BROWARD COUNTY, FL – Today, Broward County's Port Everglades Department and the Dominican Republic Port Authority signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) as part of a joint Sister Seaports agreement.

​As Port Everglades’ largest trading partner in 2018, the Dominican Republic Port Authority has agreed to enter into an MOU to promote bilateral trade. Trade between Port Everglades and the Dominican Republic increased by 6.11 percent in 2018, according to World City’s 2019 Port Everglades Trade Numbers publication. Five years ago, the Dominican Republic ranked as the 5th largest trading partner for Port Everglades, but it has since held the number one position for four straight years.

“International trade promotion is a priority for our Port and Broward County for generating economic prosperity in our region,“ said Broward County Mayor Dale V.C. Holness, who signed the MOU document along with the Acting Chief Executive and Port Director Glenn Wiltshire on behalf of Port Everglades. “Our port’s trade with the Dominican Republic alone in 2018 reached a record $2.69 billion.”

The two parties want to establish an alliance of cooperation aimed at facilitating international trade and generating new business by promoting the sea trade routes between the two countries. The MOU outlines joint initiatives, including marketing activities and market studies, training, and sharing of information on technology, modernization and improvements.

“We value this MOU as transcendental and historic since this is the first time that this institution has signed an agreement with any U.S. port,” said Victor Gómez Casanova, Executive Director of the Dominican Republic Port Authority. “We will immediately take joint actions to continue strengthening relations with Port Everglades and Broward County and accordingly increase the commercial exchange between us.” The MOU was signed by Aníbal Piña, Deputy Director, on behalf of Gómez, and witnessed by the Consul General of the Dominican Republic in Miami Miguel Angel Rodriguez.

“The Dominican Republic is an important trade partner for Port Everglades and the nation,” said Wiltshire. “Port Everglades ranked as number two among all the nation’s seaports, airports, and border crossings for United States’ trade with the Dominican Republic.”

The top Port Everglades import from the Dominican Republic that grew the most in 2018 at 73 percent was electrical supplies and apparatus, mostly automotive circuit breakers and electrical switches, to be the number one ranked commodity. The dominant Port Everglades export to the Dominican Republic was cotton yard for the apparel industry. Port Everglades also ranked number one nationally for cotton yarn exports, accounting for nearly 36 percent of the nation’s total.

​During Fiscal Year 2019 (October 1, 2018 through September 30, 2019), Port Everglades handled 52,027 TEUs (a standard maritime measurement of 20-foot equivalent units) in trade with the Dominican Republic. Top import commodities included clothing, electric machinery, medical instruments, plastics, fruits, cosmetics, cotton, iron and steel. Top export commodities included clothing, cotton, machinery, cars, plastics, medical instruments, and textiles.

Under the agreement, the two parties may also embark on initiatives related to the cruise industry. Port Everglades is the third busiest cruise port in the world. And the Dominican Republic has recently added a new cruise port, for a total of five cruise ports in the country including the popular Amber Cove. The Dominican Republic is the second-largest Caribbean nation by area, and the third by population.

About Port Everglades: 
As one of Florida’s leading economic powerhouses, Broward County’s Port Everglades is the gateway for international trade and cruise vacations. Consistently ranked among the top three busiest cruise ports in the world, Port Everglades is also one of the nation’s leading container ports, and South Florida’s main seaport for receiving petroleum products including gasoline, jet fuel and alternative fuels.

About Dominican Republic Port Authority:
The Dominican Republic Port Authority is the regulatory body of the National Port System composed of 16 ports, which include Haina, Puerto Plata, Santo Domingo, and Barahona. It is the Authority’s role to direct and manage seaports and increase the country's international trade. It is defined as an organism, with autonomous character, own patrimony and independence and unlimited duration, subject to the requirements of Law No. 70, and to the regulations issued by the Executive Power. The Dominican Republic, due to its status as an island, and geographical position, in the center of the Caribbean, has a privileged situation for the development of an optimal port system. It is estimated that approximately 96 percent of everything that moves at the level of international and local trade is done by sea, thanks to the ports that any country has.