GFDD and FUNGLODE Host Panel Discussion at United Nations to Discuss Advances in DR Capital Markets and Opportunities for Growth

May 16, 2013

On Thursday, May 16, the United Nations Dag Hammerskjöld Library Auditorium welcomed New York audiences to celebrate one of the activities of Semana Dominicana 2013 (Dominican Week 2013). Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (GFDD) and its sister organization in the DR, FUNGLODE, in close collaboratio with Dominicans on Wall Street (DOWS), the American Chamber of Commerce DR (AmChamDR), and the Dominican Republic Mission to the United Nations, hosted a
panel discussion in the framework of Semana Dominicana entitled “Moving Forward: Growth and Opportunities in the Dominican Capital Markets.”

The premise of the event was to demostrate that, in recent years, the DR has made great strides in the development of its
capital markets, achieving high solvency in the banking sector, improving the institutional framework for the management of public debt and experiencing steady growth in the value of both the private bond market and the assets of pension funds. However, the level of financing directed to the economy is still small, given the country’s level of development, and there are important structural challenges that need to be addressed. This high level panel has brought together financiers
to discuss the potential of the Dominican Republic’s financial system and to offer a series of recommendations to help develop the country’s capital markets.

The event started at 6:30pm, to a fully packed Auditorium. Yamile Eusebio, Director of GFDD New York office, came to greet the distinguished audience on behalf of Global Foundation’s Executive Director, Natasha Despotovic. Ms. Eusebio gave a special note of thanks to the partners
of the event, DOWS, AmChamDR and the Dominican Republic Mission to the United Nations, as well as GFDD team for the smooth organization and sharp coordination of the high level panel. The opening and closing remarks were made by the moderator, Frank Gutierrez, President of DOWS and Vice President at J.P. Morgan Asset Management. After a brief introduction about DOWS, Mr. Gutierrez, presented the honoured discussants of the panel, which comprised of Felipe Amador, EVP/CEO, Bolsa de Valores
de la Republica Dominicana; Rodolfo Vela, Director of America Credit Markets, Citi; Diego Torres, General Manager, BHD Valores; and Andres Slullitel, CFO, Consorcio Energetico Punta Cana-Macao (CEPM).

The value, content and quality of the presentations were outstanding. The first of the four speakers, Mr. Amador, provided the audience with an overview of Dominican capital markets. He brought to the fore such issues as the current situation of capital markets in the country; next steps in their development; the expected growth of the economy and the estimation for the inflation for 2013-2016. The CEO
of Bolsa de Valores, towards the end of the presentation, remarked that despite the small size of the Dominican economy, “we have all the assets to become an important player in the world markets.”

Following the inspiring speech of Mr. Amador, the next discussant, Diego Torres, came out with an equally enchanting theme. In his presentation about the main characteristics of current Dominican  markets, he identified the major three,
including the controlled budget and debt, huge investment in education and growth of microeconomic indices, to be achieved by 2016.

As a young but accomplished professional, the third speaker, Andres Slullitel featured a success story of the company he works for – Consorcio Energetico Punta Cana-Macao. One of the most prosperous Dominican corporations, CEPM, sets an example of winning a leading place in Dominican markets engaging foreign investments from IFC, ABN Ambro
Bank, CIFI and Damida (Danish export credit agency).

The last presenter to take the floor, Rodolfo Vela, triggered a tremendous curiosity with the audience. Being a Mexican by birth, Mr. Vela impressed everyone with his solid knowledge of Dominican economy in general and its capital markets in particular within the emerging economies in Latin America. The honoured speaker called the investors to take advantage of the current economic situation and come to invest in the DR
markets which, to a great extent, look more attractive in comparison with traditional international capital markets.      

Naturally, the themes under discussion sparked many questions from the attendees of the event. During the Q&A session, the audience wanted to know about private investments in the DR and if they can drive for capital markets growth, state politics and its influence on private investments in the
country, chances of decreasing the sovereign debt and what the DR needs to become a strong economy. As a logical touch to finish this incredibly intense and dynamic meeting, everybody was invited to a reception to proceed with networking and making some invaluable connections.

About Dominicans on Wall Street (DOWS)

Established in 1997, DOWS is a non-partisan organization which serves as a preeminent
network and forum of discussion for financial market matters as they relate to the Dominican Republic and Dominican Americans. DOWS serves its members through networking opportunities, national and international seminars focused on key financial market issues, and mentoring programs seeking the educational advancement of students of Dominican descent.  

About the American Chamber of Commerce DR

AmChamDR is a not-for-profit organization made up of around 2,500 companies, both Dominican and American, that seeks to empower its members to develop their potential to the maximum based on three pillars – economic, professional, and social – through the facilitation of access to knowledge, opportunities, a culture of best practices, respect for the rule of law, and corporate social responsibility.

Link to presentations (PDF)>>