The Dominican construction industry relies partially on manual labor

SANTO DOMINGO.- The construction sector in the Dominican Republic is a key driver of the economy and has been making advances in technology to improve productivity and competitiveness. However, the sector still faces challenges in terms of mechanization and modernization.

According to the Association of Housing Builders and Developers (Acoprovi), there are currently no 100% mechanized processes in the construction sector. Various construction activities have different levels of mechanization, some closer to full mechanization than others. For example, pouring reinforced concrete has 95% mechanization, while masonry work has 70-75% and earthworks such as excavations have 80-85%. The concrete mix on site is 60-70% mechanized and the steel bending is around 70%.

Acoprovi recognizes that productivity has improved with mechanization, leading to shorter project delivery times and the adoption of new construction methods. However, they highlight that there is still room for improvement, particularly in access to quality jobs, innovation in materials and financial support for the acquisition of new technologies.

The president of the Dominican Confederation of micro, small and medium-sized construction companies (Copymecon), Eliseo Cristopher, highlights the lack of modernization of the sector. He points out that in developed countries small businesses can use equipment such as backhoes, which are highly efficient, while in the Dominican Republic similar jobs require a large amount of labor. Modernization, according to Cristopher, would lead to greater efficiency and competitiveness in the construction sector.

A major challenge facing the construction sector is the high percentage of foreign workers it employs, which affects the local workforce. Access to modern construction technologies remains a financial obstacle for many construction MSMEs in the Dominican Republic.

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