On May 19, the UNDP in the Dominican Republic made the official launch of the Growing Inclusive Markets initiative report: ‘Creating Value for All: Strategies for Doing Business with the Poor’ in a ceremony held at UN House in Santo Domingo.
For this event, UNDP invited Daniel Runde, from the International Finance Corporation, and Alejandro Rausch, UNDP consultant. The event was chaired by the UNDP Resident Representative, Valerie Julliand, who delivered the welcoming remarks, and the Secretary of State and Director of the Consejo Nacional de Competititividad, Andrés Van der Horst.
More than 90 people attended the event, including representatives from the Dominican Government, among which were the Minister of Labor and the Minister and Advisor to the Executive in competitiveness issues, as well as Vice Ministers from the Ministries of Agriculture, Industry, and Education. Representatives of other public sector institutions were also present in the ceremony, including the Ministry of Economics and Planning, Proindustria, Centro de Exportación e Inversión Extranjera, Superintendencia de Salud y Riesgos Laborales, Administradora de Subsidios Sociales, and others. The event was also attended by representatives of some of the main business associations, such as Asociación de Bancos Comerciales, Confederación Patronal de la República Dominicana, la Junta Agroempresarial Dominicana, la Cámara de Comercio y Producción, la Organización Nacional de Empresas Comerciales, la Federación de de Asociaciones Industriales. Representatives of several NGOs also attended the event, including Participación Ciudadana, Cluster Turistico, cluster agroempresariales, as well as representatives from microfinancing institutions, consumer associations, academics and researchers.
During this event, Mr. Runde expressed some brief remarks regarding this Initiative and Mr. Rausch made a summary presentation of the Report. There was room for a session of question and answers, where some members of the public, mainly representatives of private sector and NGOs from the tourism, telecommunications, and agricultural sectors ask questions regarding this issue.
Prior to the launching event, the experts Mr. Runde and Mr. Rausch held a meeting with Valerie Julliand, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative to discuss about the Initiative and the upcoming event. Early that same day, Mr. Alejandro Rausch held a meeting with the Dominican Government, the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB), the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and UNDP to analyze potential opportunities to develop projects under this approach in the country.
It must be highlighted that recently the MDG-Fund approved a project to Strengthen the Banana Value Chain, which was submitted by seven UN agencies and the DR government. This project will be the first of its kind in the country under this perspective. During the meeting the representative of IADB expressed that there was a possibility that the Bank could finance other components of the project that were not included in the proposal submitted to the MDG-Fund due to their high costs and requested UNDP to submit a brief description of those areas in order to evaluate such possibility.
In addition to this important meeting Mr. Runde and Mr. Rausch were interviewed by the specialized magazine “Mercado”, a renowned local business magazine that is currently preparing a special issue on Corporate Social Responsibility. Also, on Wednesday, Mr. Rausch participated in a highly seen television news program, Uno + Uno where he commented on the report and on the Growing Inclusive Market initiative.
It is important to note that the enthusiastic response from the private sector to this launch event and the willingness of multilateral agencies to participate in initiatives of this kind, make us consider what should be the next steps to be taken by UNDP-DR in coordination with UNDP-NY so that this release will result in actions leading to the implementation of initiatives in the DR in key sectors of the economy that can incorporate the lowest income groups.
- “El PNUD presenta exitosas estrategias empresariales para combatir la pobreza” [here]
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