It covers payment methods and information on, banking systems, foreign exchange controls, and U.S. and correspondent banking.
Methods of Payment
For commercial transactions, requiring cash in advance or negotiating a letter of credit is advisable until a payment track record is well established. Fitch (B- in June 2022), Moody’s (B3 in Mar 2022), and S&P (B- in Nov 2019) provide credit ratings for Nicaragua. Collection agencies are not common in Nicaragua. Visa and Mastercard are widely accepted, and many businesses also accept American Express.
For more information about the methods of payment or other trade finance options, please read the Trade Finance Guide.
See the Investment Climate Statement website for an overview of the financial sector.
Foreign Exchange Controls
There are no foreign exchange controls. See the Investment Climate Statement website for an overview on foreign currency transactions.
U.S. Banks and Local Correspondent Banks
The banks in Nicaragua listed below have correspondent relationships with banks operating in the United States. However, many of these relationships have been strained due to the political and economic crisis, growing international sanctions, and recent legal changes. Reforms in 2021 to the consumer defense law effectively adds “the State” as a consumer and forces local banks to justify to the bank superintendent the denial of services to any type of user, including to “the State” and sanctioned entities. Nicaragua is “off cover” for the Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM Bank). Accordingly, EXIM Bank will not consider routine transactions for country credit reasons.
- Banco de la Producción, aka BANPRO
- Banco Lafise, aka BANCENTRO
- Banco de América Central, aka BAC
- Banco de Finanzas, aka BDF
- Banco Ficohsa Nicaragua
- Banco Avanz