TCRLA_Public/030521.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

          Wednesday, May 21, 2003, Vol. 4, Issue 99

                           Headlines


A R G E N T I N A

ACINDAR: Extends Cash Tender Offer Deadline
CAPSA: Revises Debt Payback Schedule With IFC
CLAXSON INTERACTIVE: 1Q03 Financial Results Modestly Improve
SOLFINA: Court OK's Debt-Restructuring Proposal
TELECOM ARGENTINA: Increases Buyback Offer, Extends Deadline
TELEFONICA DE ARGENTINA: S&P Lowers Ratings to `SD'


B A R B A D O S

C&WJ: OUR Awaits Response To Complaints


B E R M U D A

TYCO INTERNATIONAL: May Face US$120M One-Time Charge on Debt


B R A Z I L

BANESTES: Reports BRL34.6M 1Q03 Net Loss
CATAGUAZES-LEOPOLDINA: 1Q03 Net Losses Up 130% From 1Q02
CEMIG: 1Q03 Numbers Show Revenues Up, Net Income Down
ELETROPAULO METROPOLITANA: CEMIG Angling for Controlling Stake
SEB: Defaults On $85M Loan Payment To BNDES
USIMINAS: Reports 1Q03 Financial Results


C H I L E

EDELNOR: 1Q03 Loss Reaches BRL2.85 Billion
ENDESA CHILE: Judge's Ruling Deals Blow To Ralco Project
ENERSIS: SC Upholds Antitrust Ruling
SANTA ISABEL: Transfers Paraguay, Peruvian Ops To Parent


D O M I N I C A N   R E P U B L I C

BANCO INTERCONTINENTAL: Three Execs Arrested for Fraud
BANCO INTERCONTINENTAL: Government Takes Over Exec's Media Ties


G U A T E M A L A

* S&P Lowers Long-Term Foreign Currency Rating on Guatemala


M E X I C O

GRUPO IUSACELL: US$750M, 5Yr-Plan Hinges On Debt-Restructuring
VITRO: S&P Lowers Ratings to 'BB-'; Outlook Negative


U R U G U A Y

BANCO SANTANDER: Fitch To Review Foreign Currency Debt Rating
BANCO SUDAMERIS: Debt Exchange Prompts Further Fitch Review
CACDU: Fitch To Place Foreign Currency Debt Rating Under Review
COFAC: Fitch To Review Foreign Currency Debt Rating
FUCAC: Fitch To Place Foreign Currency Debt Rating Under Review

FUCEREP: Sovereign Cut Prompts Further Review from Fitch
HSBC BANK: Fitch To Review Ratings in the Short Term


V E N E Z U E L A

PDVSA: Executive Explains Investment Terms


     - - - - - - - - - -


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A R G E N T I N A
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ACINDAR: Extends Cash Tender Offer Deadline
-------------------------------------------
Acindar Industria Argentina de Aceros S.A. (the "Company")
announced Monday that it is extending until 12:00 p.m., New York
City time, on Wednesday, May 28, 2003 (the "Expiration Date",
unless the offer is terminated earlier or further extended by the
Company in its discretion or otherwise in accordance with the
terms of the Offer (as such term is defined below)), its offer to
purchase for cash (the "Cash Tender Offer," as amended pursuant
to the press release dated May 2, 2003) upon the terms and
subject to the conditions set forth in the Offer to Purchase
dated April 10, 2003 (the "Offer to Purchase") and in the related
letter of transmittal (the "Letter of Transmittal" and, together
with the Offer to Purchase, the "Offer") its 11-1/4% Notes due
2004 (the "Notes") and certain of its U.S. dollar denominated
indebtedness (the "Dollar Debt") for an aggregate purchase price
of up to U.S.$30 million.

The purchase price for each U.S.$1,000 principal amount of Notes
or Dollar Debt will be determined pursuant to a modified Dutch
auction procedure in which a Holder of Notes or Dollar Debt (each
a "Holder") may tender such Notes or Dollar Debt at prices within
a price range from U.S.$450 per U.S.$1,000 of principal amount to
U.S.$650 per U.S.$1,000 of principal amount of Notes or Dollar
Debt. The Cash Tender Offer was scheduled to expire at 12:00
p.m., New York City time, on Friday, May 16, 2003.

The Company also announced Monday that it is extending until
12:00 p.m., New York City time, on Wednesday, May 28, 2003,
unless further extended by the Company in its discretion or
otherwise in accordance with the terms of the Offer, the Early
Tender Date (as such term is defined in the Offer to Purchase)
pursuant to which a Holder who validly tenders and does not
validly withdraw Notes or Dollar Debt prior to such date will be
paid U.S.$50.00 per U.S.$1,000 principal amount of Notes or
Dollar Debt tendered by such Holder, provided the Cash Tender
Offer is consummated and such Notes and Dollar Debt are purchased
in the Cash Tender Offer. The Early Tender Date was scheduled to
occur at 12:00 p.m., New York City time, on Friday, May 16, 2003.

The Company will not pay any accrued and unpaid interest
(including default interest and additional amounts, if any) on
any Notes and Dollar Debt that are tendered for purchase pursuant
to the Offer. Notes and Dollar Debt tendered in the Cash Tender
Offer may not be withdrawn unless the Company extends the
Expiration Date to a date after June 9, 2003 or makes an
amendment to the terms and conditions of the Offer that is, in
the Company's reasonable judgment, adverse to any Holder that has
tendered such Notes or Dollar Debt in the Cash Tender Offer.

As of 12:00 p.m., New York City time, on May 16, 2003, Holders of
approximately U.S.$39.2 million aggregate principal amount of
Notes and Dollar Debt had tendered in the Cash Tender Offer.

The Cash Tender Offer is made only by, and will remain subject
to, all of the other terms and conditions described in the Offer.

The Dealer Manager for the Cash Tender Offer is Credit Suisse
First Boston LLC ("CSFB"). The Depositary for the Cash Tender
Offer is JPMorgan Chase Bank. The Information Agent for the Cash
Tender Offer is Georgeson Shareholder and its telephone numbers
are North America: Banks and Brokers Call: +1(212) 440-9800, toll
- free (800) 368-2245 and Europe and Latin America: +39 06 42 171
777. You can also contact the Information Agent at
acindarinfo@gscorp.com.

Additional information concerning the terms of the Cash Tender
Offer, including all questions relating to the mechanics thereof,
may be obtained by contacting the Information Agent or CSFB at +1
(212) 538-8474 or U.S. toll - free at (800) 820-1653.


CAPSA: Revises Debt Payback Schedule With IFC
---------------------------------------------
Independent Argentine oil company Capsa reached an agreement with
the International Financial Corporation (IFC) to reschedule the
repayment of US$27.5 million in A and C loans from the IFC
itself, as well as a syndicated B-loan, reports Business News
Americas.

The agreement is part of the overall rescheduling of Capsa's
outstanding debt of US$94.7 million equivalent, the IFC said in a
statement, adding that the rescheduling of Capsa's debt helps the
Company withstand the current difficult environment in Argentina.

"The successful closure of this debt rescheduling was largely due
to the confidence of the lenders in the long-term viability of
the company," IFC oil, gas, mining, and chemicals director Rashad
Kaldany said.

"The transaction will have an important demonstration effect for
other Argentine projects, many of which have strong business
prospects but are constrained by liquidity problems," he added.

"The transaction will contribute to business confidence in
Argentina, especially on the part of foreign investors," IFC
director for syndications Suellen Lazarus said.


CLAXSON INTERACTIVE: 1Q03 Financial Results Modestly Improve
------------------------------------------------------------
Claxson Interactive Group Inc. (XSON.OB; "Claxson" or the
"Company"), announced Monday financial results for the three-
month period ended March 31, 2003.

Financial Results

Operating results for the three-month period ended March 31, 2003
represented a loss of $0.2 million, reflecting a $1.6 million
improvement from an operating loss of $1.8 million for the three
month period ended March 31, 2002.  The operational results of
the first quarter reflect a near break-even operation in what is
historically the weakest advertising sales quarter of the year,
continuing on a path of operational improvement.  As a result of
the new agreement with Playboy Enterprises, Inc., Claxson
consolidates, as of January 1st, 2003, the operations of Playboy
TV Latin America & Iberia (PTVLA) into the operations of its Pay
TV division for financial reporting purposes.

Net revenues for the first quarter of 2003 were $18.5 million, a
4% decrease from net revenues of $19.2 million for the first
quarter of 2002.  Net revenues are affected by a devaluation of
currencies and a decrease in the rates from DIRECTV„ Latin
America.  Net revenues earned in Argentina, where Claxson has
significant operations, were 19% of total net revenues for the
three months ended March 31, 2003 compared to 25% for the same
period in 2002. During the first quarter of 2003, the average
exchange rate of the Argentine peso as compared to the U.S.
dollar decreased 54%, versus the same period in 2002.

"Claxson's first quarter results confirm the positive operational
and financial trend in which we have put the company due to last
year's reengineering," said Roberto Vivo, Chairman and CEO.
"Having overcome last year's challenges, we are concentrating in
efficiently managing the operation and taking full advantage of
the rationalization process undertaken in 2002.  Revenues have
stabilized and we continue to aggressively manage cost, hence we
expect to continue on this improvement path."

Subscriber-based fees for the three-month period ended March 31,
2003 totaled $9.8 million, representing approximately 53% of
total net revenues and an 8% increase from subscriber-based fees
of $9.1 million for the first quarter of 2002. The increase is
primarily attributed to the consolidation of PTVLA, partially
offset by devaluation of currencies in the region and the effect
of the renegotiation of our agreement with DIRECTV„ Latin
America, which reduced per subscriber rates and translated prices
to local currencies, in exchange for a two year extension in the
contract's maturity.

Advertising revenues for the three-month period ended March 31,
2003 were $7.0 million, representing approximately 38% of
Claxson's total net revenues and a 3% decrease from advertising
revenues of $7.2 million for the first quarter of 2002.

Production services revenues for the three-month period ended
March 31, 2003 were $0.9 million, which represented a 39%
decrease over the $1.5 million for the first quarter of 2002.
This decrease was primarily due to the consolidation of PTVLA, as
services rendered to PTVLA are now eliminated upon consolidation,
and a decrease in volumes handled by The Kitchen, Inc., Claxson's
Miami-based broadcast and dubbing facility, as a result of the
adverse economic situation in Latin America.

Other revenues for the three-month period ended March 31, 2003
were $0.7 million, which represented a 50% decrease from $1.4
million for the first quarter of 2002.  This decrease is
explained by the consolidation of PTVLA, as services rendered to
PTVLA are now eliminated upon consolidation, as well as the
discontinuation of services provided to Playboy TV International.

Operating expenses for the three months ended March 31, 2003 were
$18.6 million, a decrease of 11% from the $21.0 million in the
first quarter of 2002, due primarily to the general restructuring
of all operating areas of the company and the devaluation of the
Argentine Peso where the company has significant operations,
partially offset by the consolidation of PTVLA.

Interest expense for the three-month period ended March 31, 2003
was $0.7 million compared to $3.5 million for the first quarter
of 2002.  This decrease is attributable to the Exchange Offer and
consent solicitation as all future interests on the new Claxson
Notes are reflected as part of the balance of the debt.  As
interest on these Notes is paid, the debt will be reduced
proportionately.

Net income for the three months ended March 31, 2003 was $5.7
million ($0.31 per common share), including a $7.3 million
foreign exchange gain as a result of the appreciation in value of
the Argentine Peso during 2003.  The first quarter net income
represented a turnaround of $141.0 million over the $135.0
million net loss for the same three months of 2002.

Claxson has not yet completed the annual valuation and assessment
of the carrying value of its goodwill in accordance with the
Statement of Financial Accounting Standards No. 142 in 2003.

As of March 31, 2003, Claxson had a balance of cash, cash
equivalents and investments of $8.1 million and $90 million in
debt, which includes $21.0 million in future interest payments as
dictated by accounting principles applicable to Claxson's debt
restructuring.

First Quarter Highlights

During the first quarter of 2003, Claxson's main client, DIRECTV„
Latin America, filed for protection under Chapter 11.  At filing
date, Claxson's contract with DIRECTV was not rejected and
account receivables added up to approximately $4.2 million.
Claxson's management expects DIRECTV to honor its contract going
forward.

On March 1st Claxson launched a new pan regional channel called
Retro, featuring the best classic movies and television series.
Leveraging the success achieved in the Southern Cone by its
classic series channel Uniseries, Retro launched throughout
Spanish-speaking Latin America and the Caribbean on DIRECTV„
Latin America and on major cable operators in the Southern Cone,
to more than five million Latin American subscribers.

About Claxson

Claxson (XSON.OB) is a multimedia company providing branded
entertainment content targeted to Spanish and Portuguese speakers
around the world. Claxson has a portfolio of popular
entertainment brands that are distributed over multiple platforms
through its assets in pay television, broadcast television, radio
and the Internet.  Claxson was formed on September 21, 2001 in a
merger transaction, which combined El Sitio, Inc. and other media
assets contributed by funds affiliated with Hicks, Muse, Tate &
Furst Inc. and members of the Cisneros Group of Companies.
Headquartered in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Miami Beach,
Florida, Claxson has a presence in all key Ibero-American
countries, including without limitation, Argentina, Mexico,
Chile, Brazil, Spain, Portugal and the United States.

CONTACT:  Press:
          Alfredo Richard, SVP, Communications
          Phone: 305 894 3588

          Investors:
          Jose Antonio Ituarte, Chief Financial Officer
          Phone: 011 5411 4339 3700


SOLFINA: Court OK's Debt-Restructuring Proposal
-----------------------------------------------
An Argentine court approved on May 8, 2003 Solfina SA's proposal
to restructure debts to creditors, which include Citibank, BNL
and Administradora Fiduciaria. The proposal consists of
converting its US$50 million debt into ARS50 million without any
adjustments or corrections.

The first payment of ARS42.5 million (US$15.18mn), or 85% of the
total, will be carried out in year 2011. In addition, Solfina has
the right to settle the debt in advance by paying only 10% of the
total, as long as it does so within the first 18 months.

Solfina is the financial firm of entrepreneur Santiago Soldati.
The Company holds the shares of Sociedad Comercial del Plata Tren
de la Costa, Parque de la Costa, Casino of Tigre and Compania
General de Combustibles (CGC).


TELECOM ARGENTINA: Increases Buyback Offer, Extends Deadline
------------------------------------------------------------
Telecom Argentina and its mobile subsidiary Telecom Personal
informed the Buenos Aires stock exchange in a letter that it will
increase by US$60 million the amount they intent to spend on
their pending cash tender offers for financial debt instruments.

Business News Americas recalls that the telco and the mobile
operator originally offered up to US$260 million and US$45
million, respectively, when the operation commenced on April 16.
Now, Telecom Argentina and Telecom Personal intend to spend
US$310 million and US$55 million respectively.

The companies have also raised the buyback price to 48-55% of the
outstanding principal, from 43.5-50%. Telecom Argentina will
prefer offers at the lower end of the range in what is a modified
Dutch auction. Furthermore, Telecom Argentina has extended
expiration of the offer to June 2 from May 23.

If the offer is fully accepted at the minimum price, Telecom
Argentina will succeed in reducing its end-2002 total debt load
by US$646 million or 26%, while Telecom Personal would eliminate
US$115 million or 18%.

The two operators ended 2002 with combined debt of some US$3.4
billion.

CONTACT:  TELECOM ARGENTINA STET - FRANCE TELECOM SA(TELECOM)
          Alicia Moreau de Justo 50, 10th Floor
          Capital Federal (1107) Repoblica Argentina
          Phone: +54 11 4968 4000
          Home Page: http://www.telecom.com.ar
          Contacts:
          Alberto J. Ricciardi, Chief Financial Officer
          Elvira Lazzati, Finance Director
          Pedro Insussarry, Investor Relations Manager
          Phone: (5411) 4968-3626/3627
          Fax: (5411) 4313-5842/3109
          Email: inversores@intersrv.telecom.com.ar


TELEFONICA DE ARGENTINA: S&P Lowers Ratings to `SD'
---------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Rating Services downgraded the ratings of
Telef¢nica de Argentina (TASA) from 'CC' to 'SD' (selective
default), reports Infobae. Telefonica de Argentina, owned by
Spain's Telefonica, recently submitted to the Buenos Aires Stock
Exchange its profit and loss statement for the quarter ended
March 31. The report showed a net profit of US$564 million, which
came due to the revaluation of the peso versus the dollar during
the period.

The net profit reported was the result of the revaluation of the
peso versus the dollar amounting to more than 11%, when the
dollar price decreased from US$3.37 per US dollar as of December
31, 2002 to US$2.98 per US dollar at March 31, 2003. This
revaluation of the peso generated a net profit pursuant to the
exchange difference of US$708 million, which was partially offset
by financial interests totaling US$119 million and the
exploitation a US$4-million operating loss.

The exchange difference resulted in a negative consolidated net
position in foreign currency (assets less liabilities in foreign
currency of approximately USD $1.7 billion), which is the result
of the indebtedness in foreign currency when compared to the
assets mostly stated in local currency.

The negative effect of the peso devaluation, net of inflation,
has been a loss of US$1.8 billion during the last five quarters
ended as at March 31, 2003. The variations in exchange rate also
had an impact on interest for indebtedness the Company has
incurred amounting to approximately an US$800-million loss; this
figure is also net of the effect of inflation exposure.

Since the beginning of the deep crisis Argentina faces,
particularly since January 2002, Telefonica de Argentina has
suffered a net loss of approximately 2.9 billion pesos as a
direct consequence of the above-mentioned devaluation, as well as
inflation, pesification and the freezing of its rates.

CONTACT:  TELEFONICA DE ARGENTINA
          Tucuman 1, 18th Floor, 1049
          Buenos Aires, Argentina
          Phone: (212) 688-6840
          Home Page: http://www.telefonica.com.ar
          Contacts:
          Carlos Fernandez-Prida Mendez Nunez, Chairman
          Paul Burton Savoldelli, Vice Chairman
          Fernando Raul Borio, Secretary



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B A R B A D O S
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C&WJ: OUR Awaits Response To Complaints
---------------------------------------
The Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR) of Jamaica said that it
has not received a response from Cable & Wireless Jamaica, Ltd.
on issues regarding the Company's operations. Local news portal
RLRNews.Com reports that OUR reprimanded C&WJ last week after
other entities complained of having difficulties in launching or
varying their pre-paid calling card services because they are
unable to obtain toll-free lines from C&WJ.

Under the liberalized telecommunications policy, which took
effect earlier this year, calling card holders should be able to
access the pre-paid platforms of all domestic and international
providers by a toll free number, said OUR.

However, C&WJ has reportedly indicated that it is awaiting
directions from the OUR as it does believe that the regulations
dictate it to provide the said services. In the meantime, OUT
says that it expects the Company to begin offering the service
without further delay.

CONTACT:  Cable & Wireless PLC
          124 Theobalds Road
          London
          England
          WC1X 8RX
          Phone:  +44 (0)20 7315 4000
          Fax:  +44 (0)20 7315 5000
          Home Page:  http://www.cw.com
          Contacts:
          Sir Ralph Robins, Non Executive Chairman
          Sir Winfried W. Bischoff, Non Executive Deputy
                                         Chairman
          Graham M. Wallace, Chief Executive
          Robert E. Lerwill, Executive Director Finance



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B E R M U D A
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TYCO INTERNATIONAL: May Face US$120M One-Time Charge on Debt
------------------------------------------------------------
Bermuda-based Tyco International faces the possibility of having
to take a one-time charge of US$120 million if it fails to
restructure a US$750 million in debt maturing next month. Tyco
could be required to repurchase the debt outright, at an
estimated cost of US$870 million, says Reuters.

This means that Tyco, which has US$2.1 billion in debt as of last
March, would have to pay US$120 million on top of the debts'
US$750 million value. Reuters suggests that Tyco would sustain a
loss of US$0.06 per share. For the fiscal year 2003, the Company
hopes to earn US$1.30 to US$1.40 per share.

The higher cost of repurchasing the debt would represent the
difference between the 10-year U.S. treasury yield-to- maturity
in June and the 5.55 percent base rate, the report suggests.

Under the terms of the said debt, the dealer of the securities
has the option to remarket the debt next month and reset the
interest rate, according to recent SEC filings.

However, Tyco spokesman Gary Holmes expressed confidence that the
Company will surmount this new problem.

"We are looking at a variety of options to handle these (dealer
remarketable securities) but are confident we will be able to get
an exchange of new debt if we decide that is the right
approach... We are currently discussing that possibility with a
number of banks," said Mr. Holmes.

J.P Morgan analysts Donald MacDougall commented, "While the news
of a potential (6-cents) hit to earnings is a potential concern,
we note that it is of a nonrecurring nature and it appears Tyco
is considering a way to spread it over a longer period of time."

In any event, payments above the par value of the US$750 million
in debt would be recorded as a loss to income, said the Company.

CONTACT:  TYCO INTERNATIONAL, LTD.
          Media
          Gary Holmes
          Phone: 212-424-1314

          Investor Relations
          Kathy Manning
          Phone: 603-334-3900



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BANESTES: Reports BRL34.6M 1Q03 Net Loss
----------------------------------------
Espirito Santo state bank Banestes suffered a net loss of BRL34.6
million (US$11.5 million) during this year's first quarter,
compared to a 1Q02 profit of BRL10.21 million, Brazilian
newspaper Gazeta Mercantil reports. Furthermore, the bank has to
pay a fine to the country's security regulator, CVM, for filing
the results 45 days after the deadline.

Banestes CEO Joao Scardua was quoted by Business News Americas as
saying that the bad results were due to a stalemate in the bank's
privatization process, and partly due to bad management in the
part of the former Espiritu Santo State administration.

Mr. Scardua, who hopes to see the bank post a net income of
BRL15.5 million by year-end, said, "They relaxed controls and
forgot to focus on their market. Employees felt they were in a
dead end and the bank stagnated. This was a disaster."

Espirito Santo state governor Paulo Hartung, who took office this
year, has pledged not to privatize the bank.

However, the bank's CFO Sebastiao Bussular said that during the
first four months of the year Banestes recovered its
profitability and posted net income of BRL5.21 million through
April this year.

Mr. Bussular said that the financial turnaround is a result of
new cost cutting measures that saved the bank BRL33.4 million
reais and incorporated the closure of 12 branches.


CATAGUAZES-LEOPOLDINA: 1Q03 Net Losses Up 130% From 1Q02
--------------------------------------------------------
Brazil's Cataguazes-Leopoldina power sector holding had a BRL15.6
net loss (US$5.21 million) for the first three months of this
year, despite having positive cash flow. The figure is 130%
higher than its 1Q02 net loss of BRL6.78 million.

The group of five distributors had consolidated revenue of BRL285
million, 11.7% more than the BRl255 million figure in 1Q02.

EBITDA was BRL68.8 million, up 31.6% from 1Q02, for an EBITDA
margin of 32%, compared to 25.8% last year, says Business News
Americas.

About 1,491 GWh were sold during the said quarter, up 19.4% from
1QO2.

The Cataguazes-Leopoldina is made up of Energipe, CELB and Saelpa
in the northeast, and CFLCL and CENF in the southeast. The report
indicates that the northeast operators had better results than
their southeast counterparts.

Northeast sales were up 2.6% compared to 1Q01, while sales in the
southeast are 5.9% lower than 1Q01. Average consumption per
capita is up 21.9% at Energipe, CELB and Saelpa, rising to 317kWh
in 1Q03 from 260kWh in January and February 2002 (the last two
months of rationing). By comparison, average consumption at CFLCL
and CENF has risen 13.2% from 258kWh to 292kWh in the same
comparable periods, says Business News Americas.

The Company explained that higher financial costs led to the
losses, because the company was forced to seek short-term
financing to cover the lower revenues during 2002, because of
delays in receiving credits from the federal government and
delays to settlement from the MAE wholesale market, resulted in
the negative results.

The Company added that it still has BRL89 million collectable
from MAE.

Last week, main distributor CFLCL, and Sergipe state distributor
Energipe, received approval to issue up to BRL380 million to
refinance debts. The report adds that the group also plans to
renegotiate BRL140 million in bank loans and raise BRL20 million
from capital increase.


CEMIG: 1Q03 Numbers Show Revenues Up, Net Income Down
-----------------------------------------------------
Companhia Energetica de Minas Gerais -- CEMIG -- (NYSE: CIG; BOV:
CMIG4, CMIG3 and LATIBEX: XCMIG), a leading fully-integrated
electricity company in Brazil, reported Monday net income of
R$151.7 million for the first quarter of 2003, a drop from net
income of R$219.9 million in the first quarter of 2002.

CEMIG's first quarter 2003 results were aided by higher revenues
from gross electricity supply, and by financial revenues from
appreciation of the real in relation to the U.S. dollar.

Mr. Djalma Bastos, our CEO, had the following to say about the
results: "We are happy with the Company's performance in the
first quarter. Not only did we see energy sales volumes rise but
we are profitable again thanks to the Company's solid
fundamentals. Our unchanged focus on the core business and our
ability to develop profitable projects and remain financially
sound make Cemig one of the greatest investment opportunities in
Brazil. Profitability will continue to be a priority in the
coming quarters. The measures we took earlier in the year to cut
operating expenses, as well as the comprehensive capital budget
review we performed, should enable us to produce strong returns."

Revenues from gross electricity supply were R$1.458 billion in
the first quarter of 2003, a 23.56% increase over the R$1.180
reported in the first quarter of 2002. This result was
fundamentally due to a 10.51% tariff readjustment as of April 8,
2002, an increase in the Charges for Emergency Capacity in the
first quarter of 2003, and a 5.58% increase in the volume of
energy sold.

Revenues from electricity supply to other concessionaires were
R$4.3 million in the first quarter, an 89.15% reduction from the
R$39.2 million recorded in the first quarter of 2002. These
revenues are mainly from energy transactions on the Wholesale
Electricity Market (MAE) in the prior period, which amounted to
R$32.27 million.

In the first quarter CEMIG recognized revenues of R$315.2 million
from the extraordinary tariff readjustment, which refers to
billing losses and the parcel of expenses from the energy sold on
the MAE during the Rationing Program. The Company is receiving
the amounts recognized as revenues from the extraordinary tariff
readjustment by means of an additional readjustment, effective
for 82 months as of January 2002.

General and administrative expenses were R$965 million in the
first quarter, a 0.21% increase over G&A expenses in the first
quarter of 2002. The higher number was due substantially to
higher personnel expenses and the Fuel Consumption Account (CCC),
which offset the reduction in expenses from energy purchased for
resale and post-employment obligations.

The financial result was impacted by exchange rate variations in
relation to foreign currency loans and financing, and to the
reversal of the provision for devaluation to market value of the
National Treasury Notes.

Net non-operating expenses of R$9.3 million in the first quarter
of 2003 rose 33.42% over the R$7 million reported in the same
quarter of the prior year. The non-operating result is comprised
of losses on projects and damages in the deactivation of Fixed
Assets.

Mr. Flavio Decat, our CFO, said: "Our major concern in the
quarter was to preserve the Company's liquidity despite the
volatility of the country's major indicators. In particular,
appreciation of the dollar caused heavy losses to companies doing
business in Brazil. In addition, Brazil's major bonds had wide
spreads, which affected corporate bond and syndicated loan costs,
which are the main instruments used to roll over maturing debt or
to finance expansion projects. Accordingly, we have taken
measures to reduce the operating expenses to the level required
by the new electricity rate as well as the capital expenditure
forecasted for this year in order to significantly reduce the
Company's indebtedness. Thus, with a more favorable outlook and
expectations of stronger cash flow due to the rate adjustment
granted to us last April by ANEEL, we will be able to meet the
goals established by the Board of Directors early this year and
add value to shareholders' investments.

CONTACT:  COMPANHIA ENERGETICA DE MINAS GERAIS
          Luiz Fernando Rolla, Investor Relations
          Phone:  + 011-5531-299-3930
          Fax: + 011-5531-299-3933
          E-mail: lrolla@cemig.com.br


ELETROPAULO METROPOLITANA: CEMIG Angling for Controlling Stake
--------------------------------------------------------------
Cemig revealed Monday that it is interested in taking over AES
Corp.'s cash-strapped utility Eletropaulo, reports Reuters.
However, Cemig's chief of investor relations Luiz Fernando Rolla
admits that the operation could take a few months before it will
be completed due to regulatory issues.

Already the two largest energy firms in Brazil, together Cemig
and Eletropaulo would serve 26% of Brazilian power users while
generating more than 7% of the country's energy.

Under current Brazilian antitrust law, no single utility can
control more than 30% of the national energy market. Government
regulators are expected to revise those rules in the coming
weeks, and Cemig is among those lobbying for more flexibility.

CONTACT:  ELETROPAULO METROPOLITANA
          Avenida Alfredo Egidio de Souza Aranha 100-B,
          13 andar 04726-270 San Paulo
          Brazil
          Phone: +55-11-548-9461, +55 11 5696 3595
          Fax: +55-11-546-1933
          URL: http://www.eletropaulo.com.br
          Contacts:
          Luiz D. Travesso, Chairman and President
          Orestes Gonzalves Jr., VP Finance/Investor Relations


SEB: Defaults On $85M Loan Payment To BNDES
-------------------------------------------
Southern Electric Brazil Part., a consortium which includes U.S.
power group AES Corp. and local investment bank Opportunity,
missed a loan payment of about US$85 million to Brazil's
development bank BNDES last Thursday, reports Dow Jones.

The payment is part of a US$600-million loan the consortium took
out in 1997 to buy its 33% interest in Brazil's state-controlled
power group Companhia Energetica de Minas Gerais (Cemig) at an
auction.

According to Dow Jones, SEB's debt had been rescheduled a few
times before by the BNDES administration after a state governor
canceled a shareholders agreement between the state government
and the private minority shareholders in Cemig.


USIMINAS: Reports 1Q03 Financial Results
----------------------------------------
Brazilian steelmaker Usinas Siderurgicas de Minas Gerais SA
(Usiminas) had a BRL2.12-billion net revenue for the first
quarter of this year, compared to the 1Q03 net revenue of BRL1.31
billion.

The results boil down to a net profit of BRL356.2 million, a
dramatic increase from BRL30.9 million in the same annual
comparison.

According to Dow Jones, the Company's consolidated sales volumes
of 1.8 million tons in the first quarter, a 5% increase from the
same period a year earlier.

About three-fourths of its output was sold in the domestic
market, while the rest were exported.

Usiminas, which has a gross consolidated debt of BRL8.7 billion
at March 31, had an EBITDA of BRL888.8 million, up from its 1Q02
EBITDA of BRL349.1 million.



=========
C H I L E
=========

EDELNOR: 1Q03 Loss Reaches BRL2.85 Billion
------------------------------------------
Chilean thermoelectric generator Edelnor suffered a CLP2.85-
billion net loss for the first three months of this year,
Business News Americas reports, citing a Company statement to the
SVS, Chile's securities commission.

The Company's 1Q03 net loss is 49.9 percent lower than its 1Q02
net loss. Operating losses billed CLP2.35 billion compared to
profits of CLP662.3 million in 1Q02.

Operating margins recorded losses of CLP1.41 billion compared to
profits of CLP1.33 billion at the same time last year, while
operating revenues increased 7.66 percent to CLP13.1 billion,
said the report, adding Non-operating losses went down 80.4
percent to CLP1.47 billion in 1Q03.

Edelnor, which is based in Mejillones in northern Chile's Region
II, and operates in the country's northern grid (SING) is owned
by Belgian power company Tractebel and Chile's state copper
company Codelco.

CONTACT:  Empresa Electrica Del Norte Grande SA
          Avenida Grecia 750
          Antofagasta, Chile
          Phone: +56 55 248500
                 +56 55 248094
          Contact: Fernando del Sol, Chairman

          Tractebel Energia SA
          Registered Office
          Rua Antonio Dib Mussi, no 366
          Centro
          88015 - 110 Florianopolis - SC
          Brazil
          Phone: +55 48 221-7016
          Fax: +55 48 221-7015
          Home Page: http://www.gerasul.com.br
          Contacts:
          Mauricio Stolle Bahr, Chairman
          Eric L.J. de Muynck, Vice Chairman


ENDESA CHILE: Judge's Ruling Deals Blow To Ralco Project
--------------------------------------------------------
Chilean Judge Hadolff Ascensio ruled that a permit given by the
national environmental authority Conama to power generator Endesa
for the construction of the Ralco hydro project is "irregular,"
reports local newspaper El Mercurio.

The 750MW Ralco project, constructed in Region VII, is 82 percent
complete. Business News Americas said that if the ruling is held,
the existing infrastructure built will have to be demolished.

However, Endesa has 10 days to appeal the ruling once it receives
official notification, said a spokesman for the Company.

The Judge pointed out that state entities Conama consulted while
evaluating environmental impact studies for the project opposed
to the plan, making the permit Conama issued irregular.

According to Business News Americas, the ruling might "provide
ammunition" to a group of four Pehuenche families that refused to
leave their lands in the upper Bio Bio basin.

Endesa needs the area in order to fill the Ralco reservoir. The
Company offered CLP200 million and 77 hectares of land to each of
the families in an attempt to convince them to abandon their
lands. The report added that the Company would not pay more than
what it offered.

However, the May 12 deadline has passed without an agreement
between the two parties. A national court will be called to rule
over the dispute if no agreement is reached.

The Inter-American Commission of Human Rights has issues an
injunction freezing the Ralco project after the four families
filed a case against the country at the Commission.

In related new, workers at Ralco went on strike last week,
blocking access roads and complaining that a bonus promised to
them was not paid. Local papers said that the protest was a
peaceful one.


ENERSIS: SC Upholds Antitrust Ruling
------------------------------------
Chilean lawyers Ramon Briones and Hernan Bosselin lost in their
appeal to overturn a ruling by the country's antitrust commission
that rejected accusations that the vertical integration of assets
held by power sector holding Enersis would affect consumers.

Business News Americas recalls that in October 2002, the
antitrust commission voted four to one in favor of Enersis and
against Briones and Bosselin. Briones and Bosselin appealed the
decision to the Supreme Court, claiming that the vertical
integration between Enersis and its subsidiaries gives the
Company unfair control over the end-price paid by power
consumers.

However, Enersis lawyers argued that the claim was unfounded
given that the Company sold its transmission subsidiary Transelec
to Canada's Hydro Quebec for US$1.1 billion in 2001.

The Supreme Court, which heard closing arguments on March 15 from
Enersis and the lawyers, decided to uphold the antitrust
commission's ruling.

Enersis owns 60% of generator Endesa Chile and 98.5% of
distributor Chilectra. Enersis had been forbidden from buying or
selling shares in Endesa Chile until the Supreme Court gave its
ruling. In addition, no board member of Enersis, Chilectra or
Endesa Chile had been permitted to sit on the board of one of the
other two companies.

CONTACT:  ENERSIS
          Investor Relations:
          Ricardo Alvial
          Chief Investments & Risks Officer of Enersis
          Email: ram@e.enersis.cl
          Phone: (562) 353-4682
          Contacts:
          Susana Rey, srm@e.enersis.cl
          Ximena Rivas, mxra@e.enersis.cl
          Pablo Lanyi-Grunfeldt, pll@e.enersis.cl


SANTA ISABEL: Transfers Paraguay, Peruvian Ops To Parent
--------------------------------------------------------
Chilean supermarket chain Santa Isabel, which is close to
completing the sale of its operations to retail holding Cencosud
SA, said on Monday it had transferred its units in Paraguay and
Peru to its parent company, Dutch food retailer Disco Ahold.

TCR-LA earlier reported that Ahold, the world's No. 3 food
retailer, reached an agreement with Cencosud to sell its 97%
owned Santa Isabel for around US$150 million. However, the
Paraguay and Peru operations don't form part of that planned
deal.

Disco will now assume the debts of Supermercados Stock in
Paraguay and Santa Isabel in Peru.

The US$150-million sale of Santa Isabel to Cencosud SA is
expected to close May 30, Cencosud Chief Executive Laurence
Golborne said earlier. The transaction had been expected to close
by the end of April. However, the sale has been delayed pending
the results of the additional audit of Santa Isabel to ensure its
earnings have been properly presented to Chilean securities
regulators.

The audit followed revelations of large-scale accounting
irregularities in the accounts of Ahold's North American
operations and at its Argentine unit Disco SA, which controlled
Santa Isabel until the Dutch parent took over some 99.7% of the
shares in a buyout that included a public offer.

CONTACT:  Royal Ahold
          Investor Relations:
          Huibert Wurfbain, 011-31-75-659-5813
          or
          Media Relations:
          Annemiek Louwers, 011-31-75-659-5720
          or
          Taylor Rafferty New York
          Media Relations:
          Ethan Sack, 212/889-4350
          or
          Taylor Rafferty London
          Media Relations:
          Matthew Nardella, + 44 20 7936 0400



===================================
D O M I N I C A N   R E P U B L I C
===================================

BANCO INTERCONTINENTAL: Three Execs Arrested for Fraud
------------------------------------------------------
Three executives of Dominican Republic bank Banco
Intercontinental (BanInter) were arrested for an alleged
involvement in a $2.2-billion fraud, the New York Times reports,
citing central bank officials.

BanInter's president and chief shareholder, Ramon Baez Figueroa,
is one of the arrested executives, the Times says without
revealing the names of the other two executives.

In 1989, Baninter set up an unsupervised bank to use deposits to
purchase companies linked to company executives and forgive
millions of dollars in bad loans, the newspaper recalls, adding
that Baninter officials ordered staff to erase all bad or secret
loan records.

The losses, which equal two thirds of the island republic's
annual budget, were responsible for weakening the Dominican peso,
which fell 40% against the dollar in the last year, says the
Times.

Just recently, Standard & Poor's Rating Services placed its 'BB-'
long-term ratings on the Dominican Republic on CreditWatch with
negative implications. The CreditWatch placement reflected the
risk that the ratings will be lowered if the emerging problems at
BanInter further weaken political institutions, the external
reserve position, and economic policy flexibility.


BANCO INTERCONTINENTAL: Government Takes Over Exec's Media Ties
---------------------------------------------------------------
Media companies owned by Ramon Baez Figueroa were taken over by
Dominican authorities in the wake of the scandal that involved
the businessman. According to an EFE report, Baez Figueroa owns
Listin Diario, El Expreso, El Financiero and Ultima Hora
newspapers, as well as Radio Cadena Comercial radio network and
two television outlets, Red Nacional de Noticias Canal 27 and
Telecentro Canal 13.

The Central Bank would say only that it took possession in the
name of the government to "protect assets," and that the action
was "legitimate."

Meanwhile, Jose Lois Malkun, the head of the Dominican Republic's
National Bank, said that the government's takeover of media
companies owned by Baez Figueroa does not place employees' jobs
at risk.

"The Monetary and Financial Administration's court action
(confiscating) assets linked to Banco Intercontinental (Baninter)
does not threaten the jobs of any employees of those companies,"
Malkun said in a communiqu‚ clarifying the issu.



=================
G U A T E M A L A
=================

* S&P Lowers Long-Term Foreign Currency Rating on Guatemala
-----------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said Monday that it lowered
its long-term local currency sovereign credit rating on the
Republic of Guatemala to 'BB' from 'BB+' and its long-term
foreign currency sovereign credit rating to 'BB-' from 'BB'.
Standard & Poor's also affirmed its 'B' short-term ratings on the
republic. The outlook on the long-term ratings was revised to
stable from negative.

The downgrade reflects the negative effects of political
polarization on the government's implementation of economic
policy. An intransigent relationship between the government and
the opposition, exacerbated by the upcoming November elections,
has prevented meaningful discussion of economic policy.

"With the exception of the significant progress made in
strengthening the financial system, the current political rift
has shifted policymakers' focus away from the critical
responsibility of reforming the structural economic deficiencies
that constrain medium-term economic growth," said sovereign
analyst Sebastian Briozzo. "Guatemala is experiencing its third
year of negative per capita GDP growth despite several years of
macroeconomic stability, and exports to GDP have actually dropped
since 2000. Providing for economic expansion is critical in
Guatemala, a country with extremely high economic and social
needs," he added.

According to Mr. Briozzo, the level of political confrontation is
unlikely to either ebb as the presidential election nears or
moderate significantly thereafter, given the magnitude of the
divide between different political groups. Nonetheless, the
stable macroeconomic framework-with low fiscal deficits,
declining inflation, and a stable exchange rate-and the almost
certain renewal of the International Monetary Fund (IMF)
agreement that expired on March 31, 2003, limit the effects of
the political discord on creditworthiness.

"Despite recent difficulties, Standard & Poor's expects the
government to cover its financing gap-albeit at relatively higher
interest rates," noted Mr. Briozzo. "While an electoral year
could add expenditure pressures, Guatemala's fiscal accounts have
already shown reasonable levels of flexibility: the public sector
deficit accounted for only 1% of the GDP in 2002, the country
more than satisfied IMF's fiscal and international reserves
targets in 2002, and debt levels remain low, with public sector
debt accounting for only 22% of GDP," he said.

According to Standard & Poor's, the current ratings and stable
outlook on Guatemala balances political strain with a sound
macroeconomic framework and low debt levels. While Standard and
Poor's does not expect the political situation to improve
significantly over the next year, the IMF agreement (over the
short term) and prospects of a free trade agreement with the U.S.
(over the medium term) will somewhat offset the negative effects
of political developments on advances in the policymaking
framework. The Guatemalan government still needs to finance most
of its only moderate financing gap in 2003, estimated at US$600
million (about 2.6% of GDP). While Standard and Poor's assumes
that the government will be able to satisfy its financing needs,
the ratings could come under pressure if political tensions
inhibit the government's access to the financial markets.

ANALYSTS:  Sebastian Briozzo, New York 212-438-7342
           Jane Eddy, New York (1) 212-438-7996



===========
M E X I C O
===========

GRUPO IUSACELL: US$750M, 5Yr-Plan Hinges On Debt-Restructuring
--------------------------------------------------------------
Mexico's third largest mobile operator Iusacell drafted a five-
year development plan in which majority shareholders will invest
US$750 million pending the success of an US$822-million debt
restructuring. According to Business News Americas, Iusacell and
financial advisor Morgan Stanley are scheduled to publish a
restructuring plan by the end of June.

CEO and Chairman Carlos Espinal was quoted in a local daily El
Financiero report as saying that Iusacell's main problem is that
it is paying interest rates of around 14%, while its main US
shareholder Verizon, for example, is generating capital at 4%.

Iusacell met with creditors last week to provide company
information that could qualify the firm for exemption of
obligations, such as debt to EBITDA ratio limits, applicable to a
US$266-million debt restructured in March 2001. The Company has
secured temporary modifications to the obligations, but these are
due to expire May 22.

Grupo Iusacell, S.A. de C.V. (Iusacell, NYSE:CEL; BMV:CEL) is a
wireless cellular and PCS service provider in seven of Mexico's
nine regions, including Mexico City, Guadalajara, Monterrey,
Tijuana, Acapulco, Puebla, Leon and Merida. The Company's service
regions encompass a total of approximately 92 million POPs,
representing approximately 90% of the country's total population.
Iusacell is under the management and operating control of
subsidiaries of Verizon Communications Inc..

CONTACT:     Grupo Iusacell, S.A. de C.V., Mexico City
             Russell A. Olson, 011-5255-5109-5751
             russell.olson@iusacell.com.mx
             or
             Carlos J. Moctezuma, 011-5255-5109-5780
             carlos.moctezuma@iusacell.com.mx

             Web site at http://www.iusacell.com


VITRO: S&P Lowers Ratings to 'BB-'; Outlook Negative
----------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said Monday that it lowered
its local and foreign currency corporate credit ratings on glass
manufacturer Vitro S.A. de C.V. to 'BB-' from 'BB'. The downgrade
reflects the continued increase in the Mexican company's debt
leverage relative to its cash flow generation over the past two
years, a result of the economic slowdown in Mexico and the U.S.

The outlook is negative. Standard & Poor's also lowered the
rating of Vicap S.A. de C.V.'s 11.375% notes due 2007 to 'B' from
'B+'. The lower rating on the notes reflects the structural
subordination of the issue.

Vitro has around $1.6 billion in total debt.

The weakness in the company's performance is reflected in its
financial indicators, which consider Vitro's off-balance-sheet
debt (factoring programs that total $60 million), for the last 12
months ended March 31, 2003. For this period, EBITDA interest
coverage, total debt to EBITDA, and FFO to total debt ratios were
2.5x, 4.2x, and 9.5%. These ratios compare unfavorably to the
2.6x, 2.9x, and 16% posted in 2000.

The company's consolidated EBITDA during the first quarter
decreased 22% versus the first quarter of 2002. In particular,
the company's flat glass business was hurt by the lower sales in
the non-residential construction sector in the U.S. and in sales
to auto OEMs. Sales of glass containers in Mexico and the U.S.
were also lower because of lower demand for beer and soft drinks
in the domestic and export markets. The performance of the
glassware business was also weak in light of the drop of 15% in
domestic sales.

Liquidity is limited. Vitro faces short-term debt maturities of
$495 million (of which $279 million are revolving trade finance
facilities) over the next 12 months.

The negative outlook reflects the challenging operating and
economic environment faced by Vitro's business that could lead to
further weakness in the company's operating performance and key
financial measures.

ANALYST: Jose Coballasi, Mexico City (52) 55-5279-2014



=============
U R U G U A Y
=============

BANCO SANTANDER: Fitch To Review Foreign Currency Debt Rating
-------------------------------------------------------------
Credit rating agency Fitch Ratings will review the `CCC' foreign
currency debt rating of Uruguayan bank Banco Santander in the
short term. The review follows the distressed debt exchange
carried out on a sovereign debt last week, Business News Americas
reports, citing Fitch Ratings Argentina managing director Lorna
Martin.

Fitch lowered last week the Uruguayan foreign currency rating to
default after the country completed a distressed debt exchange,
which was aimed at extending the debt profile to make repayments
easier.


BANCO SUDAMERIS: Debt Exchange Prompts Further Fitch Review
-----------------------------------------------------------
Credit rating agency Fitch Ratings will review the `CCC' foreign
currency debt rating of Uruguayan bank Banco Sudameris in the
short term. The review follows the distressed debt exchange
carried out on a sovereign debt last week, Business News Americas
reports, citing Fitch Ratings Argentina managing director Lorna
Martin.

Fitch lowered last week the Uruguayan foreign currency rating to
default after the country completed a distressed debt exchange,
which was aimed at extending the debt profile to make repayments
easier.


CACDU: Fitch To Place Foreign Currency Debt Rating Under Review
---------------------------------------------------------------
Credit rating agency Fitch Ratings will review the `CCC' foreign
currency debt rating of Uruguayan bank Primera Cooperativa de
Ahorro y Credito de Paysandu (CACDU) in the short term.

The review follows the distressed debt exchange carried out on a
sovereign debt last week, Business News Americas reports, citing
Fitch Ratings Argentina managing director Lorna Martin.

Fitch lowered last week the Uruguayan foreign currency rating to
default after the country completed a distressed debt exchange,
which was aimed at extending the debt profile to make repayments
easier.


COFAC: Fitch To Review Foreign Currency Debt Rating
---------------------------------------------------
Credit rating agency Fitch Ratings will review the `CCC' foreign
currency debt rating of Uruguayan bank Cooperativa Nacional de
Ahorro y Credito (COFAC) in the short term. The review follows
the distressed debt exchange carried out on a sovereign debt last
week, Business News Americas reports, citing Fitch Ratings
Argentina managing director Lorna Martin.

Fitch lowered last week the Uruguayan foreign currency rating to
default after the country completed a distressed debt exchange,
which was aimed at extending the debt profile to make repayments
easier.


FUCAC: Fitch To Place Foreign Currency Debt Rating Under Review
---------------------------------------------------------------
Credit rating agency Fitch Ratings will review the `CCC' foreign
currency debt rating of Uruguayan bank Federacion Uruguaya de
Cooperativas de Ahorro y Credito (FUCAC) in the short term. The
review follows the distressed debt exchange carried out on a
sovereign debt last week, Business News Americas reports, citing
Fitch Ratings Argentina managing director Lorna Martin.

Fitch lowered last week the Uruguayan foreign currency rating to
default after the country completed a distressed debt exchange,
which was aimed at extending the debt profile to make repayments
easier.


FUCEREP: Sovereign Cut Prompts Further Review from Fitch
--------------------------------------------------------
Credit rating agency Fitch Ratings will review the `CCC' foreign
currency debt rating of Uruguayan bank Cooperativo de Ahorro y
Credito (FUCEREP) in the short term. The review follows the
distressed debt exchange carried out on a sovereign debt last
week, Business News Americas reports, citing Fitch Ratings
Argentina managing director Lorna Martin.

Fitch lowered last week the Uruguayan foreign currency rating to
default after the country completed a distressed debt exchange,
which was aimed at extending the debt profile to make repayments
easier.


HSBC BANK: Fitch To Review Ratings in the Short Term
----------------------------------------------------
Credit rating agency Fitch Ratings will review the `CCC' foreign
currency debt rating of Uruguayan bank HSBC Bank (Uruguay) in the
short term. The review follows the distressed debt exchange
carried out on a sovereign debt last week, Business News Americas
reports, citing Fitch Ratings Argentina managing director Lorna
Martin.

Fitch lowered last week the Uruguayan foreign currency rating to
default after the country completed a distressed debt exchange,
which was aimed at extending the debt profile to make repayments
easier.



=================
V E N E Z U E L A
=================

PDVSA: Executive Explains Investment Terms
------------------------------------------
Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A. (PDVSA) director Felix Rodriguez
said that the Company remains open to new investment from the
private sector in the basis of a "win-win" perspective. Business
News Americas relates that Mr. Rodriguez indicated that PdVSA is
open to investment on three areas:

The first is to get the highest value possible from reserves in
the Orinoco and traditional areas through state-of-the-art
technology and the production of high quality crude.

Secondly, PDVSA is exploring areas adjacent to existing oil
fields with its own resources, and exploring new areas in joint
ventures with the private sector.

And thirdly, the Company is seeking a balance between its own
operations and the private sector's in the exploration and
production of natural gas.

At the XII Annual Latin America Energy Conference in California,
Mr. Rodriguez said that the recent awarding of exploration and
production contracts on the offshore Deltana platform shows that
Venezuela is an "attractive and reliable country in which to do
business."

Some 55 companies representing 18 countries are currently
involved in Venezuela's oil industry.

"We are the sixth in the world in terms of proven reserves, which
represents 45 percent of total crude reserves in the Americas and
57 percent of Latin America's crude reserves," Mr. Rodriguez
said.

Venezuela has about 313 billion barrels of crude reserves. Some
78 billion barrels are of conventional crude, while the remaining
235 billion barrels of extra-heavy Orinoco crude.


               ***********


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 Oona G. Oyangoren, Editors.

Copyright 2003.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1529-2746.

This material is copyrighted and any commercial use, resale or
publication in any form (including e-mail forwarding, electronic
re-mailing and photocopying) is strictly prohibited without prior
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Information contained herein is obtained from sources believed to
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The TCR Latin America subscription rate is $575 per half-year,
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or balance thereof are $25 each.  For subscription information,
contact Christopher Beard at 240/629-3300.


* * * End of Transmission * * *