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Business-Managed Democracy

“Business-managed democracies are those in which the political and cultural arrangements are managed in the interests of business”

Sharon Beder

Business-Managed Government

The World Bank and Nicaragua


Reagan also used the World Bank to once again impose an ‘invisible blockade’ on NicaNicaragua mapragua with a view to destabilizing the economy and creating internal unrest and support for a takeover by the US-backed Contras. The Sandinista government of Nicaragua, which had come to power in 1979 with a socialist agenda that included nationalization of property and resources – including mines – and land reform. The Reagan administration used a variety of methods to stop MBD loans to Nicaragua going ahead, including vetoes, organized voting blocks, paper work delays and political pressure on MBD officials. From 1983 none of the multilateral development banks (MBDs) made loans to Nicaragua. The reasoning given by US officials for their opposition to the loans was ‘inappropriate macro-economic policies’. In addition, the Contras and CIA agents directed attacks at Nicaragua’s economic infrastructure. By 1989 the Sandinista government had been forced to abandon its welfare-oriented economic policies in favour of free market reforms. It lost government in 1990.