Guatemala

Homicide Rates Homicide Rates in Central America-Where does Costa Rica Stack Up

The foundation Insight Crime, which is dedicated to the study of organized crime in Latin America and the Caribbean published its yearly “InSight Crime’s 2017 Homicide Round-Up”, with the purpose of giving a snapshot of murder rates in the Latin America region. Murder rates are calculated by InSight Crime, based on the number of reported homicides and the country’s 2017 estimated population tot...

Costa Rica Economy Costa Rica Pays the Highest Minimum Salary in Central America, Nicaragua the Lowest

According to information provided by the Ministries’ of Labor the Central American countries, Costa Rica pays the highest minimum wages in the region, while Nicaragua the lowest. Minimum wage is defined as the lowest remuneration that employers can legally pay their workers; equivalently it is the price floor below which workers may not sell their labor. This amount should allow workers to cov...

Free Checked Bag on Volaris’ Central America Flights for Limited Time

Hopping from one Central American country to another has never been easier, with cheap flights on Volaris, Costa Rica's airline. And the company just announced that your first checked bag flies free on regional flights purchased between now and November 20. The promotion applies to travel undertaken between now and February 28, 2018, as long as tickets are purchased within the time-frame of ...

Foreigner Accused of Using Slave Labor to Run Souvenir Shop in La Fortuna, Costa Rica

A Guatemalan woman is under investigation in Costa Rica for allegedly forcing another Guatemalan woman to work 17 hours a day without pay, and also without food during her workday or any days off, according to reports from the Costa Rica Judicial Investigative Police (OIJ). The woman, with the last names Martínez López, was arrested Thursday morning October 12 in La Fortuna de San Carlos, Alaju...

nicaragua gang launders 1 billion dollars US Ambassador to Costa Rica Sharon Day Inaugurates Central America Anti-Gang Conference

Representatives from Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama and Belize will analyze the regional anti-gang strategy jointly with specialists from the United States Federal Office of Investigation (FBI), Department of Police Los Angeles, Chicago and Fairfax; and the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department. This is happening at the Central American Anti-Gang Conference, an important region...

costa rica taxes Businesses in Costa Rica Pay Some of Region’s Highest Taxes

On average, companies in the Central American region pay 45.8 percent of their profits in taxes, while companies in Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries on average pay 41 percent. A study on the evolution of the fiscal situation in Central America by the Federation of Central American Chambers of Commerce (FECAMCO, in Spanish) revealed the fact that in Costa Ri...

Costa Rica Electricity Costa Rica’s State Electric to Aid in Expansion of Central American Network

The Central American Electricity Interconnection System (SIEPAC) contracted the Costa Rican Electric Institute (Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad, better known as ICE) to conduct a feasibility study for the connection of a second circuit in 13 substations located in Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama, thus improving the region's interconnectivity. SIEPAC co...

Costa Rica Unites Region to Promote Tourism

Last week, Costa Rica hosted a meeting of the Central American Council of Tourism at which ideas were discussed to promote tourism investment in the region, said the Costa Rican tourism Institute (ICT). Central America's Tourism Ministers, businessmen and representatives of the region's tourism chambers participated in this first "Forum of Exchange of Experiences for the Promotion of Tourism In...

US State Department Visit to Costa Rica Focuses on Environment

Acting Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs Judith Garber is in San Jose, Costa Rica this week. Her 3-day visit will focus on environmental issues and sustainable trade, said the U.S. Department of State's office of the spokesperson in a statement Tuesday. On June 20, Garber met with Costa Rican Minister of Environment ...

Costa Rican Researchers Say Region’s Farmers Not Prepared for Climate Change

Researchers from Costa Rica's Tropical Agronomic Research and Teaching Center and the non-profit Conservation International published findings on the impact of climate change in Latin America. Climatic Change magazine's special edition in March, Climate Change Impacts on Ecosystems, Agriculture and Smallholder Farmers in Central America, detailed the negative impacts of climate change in Centra...

Four Costa Rica Banks Among Those With Largest Assets in the Region

The reputational risks associated with last year's financial scandals such as the Panama Papers, and the arrests and imprisonment of several high ranking Guatemalan politicians on banking-related corruption charges, are the greatest current threats to Costa Rica's and Central America's banking sector, said analysts at Central America's business strategy magazine, Estrategias y Negocios. The 180...

Costa Rica Hosts Regional Plan Against Organized Crime and Violence Against Women

The Central American Security Commission approved this week a plan against organized crime and for the prevention of violence against women. Representatives of the Central American Integration System (SICA, its initials in Spanish) member countries met to discuss security and foreign affairs this week in San José. The SICA's Central American Security Commission (CSC) approved a technical...

history of dos pinos costa rica Costa Rican Businesses Invested Almost US $2 Billion Abroad Over Past Decade

Countries in the Central American region are the favored recipients of direct foreign investment by Costa Rican firms. According to figures from the Central Bank of Costa Rica (BCCR), over the last 10 years the flow of investments abroad reached US$1.96 billion, and 56 percent of these investments were in Central America. Panama is the top destination, with US$541.1 million over the last dec...

Drug Trafficking Causes Deforestation Says Central America Study

Biologists wanted to find out whether drug trafficking, in addition to drug cultivation, might also affect deforestation. Noting that Central America as a region has had a net loss of forest cover over the past decade, while other parts of Latin America have slowed their forest loss, researchers wondered if the growing presence of illicit drugs had any role to play. Central American countrie...

Costa Rican Student Activist Kidnapped and Raped in Guatemala Survives

Following is a statement by the Costa Rican women's advocacy organization, Cefemina, in response to the kidnapping this week of a Costa Rican university student who was in Guatemala to join in a memorial of the 41 girls whose lives were lost in a fire in March. "On Monday, May 15, 2017, the 23-year-old Costa Rican woman, Shanon Moreno Castro, was kidnapped in Guatemala City by four heavily arme...

Violence in Central America’s Northern Triangle Is now a Humanitarian Crisis

A report presented last week by the international medical humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) said their teams in Mexico treating migrants show a “pattern of violent displacement, persecution, sexual violence, and forced repatriation akin to the conditions found in the deadliest armed conflicts in the world today,” in people fleeing El Salvador, Hondura...

Early Pacific Tropical Storm Moves North From Costa Rica; May Hit Mexico Sunday

The 2017 hurricane season is already here with the arrival of Tropical Depression One-E which has been forming off Costa Rica's Pacific coast for the last couple of days, and is now gathering momentum as it heads in a northwesterly direction away from Costa Rica. If it becomes a tropical storm over the next day or two, as predicted, it will be named Adrian. The system is now moving north - n...

USMC. Source: Wikimedia Commons US Drug Consumption Blamed for 80% of Central American Violence by Security Official

Drug-related violence is as much a fact of life in Central America’s Northern Triangle as it is in some parts of the urban U.S. But its impact in these small Central American countries is huge, with up to 10 percent of the population of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador having fled violence and its associated poverty and insecurity according to the Washington-based Atlantic Council. This viol...

Australians Seek Haven in Costa Rica After Violent Robbery in Guatemala

British and UK media reported over the weekend about a group of Australian and other tourists who left their hotel in Antigua, Guatemala for an excursion on a private bus, only to be shot at by a passing car and subsequently assaulted, tied up, and robbed at gunpoint. An Australian couple who was part of the kidnapped group decided to try to recuperate their thwarted vacation plans by coming to...

Costa Rica’s National University Works to Eliminate Pesticide Use in Coffee

Glyphosphate is an herbicide used on coffee plantations in Costa Rica and other Central American countries. The chemical is included in the international Pesticide Action Network’s "List of Highly Hazardous Pesticides" and is targeted for global phaseout. Endosulfan is also used in Central American coffee production. It is “an off-patent organochlorine insecticide and acaricide that is being...

A new application developed by the University of Costa Rica will facilitate contacts between suppliers and customers, and will reduce company transportation and associated costs, source UCR. University of Costa Rica Project Seeks to Benefit, Revolutionize Transportation Trade

The University of Costa Rica (UCR) will launch a project that seeks to revolutionize the transportation sector in Central America through a new computer application and a web page, announced the institution yesterday. The official launch will take place Friday, April 28, 2017 at the Wyndham Hotel at 8 a.m. At the event, the Caravana application will be officially presented to the Secretariat of...

Global Tech Experts Meet to Improve Central America’s Internet Resources

Global technology experts met this week in Guatemala to call for a collaborative, multisectoral approach to the continued development of a more open, stable and secure Internet in Central and South America, and the Caribbean. Costa Rica has found itself lagging behind on Internet speed. “For Internet users in many Central American societies, the Internet affects many aspects of our quality of l...

Guatemala Fire Kills Girls 30 Girls killed in fire at children’s shelter in Guatemala

Thirty girls died and 32 others were injured in a fire that broke out on Wednesday in a Guatemalan children's shelter, when female residents attempted to protest over alleged sexual and physical abuse they were suffering. Secretary general of the Public Ministry, Mayra Véliz, said that of the first 19 deaths, 17 of them were caused by severe burns, while the other two were still being investiga...

Dentons Expands Global Presence to Costa Rica and Central America with Munoz Global

Dentons, the world’s largest law firm, has announced the completion of its combination with Costa Rica-based Muñoz Global, making it the first global law firm to have a footprint across Central America. The combined firm will be known as Dentons Muñoz. The combination follows the launch of Dentons López Velarde in Mexico and Dentons Cardenas & Cardenas in Colombia last year. It marks the next...

Abortion Boat Abortion boat told to leave Guatemala

A boat used by a Dutch non-government organization to provide abortion pills to women in countries where that practice is illegal has been ordered to leave Guatemala, an army colonel told EFE Friday. The colonel, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the dock where the so-called "abortion ship" is anchored was private and that the owner had only accepted payment for Thursday night, meaning ...

Costa Rica Korea Fellowship Korea University Meetings This Week for Central America-South Korea Trade Pact

By Wendy Anders South Korea will hold meetings this week with six Central American countries for a legal review of their pending free trade agreement, said South Korean media sources. A team from Seoul's Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy will meet its counterparts from Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panama and Honduras for three days of negotiations starting Monday, Feb....

Palestinian Rights Committee to Convene in Managua, Nicaragua

By Wendy Anders The Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People will convene at the Holiday Inn–Convention Center in Managua, Nicaragua this weekend, said the United Nations General Assembly. The theme of the event is, "Building Bridges with the Palestinian Diaspora in Central America" and comes near the fiftieth anniversary of the Israeli occupation of Pale...

Costa Rica Strengthens Economic Ties With Mexico

By Wendy Anders Representatives from Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Mexico met for the second conference of the commission that administers the Central America-Mexico free trade agreement. The Costa Rica delegation was led by Jhon Fonseca, Vice Minister of Foreign Trade. During the event, the leaders analyzed the evolution of the region’s trade, and stressed the ...

3 of the World’s Most Unequal Countries Are in Central America

By Wendy Anders A recent report by the World Bank shows some startling truths about economic inequality. Three of the world’s least equitable countries are Costa Rica’s neighbors, on the narrow Central American isthmus connecting Mexico with South America. Honduras, is ranked as the 6th most unequal by the World Bank, followed by Colombia, Brazil, Guatemala, and Panama in 10th place. The ...

Central America Refugees Fleeing gang warfare, more Central Americans seek refuge in Mexico and Costa Rica

As Juan walked to school one morning a year ago in El Salvador, two men on a motorbike sped by and fatally shot a boy on the street in front of him. The shooter took a good look at Juan's face. As a witness to a gang murder, Juan was now in the firing line. "They said I had to be part of their gang," said Juan, 15, who declined to give his real name for security reasons. Juan's mother, Te...

Guatemalan Suspected of 1980s Massacre Deported from U.S.

HYATTSVILLE, Md., Jan. 6, 2017 – A former member of the Guatemalan army, whom witnesses say participated in a massacre there more than three decades ago that claimed over 200 lives, was arrested today by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and charged in immigration court with having assisted or otherwise participated in extrajudicial killings du...

6 Hikers Die in Guatemalan, 3 Others in Central America from Cold

Guatemala, Jan. 9 — The discovery of three bodies on the slopes of Guatemala's Acatenango Volcano on Monday raised to six the number of hikers who died there, possibly of hypothermia caused by the cold front that has seized the country. The head of the Conred emergency management office, Sergio Cabañas, confirmed that the three lifeless bodies were found Monday on the volcano, located between t...

Taiwanese Diplomacy in C. America and U.S. Stopover Anger China

Taipei, Jan. 7 — The president of Taiwan on Saturday embarked on a trip to Central America, with controversial stopovers in the United States, in a bid to strengthen the island nation's ties with Latin America after the re-emergence of its diplomatic war with China. Tsai Ing-wen, accompanied by businessmen and officials, will travel to Honduras, Nicaragua, Guatemala and El Salvador - four of Ta...

Spanish Company Cancels Guatemala Hydro Due to Local Protests

By Wendy Anders Hidro Santa Cruz, a subsidiary of the Spanish transnational Ecoener-Hidralia, announced it will not continue in Guatemala after eight years of indigenous resistance to the hydroelectric company's plans, reported Spain’s daily El Diario. In an official statement, the company announced its waiver of the rights associated with the construction of a hydroelectric dam on the Camba...

Latin America Malnutrition Latin America losing the fight against malnutrition, expert says

Food and nutrition security are not improving in Latin American - some 34 million people continue to suffer from malnutrition, 47.7 percent of children under age 5 suffer from anemia and 49.8 percent, approximately 1.3 million, have chronic malnutrition. The figures "have not varied ostensibly in the region, they remain the same and are very worrying," the World Food Program (WFP) regional dire...

Medical Tourism in Costa Rica Medical Tourism to Guatemala Grew Over 12% This Year

By Wendy Anders Tourism to Guatemala for medical, health and wellbeing services brought in over US$66 million last year, and the sector is growing quickly. This year income from these specialized health services is expected to register 12.4 percent higher than last year’s sales, said the Guatemalan Export Associaction (Agexport) to Central America’s Summa business magazine. Experts estima...

France-Panama Merger to Lead Central America’s Outdoor Publicity

By Wendy Anders Paris, France-based JCDecaux, the world’s number one outdoor advertizing company, and Top Media, leader in the outdoor advertizing sector in Central America, signed an agreement last week to merge their activities, said the companies in a press statement In the new venture, JCDecaux-Top Media, 71 percent of the capital is owned by JCDecaux and 29 percent controled by Top Medi...

Uber Launches in Guatemala; Is Now in 70 Countries

Guatemala yesterday welcomed into its market the U.S. application found in more than 70 countries and 480 cities. Among those who joined in congratulating the arrival of Uber to Guatemala was the United States Commercial Service. An Uber driver in Bogota. Wikimedia Commons "This country has all the potential to receive Uber, and we are sure that Guatemalans will find the benefit of a new al...

Central America Indigenous People Nature reserves in Central America push out indigenous people

The creation of protected areas and parks in Central America aimed at conserving tropical forests has pushed indigenous people off the land they have nurtured for generations, researchers said on Friday. Protected areas are more effective when the rights of indigenous people living on the land are formally recognized, said the report released on the sidelines of a U.N. conservation conference i...

Costa Rica New York low cost Flights Volaris Airline Launches Its First Costa Rica-Guatemala Flights

By Wendy Anders The low-budget Mexican airline Volaris will launch its regional flights in and out of Costa Rica today, reported La Republica, a Costa Rican Spanish newspaper. Volaris will start its service by offering two daily flights to Guatemala from Alajuela's Juan Santamaría (SJO) airport; one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Over the next three years the airline plans t...