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Population 10,646,714 (July 2017 est) World Factbook
Independence January 1, 1804 Declaration of Independence from France
Languages French (official), Creole (official)
Form of government Semi Presidential Republic
GDP (2017) $8.36 billion; per capita: $1.800


Haiti, an island nation in the Caribbean that shares an eastern border with the Dominican Republic, gained independence form France in 1804. Since that time, Haiti has experienced political upheaval and instability. After an uprising in 2004 that ousted dictator Jean Bertrand Aristide, UN peacekeepers were deployed to re-establish order, and democratic rule was restored in 2006.

Today, Haiti’s political and economic environment is precarious. A magnitude 7.0 earthquake devastated the capital, Port-au-Prince, in January 2010; more than 300,000 people died and 1.5 million were left homeless. The effects are still reverberating. A subsequent outbreak of cholera and a series of hurricanes further destabilized the economy and disrupted delivery of social services.

Efforts to rebuild are ongoing: More than 90 percent of Haiti’s internally displaced persons have returned to their home communities or relocated within the country, and infrastructure is being upgraded to better withstand natural disasters. President Michel Martelly resigned in February 2016 and was replaced by interim President Jocelerme Privert. President Jovenel Moise won the election in November 2016 and assumed the office in February 2017.

Government Title Name
President H.E. Jovenel MOISE
Prime Minister H.E. Dr. Jack Guy LAFONTANT
Minister of Planning and International Cooperation H.E. Aviol-Fleurant
g7+ Focal Point Mr. Marc Anglade National Coordinator- STC-CAED - Ministry of Planning and External Cooperation

New Deal Implementation

Haiti joined the g7+ group in 2010 and endorsed the New Deal. Haiti hosted the annual g7+ Ministerial Meetings in Port-au-Prince in 2012.


The president is the chief of state and is elected in five-year terms, with a single non consecutive term limit. The head of government is the prime minister, who is appointed by the president and ratified by the National Assembly. The prime minister in consultation with the president appoints the member of cabinet.

The bicameral parliament consists of the 30-seat Senate, elected in multi-seat constituencies, whose members serve six-year terms with one third of the membership renewed every two years. The 119-seat Chamber of Deputies are elected directly and whose members serve four-year terms. When the two cambers meet collectively, it is known as L’Assemble Nationale of the National Assembly. As of mid-2015, parliament was not functioning due to members’ terms expiring following years of legislative election delays. Elections in August 2015 was cancelled and held it again on 25 October 2015 to resume parliamentary activity.

Haiti’s decentralized government provides autonomy to municipalities, but capacity for both service provision and revenue collection at the local level is limited. The central government and development partners are working to provide more resources to municipalities for governance and public financial management.

Socioeconomic Status

Periods of political instability and prevalence of natural disasters has led to high rates of poverty and unemployment, with 60% of the population living under the national poverty line, Haiti’s GDP growth to 5.5% in 2011 as the Haitian economy began recovering from the devastating January earthquake that destroyed much of its Capital City, Port-au-Prince, but has since risen to 2.6 billion as of December 2017. Much of the country’s infrastructure is damaged, and the government’s capacity to carry out service provision is limited. One in four people in Haiti live in extreme poverty. Inequality is also high, with the French-speaking minority dominating public and private sector leadership and the Creole-speaking majority lacking employment opportunities. Poor access to clean water, housing, and social protection are obstacles to socioeconomic development. As off 2017, there are 37,667 people still live in IDP camps, and while this represents a significant decrease since 2010, it is a population that remains at high risk of food insecurity, disease, and unemployment.

The international humanitarian response following the 2010 earthquake overwhelmed the country’s government and already weakened infrastructure, but development partners have since made efforts to improve coordination and leverage resources. In addition to the earthquake’s devastating effects on infrastructure, it had similar effects on human capital; an estimated 18,000 civil servants died in the disaster. Haiti’s 2010-2030 Strategic Development Plan calls for a series of three-year frameworks setting priorities for development, including building human capital. The 2014-2016 framework focuses on (1) education and human and social development; (2) environment and regional development, (3) economy and employment, (4) energy, and (5) rule of law and democracy.

Investment Climate

The 2010 earthquake caused $7.8 billion in damage and a contraction in Haiti’s GDP. Two-fifths of all Haitian economy is dependent on the agriculture sector and is vulnerable to shocks in commodity prices and natural disasters; hurricanes and severe droughts in recent years have further affected agricultural output.  Most agricultural production is for domestic consumption; the apparel sector accounts for an estimated 90 percent of Haiti’s exports. Remittances from the Haitian diaspora are a primary source of income.

Lack of infrastructure and human capital is a constraint to private investment, but Haiti’s geographic proximity to the U.S. and Latin American markets, as well as its preferential free trade agreements, offer lucrative opportunities for domestic entrepreneurship and foreign investment. New legislation designed to improve the investment climate is expected to be taken up by the new parliament when it is elected, including new mining, insurance, and labor codes; a law establishing a public credit bureau; and new construction permit regulations. The Government of Haiti has prioritized investment promotion in the tourism, agriculture, construction, energy, and manufacturing sectors.