TCRLA_Public/020319.mbx        T R O U B L E D   C O M P A N Y   R E P O R T E R

                   L A T I N   A M E R I C A

            Tuesday, March 19, 2002, Vol. 3, Issue 55



ALPARGATAS: Creditors Have Until Mid-June To Verify Claims
BHN: Successful Debt-Restructuring Narrowly Averts Default
CLAXSON: Subsidiary Debt Deal Likely; NASDAQ May Delist Shares
IMPSA: Floats Note Exchange Offer to Restructure Debt
PEREZ COMPANC: Pecom Energia Clarifies CEO's Recent Remarks
PEREZ COMPANC: May Sell Assets To Cover Debt Obligations


GLOBAL CROSSING: CEO, CFO to Testify Before House Committee
GLOBAL CROSSING: Names John B. McShane General Counsel


CEMAR: S&P Cuts Ratings On Failure To Meet Debt Obligations
TELESYSTEM INTERNATIONAL: Exits Brazil Market Amid Controversy


SEVEN SEAS: Board Adopts Defensive Shareholder Rights Plan
TELECOM: Debt With Canadian Firm Threatens Survival


CINTRA: Grupo Carso Denies Interest In Buying Assets
GRUPO BITAL: ING's Stake Acquisition Not To Affect Ratings
HYLSAMEX: Misses Interest Payment On US$300 Mln Of Bonds
IPAB: IMEF Urges Debt To Be Recognized As Public
MAXCOM TELECOMUNICACIONES: Announces Sr. Note Exchange Offer
VITRO: Dividend Declared at Shareholders Meeting

T R I N I D A D   &   T O B A G O

BWIA: Over Half of Trinidad Workforce Terminated

     - - - - - - - - - -


ALPARGATAS: Creditors Have Until Mid-June To Verify Claims
More than 200 creditors of Argentine footwear and textile firm
Alpargatas SA have until mid-June this year to prove amounts they
claim are owed, reports El Cronista.

Alpargatas called in the receivers in early Jan. 2002 due to the
ongoing economic depression in Argentina. The company has debts
totaling US$279 million, 83 percent of which is bank debt.

The Bank of New York is the largest creditor with ARS87.96
million, followed by Banco Nacion with ARS68.23 million and
Bankers Trust Company with claims for ARS25.11 million.

Alpargatas values its assets at ARS295 million and the guarantees
given to Bancafe de Panama, Creditanstalt, Eagle and Hamilton at
ARS3.8 million.

Alpargatas blamed the creditor protection filing and its
difficulty in obtaining new financial sources for working capital
due on pressure from lenders who did not accept the restructuring
completed more than a year ago.


1 Wall St.
New York, NY 10286
Phone: 212-495-1784
Fax: 212-635-1799
Home Page:
Public and Investor Relations
One Wall Street - 31st Floor
New York, NY 10286
Tel: (212) 635-1569
Fax: (212) 635-1799

Bartolome Mitre, 326
1036 Buenos Aires, Argentina
Phone: +54-11-4347-6000
Fax: +54-11-4347-8078
Home Page:
Enrique Olivera, President
Adolfo Martin Prudencio Canitrot, Deputy VP

280 Park Avenue
New York, New York 10017
Phone: (+1-212) 237-2000
Fax: (+1-212) 469-7014

Schottengasse 6
P.O. Box 72
A-1010 Vienna
Republic Of Austria
Phone: (43)531310
Fax: (43)531317566
Home Page:

Calle Manuel M. Icaza &
Calle 52 No. 18
Panama City, Panama
Phone: 264-6066
Fax: 263-6115

3750 NW 87th Ave.
Miami, FL 33178
Phone: 305-717-5500
Fax: 305-717-5631
Eduardo A. Masferrer, Chairman and CEO
Lucious T. Harris, Executive Vice President and CFO

7815 Woodmont Avenue
Bethesda, Maryland 20814
Phone: (301) 986-1800
Fax: (301) 986-8529
Home Page:
Ronald D. Paul, Chairman

BHN: Successful Debt-Restructuring Narrowly Averts Default
In a move to stave off a default and allow continued access to
international capital markets, Argentina's largest mortgage bank
Banco Hipotecario successfully restructured its debt, reports
Business News Americas.

"It was an ant's work," Hipotecario chairperson Miguel Kiguel
said in reference to the many retail investors and private banks
that held Hipotecario debt. However, the bank did the job because
"we wanted to avoid entering into default," he said.

More than 90 percent of the creditors accepted Hipotecario's
restructured offer, most of them Italian investors.

Hipotecario managed to restructure commercial paper worth US$133
million and other notes totaling EUR200 million (US$176 million).
Debts coming due this year have now been extended to mature in


      AGS Financial LLC- New York
      350 Theodore Fremd Ave
      Rye, New York, NY 10580
      Phone: 914-925-3472
      Contact: Randy Appleyard

      AGS Financial LLC- Raleigh
      5608 Cooper Beech Lane
      Wake Forest, NC 27587
      Phone: 919-570-8126
      Contact: Deborah Grissom

      AGS Financial - CHILE
      Administraci›n de Activos Financieros
      San Francisco de Asis 0284, El Golf
      Las Condes
      Santiago, Chile
      Phone: 56-2-242-9600 Fax: 56-2-207-7371
      Contact: Patricio Diaz

CLAXSON: Subsidiary Debt Deal Likely; NASDAQ May Delist Shares
In an official company press release, Claxson Interactive Group,
Inc. (Nasdaq: XSON), a multimedia provider of branded
entertainment content to Spanish and Portuguese speakers around
the world, reported Friday financial results for the three and
twelve months ended December 31, 2001.

Claxson was formed on September 21, 2001 in a merger transaction
which combined El Sitio, Inc., media assets contributed by Ibero-
American Media Partners II, Ltd. (IAMP), and other media assets
contributed by members of the Cisneros Group of Companies. Pro
forma combined financial results for the twelve months ended
December 31, 2000 and 2001 are presented as if the merger
transaction had been effected on January 1 of each of the
reported years. Consolidated financial results for the twelve
months ended December 31, 2001 are also provided. Historical
information for IAMP, El Sitio and the other assets comprising
Claxson is provided in Claxson's registration statement on Form
F-4 as filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission,
which became effective on August 15, 2001.

Claxson's full year 2001 pro forma combined results reflect $18.1
million in merger expenses and severance costs, resulting from
the merger transaction and other post-merger restructuring and
integration initiatives. These expenses have increased Claxson's
operating losses and negative cash flows, which have also been
negatively affected by the recent devaluation and economic
situation in Argentina where Claxson has significant operations.

Claxson is evaluating a number of alternatives and taking certain
steps including, among others, the possible restructuring of some
of its subsidiaries' debt including renegotiation of applicable
covenants, as well as other commitments. Claxson believes that if
these steps are not successfully completed in a timely manner, it
is likely that its auditors will express a "going concern"
opinion in connection with Claxson's annual report on Form 20- F
to be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission in June
2002. In June 2001, the Financial Accounting Standards Board
issued Statement of Financial Accounting Standards No. 142,
Goodwill and Other Intangible Assets which requires an initial
impairment test for goodwill and intangible assets. Claxson has
not yet determined if any impairment charge will result from the
adoption of this statement.

Net revenues for the three months ended December 31, 2001 totaled
$28.9 million. Pro forma net revenues for the twelve months ended
December 31, 2001 totaled $113.8 million, decreasing 11.3% from
pro forma net revenues of $128.3 million in the year 2000, due
primarily to a decline in Internet advertising revenues.

Claxson's pro forma combined results reflect the aggregate
performance of its business lines: pay television; broadcast
radio and television; and Internet and broadband. Business line
performance highlights are provided as a supplement to this press
release. Claxson also holds an 80.1% equity interest in Playboy
TV International (PTVI), a joint venture with Playboy
Enterprises, Inc. (NYSE: PLA). Claxson does not control PTVI and
therefore its interest in PTVI is not consolidated for reporting

Subscriber-based fees for the three-month period ended December
31, 2001 totaled $15.0 million. For the twelve months ended
December 31, 2001, pro forma subscriber-based fees totaled $62.4
million, which comprised approximately 55% of total pro forma net
revenues and represented a 5.2% increase from pro forma
subscriber-based fees of $59.3 million in the year 2000.
Claxson's basic package of owned and represented channels reached
a total of approximately 54 million aggregate subscribers at
December 31, 2001.

Advertising revenues for the three-month period ended December
31, 2001 were $11.3 million. For the twelve months ended December
31, 2001, pro forma advertising revenues were $42.7 million,
which comprised approximately 38% of Claxson's total pro forma
net revenues and represented a 32.6% decrease from pro forma
advertising revenues of $63.4 million in the year 2000. This
decrease in advertising revenues in 2001 was due primarily to the
decrease in Internet advertising revenues from $21.4 million in
2000 to $5.9 million in 2001, reflecting the scaling down of the
Internet operations during 2001.

During the fourth quarter, Claxson secured distribution and sales
rights for the Fashion TV (FTV) pay television franchise in Latin
America; completed the acquisition of the El Metropolitano
newspaper in Chile; completed the sale of its DeCompras e-
commerce business in Mexico and continued the process of
divesting its connectivity services assets in Brazil. Terms of
these transactions have not been disclosed.

Operating expenses for the three months ended December 31, 2001
were $40.0 million. Pro forma operating expenses for the twelve
months ended December 31, 2001 totaled $174.4 million, decreasing
15.7% from pro forma operating expenses of $206.9 million for the
year 2000, due primarily to a decrease in Internet marketing

Net loss for the three months ended December 31, 2001 was $62.1
million, or $3.35 per common share. This loss included a charge
of $29.8 million due primarily to a foreign exchange loss on
certain U.S. dollar denominated debt held by Claxson's Argentine
subsidiary as a result of the Argentine currency devaluation
which, for accounting purposes, was effective as of December 31,
2001. Subsequent to December 31, 2001, the Argentine currency has
continued to devalue resulting in further exchange rate losses.
Pro forma net loss for the twelve months ended December 31, 2001
and December 31, 2000 were $167.0 million, or $9.01 per common
share, and $121.1 million, or $6.53 per common share,

As of December 31, 2001, Claxson had a balance of cash and cash
equivalents of $15.2 million and $113.0 million in debt.

Playboy TV International

For the three months ended December 31, 2001, and for the twelve
months ended December 31, 2001, Playboy TV International (PTVI)
and its affiliated companies recorded combined pro forma net
revenue of $10.7 million and $40.5 million, respectively. The
loss for the three months ended December 31, 2001 included
charges of $11.6 million for the reductions in value of certain
programming rights, share based compensation under a Phantom
Stock Option Plan and severance. PTVI and its affiliated
companies ended the period with 25 international television
networks in 53 countries. PTVI has incurred net losses and
working capital deficiencies. Unless PTVI's financial obligations
can be restructured, PTVI will remain primarily dependent on
capital contributions from Claxson to fund shortfalls. Claxson is
in the process of taking certain steps to restructure its capital
structure, however, there can be no assurance that Claxson will
be successful in doing so. These steps are not expected to be
completed prior to the time the audit of the PTVI financials is
completed. As a result, it is expected that PTVI's auditors will
express a going concern opinion on the financial statements for
the year ended December 31, 2001.

Nasdaq Update

On February 14, 2002, Claxson received notification from Nasdaq
that its common shares had failed to maintain a minimum market
value of publicly held shares (MVPHS) of $5.0 million for 30
consecutive trading days as required by Nasdaq rules, and that
Claxson would have until May 15, 2002 to regain compliance with
Nasdaq's continued listing requirements.

In addition, on February 28, 2002, Claxson received a
notification from Nasdaq that its common shares had failed to
maintain a minimum bid price of $1.00 for 30 consecutive trading
days required by Nasdaq rules, and that Claxson would have until
May 29, 2002 to regain compliance with Nasdaq's continued listing

Claxson is evaluating several options in case it cannot regain
compliance within the set period, including filing an application
for transferring its securities to The Nasdaq SmallCap Market and
applying for quotation on the OTC Bulletin Board.

About Claxson

Claxson (Nasdaq: XSON) is a multimedia company providing branded
entertainment content targeted to Spanish and Portuguese speakers
around the world. The company has a portfolio of popular
entertainment brands that are distributed over multiple platforms
through Claxson's assets in pay television, broadcast television,
radio and the Internet. Claxson was formed through the merger of
El Sitio and assets contributed by members of the Cisneros Group
of Companies and funds affiliated with Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst
Inc. Headquartered in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Miami Beach,
Florida, Claxson has a presence in all key Ibero-American
countries and in the United States.

To see financial statements:

          Alfredo Richard, SVP, Communications

          Jose Antonio Ituarte, Chief Financial Officer,

IMPSA: Floats Note Exchange Offer to Restructure Debt
Industrias Metalurgicas Pescarmona S.A.I.C. y F. (the "Company"
or "IMPSA") announced Thursday that it has commenced an exchange
offer (the "Exchange Offer") for all U.S.$137.6 million in
outstanding principal amount of its 9 1/2% notes due 2002 (144A -
CUSIP No. a45647WAB9 and Reg S - ISIN No. US45647XAB73) (the "Old

Holders may select the type of new notes they will receive for
each U.S.$1,000 in principal amount of their Old Notes, plus
accrued and unpaid interest, from the following two options:

* U.S.$1,050.00 in principal amount of the Company's new 5%
Guaranteed Senior Notes due 2011 (with an interest step-up to 8%
in May 2006) (the "Step-Up Notes"); or

* U.S.$500.00 in principal amount of the Company's new 10%
Guaranteed Senior Notes due 2007 (the "Discount Notes" and,
together with the Step-Up Notes, the "Exchange Notes").

Upon the occurrence of certain specified events as described in
the offering memorandum date March 14, 2002, holders will be
entitled to receive an extraordinary cash payment. These events
include certain asset sales, annual excess cash flow, early
redemption at the option of the Company and maturity. In
addition, the Exchange Notes will be guaranteed on a senior
unsecured basis by a wholly owned subsidiary of IMPSA.

Holders do not have to choose the same option for all the Old
Notes that they tender. Holders will receive the Exchange Note
option for which they tender, as there is no limitation on the
right of any holder to elect to receive either the Step-up Notes
or the Discount Notes or a combination of both options.

The offer will expire at 5:00 p.m., New York City time, on April
10, 2002, unless extended. Holders may withdraw their tenders of
Old Notes or change their selection of Exchange Notes at any time
prior to the expiration date.

The Exchange Offer is conditioned upon the receipt of valid
tenders of at least 95% of the outstanding principal amount of
the Old Notes and other customary conditions.

Banc of America Securities LLC is the exclusive dealer manager
for the Exchange Offer. D.F. King & Co., Inc. is the information
agent and Bankers Trust Company is the exchange agent. Additional
information concerning the Exchange Offer may be obtained by
contacting Banc of America Securities LLC at (1)888-292-0070
(U.S. toll-free) or (1)704-388-4807 (from outside the U.S.) or,
in Argentina, Bank of America N.A. Buenos Aires Branch at (54)11-

The Exchange Notes will not be registered under the United States
Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and will only be offered in
the U.S. to qualified institutional buyers and accredited
investors in private transactions, and outside the U.S. to
persons other than U.S. persons in offshore transactions. The
Exchange Notes will be authorized by the Argentine Comision
Nacional de Valores for their public offering in Argentina.

CONTACT:  Banc of America Securities LLC, +1-888-292-0070
          or +1-704-388-4807, for IMPSA

          Roberto Arancibia
          Rodriguez Pena 2451 (5503)
          Godoy Cruz, Mendoza, Argentina.
          Tel: +54-261 4131300
          Fax. +54-261 4131416 - 4131423

          Julio Bermant
          Av. Eduardo Madero 940, piso 19 (1106)
          Buenos Aires, Argentina
          Tel.: +54 11 50770888
          Fax: +54 11 50770835

PEREZ COMPANC: Pecom Energia Clarifies CEO's Recent Remarks
With respect to the news that was derived from comments made by
the Company Thursday during "The Company and the Challenges of
Today", a seminar that took place at The Catholic University of
Argentina, Pecom EnergĦa clarifies the following:

- Regarding its financial liabilities, the Company maintains
permanent contact and good relations with all of its creditors.
Within this framework, and as it has always done, it is
undertaking discussions to obtain new financing in order to repay
part of its debt maturing in 2002. The Company reiterates its
intentions to continue meeting its obligations.

- The Company considers that the viability of its businesses
should be measured in the long term. Some of its businesses in
Argentina, such gas and electricity services, currently have
Pesified tariffs at an exchange rate of 1 peso to 1 dollar. We
hope that this situation changes in the short term, and for this
we have initiated negotiations for its revision within the
framework defined by the Argentine government.

Pecom EnergĦa S.A., controlled by Perez Companc S.A., is the
largest independently owned energy company in the Latin American
region. Its business activities include oil and gas production
and transportation, refining and petrochemicals, power
generation, transmission and distribution as well as forestry
activities. Headquartered in Buenos Aires, the Company has
operations throughout Argentina, Brazil, Venezuela, Bolivia, Peru
and Ecuador.

CONTACTS:  Pecom Energia S.A. de Perez Companc S.A.
           Maipo 1 - Piso 22 - C1084ABA
           Buenos Aires, Argentina
           Phone: (54-11) 4344-6000
           Fax: (54-11) 4344-6315

PEREZ COMPANC: May Sell Assets To Cover Debt Obligations
Argentine oil company Perez Companc SA recently unveiled plans to
cover a 300-billion-lira (US$137 million) bond due April 1 this
year. In the announcement, spokesman Mario Grandinetti said the
company will meet debt obligations this year.

In a Bloomberg report, Grandinetti revealed the Company is in
talks with creditors to refinance US$1.3 billion of debt due this
year. Perez Companc owes US$270 million in international bonds,
US$392 million in bank loans and US$348 million in trade finance.
Another US$243 million is owed to domestic banks, analysts said.

Analysts believe that Perez Companc may have to sell assets to
finance these debts. The Company has about US$600 million in
accounts outside Argentina to cover payments as the government
maintains restrictions on bank transfers and the peso continues
to weaken, analysts said.

According to Terrance O'Dwyer, a corporate bond analyst at
Prudential Securities Inc. in New York, Perez Companc may sell
offshore oil fields to raise finance, such as a 50-percent in an
oil field in the Amazon region of Ecuador.

"It was looking for a strategic partnership before, but they
could sell off a chunk in exchange for cash," he said. "They may
also try to maximize offshore funding in Ecuador, Peru, Venezuela
and Brazil."


GLOBAL CROSSING: CEO, CFO to Testify Before House Committee
Global Crossing confirmed it has received invitations for John
Legere, chief executive officer, and Dan Cohrs, chief financial
officer, to testify before the Subcommittee on Oversight and
Investigations, of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on
Financial Services, on Thursday, March 21, 2002 in Washington,

In letters addressed to Messrs. Legere and Cohrs, Chairwoman Sue
W. Kelly, Congresswoman from New York, described as the purpose
of the hearing "to examine the effects of the Global Crossing
bankruptcy on investors, financial markets, and employees."

The letter also seeks Global Crossing's comment on HR 3763, "The
Corporate and Auditing Accountability, Responsibility and
Transparency Act of 2002." and guidance for the committee with
respect to "a comprehensive solution that enhances investor
confidence in the financial disclosures of telecommunications

"Global Crossing and the broader telecommunications industry face
new challenges in this tougher economic environment, and in the
light of increased public attention with respect to accounting
and financial reporting practices," said John Legere, chief
executive officer. "As we continue to turn Global Crossing's
business around by creating a more efficient cost structure and a
business model geared toward today's economic realities, we look
forward to cooperating with the committee and participating in
the public forum this hearing enables."

The hearing is scheduled for Thursday, March 21, 2002, 10 AM
Eastern, at the Rayburn House Office Building. For more
information, visit:


Global Crossing provides telecommunications solutions over the
world's first integrated global IP-based network, which reaches
27 countries and more than 200 major cities around the globe.
Global Crossing serves many of the world's largest corporations,
providing a full range of managed data and voice products and
services. Global Crossing operates throughout the Americas and
Europe, and provides services in Asia through its subsidiary,
Asia Global Crossing.

On January 28, 2002, certain companies in the Global Crossing
Group (excluding Asia Global Crossing and its subsidiaries)
commenced Chapter 11 cases in the United States Bankruptcy Court
for the Southern District of New York and coordinated proceedings
in the Supreme Court of Bermuda.

           Press Contacts:
           Cynthia Artin
           +1 973 410-8421

           Becky Yeamans
           +1 973 410-8421

           Analysts/Investors Contact
           Ken Simril
           +1 310 385-5200

GLOBAL CROSSING: Names John B. McShane General Counsel
Global Crossing announced Thursday that John B. McShane has been
named general counsel. Mr. McShane, who most recently served as
vice president and assistant general counsel for Global Crossing,
is responsible for directing all of Global Crossing's legal staff
and managing all related activities, including issues related to
the restructuring process, regulatory and reporting policies and
contracts and agreements. He reports to John Legere, chief
executive officer of Global Crossing.

"During this critical time, it is essential to have a general
counsel who is intimately familiar with Global Crossing and has
the skill and experience to guide us through the restructuring
and turn-around of our business," said Mr. Legere. "John has been
an extremely valuable member of the Global Crossing team. I am
confident he will make significant additional contributions in
his new role as we move toward becoming the world's most cost
efficient and globally competitive data communications service

Mr. McShane has 15 years of corporate legal experience with
publicly traded companies. Prior to joining Global Crossing in
February 1999, Mr. McShane served as senior counsel for the
international law firms of Shearman & Sterling, Cadwalader
Wickersham & Taft, and Brown & Wood. He began his legal career as
an associate at the international law firm of Simpson Thacher &
Bartlett in 1987.

A member of the New York State Bar and the Association of the Bar
of the City of New York, Mr. McShane holds a bachelor of arts
degree from St. John's College and a juris doctor degree, cum
laude, from Harvard Law School.

Mr. McShane replaces Rhett Brandon, who previously served as
Global Crossing's acting general counsel. Mr. Brandon will
continue to provide corporate legal advice to Global Crossing in
his capacity as a partner with Simpson Thacher & Bartlett.


CEMAR: S&P Cuts Ratings On Failure To Meet Debt Obligations
Brazil's Maranhao state distributor Cemar had its credit rating
downgraded by credit rating agency Standard & Poor's (S&P) to
'brSD' (Selective Default) on the Brazilian national scale from
'brBBB.' S&P also cut the Company's BRL150-million bond
emission's rating to 'brCC' from 'brBBB-.'

The rating actions reflect Cemar's failure to meet its financial
obligations on time and the fact that negotiations for new terms
and conditions are continuing with certain creditors.

Cemar's liquidity was hampered by the combined affects of power
rationing, the delay in the wholesale power market (MAE) being
implemented and less than expected financial flexibility of the

Cemar, which has one million clients, is controlled by US company

TELESYSTEM INTERNATIONAL: Exits Brazil Market Amid Controversy
Telesystem International Wireless Inc., (TIW) which just
completed its restructuring plan, is pulling out of Brazil in a
move to focus on what it calls a scaled-back strategy.

TIW president and CEO Bruno Ducharme believes the humbler, more
realistic game plan leaves TIW well-positioned to weather what he
sees as more turmoil to come in the already hard-hit
telecommunications sector.

TIW feels it's best to pull out of Brazil, where it also had its
share of problems, not least of which was a long-running fight
with Brazilian fund manager Daniel Dantas over control of
Telpart, the holding company that owns two cellular operators,
Telemig Celular and TeleNorte Celular.

Mr. Ducharme said TIW is suing several funds controlled by Mr.
Dantas in the Cayman Islands for about US$380 million for
allegedly moving to take control without getting either TIW's or
Brazilian regulators' approval.

Mr. Dantas and his allies, on the other hand, have alleged in the
media that TIW was working with its own allies to try to squeeze
him out.

Mr. Dantas has also complained to the public attorney's office in
Rio de Janeiro about the tactics of Mr. Ducharme and an
associate, according to a source close to the conflict.

TIW is looking to sell its 49-per-cent voting stake in Telpart
within the next 12 months, but is not about to let it go at a
fire-sale price, Mr. Ducharme said.

TIW's major investors are Charles Sirois' private holding company
Telesystem Ltd. with 25.6 percent; public pension fund manager
Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec with 13 percent; Hutchison
Whampoa Ltd. with 15.5 percent; and J.P. Morgan Partners LLC with
23.3 percent.

Completion of TIW's nine-month restructuring exercise has left
the Company with debt of US$105 million, down from about US$800
million, and the Company's funding needs are covered until mid-
2003, Mr. Ducharme said.


SEVEN SEAS: Board Adopts Defensive Shareholder Rights Plan
Seven Seas Petroleum Inc. (Amex: SEV) announced Friday that the
Company's Board of Directors has adopted a preferred shareholder
rights plan to deter coercive takeover tactics and prevent an
acquiring person from attempting to gain control of the Company
without dealing fairly with the Company's stockholders. The
adoption of the rights plan is not in response to any effort to
acquire control of the Company, and Seven Seas is not aware of
any takeover effort. A copy of the shareholder rights plan will
be filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Form
8-K. The principle provisions of the shareholder rights plan

    -- Under the plan, the Board declared a dividend
       distribution of one preferred share purchase right for
       each share of the Company's common stock outstanding on
       March 27, 2002.
    -- The rights will be exercisable only if a person or group
       acquires 15 percent or more of Seven Seas' outstanding
       common stock, or announces a tender offer, which, if
       successful, would result in the ownership by a person or
       group of 15 percent of the Company's common stock.
    -- If a person or group acquires 15 percent or more of the
       Company's outstanding common stock, each right will
       entitle stockholders (other than the 15 percent acquiring
       person) to purchase shares of common stock at half the
       market price at the time the rights become exercisable.
       The number of shares each right will entitle stockholders
       to purchase will be determined by dividing $65 by half the
       market price of a share of common stock.  For example, if
       the market price were $5 per share of common stock, each
       right would entitle stockholders to purchase 26 shares of
       common stock at $2.50 per share.
    -- If Seven Seas were to be acquired in a merger or other
       business combination transaction after a person or group
       has acquired 15 percent or more of the Company's
       outstanding common stock, each right would entitle its
       holders (other than the acquiring person or group) to
       purchase a number of the acquiring company's common shares
       such that the market value of those shares is twice the
       exercise price of the right.
    -- The Board may redeem outstanding rights at a price of
       $0.01 per right any time prior to a person or group
       acquiring ownership of 15 percent or more of the
       Company's common stock.
    -- The Board may amend the terms of the rights without the
       approval of the right holders until the rights become
    -- The rights will expire ten years from the date of issue.

Seven Seas Petroleum Inc. is an independent oil and gas
exploration and production company operating in Colombia, South
America. The Company's primary emphasis is on the development and
production of the Guaduas Oil Field and exploration of the
Subthrust Dindal Prospect, both of which are located in
Colombia's prolific Magdalena Basin.

CONTACT:  Bryan Sanchez, Investor Relations of Seven Seas

TELECOM: Debt With Canadian Firm Threatens Survival
A senior U.S. official warned that Colombian state-owned Empresa
Nacional de Telecomunicaciones' (Telecom) failure to pay Canada's
Nortel Networks Corp. some US$73 million owed under the terms of
a joint-venture contract is a "problem," creating waves in
Washington, reports Reuters.

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Zoellick has called on Telecom,
Colombia's largest telecommunications firm, to send a positive
message to international investors by resolving the matter.

"It's a problem that we have to work on. And every time I testify
before our Congress, every time I testify before a congressional
hearing, this is raised by a number of our members. We have to
solve it," Zoellick said.

Nortel is one of six international companies that want Telecom to
pay compensation for installing 1.6 million telephone lines under
joint-venture contracts, which proved much less profitable than
originally promised.

The government says compensation could top US$800 million, and
Telecom says it could need a state cash injection to pay.
However, the communications ministry last week ruled out a
bailout for Telecom even if the firm threatens to collapse.

Colombia's government is trying to keep to strict public spending
limits as agreed with the International Monetary Fund under the
terms of a US$2.7 billion loan accord expiring at the end of this

Telecom has complained that the joint-venture contracts were
badly negotiated and left the firm assuming most of the risk. The
foreign companies have so far invested US$2.8 billion, but say
they have only received $1 billion in income.

In 2001, Telecom posted losses of US$36 million on revenues of
US$550 million. This year, owing to its joint-venture debacle,
the company expects losses of US$300 million -- factoring in
compensation payments of about US$400 million.


CINTRA: Grupo Carso Denies Interest In Buying Assets
While Grupo Carso denied any interest in buying Cintra's assets,
Jaime Luis Gonzalez, head of the Mexican Pilots and Aviation
Union (ASPA), revealed that Grupo Carso owner, Carlos Slim, is
interested in the airlines Cintra controls (Mexicana and

According to Gonzalez, the Secretary of Transport and
Communications, Pedro Cerisola, said that the government would be
pleased if Slim took part in the sale of Mexicana and Aeromexico.
The idea is viewed favorably because the government does not want
control of Cintra to "slip out of Mexican hands."

Grupo Carso has denied having an interest in buying Cintra's
assets. However, the company did indicate its willingness to help
potential investors with capital through its financial

GRUPO BITAL: ING's Stake Acquisition Not To Affect Ratings
Standard & Poor's said Friday that the announcement of the 17.5%
acquisition of Grupo Financiero Bital (unrated) by ING GROEP N.V.
(AA-/Negative/A-1+) would not impact the BBpi rating of Bital

With the investment of US$200 million, ING will obtain a 17.5%
share of the group. On March 8, the largest shareholders of the
bank injected an additional US$70 million. When it closed
negotiations with the Instituto de Proteccion al Ahorro Bancario
(IPAB) to acquire Banco del Atlantico last year, Bital agreed to
increase its capital base by US$100 million during the first
quarter of this year.

Although these capital injections improve the bank's solvency,
S&P believes additional capital is required to comply with new
capitalization standards established by regulators for 2002.

          Angelica Bala, +52-55-5279-2005
          Ursula M Wilhelm, +52-55-5279-2007

HYLSAMEX: Misses Interest Payment On US$300 Mln Of Bonds
Struggling in the throws of a sharp decline in demand for its
products, Mexican steelmaker Hylsamex SA missed an interest
payment on US$300 million of bonds, reports Bloomberg.

Hylsamex, a subsidiary of Alfa SA, the country's second-largest
industrial group, has a 30-day grace period to make the US$13.9
million payment before it falls into default on the Eurobonds,
said Ricardo Sada, Hylsamex's treasurer.

"The Company doesn't have enough cash flow to make the payment,"
Sada said.

Hylsamex will send a consent solicitation to holders of the
Eurobonds sometime this week seeking to extend the maturity by
three years to 2010 with a higher interest rate, Sada said
without giving further details on the proposed terms.

Bondholders holding at least US$1 more than US$150 million of the
debt must agree to the proposal for it to be approved, Sada said.
Credit Suisse First Boston Corp. is managing the request.

The Company will be able to tap a US$40-million revolving bank
loan and US$25 million of new capital from its parent Alfa SA if
bondholders accept the agreement, allowing it to make interest
payments and move forward on an agreement reached with banks to
stretch out payments on US$627 million in bank loans.

           New York-Headquarters
           11 Madison Ave.
           New York, NY 10010
           Phone: 212-325-2000
           Fax: 212-325-8249
           Home Page:
           Joe L. Roby, Senior Advisor
           John J. Mack, Vice Chairman and CEO
           Richard E. Thornburgh, Vice Chairman,
                Executive Board, CFO and Head of Support

IPAB: IMEF Urges Debt To Be Recognized As Public
Mexican Institute of Finance Executives (IMEF) warned that the
Bank Savings Protection Institute (IPAB) risks bankruptcy if its
debt is not recognized as public. IMEF contends that the deposit
insurance reserves would be insufficient for the banking sector
should the IPAB's continue under its current scenario.

According to the IMEF, the lack of a plan to pay off IPAB debts
would be a source of risk as the government protection of public
deposits was limited.

Luis Haime Levy, IMEF president, recommended that the passive
part of the debt be separated from the active part, which would
require the approval of Congress. IPAB's debts could then be
liquidated by the government.

MAXCOM TELECOMUNICACIONES: Announces Sr. Note Exchange Offer
Maxcom Telecomunicaciones, S.A. de C.V., a facilities-based
telecommunications provider (CLEC) using a "smart build" approach
to focus on small- and medium-sized businesses and residential
customers in the Mexican territory, announced that beginning
March 14, 2002 through April 11, 2002 at 17:00 EST, the Company
will be offering to exchange an aggregate principal amount of
$275 million of its 13 3/4% Series B Senior Notes due 2007 for an
aggregate of $175 million principal amount of New Senior Notes;
and an aggregate of 28,050,000 ordinary participation
certificates (CPOs), each representing one share of Series N2
Convertible Preferred Stock with limited voting rights.

The $175 million New Senior Notes will bear 0% (zero) interest
through March 1, 2006 and will accrue interest thereafter at an
annual interest rate of 10%. Interest will be payable in cash on
September 1st, 2006 and March 1st, 2007. The Series N2
Convertible Preferred Stock, which would represent 15.9% of the
total capital stock of Maxcom, will have an initial liquidation
preference of U.S.$0.4927 per share, and limited voting rights.

As part of the exchange offer, the Company is soliciting the
consent of its holders to amend the indenture governing the 13
3/4% Series B Senior Notes to eliminate all of the restrictive
covenants and certain events of default.

The Company plans to cancel its $25 million proprietary position
on the 13 3/4% Series B Senior Notes repurchased during 2001,
prior to the expiration of the exchange offer.

The purpose of the exchange offer is to reduce the Company's debt
service burden, improve its liquidity and attract additional
investment, in order to continue the buildout of its
infrastructure and the growth of its business.

The exchange offer is conditioned, among other things, on the
tender of 13 3/4% Series B Senior Notes representing at least 95%
of the total notes outstanding (without giving effect to the
U.S.$25.0 million purchased by Maxcom). As announced on January
31, 2002, holders of approximately 56.8% of the 13 3/4% Series B
Senior Notes committed to tender their Notes in the exchange.

In addition, certain shareholders of Maxcom and other investors
have committed to invest an additional $66.2 million into Maxcom,
subject to the completion of the exchange offer and the
obtainment of certain Mexican regulatory approvals.

Offering materials are being mailed to holders of the 13 3/4%
Series B Senior Notes. Holders may also obtain copies of the
offering materials by calling toll free 1 (866) 811-4114.

Bank of New York has been appointed as the Exchange Offer Agent.

For additional information, please contact Jose-Antonio Solbes,
Director of Investor Relations of Maxcom, at (5255) 5147-1125, or
Lucia Domville, of Citigate Dewe Rogerson, the information agent,
at (212) 419-4166.

Maxcom Telecomunicaciones, S.A. de C.V, headquartered in Mexico
City, Mexico, is a facilities-based telecommunications provider
using a "smart- build" approach to deliver last-mile connectivity
to small- and medium-sized businesses and residential customers
in the Mexican territory. Maxcom launched commercial operations
in May 1999 and is currently offering local, long distance and
data services.

          Jose-Antonio Solbes, +5255-5147-1125,

          Lucia Domville, +1-212-419-4166

VITRO: Dividend Declared at Shareholders Meeting
Vitro S.A. de C.V. (BMV: VITRO A; NYSE: VTO) on Thursday, held
its General Ordinary Shareholders Meeting which approved the
Company's 2001 financial results, elected the members of the
Board of Directors and the Examiner for the year 2002, and
resolved to pay a cash dividend of Ps. $ 0.25 (twenty five cents)
per common share (approximately equivalent to US$8 million).

In addition, the General Ordinary Shareholders Meeting, subject
to certain terms and conditions, and to the negotiation and
signature of the definitive agreements, resolved to sell 51% of
its stake in Vitromatic, S.A. de C.V. to Whirlpool. Vitro expects
to complete the transaction during the second quarter of this
year, which is subject to regulatory approvals.

The cash dividend will be paid after the Yankee Bond, which
matures in May 2002 has been negotiated. The cash dividend will
be paid in exchange of coupon 61. The cash dividend will be paid
from the "Cuenta de Utilidad Fiscal Neta (Net Income Account)",
and is subject to a withholding tax pursuant to the current
Mexican Income Tax Law.

Also on this date, a General Extraordinary Shareholders Meeting
was held, which approved changes to some articles of its
corporate by-laws, to make them consistent with the new "Ley del
Mercado de Valores" (Securities Market Law), and applicable

Vitro, S.A. de C.V., through its subsidiary companies, is a major
participant in four distinct businesses: flat glass, glass
containers, glassware, and home appliances. Vitro's subsidiaries
serve multiple product markets, including construction and
automotive glass, wine, liquor, cosmetics, pharmaceutical, food
and beverage glass containers, fiberglass, plastic and aluminum
containers, glassware for commercial, industrial and consumer
uses, and household appliances. Founded in 1909, Monterrey,
Mexico-based Vitro has joint ventures with 9 major world-class
manufacturers that provide its subsidiaries with access to
international markets, distribution channels and state-of-the-art
technology. Vitro's subsidiaries do business throughout the
Americas, with facilities and distribution centers in seven
countries, and export products to more than 70 countries.

           Media Relations:
           Albert Chico Smith, 011 (52) 8863-1335
           Email: or

           Investor Relations:
           Beatriz Martinez, 011 (52) 8863-1258
           Email: or

           Susan Borinelli/ Luca Biondolillo, (646)536-7018/7012

T R I N I D A D   &   T O B A G O

BWIA: Over Half of Trinidad Workforce Terminated
Pink slips went out to 44 of BWIA's employees over the weekend.
The move was part of the Trinidad national carrier's
restructuring exercise affecting 72 workers directly, reports The
Trinidad Guardian.

According to the Company, the separation notices will take effect
in 45 days, in accordance with prevailing labor laws. The
displaced workers also include people who have applied for
voluntary separation.

The airline has been reviewing and reorganizing its operations to
deal with the new economic realities of the aviation industry in
the wake of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks against the
United States.

The restructuring originally identified 181 surplus positions
company-wide, 150 of which were in the local operations.

BWIA did not disclose the cost of offering voluntary separation
packages to some of its workers. Neither did the airline say if
any remuneration would be given to those laid-off workers who did
not qualify for VSEP.

CONTACTS:  BWIA West Indies Airways
           Phone: + 868 627 2942
           Home Page:
           Conrad Aleong, President and CEO (Trinidad)
           Beatrix Carrington, VP Marketing and Sales (Barbados)
           Paul Schutz, Chief Financial Officer (Trinidad)


S U B S C R I P T I O N   I N F O R M A T I O N

Troubled Company Reporter Latin American is a daily newsletter
co-published by Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc., Trenton, NJ,
and Beard Group, Inc., Washington, DC. John D. Resnick, Edem
Psamathe P. Alfeche and Ma. Cristina Canson, Editors.

Copyright 2002.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1529-2746.

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