The 1990’s and early 2000’s were characterized by institutional dispersion and the lack of an appropriate regulatory framework for the management of public debt in the Dominican Republic. This situation, combined with the high exposure of our debt portfolio to the occurrence of risky events, was evident during the banking crisis of 2003. At that time, the depreciation of the exchange rate of about 70% contributed to the increase of the non-financial public sector debt service by more than 1% of GDP, from 2002 to 2003.
This context resulted in a profound process of institutional reforms with the main objective of strengthening of the public financial system and the reorganization of the nation’s revenue, expenditure and financing administration. An important part of this process was the organization of the Ministry of Finance, through Act. 494-06 -today the Ministry of Hacienda-, which serves as the governing body for national public finances and concentrates in one governmental institution the formulation and implementation of fiscal policy.
In addition,given the need to institutionalize and professionalize the management of public debt operations and administration of the corresponding payment obligations, the Law No 6-06 created the Public Credit General Office (PCGO) within the previous Ministry of Finance to act as the governing entity of the Public Credit System. This Office is responsible for the credit aspects of the financial policy of the nonfinancial public sector, while dictating the rules governing the negotiations, procurement, disbursement and debt service procedures of the nonfinancial public sector. It also records and monitors the debt of the nonfinancial public sector.
Since its creation, the Public Credit General Office has been conducting public credit operations, as mandated by the General State Budget that is approved for each fiscal period. The process of having an active participation and access to international capital markets and the increase in credibility, has led an arduous and continuous efforts that include the implementation of several policies and strategies, such as the beginning of the Auction Program of Public Debt Securities in 2009, and of Market Makers Program in 2012. In addition as part of the public debt financing and management, the government has made successful bond issuances in the international markets, and negotiations on the financial conditions on the loans agreements to achieve the favorable debt portfolio indicators presented today.