Dominican Republic - Country Commercial Guide
Trade Barriers
Last published date:

While CAFTA-DR eliminates most trade barriers to imports from the United States, the treaty’s implementation, since its signing in March 2007, has not been without problems, and certain technical barriers and issues of interpretation can arise from time to time. For example, most U.S. agricultural goods that do not compete with local industries have zero or no duty. Goods that compete with local industries are restricted more strongly than others that do not compete.  Nevertheless, importers must obtain import permits for all agricultural products via the Ministry of Agriculture’s Department of Agricultural Permits. In the case of processed foods, products are required to have valid santitary registrations from the Ministry of Health/DIGEMAPS that, in some cases, are difficult to obtain.

Even though the procedures to obtain an import permit have improved in the last decade, these import permits are not always easy to obtain in a timely manner and sometimes, are not available at all. In addition to the import permit, some agricultural products such as milk, cheese, rice, and poultry carry higher duty rates. Under CAFTA-DR, the higher duties for sensitive agricultural goods will continue to be phased out over the next two years. Small amounts of these products are also allowed in duty free each year under a Tariff Rate Quota (TRQ) regime. 

For more information and help with trade barriers please contact:

International Trade Administration

Enforcement and Compliance

(202) 482-0063


E&C Website


For Agriculture

USDA Office of Agricultural Affairs (USDA/FAS)

U.S. Embassy

Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Phone: (809) 368-7741


USDA/FAS website