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The U.S. isn’t pressuring Dominican Republic, ambassador says

Dominican Today, Dominican Republic

The U.S. isn’t pressuring Dominican Republic, ambassador says

28 June 2006

SANTO DOMINGO.- United States ambassador Hans Hertell denied yesterday that his nation is making last minute for incorporating the Dominican Republic to the Free Trade Agreement in July, affirming that what the U.S. only expects is that the Caribbean nation complies with what it originally negotiated and signed.

"Law 173, which has to do with the protective aspects of the representations of American companies that operate in the Dominican Republic, is part of what is being focused to implement the agreement, and both parts (DR and the U.S.) have obligations to fulfill," Hertell said.

The diplomat was interviewed prior to participating in the ceremony in which the Central Electoral Board (JCE) issued the elections certificates to the winning Senators and Deputies in last May’s elections.

He announced that there is a team that is "negotiating" aspects relating to Law 173 and other pending topics so that the TLC can be implemented on July 1, as was foreseen, adding that is necessary that it be given the opportunity to conclude its work and express itself.

When Hertell was asked if the United States would be willing to yield in its demands so that the Industrial Property Law is also modified, he said that, "we are speaking neither of yielding nor of demanding, what we want is for the agreement to be implemented in the measure in which it was negotiated at its moment."

Before reporters’ insistence to know if the modification of both legislations (Industrial Property and of protection of representatives of foreign companies) was included in the agreements from the start of the negotiations, Hertell answered: "All that was in the pact from the beginning, has been one of the topics that has been discussed, there have been no new demands, what it’s about is different interpretations."

The American ambassador abstained from specifying when the Dominican Republic, United States and Central American Free Trade Agreement (Dr-Cafta), could take effect "we are working together to obtain that this is done as quickly as possible," he said.