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Without Barrick Pueblo Viejo, Dominican exports last year would have decreased instead of growing. (Photo: Barrick Gold)
Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro with a locally produced computer. Venezuela leads Latin America in software piracy. (Photo: Government of Venezuela)
The FactCheckArgentina web site shows how many days and hours have lapsed since the US Supreme Court ruling on Argentina.
Wednesday, July 9, 2014
Trade Talk

Barrick Boosts Dominican Republic

Barrick Gold boosts Dominican exports, GDP and FDI; fact-checking Argentina; illegal software in Latin America.

BY LATINVEX STAFF

The Dominican economy last year grew by 4.1 percent, in large part helped by the strong increase in mining exports. In fact, the economy would have only grown by 2.7 percent last year if the impact of Canada-based Barrick Gold’s Pueblo Viejo mine had been excluded, according to a new report from Dominican consultancy Analytica.

Meanwhile, without Barrick Pueblo Viejo, Dominican exports last year would have decreased by 5 percent instead of growing by 5.8 percent, the report estimates.

“The report clearly demonstrates with hard facts the significant and positive impact the Barrick Pueblo Viejo has made, is making, and will continue to make for many years to come to the economic growth and development of the Dominican Republic,” says Manuel Rocha, president of Barrick Pueblo Viejo.  “Importantly, it shows how it is improving the quality of life of thousands of Dominicans and their families."

Between 2009 and 2012, Barrick Pueblo Viejo invested $4.5 billion, the largest private investment ever in the Dominican Republic. Barrick Pueblo Viejo is 60 percent owned by Barrick Gold and 40 percent by Canada-based Goldcorp, with Barrick responsible for operations.

Barrick Pueblo Viejo accounted for 40.7 percent of total foreign direct investment in the Dominican Republic in 2011 and 35 percent in 2012, according to the Analytica report.

In 2012, the Dominican Republic saw the strongest FDI growth in Latin America (59 percent), according to a Latinvex analysis of data from the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC). However, last year – as the main Barrick investments were finalized – the Dominican Republic posted the second-worst result in FDI growth in Latin America, with a decline of 37 percent, according to a Latinvex analysis of 2013 data from ECLAC.

Barrick’s exports from the Dominican Republic also catapulted the Caribbean country to become the sixth-largest Latin American exporter to Canada and Canada’s seventh-largest trade partner in Latin America last year, according to a Latinvex analysis of data from Statistics Canada.

Barrick Pueblo Viejo has also had a strong impact on job creation and salaries.  It has created more than 2,100 direct jobs and 11,392 indirect jobs. And the direct jobs are the best paid in the Dominican Republic compared to other sectors of the economy, including finance, according to Analytica.

Gold output at Pueblo Viejo jumped from 67,000 ounces in 2012 to 488,000 ounces last year.  This year, Barrick expects to see between 600,000 and 700,000 ounces.

FACT CHECK ON ARGENTINA DEBT

As Argentina starts talks to potentially resolve defaulted debt with US creditors, the American Task Force Argentina (ATFA) launched a web site FactCheckArgentina and advertising campaign to counter the myths being portrayed by the Argentine government in the debt dispute

The ATFA is an alliance of organizations that promotes a negotiated settlement with the Argentine government in the interests of American stakeholders. 

"Argentina, It's Time to Negotiate!" ATFA says in full-page advertisements that will run run this week in a number of publications including the Washington Post, the Financial Times, the Wall Street Journal, La Nacion, and Clarin, as well as a number of other newspapers throughout Argentina.

On Monday, ATFA noted in this blog post that Economy Minister Axel Kicillof’s recent conduct, including berating the US courts and judges by name, seem to imply a lack of seriousness on the part of Argentina to negotiate.

ILLEGAL SOFTWARE

Illegal software use in Latin America is declining, although the value of the illegal software is growing, according to the latest Global Software Survey from the Business Software Alliance (BSA). The survey is conducted every other year for BSA by IDC, which this year polled computer users in 34 markets, including nearly 22,000 consumer and business PC users and more than 2,000 IT managers.

The average rate of unlicensed software In Latin America reached 59 percent last year, a decline from the 61 percent rate in 2011. However, the value of the unlicensed software grew from $7.5 billion in 2011 to $8.4 billion last year.

Venezuela has the highest arte of unlicensed software in Latin America – 88 percent. Paraguay and El Salvador follow, with 84 percent and 80 percent, respectively.

Brazil has the lowest rate (50 percent), followed by Colombia (52 percent) and Chile and Costa Rica (59 percent each).  

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