11.8.2020 : 12:04 : +0200

General Information | Point of Contact | PoA initiatives & activites | Instruments & documents | Members


Central American Integration System (SICA)


San Salvador, El Salvador

Web site

Short description

SICA is an institutional framework designed to drive the eventual economic, social, and political integration of Central America.


The SICA General Secretariat is financed through equal annual contributions from its members. UNDP, the EU, Sweden, Spain, and Austria have financed the work of CASAC (see below).

SICA succeeded ODECA when its six members amended the 1962 charter with the signing of the Tegucigalpa Protocol in 1991. Belize joined in 2000 as a full member and the Dominican Republic as an associate member in 2004. Regional observers include Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and Peru. Extra-regional observers are Australia, China, Germany, Italy, Japan, and Spain.


7 members (all UN member states)

  • Current members*: Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama (Bold: founding member, Grey: suspended member)
  • Former members: None
  • Membership pending: None

Overlapping memberships with other ROs

SICA members represent:

  • 1 of 15 CARICOM members (Belize is a CARICOM member)
  • 7 of 35 OAS members

* Information accurate as of 23 May 2012

PoA Point of Contact

  • Erich Constantino Vílchez Ascher
  • Director of Democratic Security


PoA-related activities

SICA adopted the Code of Conduct on Arms Transfer in 2005. Two years later (2007) it adopted the Central American Security Strategy that included, among other things, crime reduction, violence prevention, rehabilitation, and reintegration. The strategy was revised in 2011, setting out common objectives in areas that included arms control, crime and violence prevention (related to gangs, youth violence, and gender-based violence, among many more), and strengthening the institutions of law enforcement. In order to implement the initial strategy, SICA launched—with UNDP financial and technical support—the Central American Programme on Small Arms Control (CASAC) in Managua, Nicaragua. Since then CASAC has provided technical assistance on national legislation to Panama, Honduras, and Guatemala; promoted the creation of multidisciplinary national commissions on small arms; assisted in the establishment of commissions in Costa Rica and Nicaragua; and supported the early process of developing national commissions in Belize and Panama. It provides capacity building in designing, implementing, and evaluating initiatives for the destruction of arms in Central America. CASAC notably supported the destruction of thousands of weapons in Nicaragua and Costa Rica in 2009. The EU has also funded a three-year project (2009–11) through CASAC that aims to: (1) support national authorities in the implementation of arms control systems; (2) foster cross-border cooperation with enhanced registration and information exchanges; and (3) promote the strengthening of civil society. A second phase is scheduled for 2012– 14. CASAC regularly attends and holds seminars/ training on PoA-related issues with UNDP, UNLIREC, states, and CSOs.

PoA-related programmes and initiatives

PoA-relevant cooperation with other ROs

CASAC has coordinated PoA-related projects with the OAS. It regularly exchanges information and experiences with CAN, MERCOSUR, and some CARICOM countries.

Legally binding regional instruments

  • Charter of the Organization of Central American States (ODECA) – Second Charter (‘Carta de San Salvador’) (1962)
  • Tegucigalpa Protocol to the Charter of the Organization of Central American States (ODECA) (1991)
  • Framework Treaty on Democratic Security in Central America/ Tratado Marco de Seguridad Democrática en Centroamérica (1995)

Other official documents of interest

  • Code of Conduct of Central American States on the Transfer of Arms, Ammunition, Explosives and Other Related Materiel (2005)
  • Reviewed Central American Security Strategy (2011)


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