The signing of the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement laid the groundwork for the region to galvanize its international trade by increasing the exchange of goods with the United States, thereby accelerating regional economic growth.
The Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement includes seven signatories: the United States, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. Chemonics, through the USAID Regional Trade Program for the agreement, worked with customs units in each country and with the Secretariat for Central American Economic Integration to enhance regional economic integration and facilitate trade across borders.
For example, the project helped the Technical Secretariat of the presidency of El Salvador expand its information technology for electronic payments. This electronic system reduced the transaction costs for importers and exporters who travel long distances, wait in long lines, and pay steep fees for a series of stamps that allow access to trade.
The program achieved important results such as supporting the implementation, use, and understanding of rules of origin and the origin procedures, supporting implementation of customs administration and trade facilitation requirements, strengthening the countries’ foreign trade capacity in the framework of national action plans for trade-related capacity building, and promoting adoption of three international trade facilitation instruments.
Project Duration: 2006-2010