic and overseas including airport offices, hotels, insurers, telephone companies, taxis, electricity and even a clinical laboratory. It is thought the amount might be even more. Details of the debt are contained in a resolution issued on 12 March 2018 by the Restructuring and Liquidation Court in the National District.

The highest amounts owed are US$2,431,864 to insurers, Seguros Sura, US$1,994,358 to IATA Geneva (in Switzerland), US$1,264,358 to Aeropuertos Dominicanos Siglo XXI and US$1,110,628 to World Fuel Services (Miami).

There is a complaint pending issued against PAWA Dominicana and the president of its Administration Board, Simeón Rafael García Rodríguez, by the Dominican Civil Aviation Institute (IDAC) and the Civil Aviation Board (JAC), asking for an investigation into alleged abuse of trust and supposed money laundering.

García Rodríguez is Venezuelan but obtained Dominican nationality in 2016 awarded by President Danilo Medina under the privileged category. He is currently abroad.

https://www.diariolibre.com/noticias...ivos-EI9758879


US Coastguard repatriates 12 illegal Dominicans arrested in Mona Channel
The United States’ Coastguard, located in Puerto Rico has announced that on Sunday 29 April 2018, they repatriated 12 illegal Dominicans, 10 men, one woman and a minor, who were arrested in the Mona Channel on Friday, 27 April. They were found traveling in a wooden boat some 51 nautical miles north west of Desecheo Island during a routine patrol by the US Coastguard.

The US Coastguard boat “The Joseph Napier” and a helicopter were sent to intercept the boat. Coastguard personnel gave the illegal aliens food and water and basic medical attention.

http://almomento.net/puerto-rico-gua...2-dominicanos/


Emely Peguero’s father arrested for illegal firearm possession
Prosecutors levied pre-trial presentation ruling to Genaro Peguero, father of murdered teenager Emely Peguero for illegal carrying of a firearm. Peguero said he carried the firearm because of the threats he had been receiving for not dropping the case against Marlon and Marlin for the murder.

The San Francisco de Macoris prosecution office ordered he appear before court one day every month. He was sentenced to six months of conditional freedom for illegally carrying the firearm. Peguero complained the prosecutors have not assigned protection to him despite the threats. He has said he has been offered RD$20 million to drop the case, but that the body of his daughter does not have a price. He was arrested on Tuesday, 1 May 2018 at the San Francisco de Macoris courthouse.


Giannina Azar gets international press coverage for her JLo designs
The “El Anillo” video with her performance at the Latin Billboards held in Las Vegas with Jennifer Lopez is trending on social media. In the video, the Latin star is wearing a Giannina Azar design. The Dominican fashion designer is repeatedly mentioned in the media now. The glittering attire, an embellished metallic bodysuit, is making the rounds, and few before would have known the designer was a Dominican. Azar has recently been the designer of choice by Lopez for a year now.

“Dressing Jennifer Lopez is the dream of many designers, so I feel grateful and privileged. This is not a personal achievement, it is an acknowledgment of Dominican talent,” said Azar in an interview with Listin Diario.

https://www.listindiario.com/las-soc...-giannina-azar
http://www.redcarpet-fashionawards.c...-music-awards/
https://www.vanityfair.com/style/201...est-mini-dress
https://fashionsizzle.com/2018/04/27...-music-awards/