Envío Digital
Central American University - UCA  
  Number 108 | Julio 1990



Just the Facts: COSEP & CO. and CORDENIC

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Founded in 1978 as a coordinating body for diverse business associations, replacing COSIP, founded in 1972. The president of the Nicaraguan Development Institute (INDE) was the ex-officio COSEP president until 1988; now the president of each business chamber votes for a presidential candidate according to instructions from its board. COSIP/COSEP Presidents: 1972-74 Humberto Belli (now Vice Minister of Education), 1974-76 Marcos Zeledón (of Chamber of Industry, left for Miami), 1976-78 Alfonso Robelo (cooking-oil industrialist, now Ambassador to Costa Rica), 1978-80 José Torres (cattle rancher, now Ambassador to Venezuela), 1980-83 Enrique Dreyfus (see below), 1983-88 Enrique Bolaños (cotton farmer), 1988-current Gilberto Cuadra (engineer).


Founded in 1963 by 14 young businessmen to be the “social arm” of the private sector, above sectoral interests. Linked to pre-1979 “BANAMERICA” financial group of Conservative modernizers.

Stated objectives: Unify private sector to promote socioeconomic development via a western concept; create solidarity, cooperation and mutual understanding among different production sectors; stimulate improvement of private enterprise; collaborate with public sector in national welfare tasks; defend general interests of private enterprise and increase private sector's influence on public policy.

/n> Businesses and businesspeople in all sectors.

Social program: FUNDE (Nicaraguan Development Fund), created in 1970 to promote and finance cooperatives of small merchants, manufacturers and farmers; EDUCREDITO, created in 1964, to manage revolving higher education loan fund for low-income youth.


Founded as Chamber of Commerce and Industry 1928, representing large commercial import-export sector, mainly European immigrants. Membership voluntary until 1934, when all commercial, agricultural and industrial enterprises were obliged to register with it.

Stated objectives: Foster unity of businesspeople, especially those in commerce; foster international trade relations; cooperate in general-interest tasks related to national economy and commerce; act as intermediary with government; promote and direct sectoral activity development, promote fairs and expositions of local goods and raw materials.

Membership: 17 departmental chambers and 10 associations of distributors, transport and specialized merchants; formed into CCN Confederation 1978. Commissions (formed 1986): Promotion, Labor Relations and Affairs; Domestic and Foreign Commerce; Economy, National
Financial System, Fiscal and Municipal Taxes; Legal Affairs; Associate Relations.


Twelve industrialists, mainly agro-processors, separated from Chamber of Commerce and Industry, 1957; later included industrial park promoted by Central American Common Market.

Stated objectives: Coordinate sector’s interests; promote industrial development; service members independent of any political party, religious or profit-making activity.

Membership: In 1975, 360 associates and representatives of main industries; substantially reduced by confiscations.


Founded 1967. Biggest companies expropriated under pressure from construction workers from 1979 on.

Stated Objectives: Develop construction and related industries; create and foster conditions for free development of such activity; protect associates' collective interests; establish, maintain and deepen relations with like organizations internationally; coordinate and organize training, efficiency, safety, seriousness, professional morality; represent associates to state, unions, professional and other industrial associations.

Membership: Says about 120 individuals and business.


Founded March 1979 to group agricultural organizations nationally. Most important and strongest are cotton, coffee and cattle. Controls a quarter of the agricultural area, and a third of the pasture and cattle land. Says accounts for 60% of national agricultural production; independent researchers estimate 30%.

Stated objectives: Achieve integral development of man [sic] by promoting growth and development of activities related to agricultural production; intervene in takeoff, development and progress of such activities; defend development of private property, a basic and necessary element for individual development and principal universal might; promote, represent and legally defend agricultural sector when individual or collective patrimony is harmed; promote socioeconomic, educational and health-environmental development of agricultural workers and their activities.

Membership: Says has 5,717 associated producers. Associated producer organizations (most have branches by geography or sectoral sub-branch): Confederation of Cotton Growers Associations (CAAN), Federation of Livestock Raisers’ Associations (FAGANIC), National Union of Coffee Growers (UNCAFENIC), National Association of Sorghum Producers (ANPROSOR), Development Fund for Dairy Industry (FONDELAC), Nicaraguan Association of Irrigated Rice Growers (ANAR), National Association of Banana Producers (ANPROBA), Association of Private Sugarcane Producers (APRICO).


Founded May 1979; pro-Sandinista CONAPRO Héroes and Martyrs split off in 1981, representing 22 associations, most never in CONAPRO.

Stated objectives: Promote applied arts, sciences and culture; coordinate members' efforts at more direct and effective participation in public affairs decision-making; help train members and associates; promote university professionals' organization; defend rational use of human and natural resources; promote conditions for free professional exercise; stimulate professionals' authentic desire to serve community.

Membership: 14 associations, including architects and engineers, microbiologists and chemists, veterinarians, economists, lawyers, public accountants, pharmacists, women professionals, etc.

Source: Paper by Itztani director Marvin Ortega.


The Commission on the Recovery and Development of Nicaragua (CORDENIC) is a two-year-old economic thinktank that is playing a key role in the new Chamorro government

President: Enrique Dreyfus: Born in Managua, 1930. Studied industrial chemistry, McGill U., Canada. Member of the Interamerican Dialogue; Sanford Commission; Advisory Committee, OAS Pan-American Development Foundation; National Committee, INCAE. Former president of COSEP, Chamber of Industries, INDE (founding member), Central American Federated Chambers of Industries; director University of Central America (UCA), FUNDE.

Vice President: Felipe Mántica; Born in León. 1935. Studied business administration, Georgetown University. President of Agrícola Holanda, Pierson Jackman SA and Microsistemas SA, member of “City of God.” Former member of the Group of 12; director of UCA and Chamber of Commerce; president of EDUCREDITO and Casa Mántica SA; vice president of Supermercados La Colonia de Honduras. Founder of Nicaraguan supermarket chain.

Secretary General: Francisco Mayorga: Born in León, 1949. Doctorate in economy, Yale University, Member of the Sanford Commission. Former professor of business and finance economy and director of postgraduate studies, INCAE; economic adviser to the Central Bank; consultant to the Secretariat of Regional Integration; adviser to Nicaragua's Ministry of Planning (1980-82). On the commission that prepared the National Reconstruction Government program.

Other members:
* Pablo Ayon: Born in León, 1930. Postgraduate civil engineering, Ecole des Arts et Metiers, Paris; Mastersin industrial engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology. President of Polymer United. Former engineering professor, UNAN and UCA, president of Nicaraguan Association of Engineers and Architects, Grupo Numar, United Brands consortium.
* Filadelfo Chamorro Coronel: Born in Granada, 1928. Studied civil engineering, MIT. Engineer 30 years; currently consultant to construction industry.
* Carlos Reynaldo Lacayo: Born in Diriamba, 1950. Studied business administration, Harvard University. Member of the National Committee, INCAE; president or director of various Nicaraguan and Central American companies including Grupo OSALCA, transnational corporations. Former president of Advertisers' Association of Nicaragua (founding member), Central American Federated Chambers of Advertisers; director of FUNDE and INDE.
* Antonio Lacayo: Born in Managua, 1947. Graduated with honors in industrial engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, Masters in Administration, MIT. President-CEO of GRACSA-ALMESA, Nicaragua; director of agro-industrial enterprises in Costa Rica and Mexico. Former professor of School of Business Administration, UCA; board member of Chamber of Industries.

* José Francisco Rosales: Born in León, 1945. Law degree UNAN, postgraduate studies, University of Paris (Sorbonne); specialist in corporate and labor law. 1egal adviser and director of several industrial and commercial enterprises. Former FSLN leader; professor, UCA Law School; director, UNAN Law School.

Source: CORDENIC: Misión y Programa de Actividades, 1988.

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