President Violeta Chamorro has announced a package of austerity measures aimed at curbing inflation and reviving the country's war-battered economy.
The measures, announced Sunday, included a sharp currency devaluation and big price increases for food staples, utilities and fuels.To offset the impact, Chamorro said pay would be tripled for public employees and state pensioners. Savings accounts were to be adjusted to reflect the devaluation, she said.
Chamorro said the package was meant to stabilize the economy in advance of a March 25 meeting in Washington between Nicaraguan officials and representatives of international financial institutions and governments.
Chamorro urged "all Nicaraguans to unite in support (of the measures) so that we can face down our problems of inflation and poverty."
Nicaragua is seeking $440 million in emergency aid to offset damage to the economy caused by nine years of civil war between the former Sandinista government and U.S-supported Contra rebels.