Published: 15 Jun, '23

Crafts Cluster for Export Launched in the Dominican Republic to Boost Economic Development

Source: Caribbean Export

SANTO DOMINGO – Aiming to drive economic development through the promotion of craftsmanship,  and expand the presence of Dominican products in global markets, the Crafts Cluster for Export of the Dominican Republic (CLARDEXPO) was officially launched on June 13th, 2023.

Under the leadership of the Caribbean Export Development Agency, the pioneering project was established as part of the Trade and Private Sector Support Component of the Haiti-Dominican Republic Bilateral Cooperation Program, implemented within the framework of the 11th European Development Fund (EDF), financed by the European Union.

CLARDEXPO encompasses various sectors, including jewelry, fashion, accessories, textile, decoration, home, wood, and recycling. The initiative was born out of the establishment of a binational craftsmanship value chain, uniting businesses, public institutions, and universities associated with the craft industry in the Dominican Republic. Together, they strive to enhance the promotion and exportation of innovative Dominican products.

During the inaugural event, the board of directors, serving until 2024, was sworn in. Led by Antonio Ramos Fernández, Executive Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce and Production of Santo Domingo. The board comprises accomplished individuals from diverse backgrounds; Carla Quiñones Polanco, Vice President and Project Manager of the Jenny Polanco Foundation, assumes the role of Vice President, while Ada Lora Comprés, Secretary and Anthropologist at the Deputy Ministry of Protected Areas and Biodiversity, will provide essential support. Jorge Caridad, President of the Mundo del Ámbar Museum, will oversee the financial aspects as Treasurer.

Furthermore, the vocal members of the board include Mariano Frontera Martínez, Executive Director of the Dominican Development Foundation; Fátima Ivette Polanco, renowned jewelry designer and manager of 3 Estilos SRL, representing the Dominican Republic at prestigious international events; Giselle Mancebo Castillo, an esteemed jewelry designer; Elba Espinal Gómez, Treasurer of the Ciudad Corazón Artisans Association in Santiago; Ramón Quezada Batista, President of the Association of Dominican Chacabanas Artisans (ACHADOM); Norkelly Acosta Collado, environmental designer and accomplished muralist in the country’s urban art scene; and Yazmín Guerrero Ureña, Manager of Cayenart, a distinguished company specializing in handmade Dominican crafts.

Honorary members of the board include representatives from various government and academic institutions, demonstrating their commitment to supporting the crafts industry. The Ministry of Industry, Commerce, and SMEs, through its Vice Ministry of SME Development, will be represented by José De Ferrari. The Ministry of Culture, through its Fostering and Development of Cultural Industries division, will be represented by Director Richarson Díaz. FODEARTE, through the Directorate of Promotion and Development of National Crafts, will be represented by Director General Ramón Guillén. ProDominicana, through its Mipymes Export Center, will be represented by Manager Víctor Encarnación. SUPERATE’s Solidarity Trade program will be represented by Director Esther Castillo. Additionally, the academic sector will be represented by the Technological Catholic University of Barahona (UCATEBA), with Rector Fr. Marco Antonio Pérez, and the Pontifical Catholic University Mother and Teacher (PUCMM), with Roselys Arias serving as the Director of the Mipymes Center.

Caribbean Export, as the regional entity dedicated to promoting economic and trade development in CARIFORUM countries, will continue to provide ongoing support to CLARDEXPO, fostering its growth through the implementation of private sector support programs.

Moving forward, the project aims to secure governmental support to further empower the crafts industry, ensure transparent processes, and effectively position Dominican artisanal products for successful exportation.


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Produced with the financial assistance of the European Union.

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