Dominican Republic: Corruption remains at a high level

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The Dominican Republic is considered a vacation paradise. Away from the resorts, however, corruption and economic problems are rampant. Tourists continue to report problems, from corruption at the casino to problems at the airport. Police violence is also a big problem in the country: so-called bribes often have to be paid, and locals often pay with their lives when they encounter ruthless officials.

In 2022, the Dominican Republic scored 32 out of 100 on the Corruption Perceptions Index or CPI. The higher the value, the cleaner the country. For comparison: Denmark, Finland and New Zealand lead with 88 points and are therefore considered the least corrupt. Germany still finished in 9th place with a score of 79 points, with South Sudan bringing up the rear with only 11 points. In Syria and Somalia, they only managed 13 points.

Comparing the Dominican Republic with other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean shows stronger economic growth. However, wages are low, which is why the Dominican Republic has become a manufacturing country. The service sector is an important source of income, but agriculture is also a hobby: from coconuts and coffee to sugar, bananas and tobacco. Commodities such as zinc, gold and silver can also be found in the country. Leather goods and footwear have also gained prominence as important commodities in recent years.

The annual Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) ranks countries and territories according to the levels of corruption perceived by experts in the public sphere. The CPI was introduced in 1995. The data dates back to 2012, which is why it is still known today for putting the issue of corruption on the international political agenda. The assessment focuses on areas such as illegal monetary systems and political integrity. Progress is also monitored in the fight against corruption, which governments and organizations are in fact obliged to do.

Numerous human rights violations

Amnesty International reports various human rights violations, particularly in the area of ​​the police. These include arbitrary arrests and death threats if they are not respected. There are also instances where police officers shoot gang members and then hand them guns to make it look like they fired first.

However, these are only a few examples among many others. Amnesty International accuses the country and the police of unlawful killings, torture and other forms of ill-treatment. In recent years, there have been countless violent crimes that the police have responded to in an unprofessional manner – and the number of violent crimes has even skyrocketed.

Travel and Safety Tips for Tourists

Despite the high crime rate, the Dominican Republic is a popular travel destination. Tourists like to stay in the facilities and avoid the hustle and bustle. Possession of firearms and other weapons is widespread. Anyone deciding to travel should be aware of the propensity for violence and corruption and exercise caution. Thefts on the street or in shelters are not uncommon. Credit card abuse is also common.

Catherine Mills Avatar