Nicaragua in Central America is one of the
poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere. The basis
of the economy is agriculture, with coffee as the
largest export commodity. Following a revolution against
dictator Somoza in 1979, a decade of civil war followed
between the Marxist Sandini movement and US-backed
rebels. The Sandinists returned to power in 2007 after
an election, and Daniel Ortega became president again.
Brief profiles of Nicaragua, including geography, history, politics, economics as well as common acronyms about this country.
Geography and climate
Nicaragua is Central America's largest
country with an area corresponding to just under a third
of Sweden's. The country has coasts towards the Pacific
Ocean to the west and the Caribbean to the east. The
climate is tropical.
In western Nicaragua, the landscape alternates
between fertile lowlands and volcanic mountains. There
is also the deep Nicaragua sink with Managua and
Nicaragua lake. In the latter, which is almost one and a
half times as large as Lake Vänern, there is a permanent
stock of bull sharks that can live in fresh water.
From the northwest down to Lake Nicaragua runs a
chain of volcanoes, several of which are active. Through
the San Juan River, Lake Nicaragua connects with the
Caribbean, which is part of the Atlantic. The hinterland
is occupied by a partly wooded high plateau. The highest
mountains are in the north. To the east along the edge
of the Caribbean runs a broad and swampy coastal plain.
The country is prone to earthquakes and hurricanes.
The temperature variations during the year are small.
It is slightly warmer in the west than in the east and
coolest in the highlands. It rains mostly in the
southeast and least in the northwest. A rainy season
that the Nicaraguans call winter falls approximately
between May and October, while the dry season (summer)
runs from November to April.
FACTS - GEOGRAPHY AND CLIMATE
130,000 km2 (2018)
Swedish –7 hours
Adjacent country (s)
Honduras, Costa Rica
Capital with number of inhabitants
Managua 1,038,000 (2018 estimate)
Other major cities
León 171,000, Masaya 130,000, Chinandega 112,000,
Mogotón (2107 m asl)
the border rivers San Juan in the south and Coco in
the north and Rio Grande
Average Precipitation / month
Managua 296 mm (June), 1 mm (Feb)
Average / day
Managua 29 °C (May), 26 °C (Jan)
Decisive in border dispute with Colombia
The International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague gives Nicaragua the
right to a number of small islands in the Caribbean, to which Colombia is
entitled, but at the same time changes the sea border to Nicaragua's advantage.
Nicaragua does not approve the border demarcation and makes a new report to the
ICJ on the disputed area (see also Foreign Policy and Defense).
Strong support for FSLN in municipal elections
Sand ministers get about 75 percent of the vote and win 134 of 153 mayoral
positions when local elections are held. At least three people are reported to
have been killed in unrest in connection with the election.
Banana companies pay damages
After many years of legal proceedings, the multinational banana company Dole
agrees to pay damages to 5,400 agricultural workers from Nicaragua, Honduras and
Costa Rica who were harmed by prohibited pesticides when they worked on banana
plantations owned by Dole in the 1970s and 1980s. The company used pesticides
like Nemagon even though there was evidence in the United States that they
caused injury to people. Many workers have become sterile from the poisons,
others have died. Despite the settlement, Dole does not admit that the
pesticides caused workers' injuries.
Nicaragua leaves US military school
Ortega announces that Nicaragua will stop sending soldiers to the notorious
US military school School of the Americas (SOA), which has now been renamed
WHINSEC and is located in the state of Georgia in the United States. The school
was formerly located in Panama and trained Latin American dictators and
military, including torture. Ortega calls the school "a symbol of death, a
symbol of terror". In recent years, several Latin American countries have
abandoned cooperation with the military school.
The central bank's chairman resigns
Bank manager Antenor Rosales leaves his post in protest of President Ortega's
plans to transfer part of Nicaragua's foreign exchange reserves to a bank to be
set up by the regional cooperation organization Alba. Rosales believes that only
the central bank has the right to make decisions regarding the foreign exchange
reserve. Rosales was seen as important for economic stability and the situation
is worrying many in business.
Germany withdraws aid
Germany withdraws most of its aid in protest of how the election was
conducted. The US warns that Nicaragua's loan applications to the Inter-American
Development Bank (IDB) and the World Bank, where the US has influence, will be
reviewed "aggressively". However, aid continues to flow in from Venezuela.