SHIPPING AND COMMUNICATIONS
Republic for 1897. In tliat year the total imports were estimated at 528,384/., the principal articles imported having been cottons, 205,000Z. ; woollens, 20,560/. ; wines and spirits, 40,440Z. ; flour, 27,000Z. ; hardware, 18,000/. ; drugs, 17,000/. ; wire fencing, 15,000/. The total exports were valued at 611,533/., the chief articles of export having been cofree, (about 154,000 bags), 385,000/. ; gold in bar and dust (36,000 oz.) 110,000/. ; silver dollars 617,500 in number), 51,000/. ; rubber (1,596 cwt.), 16,000/. ; hides, 3,500 cwt.), 10,500/. ; cattle (1,500 head), 6,500. In 1895 the imports were valued at 847,090/., and the exports at 1,027,679/. In 1897 the imports were from Great Britain, 204,600/. ; from the United States, 100,320/. ; from Germany, 94,964/. ; from Frauce, 55,000/. ; other European countries, 58,500/. ; Central American States, 15,000/. Of the exports the value of 150,050/. went to Great Britain ; 106,100/. to the United States, 280,150/. to Germany ; 20,000/. to France ; 10,576/. to other European countries ; 44,657/. to Central American States. The trade of the United Kingdom with Nicaragua ^according to the Board of Trade Returns) has been as follows : —
1896 1897 j
Imports into U.K. from Nicaragua
Exports of lionie pro- duce to Nicaragua .
80,077 74 222
£ 89,264 242,559
£ £ 53,972 148,170 j 101,154 113,537
The chief imports from Nicaragua in 1897 were coffee, 126,934/. ; mahogany, 15,254/. ; and the chief exports to Nicaragua, cottons, 66,572/. ; iron, 7,788/. ; woollens, 7,240/.
Shipping and Communications.
About two-thirds of the trade of Nicaragua passes thiough Corinto. At this port in 1897 there entered, of ocean-going vessels, 50 vessels of 39,520 tons (38 of 25,000 tons German, and 7 of 13,520 tons British). Of coasting vessels there entered 161 of 148,662 tons (including 82 of 145,392 tons belonging to the American Pacific Mail Company's steamers).
Work on the canal to connect the Atlantic and Pacific Coasts is at present suspended. Legislation concerning its construction is under con- sideration in the United States.
There are few good roads in the country. There are 91 miles of railway open, which cost 2,700,000 dollars. One line extends from Corinto, on the Pacific, to Momotombo, 58 miles, and another from Managua, the capital, to Granada, 33 miles. The Government is constructing a line from ^lasaga, through the coffee district, to the village of Jinotepe, which will bring the plantations into communication with Corinto.
In 1896 there were 119 post offices; 1,376,366 letters, papers, &c., received and 1,242,876 delivered. There are 1,245 miles of telegraph wires, and 59 offices.
Money, Weights, and Measures.
The Bank of Loudon and Central America has a suliscribcd capital of 260,000/. of which 130,300/. is paid up. In December, 1895, its note issue amounted to 130,272/.
The system of money is the .same as in Honduras, tl)<)Ugh Mexican,