The Legal 500

Dominican Republic

Editorial

 

Legal market overview

Although there is a noticeable shift towards more value-added products, all-inclusive tourism remains the driving force in the Dominican Republic. Environmental considerations are also impacting on the thriving energy market – the country doubled its investments in renewable energy in 2013, reaching $645m. Although there is still a way to go in terms of ‘going green’, there are new laws and regulations in place promoting renewable energy, especially with respect to fuel and gas, and these fiscal incentives are attracting international investors. The completion of new road infrastructure is also speeding up the industry’s development.

On the corporate front, the high-profile $4.7bn merger of El Centro Financiero BHD and Grupo Financiero León in January 2014 created the Dominican Republic’s second-largest bank: Banco BHD León. Since the introduction of a new regulatory framework for the financial markets, banks have increasingly been utilising a novel trust law to set up real estate trusts. The establishment of Free Trade Zones is also ongoing. It was an active year for the telecoms sector, with Luxembourg-based investment fund Altice Group acquiring Orange Dominicana and Tricom. The IP market has been stable while the anticipated future implementation of the Madrid Protocol remains a hot topic: it would enable firms to file trade marks internationally, making local filing relatively redundant. Other changes include the new data protection law and the introduction of fiscal incentives to foreign investors in the local cinematography business.

The Constitutional Court was set up two years ago: this prompted an increase in constitutional cases with some decisions proving very controversial, for example its ruling in September 2013 to revoke the citizenship of the children of unauthorised migrants born in the Dominican Republic since 1929.

Lately there has also been an increase in local and ICC arbitration (many find court cases take too long and local courts tend to be less technical). Firms also noted an uptick in administrative matters due to new regulations regarding both consumer protection and telecommunications. March 2014 saw two new entries into the Santo Domingo market: Costa Rica-based BDS Asesores as well as US labour firm Littler Mendelson, P.C.; the latter, represented by Angelina Salegna Bacó, set up shop in the capital. Sadly, Luis Heredia Bonetti, one of the founders of Russin, Vecchi & Heredia Bonetti SA, passed away in March 2014.

As this publication went to press, Squire Sanders (whose local Dominican office was formerly known as Squire Sanders, Peña Prieto & Gamundi), has announced it merger with US firm Patton Boggs to form Squire Patton Boggs. The merger took effect from 1 June 2014.

Press releases

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to

Legal Developments worldwide

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • http://www.drewnapier.com/Publications-Events/Legal-Updates/Copyright-(Amendment)-Bill-2014

    This update discusses the Copyright (Amendment) Bill 2014 (" Bill "), which was passed by Parliament on 8 July 2014.
  • EU/AT: Austrian gas law's possible non-compliance with EU Gas Directive

    On 18 July 2014, the Austrian energy regulatory authority E-Control released its affirmative decision in relation to the certification of Trans Austria Gasleitung GmbH (" TAG ") as a transmission system operator (" TSO ") for gas. In its decision, E-Control not only requires TAG to be comprehensively restructured, but also takes a stance on the European Commission's (" EC ") opinion on the potential non-compliance of the Austrian Natural Gas Act 2011 (Gaswirtschaftsgesetz " GWG ") with EU unbundling rules.  read more...
  • Proposals to enhance regulatory safeguards for investors in the capital markets

    This update discusses a consultation paper published by the Monetary Authority of Singapore on proposals to enhance its regulatory framework for safeguarding investors' interests. The proposals are in the following three key areas: (a) extending to investors in non-conventional investment products the current regulatory safeguards available to investors in capital markets; (b) requiring investment products to be rated for complexity and risks, and for these ratings to be disclosed to investors; and (c) refining the non-retail investor classes including providing accredited investors the option to benefit from the full range of capital markets regulatory safeguards that are applicable for retail investors.
  • New Regulation for the Turkish Banking Industry: Towards a Healthy Synthesis Between the Banks and t

    Turkish banking industry is considered one of the strongest in Europe. The crisis ridden global banking industry had experienced numerous difficulties following the 2008 market collapse, but Turkish banking industry had survived the crisis with relatively insignificant scars.
  • A Touchstone in Energy Financing: Reduced Yield and Turkish Insurance Market

    The effect of climate change is not only an environmental problem today as it directly relates to the resource based industries.  In today's world, the scientific assessments lead the players of energy to reflect on their project viability.  In direct proportion to the growth in financing renewable projects, insurance companies and underwriters are also expected to formulate their risk assessments on resource-oriented allocation models.  Since especially the incontestable growth of ancillary instruments in Europe and  the Japan the warranties in financing the "energy as the capital and the resource itself" yields new insurance coverage.
  • UA: New rules for conversion of FX proceeds

    The National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) introduced the compulsory exchange of 100% of foreign currency proceeds.  read more...
  • Competiton Law Quarterly Update Q2/2014

    In this edition's feature article "CCS airline industry market study", we discuss CCS findings from an airline industry market study which CCS commissioned to examine whether certain joint ventures between airlines operating through Singapore have actually resulted in net economic benefits.
  • South Korea: Draft Act on Compensation and Relief of Environmental Pollution Damage

    The Korean Government has launched a government project to establish a system to compensate and insure against environmental pollution damage, and is pursuing the introduction of a legal relief system for environmental pollution damage. Such Government initiative is intended to address the current situation where environmental pollution accidents inflict serious damage on society due to the enormous amount of tax money that is required for curing the pollution, while companies that caused the accident sometimes go bankrupt because they cannot bear the financial burden of paying the compensation. Moreover, the victims of environmental pollution accidents are often unable to obtain proper compensation due to the burden of proving that their injury resulted from the pollution or due to the prolonged litigation process which is unavoidable in light of the nature of environmental pollution.
  • South Korea: KFTC Approves First Consent Decree

    On March 12, 2014, the Commissioners of the Korea Fair Trade Commission ("KFTC") approved a consent decree with Korea's major Internet portal companies, Naver and Naver Business Platform (collectively "Naver") and Daum Communications ("Daum"). This was the first time since its introduction that a consent decree was used to conclude a case before the KFTC. With this consent decree, the KFTC's investigation of Naver and Daum for their alleged abuse of market dominance ended without any finding of liability.
  • South Korea: Recent Developments in Broadcasting Regulations

    Recent regulatory developments in the ever-changing broadcasting environment are summarized below.

Press Releases worldwide

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to