The Dominican Republic has a wide range of business opportunities for United States-based companies, including in tourism, ecotourism, mining, transportation, energy, agriculture, technology, electronics and telecommunications. Indeed, over the past decade, a wide range of new laws and initiatives enacted by the Dominican government has led numerous American corporations to successfully begin operating in the Dominican Republic.
Recently, in fact, a number of American health, finance, and banking companies have discovered -- and have begun to fill -- an interesting business niche resulting from a new law that many Dominicans had believed affected only Dominican workers.
The law creates a Dominican Social Security System. Recognizing an opportunity, American companies have established affiliates to handle the medical, insurance and pension issues arising from the new law. The relative ease with which these U.S. businesses entered a new market, in a new field, in the Dominican Republic illustrates the value that the country places on attracting U.S. and other foreign investment.
The Social Security Law
The new social security law regulates the rights and duties of the Dominican government and its citizens with respect to the financing necessary to protect workers against the risks of old age, disability, old-age severance, survivorship, illness, maternity, infancy and occupational hazards.
In particular, the social security system offers three types of insurance. These are:
Old Age, Disability, and Survivorship: to compensate for the loss or reduction of income for old age, death, disability, old age severance, and survivorship.
Family Health Insurance: aimed at protecting the integral physical and mental health of workers and their families.
Occupational Hazard Insurance: intended to prevent and provide coverage for accidents occurring in the workplace and occupational diseases.
The "Social Solidarity Fund" has multiple purposes. For example, the fund is intended to ensure that every person in the system enjoys a pension at the end of his or her working life, in cases where for one reason or another the person's individual account does not have enough funds. It also is intended to ensure that those individuals most in need, who for some reason do not have a job or any other income source, can receive the necessary benefits from the system provided for the rest of the country's citizens.
Entities Operating In The System
The law creating...