The Association of Small and Medium Textile Companies complained yesterday that the Ministry of Education has an outstanding debt with the association’s suppliers of school uniforms. The association says that the RD$70 million debt could lead many companies to bankruptcy. Because of the debt, many of the companies did not have the cash on hand to pay the Christmas bonus, and they had to go to the informal sector to take loans carrying up to 36% interest, in order to fulfill their obligations with their workers.
Eduardo Martinez, the association president, told Hoy reporters that specifically, the debt is affecting 125 micro, small and medium producers of shoes, backpacks, and clothing. These were purchased by the Ministry of Education for distribution as part of its social programs.