What are the Social, Economic and Environmental reasons why the

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What are the Social, Economic and Environmental reasons why the Dominican Republic is underdeveloped?

The Dominican Republic has a population of 8 million (1998 figures) and occupies half of an island in the Caribbean called Hispaniola. The other half of this island belongs to another country called Haiti. Looking at the standards of the world’s least developed countries we can see that the Dominican Republic is not doing too badly. Compared to the economically developed world it can only be described as poor. There are three main reasons why this country is underdeveloped. These are because social, economic and environmental factors are affecting the country’s development. I will now attempt to explain these factors.

Social reasons can stop a country such as the Dominican Republic from developing in many different ways. One of these is the low literacy rates. Many children have never been into a primary school in their lives. This lack of education reduces the chances of employment, increasing development and escaping poverty altogether. In the past religion has discouraged the education of women and girls. Also parents were reluctant to pay for the education of their daughters as they would only leave home when they married. With half of the countries workforce made up of females, the country can no longer afford to ignore them. Women being less educated than men are also rarely in control of their own lives. Where they have greater independence, social development is often more advanced. Another of these factors is population. In the Dominican Republic population growth is greater than economic growth. This means that while there are more people to feed, more jobs to provide, more demands of education and healthcare there is less money per person to pay for them. This means that the people get even poorer.

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As well as this there are economic reasons which are hindering development. One of these is a shortage in capital as lack of money is a major barrier. It is essential if the country is to exploit its natural resources, improve its agriculture, develop new industries and pay for roads, airports, schools and hospitals. Another factor is that although foreign investments are creating jobs, many of the financial benefits leak overseas to the foreign companies which invest in the country. Shortages of skilled workers in the Dominican Republic mean that overseas workers get the better paid jobs as they ...

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