Two of the main export products of the Dominican Republic were front and center at the customary “Night of Dominican Cigars and Rum” reception at the residence of Sonia Guzmán – The Dominican Republic’s Ambassador to the United States.
The Ambassador welcomed members of Congress, government officials, diplomats, representatives of international organizations, and others involved in the sale and distribution of cigars and rum in Washington, Virginia, and Maryland, and throughout the rest of the country.
Ahead of the event, Hendrik Kelner – Procigar President and cigar industry luminary – and other representatives visited Congress, where they met with the chairman of the Cigar Caucus, Congressman Dan Meuser of Pennsylvania.
Kelner shared that “Tobacco is the most enduring product in the history of our country, even before the arrival of Columbus, being part of the culture of the natives of our nation.”
Ambassador Guzmán emphasized that the quality of Dominican cigars has transcended borders and the Dominican Republic is currently the world’s leading exporter of premium cigars. Last year it achieved 1.2 billion dollars in global cigar exports, its first market being the United States. In Dominican Today’s reporting, the Ambassador is quote as saying “Cigars are also art and culture, for this reason, President Luis Abinader presented a bill to declare tobacco and cigars in particular as Dominican Cultural Heritage, a bill that has already been approved by the Chamber of Deputies.”
She added that in 2021, the Dominican Republic was the main country exporting rum to the United States and that the industry achieved a significant milestone with the approval by the Dominican government of the denomination of origin to provide consumers around the world with greater guarantees of quality and traceability.
Guests enjoyed food and beverages emblematic of the country’s export offer, such as Dominican chocolate courtesy of Rizek Cacao. Representatives from the Dominican Republic attended the event, including representatives from the Ministries of the Presidency, Public Health and Higher Education, ProDominicana, and the American Chamber of Commerce.