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Nicaragua: New Commercial Code to Be Drafted

(Aug. 25, 2011) Within the next two years, Nicaragua expects to draft and approve a new Commercial Code. The Consejo Superio de la Empresa Privada (COSEP) [Superior Council for Private Enterprise] and President Daniel Ortega's administration are planning to issue a new Code because the current one entered into effect in 1917 and is considered obsolete.

The new Code will revise modern mercantile and maritime laws and update several other laws already in the Code because, according to José Adán Aguerri, a spokesperson for the COSEP, it is not possible “to continue with a Commercial Code of 100 years ago.” (Raúl Alemán Arévalo, Legislarán por un nuevo Código de Comercio en Nicaragua, LA JORNADA ONLINE (Aug.19, 2011).) COSEP and Ortega's administration are working in conjunction with the World Bank to draft the new mercantile provisions in the Code, which will include all matters concerning e-commerce. New maritime provisions in the Code are expected to include articles on the construction of new ports in Nicaragua. On August 16, 2011, Ortega's administration signed a letter of intent with a Brazilian corporation to conduct feasibility and viability studies for the construction of a deepwater port at Monkey Point, in the south Caribbean region of Nicaragua. (Id.)