Editorial – Keys to Nicaragua Moving Forward

It is sad to see politicians do so little in a country with so much potential.  As far as natural resources, location and other factors Nicaragua should be light years ahead.  Instead of pocketing the money that comes in, imagine what could be done.  Here is my thoughts on what the government should focus on. 

Moving Nicaragua Forward 

Education

Infrastructure

Crime

Education is by far and away the most important factor in a country moving ahead.  Children must be required (and enforced) to go to school and not stay on the streets begging.  Education is not only about kids graduating from high school but an education that goes beyond that.  One of the saddest parts of Nicaragua is watching all the natural resources get polluted and go to waste. Nicaragua must start campaigns to clean up the country and children must be educated on this from a young age.  One of the things that irritates me the most is the campaign “El Rio San Juan Es Nica” which means the Rio San Juan is Nicaragua’s.  This campaign goes way back to Nicaragua’s dispute with Costa Rica over the river.  Nicaraguans have a lot of national pride and are passionate on the subject but the fact is Nicaragua at this point almost does not deserve this beautiful river.  Managua’s streets are lined with trash and Lake Managua is almost sewage, one can only imagine what the Rio San Juan would look like if it were close to an urban area.  Before we can start claiming a river is ours lets make sure we are taking care of what has been given to us.  Once Nicaragua can clean up much of these areas the rewards will be huge.  Just take a look across the border at Costa Rica and see what they have done with their country by taking care of the God given resources.  Nicaragua could learn something from its brothers to the south.  Costa Rica is less than half the size of Nicaragua!  There is no excuse for Nicaragua to be where it is in comparison to the other Central American countries.

Nicaragua Moving ForwardSecondly, infrastructure is the one of the key economic factors to moving forward.  Much of the eastern side of the country of Nicaragua is inaccessible.  Most Nicaraguans never get to see the beauty of the Rio San Juan, the Corn Islands or the Pearl Lagoon.  Nicaragua needs to invest in getting paved roads to all these areas.  If the travel time to these areas can be cut in half it will give a boost to the economy. Tourism in these areas would explode.  Also exporting from these areas would be a lot more feasible as well.  If a drive from Managua to Puerto Cabezas could be done in under seven hours would be monumental.  Jobs would be created from the roads getting put in.  Once the roads are done jobs would be created from all the development that would happen in these areas due to the better infrastructure.  Tourism would explode in areas like the Rio San Juan and up along the Caribbean coastline.  With large focus on eco-tourism, Nicaragua is in great shape to take advantage of this niche.

For all of Nicaragua’s history and problems, crime has been low on the list.  Most of the crimes have been theft and very little violence.  In the last few years crime has been creeping up.  There is nothing that can deter outsiders from visiting like crime.  Just ask Mexico where gangs and drug cartels rule their country.  Nicaragua is a safe haven compared Mexico but it would imperative to keep it that away.  Best way to keep crime down is to keep kids in school.  The best way to keep kids in school is provide jobs for their parents and the best way to create jobs is to build the infrastructure. Once the infrastructure is in place, investors will come.  It is a cause and effect cycle that could do Nicaragua lots of good in the coming years.

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