Cuban head of state, Miguel Diaz-Canel, and the Dominican Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit met at the Presidential Palace in Havana Tuesday as the countries work to strengthen bilateral ties and collaborate on disaster preparedness initiatives.
During the meeting, Skerrit thanked the Cuban government for the assistance it offered when Dominica was battered by hurricane Maria last year. Cuba was among the countries to provide aid to the island, sending rescue workers, doctors, construction personnel and other staff in the post-Hurricane Maria recovery efforts that devastated the Caribbean island last year.
The Category 5 hurricane left 31 dead, and 34 missing, and a vast majority of the structure on the island damaged, with agriculture sector "practically erased."
Cuban and Dominican specialists have agreed to work on one of Dominicans' main issues, flash flooding, and lay down a strategy to reduce the impact heavy rains have on the country's drainage system.
In June, Cuba sent a contingent of 80 builders and engineers to repair schools and homes, in response to the government's request to continue with the process of recovering from the damage caused by Hurricane Maria.
Cuba, considered a leader in disaster preparedness initiatives in the Caribbean, currently shares its expertise with Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Dominica, Dominican Republic.
Diaz-Canel is expected to participate the 39th Caribbean Community, CARICOM, Heads of Government meeting which opens Wednesday, along with Chile's President Sebastian Pinera.