Sandinistas, Labor unions, service area, population, mining
In 2000 Nicaragua’s workforce was 2.1 million people. Among women, some 36 percent were economically active. Agricultural work accounts for 42 percent of Nicaragua’s actively employed population, and 38 percent are employed in the service area. Some 15 percent work in manufacturing, construction, and mining. Estimates for the unemployed and underemployed range as high as 50 percent.
Labor unions grew rapidly in the 1980s, many tied to the Sandinistas. In the mid-1990s there were 166 unions, and estimates of union membership range up to 50 percent of Nicaragua’s workforce. Because of political ties and their ability to paralyze vital areas of the economy, especially transportation, unions have important political influence.
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