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{{short description|Country in Central America}}
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{{short description|Country in Central America}}
{{Coord|13|8|N|85|7|W|region:NI_type:country|display=title}}
{{Infobox country
=== Independent Nicaragua from 1821 to 1909 ===
[[File:Political Evolution of Central America and the Caribbean 1830 na.png|thumb|[[Federal Republic of Central America]] and British colony of the [[Mosquito Coast]] in 1830]]
The [[Act of Independence of Central America]] dissolved the [[Captaincy General of Guatemala]] in September 1821, and Nicaragua soon became part of the [[First Mexican Empire]]. After the overthrow of the Mexican monarchy in March 1823, Nicaragua joined the newly-formed [[United Provinces of Central America]] (July 1823), which later{{when​?​|date=March 2021}} became the [[Federal Republic of Central America]]. Nicaragua definitively became an independent republic in 1838.<ref>{{cite journal|last1= Smith|first1= RS|title= Financing the Central American federation, 1821–1838|journal= The Hispanic American Historical Review|volume= 43|issue= 4|pages= 483–510|year= 1963|doi= 10.2307/2509898|jstor= 2509898}}</ref>
 
Rivalry between the [[Constitutionalist Liberal Party (Nicaragua) |Liberal]] elite of León and the [[Conservative Party (Nicaragua)| Conservative]] elite of Granada characterized the early years of independence and often degenerated into civil war, particularly during the 1840s and 1850s. [[Managua]] was chosen{{by whom?|date=March 2021}} as the nation's capital in 1852 to allay the rivalry between the two feuding cities.<ref name="Capital">{{cite book|last= Cybriwsky|first= Roman Adrian|title= Capital Cities around the World: An Encyclopedia of Geography, History, and Culture|url= https://books.google.com/books?id=qb6NAQAAQBAJ&pg=PA177|date= May 23, 2013|publisher= ABC-CLIO|isbn= 978-1-61069-248-9|page= 177}}</ref><ref>{{cite news|title= Managua|url= http://archivo.laprensa.com.ni/archivo/2006/marzo/09/servicios/guiaturistica/|access-date= May 24, 2017|work= La Prensa|date= March 9, 2006|archive-url= https://web.archive.org/web/20131111081208/http://archivo.laprensa.com.ni/archivo/2006/marzo/09/servicios/guiaturistica/|language= es|archive-date= November 11, 2013 | quote = Fue elevada a ciudad en 1846 y salomónicamente declarada capital de la República en 1852, para dirimir el viejo conflicto entre las urbes coloniales de León (occidente) y Granada (oriente) que rivalizaban por ejercer la hegemonía política de Nicaragua.}}</ref> Following the start (1848) of the [[California Gold Rush]], Nicaragua provided a route for travelers from the eastern [[United States of America | United States]] to journey to [[California]] by sea, via the [[San Juan River (Nicaragua) |San Juan River]] and Lake Nicaragua.<ref name="Brief" />{{rp|81}} Invited by the Liberals in 1855 to join their struggle against the Conservatives, the United States adventurer and [[Filibuster (military)|filibuster]] [[William Walker (filibuster) |William Walker]] set himself up as [[President of Nicaragua]] after conducting a farcical election in 1856; his presidency lasted less than a year.<ref name="mined">{{cite web|url= http://www.mined.gob.ni/gobernant4.php|archive-url= https://web.archive.org/web/20121009181920/http://www.mined.gob.ni/gobernant4.php|url-status= dead|archive-date= 9 October 2012|title= Gobernantes de Nicaragua|date= 9 December 2012|publisher= Ministerio de Educación}}</ref> Military forces from Costa Rica, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Nicaragua itself united to drive Walker out of Nicaragua in 1857,<ref>{{cite book|last= Walker|first= W|title= The War in Nicaragua|publisher= S.H. Goetzel & Company|place= New York|year= 1860|url= https://archive.org/stream/warinnicaragua00walkgoog#page/n6/mode/2up}}</ref><ref>{{cite journal|last= Juda|first= F|title= California Filibusters: A History of their Expeditions into Hispanic America (excerpt)|journal= The Grizzly Bear |volume= XXI|issue= 4|pages= 3–6, 15, 19|year= 1919|url= http://www.sfmuseum.org/hist1/walker.html|access-date= 2011-07-20}}</ref><ref>{{cite book|last= Baker|first= CP|title= Moon Handbooks: Costa Rica|edition= 4th|chapter= The William Walker Saga|page= [https://archive.org/details/costarica00bake_2/page/67 67]|publisher= Avalon Travel Publishing|place= New York|year= 2001|isbn= 978-1-56691-608-0|chapter-url= https://archive.org/details/costarica00bake_2/page/67}}</ref> after which a period of three decades of Conservative rule ensued.
 
Great Britain, which had claimed the [[Mosquito Coast]] as a [[protectorate]] since 1655, delegated the area to Honduras in 1859 before transferring it to Nicaragua in 1860. The Mosquito Coast remained an [[autonomous area]] until 1894. [[José Santos Zelaya]], President of Nicaragua from 1893 to 1909, negotiated the integration of the Mosquito Coast into Nicaragua. In his honor, the region became "[[Zelaya Department]]".
 
Throughout the late 19th-century, the United States and several European powers considered various schemes to link the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic by building a [[Nicaragua Canal| canal across Nicaragua]].<ref>
{{cite book
|last= Colquhoun|first= AR|title= The key of the Pacific: the Nicaragua canal
On the Pacific side of Nicaragua are the two largest fresh water lakes in Central America—[[Lake Managua]] and [[Lake Nicaragua]]. Surrounding these lakes and extending to their northwest along the [[rift valley]] of the [[Gulf of Fonseca]] are fertile lowland plains, with soil highly enriched by [[volcanic ash|ash]] from nearby [[volcano]]es of the central highlands. Nicaragua's abundance of biologically significant and unique [[ecosystem]]s contribute to [[Mesoamerica]]'s designation as a [[biodiversity hotspot]]. Nicaragua has made efforts to become less dependent on fossil fuels, and it expects to acquire 90% of its energy from renewable resources by the year 2020.<ref name="bbc">{{Cite news|title=Why isn't Nicaragua in the Paris agreement?|url=https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-40135819|newspaper=BBC News|access-date=October 27, 2017|date=June 3, 2017}}</ref><ref>{{cite web|title=Nicaragua: a renewable energy paradise in Central America|url=http://www.worldbank.org/en/news/feature/2013/10/25/energias-renovables-nicaragua|website=World Bank|access-date=October 27, 2017|language=en|date=October 25, 2013}}</ref> Nicaragua was one of the few countries that did not enter an [[Intended Nationally Determined Contributions|INDC]] at [[COP21]].<ref>{{cite web|url=https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-12-08/after-two-decades-of-stumbles-carbon-market-pioneers-revving-up#media-2|title=Carbon Markets Are Making a Slow, But Steady, Comeback|first1=Alex |last1=Nussbaum|first2=Ewa |last2=Krukowska|first3=Mathew |last3=Carr|date=8 December 2015|work=Bloomberg.com|access-date=17 February 2016}}</ref><ref>{{cite web|url=http://www4.unfccc.int/submissions/indc/Submission%20Pages/submissions.aspx|title=INDCs as communicated by Parties|publisher=unfccc.int}}</ref> Nicaragua initially chose not to join the Paris Climate Accord because it felt that "much more action is required" by individual countries on restricting global temperature rise.<ref name="bbc" /> However, in October 2017, Nicaragua made the decision to join the agreement.<ref>{{cite news|title=Nicaragua to join Paris climate accord, leaving US and Syria isolated|url=https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/oct/23/nicaragua-joins-paris-climate-accord-us-trump-syria|access-date=December 4, 2017|work=The Guardian|date=October 23, 2017}}</ref><ref>{{cite news|last1=Stack|first1=Liam|title=Only U.S. and Syria Now Oppose Paris Climate Deal, as Nicaragua Joins|url=https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/24/world/americas/nicaragua-paris-climate-agreement-us.html|access-date=December 4, 2017|work=The New York Times|date=October 24, 2017}}</ref><ref>{{cite news|last1=Noack|first1=Rick|title=Being outside the Paris climate deal: Something now only the U.S. and Syria agree on|url=https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2017/10/24/not-being-part-of-the-paris-climate-deal-something-only-the-u-s-and-syria-agree-on/|access-date=December 4, 2017|work=[[The Washington Post]]|date=October 24, 2017}}</ref> It ratified this agreement on November 22, 2017.<ref>{{cite web|title=Paris Agreement – Status of Ratification|url=http://unfccc.int/paris_agreement/items/9444.php|publisher=United Nations|access-date=13 January 2018}}</ref>
 
Nearly one fifth of Nicaragua is designated as [[Protected areas of Nicaragua|protected areas]] like national parks, nature reserves, and biological reserves. The country had a 2019 [[Forest Landscape Integrity Index]] mean score of 3.63/10, ranking it 146<sup>th</sup>​146th globally out of 172 countries.<ref name="FLII-Supplementary">{{cite journal|last1=Grantham|first1=H. S.|last2=Duncan|first2=A.|last3=Evans|first3=T. D.|last4=Jones|first4=K. R.|last5=Beyer|first5=H. L.|last6=Schuster|first6=R.|last7=Walston|first7=J.|last8=Ray|first8=J. C.|last9=Robinson|first9=J. G.|last10=Callow|first10=M.|last11=Clements|first11=T.|last12=Costa|first12=H. M.|last13=DeGemmis|first13=A.|last14=Elsen|first14=P. R.|last15=Ervin|first15=J.|last16=Franco|first16=P.|last17=Goldman|first17=E.|last18=Goetz|first18=S.|last19=Hansen|first19=A.|last20=Hofsvang|first20=E.|last21=Jantz|first21=P.|last22=Jupiter|first22=S.|last23=Kang|first23=A.|last24=Langhammer|first24=P.|last25=Laurance|first25=W. F.|last26=Lieberman|first26=S.|last27=Linkie|first27=M.|last28=Malhi|first28=Y.|last29=Maxwell|first29=S.|last30=Mendez|first30=M.|last31=Mittermeier|first31=R.|last32=Murray|first32=N. J.|last33=Possingham|first33=H.|last34=Radachowsky|first34=J.|last35=Saatchi|first35=S.|last36=Samper|first36=C.|last37=Silverman|first37=J.|last38=Shapiro|first38=A.|last39=Strassburg|first39=B.|last40=Stevens|first40=T.|last41=Stokes|first41=E.|last42=Taylor|first42=R.|last43=Tear|first43=T.|last44=Tizard|first44=R.|last45=Venter|first45=O.|last46=Visconti|first46=P.|last47=Wang|first47=S.|last48=Watson|first48=J. E. M.|display-authors=1|title=Anthropogenic modification of forests means only 40% of remaining forests have high ecosystem integrity - Supplementary Material|journal=Nature Communications|volume=11|issue=1|year=2020|page=5978|issn=2041-1723|doi=10.1038/s41467-020-19493-3|pmid=33293507|pmc=7723057|doi-access=free}}</ref> [[Geophysical]]ly, Nicaragua is surrounded by the [[Caribbean Plate]], an [[oceanic crust|oceanic]] [[tectonic plate]] underlying Central America and the [[Cocos Plate]]. Since Central America is a major [[subduction]] zone, Nicaragua hosts most of the [[Central American Volcanic Arc]].
 
=== Pacific lowlands ===
Nicaragua is among the poorest countries in the Americas.<ref>{{Cite web|url=http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/COUNTRIES/LACEXT/NICARAGUAEXTN/0,,contentMDK:22255024~pagePK:1497618~piPK:217854~theSitePK:258689,00.html|title=Nicaragua - Country Brief|website=web.worldbank.org}}</ref><ref>{{cite news|title=Rank Order – GDP – per capita (PPP)|publisher=CIA World Factbook|url=https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/2004rank.html|access-date=2007-05-09}}</ref><ref>{{cite news|title=Social indicators: Per capita GDP|publisher=United Nations|url=http://unstats.un.org/unsd/demographic/products/socind/inc-eco.htm|access-date=2007-05-09}}</ref> Its gross domestic product (GDP) in [[purchasing power parity]] (PPP) in 2008 was estimated at US$17.37&nbsp;billion.<ref name=cia>{{cite news|title=Nicaragua|publisher=CIA World Factbook|url=https://www.cia.gov/the-world-factbook/countries/nicaragua/|access-date=2007-05-09}}</ref> Agriculture represents 15.5% of GDP, the highest percentage in Central America.<ref>{{Cite web|url=https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/fields/214.html#NU|title=Field Listing :: GDP - composition, by sector of origin — The World Factbook - Central Intelligence Agency|website=www.cia.gov|access-date=2019-05-05}}</ref> Remittances account for over 15% of the Nicaraguan GDP. Close to one billion dollars are sent to the country by Nicaraguans living abroad.<ref>{{cite web|url=http://www.migrationinformation.org/Feature/display.cfm?id=393|title=Migration Information Source – Remittance Trends in Central America|publisher=Migrationinformation.org|access-date=2010-06-26|date=April 2006}}</ref> The economy grew at a rate of about 4% in 2011.<ref name=cia/> By 2019, given restrictive taxes and a civil conflict, it recorded a negative growth of - 3.9%; the International Monetary Fund forecast for 2020 is a further decline of 6% due to COVID-19.<ref>Nordea (2020). Nicaragua: Economic Outline. https://www.nordeatrade.com/en/explore-new-market/nicaragua/economy</ref>
 
The restrictive tax measures put in place in 2019 and a political crisis over social security negatively affected the country's weak public spending and investor confidence in sovereign debt. According to the update IMF forecasts from 14 April 2020, due to the outbreak of the COVID-19, GDP growth is expected to fall to -6% in 2020.{{cncitation needed|date=April 2021}}{{update inline|date=April 2021}}
 
According to the [[United Nations Development Programme]], 48% of the population of Nicaragua live below the poverty line,<ref>{{cite web|url=http://www.pnud.org.ni/noticias/343 |title=Programa de las Naciones Unidas para el Desarrollo – Noticias – La pobreza se arraiga en el país |publisher=Pnud.org.ni |access-date=2010-06-26 |url-status=dead |archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20110511101524/http://www.pnud.org.ni/noticias/343 |archive-date=May 11, 2011 }}</ref> 79.9% of the population live with less than $2 per day,<ref>{{cite web|url=http://hdrstats.undp.org/indicators/24.html |title=Human Development Report 2009 – Countries' shares of total stock of migrants in Africa (%) |publisher=Hdrstats.undp.org |access-date=2010-06-26 |url-status=dead |archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20090221190342/http://hdrstats.undp.org/indicators/24.html |archive-date=2009-02-21 }}</ref> According to UN figures, 80% of the [[indigenous peoples|indigenous people]] (who make up 5% of the population) live on less than $1 per day.<ref>{{cite news|last=Silva |first=JA |title=NICARAGUA: Name and Identity for Thousands of Indigenous Children |url=http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=43760 |work=IPS |access-date=2008-09-12 |url-status=dead |archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20080911133236/http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=43760 |archive-date=September 11, 2008 }}</ref>
* [[Index of Nicaragua-related articles]]
* [[Outline of Nicaragua]]
 
==Notes==
{{Notelist}}
 
== References ==
{{reflist}}
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