TCRLA_Public/030811.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

          Monday, August 11, 2003, Vol. 4, Issue 157

                          Headlines


A R G E N T I N A

JUAN MINETTI: Rating on Shares Remains at Category 4, Says Fitch
LAPA: Judge Finally Declares Bankruptcy
LOBSTERS & OYSTERS: Court Orders Bankruptcy
NII HOLDINGS: To Sell 2 Million Shares Through Morgan Stanley
SIDECO AMERICANA: Fitch Maintains D(arg) Rating on $200M of Debt

TELEFONICA DE ARGENTINA: Announces Issuance of New Notes


B E R M U D A

ANNUITY & LIFE: Recaptures Largest GMDB Reinsurance Contract
FOSTER WHEELER: Announces Second-Quarter Financial Results
TRENWICK GROUP: Announces Agreement In Lloyd's Restructuring


B O L I V I A

COOPERATIVA RURAL: S&P Withdraws Rating


B R A Z I L

ELETROPAULO METROPOLITANA: BNDES Takes Step Toward Selling Shares
GLOBO: Founder's Demise Wont Affect Company, Analysts Say
KLABIN: Kimberly-Clark Increases Stake in Affiliates
MSF FUNDING: Affirms Ratings on Floating-Rate, Asset-Backed Notes


C H I L E

COEUR D'ALENE: Announces Final Redemption of Its 13 3/8% Notes
TELEFONICA CTC: Hopes To Slash Debt To Cut Financing Costs


C O L O M B I A

EDT: Unions Approve Redundancy Model


E C U A D O R

PACIFICTEL: Gets Green Light To Sign $4.9M Contract With Huawei
PETROECUADOR: Joint Venture Offers Treatment To Up Production


J A M A I C A

C&WJ: Strikes Marketing Deal With Courts Jamaica
JUTC: Ministry Studies Fare Hike Proposal


M E X I C O

ALESTRA: Strikes Distribution Accord With WalMart
PEMEX: Places $624M, 10-Yr. Bonds To Finance Pidiregas Projects
SPEIZMAN INDUSTRIES: Gets Nasdaq Listing Extension


P A R A G U A Y

ESSAP: Seeks Finance Ministry's Aid Again To Meet Payments To IDB


P A N A M A

BLADEX: Reports Second Quarter 2003 Net Income of $67.1 Million


T R I N I D A D   &   T O B A G O

BWIA: Airplane Sale Rushed, Union Leader Claims


V E N E Z U E L A

CANTV: No Intention of Defaulting on Debts
CITGO: Exec Dispels Rumors of PdVSA Divestment Plan
PDVSA: Hires New President

     -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -

=================
A R G E N T I N A
=================

JUAN MINETTI: Rating on Shares Remains at Category 4, Says Fitch
----------------------------------------------------------------
The shares rating for Juan Minetti, Argentina's second largest
cement company, remains at Category 4, meaning, the shares have
low quality, medium liquidity with a low capacity to generate
funds, according to Fitch ratings agency.

Business News Americas suggests that the rating mirrors the
Company's weak fund generation denominated in pesos compared to
its high-dollar (over 90%) denominated debt.

Minetti ended the first quarter of the year with a ARS65.1
million (US$22mn) net profit, compared to a ARS335-million net
loss in the same quarter last year. Sales jumped 46.5% to ARS82.1
million, which helped operating profit close at ARS26.5 million
versus a ARS29.2-million loss in the first quarter of last year.

In June, the Company, which is controlled by Swiss cement giant
Holcim, restructured US$170 million in outstanding debts with the
International Finance Corporation. This operation is part of the
overall restructuring of Juan Minetti's outstanding debt of
US$276 million equivalent.

The recent economic crisis in Argentina deeply affected Minetti's
operations, forcing the Company to operate at about 30% of its
capacity.

CONTACT:  Juan Minetti SA
          87 Ituzaingo
          Cordoba
          Argentina  5000
          Phone: +54 51 26 7529
          Fax:  +54 51 24 4709
          Home Page: http://www.juanminetti.com.ar
          Contacts:
          Dr. Manuel Augusto J. Baltazar Ferrer, Chairman
          Atty. Carlos Buhler, Executive Vice Chairman & General
                                     Manager


LAPA: Judge Finally Declares Bankruptcy
---------------------------------------
Argentine airline Lineas Aereas Privadas Argentinas, or LAPA, was
finally declared bankrupt by Judge Margarita Braga, who was in
charge of the Company's formal restructuring proceedings. The
measure was taken following a request of a lessor, which claimed
LAPA had not paid the rent for the aircraft it had leased. It was
said that the lessor in question would be the firm Pegasus.
Although the decision was unveiled last Tuesday, it was made two
weeks ago.

LAPAs situation worsened last Easter, when its management
suddenly decided to stop operations and left 1,500 passengers
stranded at the airport. The government had to distribute flyers
among other carriers.

After a series of discussions and demonstrations by workers,
former president Eduardo Duhalde signed a decree that established
the setting up of a state-owned carrier destined to replace
paralyzed LAPA and hire its staff.

In the middle of a scandal, Mario Folchi, then president of the
airline, resigned to his position. Humberto Rocca holder of a 45%
stake in Bolivian Aeroandina, Lapas controlling company went back
to Bolivia with Horacio Grundy executive director of the firm and
the Argentine partner Ricardo Arenas kept a low profile.


LOBSTERS & OYSTERS: Court Orders Bankruptcy
-------------------------------------------
Lobsters & Oysters S.A., which is domiciled at Buenos Aires, was
declared by bankrupt by the city's Court No. 24. Argentine news
portal Infobae recalls that the Company was seeking the court's
permission to start reorganization.

Infobae adds that the court has assigned Mr. Hugo Edgardo Borgert
as receiver to whom creditors must submit their claims for
verification. However, the report did not mention the deadline
for the credit authentication process.

CONTACT:  Hugo Edgardo Borgert
          Presidente Peron 853
          Buenos Aires


NII HOLDINGS: To Sell 2 Million Shares Through Morgan Stanley
-------------------------------------------------------------
Latin America's service provider NII Holdings Inc. will sell 2
million common shares in a sale to be handled by Morgan Stanley,
according to Reuters News, adding that most of the proceeds will
be used to retire all debt under a Brazil equipment facility.

The Company expects to net US$90.8 million from the sale, of
which US$86 million will be used to settle the debt in Brazil.
The remainder will be added to fund part of the US$100 million
prepayment of an international equipment facility.

In related news, NII also said in its filing to the United States
Securities and Exchange Commission that investment adviser MacKay
Shields will sell an extra million of shares. However, it said,
it wont be receiving any of the proceeds of MacKay's sales, as
the adviser is selling in behalf of certain clients.

After the sales, NII will have 22.5 million shares outstanding,
while MacKay has 1.3 million (5.73% of NII shares).

Morgan Stanley has the option to buy 450,000 extra shares in case
of heavy investor demand, the report adds.


SIDECO AMERICANA: Fitch Maintains D(arg) Rating on $200M of Debt
----------------------------------------------------------------
Credit rating agency Fitch is maintaining a D (arg) rating on
Argentine public services and infrastructure holding Sideco
Americana's US$200 million debentures program, US$125 million of
which have been issued.

Citing a Fitch statement, Business News Americas reports that the
rating reflects Sideco's incapacity to honor its debentures. The
holding's credit profile is highly influenced by elevated
regulatory risks, Fitch added.

Sideco ended the first quarter of the year with a ARS10.9-million
(US$3.68mn) net loss, compared to a ARS209-million net loss in
first quarter of last year.

The Company attributed the results to a stronger peso versus the
US dollar and lower inflation in the first quarter.


TELEFONICA DE ARGENTINA: Announces Issuance of New Notes
--------------------------------------------------------
Telefonica de Argentina S.A. ("TASA" or the "Company") announced
Thursday that it has issued new notes in connection with its
completed offers to exchange two series of existing TASA notes
(the 11.875% TASA Notes due 2004 (the "TASA 2004 Notes") and the
9.125% TASA Notes due 2008 (the "TASA 2008 Notes")) for two new
series of TASA notes plus a cash payment (the "TASA Exchange
Offers"), and its offers to exchange two series of existing notes
issued by TASA's holding company, Compania Internacional de
Telecomunicaciones S.A. ("Cointel"), (the 8.85% Cointel Series A
Notes due 2004 (the "Cointel Series A Notes") and the 10.375%
Cointel Series B Notes due 2004 (the "Cointel Series B Notes"))
for two new series of TASA notes plus a cash payment (the
"Cointel Exchange Offers" and together with the TASA Exchange
Offers, the "Exchange Offers").

The principal amount of new notes issued in connection with the
completed Exchange Offers is as follows:

-- U.S.$189.8 million aggregate principal amount of TASA 11.875%
Notes due 2007,

-- U.S.$220.1 million aggregate principal amount of TASA 9.125%
Notes due 2010,

-- U.S.$148.2 million aggregate principal amount of TASA 8.85%
Notes due 2011, and

-- Ps. 223,750 aggregate principal amount of TASA Conversion
Notes due 2011.

The TASA 2007 and TASA 2010 Notes will be listed on the New York
Stock Exchange. The TASA 2011 Notes will be listed on the New
York Stock Exchange and the Bolsa de Comercio de Buenos Aires.
The TASA Conversion Notes will be listed on the Bolsa de Comercio
de Buenos Aires.

In connection with the completed Exchange Offers, the Company
made cash payments which had the effect of reducing the Company's
total principal debt by U.S.$77.5 million, plus accrued interest.

CONTACT:  Morgan Stanley
          Simon Morgan
          Phone: +1-212-761-2219

          Heather Hammond
          Phone: +1-212-761-1893



=============
B E R M U D A
=============

ANNUITY & LIFE: Recaptures Largest GMDB Reinsurance Contract
------------------------------------------------------------
Annuity and Life Re (Holdings), Ltd. (NYSE: ANR) announced
Thursday it regained its largest guaranteed minimum death
benefits (GMDB) reinsurance contract by the ceding companies
under that contract, effective as of June 30, 2003. In connection
with securing the recapture of the GMDB contract, the Company
issued warrants to acquire up to one million of the Company's
common shares. The Company currently expects to incur a charge of
approximately $20 million in connection with the recapture. The
company has one remaining GMDB/GMIB contract.

In addition, the Company also announced Thursday that XL Life Ltd
has served notice that it intends to recapture the four life
reinsurance contracts ceded to the Company on a 50% quota share
basis at December 31, 2002. XL Life and the Company are
continuing to discuss the terms of the recapture and settlement
of these contracts, as well as the other relationships between
the Company and XL Life and its affiliates.

The Company expects to report substantial charges in the second
quarter relating to the recapture of the XL Life contracts, due
in part to the write off of deferred acquisition costs associated
with those contracts, which totaled approximately $21 million at
June 30, 2003.

Depending on the resolution of the discussions with XL Life,
additional charges may be necessary.

CONTACT:  John F. Burke
          ANNUITY AND LIFE RE (HOLDINGS), LTD.
          Cumberland House
          1 Victoria Street
          Hamilton HM 11
          P.O. Box HM 98
          Hamilton HM AX
          Bermuda
          Tel: (441) 296-7667
          Fax: (441) 296-7665
          Website: www.alre.bm


FOSTER WHEELER: Announces Second-Quarter Financial Results
----------------------------------------------------------
Foster Wheeler Ltd. (NYSE:FWC):

-- E&C and Energy performance improving

-- Restructuring continues on track

-- Initial registration filed for first of planned debt exchanges

Foster Wheeler Ltd. (NYSE: FWC) reported Thursday a net loss for
the second quarter of 2003 of $29.3 million, or $0.72 per diluted
share, compared to a net loss of $86.0 million, or $2.10 per
diluted share, for the same quarter last year. Revenues for the
second quarter of 2003 totaled $935.8 million compared to $958.9
million in the second quarter of last year. The results for the
quarter included expenses of $16.0 million for professional
services and severance benefits driven by the company's
restructuring process, legacy expenses of $6.1 million resulting
from pension curtailment and revaluation, and net charges of
$19.5 million related to five North American projects.

"We think the results, when examined in the context of the
charges outlined above along with the relative market weakness,
would indicate that our operating initiatives and cost-cutting
measures are yielding results," said Raymond J. Milchovich,
chairman, president and chief executive officer. "Our European
businesses and our North American power business posted second-
quarter earnings at or above plan and last year's performance."

"In terms of domestic liquidity, as expected, cash balances
declined during the quarter primarily due to the timing of cash
flows on certain domestic projects combined with planned, but
significant levels of restructuring-related spending," added Mr.
Milchovich. "This trend is forecasted to continue over the next
several quarters and is expected to make domestic liquidity more
challenging in the fourth quarter. We are addressing this issue
by seeking to repatriate additional funds from our non-U. S.
subsidiaries and/or successfully completing a major asset
monetization."

"We are making significant progress on what has been and will
continue to be a very extensive operational and balance sheet
restructuring," continued Mr. Milchovich. "We believe there
exists substantial upside potential in our worldwide operations
but that this potential can only be reached with a materially
improved financial structure."

The net loss included pre-tax charges of $41.6 million and $89.0
million for the second quarter 2003 and 2002, respectively.
Charges for the second quarter of 2003 include: $22.0 million for
revisions to project cost estimates and related receivable
reserves; a gain of $2.5 million on the recovery of a project
claim; and planned pre-tax expenses of $22.1 million for
professional fees, severance and other expenses related to the
company's ongoing restructuring.

Worldwide, cash balances at the end of the quarter were $419
million, compared to $473 million at the end of the first quarter
of 2003, and $385 million at the end of the second quarter of
2002. Of the $419 million in cash at the end of the second
quarter, $342 million was held by non-U.S. subsidiaries. The
company is currently subject to legal and contractual
restrictions on the ability to repatriate much of this cash. In
certain instances, the company must obtain third party consents
and is currently working with the appropriate constituencies with
the intent of modifying certain contractual restrictions. As of
June 27, 2003, the company's indebtedness was $1.1 billion,
essentially unchanged from year-end 2002 and the end of the
second quarter of 2002.

For the six months ended June 27, 2003, revenues were $1.7
billion, down slightly from $1.8 billion in the first six months
of last year. The net loss for the period was $49.2 million
compared to a net loss of $262.1 million in the first six months
of 2002. Pre-tax charges of $60.8 million and $274.7 million were
included in the first six months of 2003 and 2002, respectively.

Reported results for the second quarter and first six months of
2003 and 2002 are supplemented with related amounts. A full
reconciliation with reported amounts and details of the charges
are included in the attached tables. Management believes these
supplemental financial measures provide useful information and a
more comprehensive understanding of the financial results.

Bookings and Segment Performance

New orders booked during the second quarter of 2003 were $647.1
million compared to $533.2 million in the second quarter of last
year, excluding orders of $115.2 million related to the assets of
the environmental business that were sold in the first quarter of
2003. The company's backlog was $3.3 billion, compared to $3.9
billion at the end of the second quarter of 2002, excluding $1.8
billion related to the environmental business.

Second-quarter new bookings for the Engineering and Construction
(E&C) Group were $460.4 million, up 16% compared to $397.3
million during the year-ago quarter, excluding the environmental
orders. The increase was due to growth in orders in Europe. The
Group's backlog was $2.2 billion, compared to $2.6 billion at
quarter-end 2002, excluding backlog of $1.8 billion for the
environmental business. Revenues for the E&C Group in the second
quarter of 2003 were $529.2 million, up 9% compared to $485.7
million in the second quarter of 2002, excluding environmental
revenues of $74.5 million. The increase was primarily due to
higher revenues in the UK. Earnings before interest, taxes,
depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) were $12.4 million this
quarter, compared to a loss of $9.5 million for the same period
last year.

New bookings in the second quarter for the Energy Group increased
to $187.4 million, compared to $138.0 as orders increased in both
the North American and European operations. Backlog at quarter-
end was $1.2 billion, compared to $1.4 billion at quarter-end
2002. Energy Group revenues for the quarter were $409.3 million,
essentially flat with $411.9 million in the same quarter of 2002,
as improvements in the European power business offset the U.S.
power operations decline. EBITDA for the quarter was $27.0
million compared to a loss of $7.8 million last year. Operations
in Europe continue to improve on revenue growth while the U.S.
business is benefiting from cost reductions and better execution
on existing projects.

To see financial statements:
http://bankrupt.com/misc/Foster_Wheeler.htm

CONTACT:  Foster Wheeler Ltd.
          Media Contact:
          Richard Tauberman
          Phone: 908-730-4444
             or
          Investor Contact:
          John Doyle
          Phone: 908-730-4270
             or
          Other Inquiries:
          Phone: 908-730-4000


TRENWICK GROUP: Announces Agreement In Lloyd's Restructuring
------------------------------------------------------------
Trenwick Group Ltd. ("Trenwick")(OTC: TWKGF) stated Thursday that
it has entered into a letter of intent with respect to an
agreement in principle on a long-term restructuring of Trenwick's
debt obligations, the sale of its business operations at Lloyd's,
and the runoff of its remaining businesses with (i) the majority
of the beneficial holders (the "Senior Noteholders") of the 6.70%
Senior Notes (the "Senior Notes") of its wholly owned subsidiary,
Trenwick America Corporation ("Trenwick America"), (ii) the
steering committee (the "Steering Committee") of the lending
institutions (the "Banks") that have issued letters of credit
under a senior secured credit facility (the "LoC Facility") on
behalf of certain subsidiaries of Trenwick in support of
Trenwick's Lloyd's operations, and (iii) a group composed of
current members of management of Trenwick's Lloyd's operations
(the "Management Team"). Trenwick America did not pay principal
and interest on the Senior Notes due on August 1, 2003, which
also created an event of default with respect to the LoC Facility
and under certain other indebtedness of Trenwick America.

The restructuring will be implemented through various means,
including but not limited to the following: (i) the filing by
Trenwick and/or one or more of its subsidiaries of Chapter 11
bankruptcy proceedings in the United States and the filing of
similar proceedings in Bermuda, Barbados or the United Kingdom,
as the case may be; (ii) the sale by Trenwick of substantially
all of its Lloyd's operations to a company controlled by the
Management Team and with capital provided by the Management Team,
third-party investors and the Banks and (iii) the retention of
third party run-off advisors and the continued runoff or
disposition of all of Trenwick's other insurance and reinsurance
operations. In light of the foregoing, Trenwick believes that it
is unlikely that any of the holders of the shares of Trenwick or
of its wholly-owned Bermuda subsidiary, LaSalle Re Holdings Ltd
will receive any return on their investment in the near term if
at all.

The terms of the restructuring are subject to the satisfaction of
numerous conditions precedent including, but not limited to, the
following: (i) approval of the restructuring by the Banks; (ii)
negotiation of definitive documentation (iii) receipt of all
requisite regulatory and other approvals in the United States,
Bermuda and the United Kingdom; (iv) due diligence by Englefield
Capital LLP, the proposed equity sponsor of the Management Team,
which has entered into an exclusive negotiation agreement with
Trenwick, and (v) approval of any court having jurisdiction over
the above-referenced insolvency proceedings.

Background Information

Trenwick is a Bermuda-based specialty insurance and reinsurance
underwriting organization with subsidiaries located in the United
States, the United Kingdom and Bermuda. Trenwick's operations at
Lloyd's, London underwrite specialty insurance as well as treaty
and facultative reinsurance on a worldwide basis. Trenwick's
United States specialty program business, specialty London market
insurance company, Trenwick International Limited, and its United
States reinsurance business through Trenwick America Reinsurance
Corporation are now in runoff. In 2002, Trenwick sold the in-
force business of LaSalle Re Limited, its Bermuda based
subsidiary.

CONTACT:  Trenwick Group
          Alan L. Hunte
          Phone: 441-292-4985



=============
B O L I V I A
=============

COOPERATIVA RURAL: S&P Withdraws Rating
---------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said Thursday it withdrew its
'B' local currency and foreign currency corporate credit ratings
on Bolivian electricity distributor Cooperativa Rural de
Electrificaci›n Ltda. at the company's request. The outlook for
both ratings was negative.

ANALYSTS:  Sergio Fuentes, Buenos Aires (54) 114-891-2131
           Marta Castelli, Buenos Aires (54) 114-891-2128



===========
B R A Z I L
===========

ELETROPAULO METROPOLITANA: BNDES Takes Step Toward Selling Shares
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Carlos Lessa, President of Brazil's national development bank
BNDES, revealed that BNDES has made considerable progress in its
plans to sell shares in Sao Paulo distributor Eletropaulo,
relates Agencia Estado.

The bank plans to sell the shares at auction on the Sao Paulo
stock exchange, and will proceed with publication of bidding
rules.

BNDES has been threatening to auction off the controlling package
of shares in Eletropaulo in a bid to recoup some of the US$1.2-
billion debt owed by Eletropaulo's parent company, US-based AES.
The shares served as a guarantee for the BNDES loan.

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


GLOBO: Founder's Demise Wont Affect Company, Analysts Say
---------------------------------------------------------
The death of Organicoes Globo founder Roberto Marinho is not
likely to cause any major changes in the Company as he had
transferred the responsibility of day operations at to his sons
and a professional manager, analysts say.

However, University of Brasilia public policy and communications
professor Murilo Cesar Ramos comments, "You can't separate Globo
from its political power. And his sons don't have the force,
talent or disposition to use it," as quoted by Reuters News.

Mr. Ramos said that the Company may lose come of its lobbying
power in Buenos Aires with the Marinho's death on Wednesday. The
Company may find it harder to secure government aid.

"What's going to happen is a restructuring so that (some units)
stop draining its cash flow and it can revamp its business and
attract investors," according to Standard & Poor's Sao Paulo-
based credit analyst Milena Zaniboni.

Presently, the Company is burdened with US$1.2 billion in debt.
The near future seems bleak with a shrinking advertising market.

"Just in this year, advertising revenues are down 20 percent from
the year before," said Ernan Lopes, a media sector analyst at Sao
Paulo consulting firm WorldInvest.

Last year, the Company said that it would place its units under a
new company, Globo S.A., but its debts forced it to hire Goldman
Sachs and Unibanco to restructure its loans. Negotiations are
still underway.

Although Globo is mum on the details of its negotiation, analysts
say it is likely drawing up a grand restructuring that will not
only diminish its debt costs but also find a way to ensure its
business is profitable enough to attract investors, according to
the report.


KLABIN: Kimberly-Clark Increases Stake in Affiliates
----------------------------------------------------
Kimberly-Clark Corporation (NYSE: KMB) announced Thursday it has
increased its ownership in two key affiliates in Latin America,
Klabin Kimberly S.A. in Brazil and Kimberly-Clark Peru S.A. In
both transactions, Kimberly-Clark's partners exercised their
rights to tender their shares to the company under terms of the
joint venture agreements.

The purchases, totaling approximately US$200 million, were paid
in cash. The transactions are expected to be slightly accretive
to earnings in the second half of 2003. Other terms of the
transactions were not disclosed.

With these transactions, Kimberly-Clark now owns 100 percent of
Klabin Kimberly S.A., Brazil's leading tissue manufacturer, and
approximately 88 percent of Kimberly-Clark Peru S.A., that
country's leader in personal care and consumer tissue products.

"Our increased ownership of these affiliates enhances K-C's
presence in two important markets and gives us greater
flexibility to implement our cost savings and productivity
initiatives," said Thomas J. Falk, chairman and chief executive
officer of Kimberly-Clark. "Brazil remains the largest business
opportunity in Latin America. Near term forecasts are for a more
stable economic environment, with the consumer tissue market
expected to grow 4 to 5 percent per year.

"Peru has one of the stronger economies in the region, with GDP
growth of 3 to 5 percent and low single-digit inflation. Consumer
markets in both countries have low penetration and ample room to
grow."

About Klabin Kimberly S.A. and Kimberly-Clark Peru S.A.

Klabin Kimberly S.A. makes bath and facial tissue, towels and
napkins for both retail and institutional markets. Brands include
Neve, Nice, Chifon, Kimberly-Clark and Lalekla. Klabin Kimberly
S.A. holds the No. 1 position in consumer tissue with an
approximately 30 percent share of Brazil's estimated US$1 billion
retail market. It also is one of the leading marketers in the
institutional sector. Klabin Kimberly S.A. has four manufacturing
facilities and employs nearly 1,650 people.

Kimberly-Clark Peru S.A. is the market leader in consumer tissue,
diapers and feminine care, with shares exceeding 50 percent in
each of these categories. Brands include Suave, Mimi and Amiga.
The company has two manufacturing facilities and employs
approximately 600 people.

About Kimberly-Clark Corporation

Kimberly-Clark and its well-known brands are an indispensable
part of life for people in more than 150 countries. Every day,
one in four people around the world trust K-C's brands to enhance
their health, hygiene and well-being - - brands such as Kleenex,
Scott, Huggies, Pull-Ups, Kotex and Depend. For the second
consecutive year, Kimberly-Clark has been named to Fortune
magazine's list of "100 Best Companies to Work For In America."
With nearly 64,000 employees worldwide, the company has received
similar recognition in Argentina, Australia, Czech Republic,
Korea, Thailand and the U.K. To keep up with the latest K-C news
and to learn more about the company's 131-year history of
innovation, visit www.kimberly-clark.com .


MSF FUNDING: Affirms Ratings on Floating-Rate, Asset-Backed Notes
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services affirmed Thursday its ratings
on MSF Funding LLC's $80 million floating-rate asset-backed notes
series 2000-1 (see list). The notes are backed by medical
equipment leases originated by DVI Inc.'s (DVI) Brazilian
operations.

DVI, which is headquartered in the U.S., announced Aug. 1, 2003,
that it would not make an interest payment due on its 9 7/8%
senior notes due 2004. This prompted Standard & Poor's to lower
DVI's counterparty credit and senior unsecured debt ratings to
'D' (see "DVI Inc. Ratings Lowered to 'D' and Removed from
CreditWatch," published Aug. 1, 2003.

DVI's Brazilian operations--Medical Systems Finance S.A. (MSF),
Healthcare Systems Finance S.A. (HSF), and Oferil S.A.--sold the
medical equipment leases to MSF Funding. MSF and HSF are the
master servicers of the portfolio of medical equipment leases.
Standard & Poor's credit and legal analysis for the ratings on
the MSF Funding notes assumes that the structure can withstand an
insolvency of DVI's Brazilian operations. Upon such insolvency, a
backup servicer, JPMorganChase Bank (formerly Chase Manhattan
Bank), would assume the servicing of the lease portfolio. Funds
in MSF Funding's accounts may be used to cover expenses relating
to the transfer of servicing to JPMorganChase.

The reserve account, currently at $4.3 million, is sized by
assuming a base amount of $600,000 plus 400 days of interest on
the class A, B, and C notes calculated using an interest rate
assumption of 14.5%. The entire reserve amount can be used to
cover the cost of servicing transfer, commingling risk, and/or
liquidity issues relating to delinquent leases.

Standard & Poor's analysis assumed the default frequency on the
lease portfolio was multiples of the historical performance and
no recovery value would be obtained on the liquidation of any
defaulted leases.

Performance on the Brazilian lease portfolio to date has been
steady--only seven leases, or 2.6% of the total pool balance,
have defaulted. The current (July 2003) quarterly average of 90-
day-plus delinquencies is 2.96% of the portfolio, and all of the
reserve accounts are funded to their required amounts. The
outstanding balances of the class A, B, C, and D notes are $15.36
million, $1.65 million, $1.89 million, and $1.18 million,
respectively. When the outstanding balances of the class D and
the unrated class E notes equals 25% of their original issuance
amounts (currently at 30%), principal amortization will cease on
these two classes until all of the class A, B, and C notes have
been redeemed. Interest on the notes is paid monthly on a timely
basis.
Principal on the notes is not due until the stated maturity date
in July 2007.

Standard & Poor's will continue to monitor developments as they
unfold.

RATINGS AFFIRMED
MSF Funding LLC

Class        Rating
A            A
B            BBB
C            BB
D            B
E            N.R.

ANALYST: Gary Kochubka, New York (1) 212-438-2514



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

COEUR D'ALENE: Announces Final Redemption of Its 13 3/8% Notes
--------------------------------------------------------------
Coeur d'Alene Mines Corporation (NYSE: CDE), the world's largest
primary silver producer, announced Thursday a call of the
remaining outstanding $3.0 million principal amount of the
Company's 13 3/8% Senior Convertible Notes. Since the end of the
second quarter, $6.9 million of the 13 3/8% Notes were
voluntarily converted into common shares according to the
original terms of the indenture.

Since the beginning of 1998 and after giving effect to the
completion of the redemption of the remaining 13 3/8% Notes,
Coeur's total debenture indebtedness has been reduced from $288.6
million to the current level of $19.1 million. This $19.1 million
of indebtedness consists of $4.9 million principal amount of
6.375% Convertible Subordinated Debentures due January 2004, $9.6
million principal amount of 7.25% Convertible Subordinated
Debentures due October 2005 and $4.6 million principal amount of
9% Senior Subordinated Notes due 2007. At June 30, 2003, the
Company's cash and cash equivalents totaled approximately $20
million.

"Our cash position of nearly $20 million of cash and equivalents
as of the end of June, combined with Coeur's strengthened balance
sheet, allows us to continue our growth strategy, led by our
high-grade/low-cost South American mines, and the acceleration of
our developmental properties, which will further ensure our
position as the world's leading primary silver producer, as well
as a growing gold producer," said Dennis E. Wheeler, Chairman and
Chief Executive Officer.

The most recent debt reductions include the voluntary conversion
by the holders of $6.9 million principal amount of 13 3/8% Notes
into shares of common stock during July and the announced
redemption by Coeur of the remaining $3.0 million principal
amount of those Notes for $3.1 million, which includes accrued
interest. Coeur has initiated the call of the remaining 13 3/8%
Notes pursuant to a Notice of Redemption sent to the holders of
the 13 3/8% Notes, which provides that the 13 3/8% Notes will be
redeemed by Coeur on September 5, 2003 in accordance with the
redemption provisions contained in the 13 3/8% Notes and the
related indenture. Payment in respect of the redeemed 13 3/8%
Notes will be made upon presentation and surrender of the 13 3/8%
Notes to the paying agent, The Bank of New York, at the address
provided in the Notice of Redemption.

Coeur d'Alene Mines Corporation is the world's largest primary
silver producer, as well as a significant, low-cost producer of
gold, with anticipated 2003 production of 14.6 million ounces of
silver and 112,000 ounces of gold. The Company has mining
interests in Nevada, Idaho, Alaska, Argentina, Chile and Bolivia.

CONTACT:  COEUR D'ALENE MINES CORPORATION
          Tony Ebersole, Director of Investor Relations
          Phone: +1-208-665-0335.


TELEFONICA CTC: Hopes To Slash Debt To Cut Financing Costs
----------------------------------------------------------
Claudio Munoz, Chief Executive Officer of Telefonica CTC Chile,
revealed that the nation's biggest telephone company plans to cut
at least US$200 million of its debt by mid-2004, relates
Bloomberg.

As of June 30 this year, the Company's debts stood at US$1.4
billion. It plans to cut the figure to between US$1.1 billion and
US$1.2 billion, in part as it pays US$52 million of loans due to
banks this year.

The Company also will consider buying back US$400 million of
dollar-denominated bonds due in 2006 and EUR200 million (US$227
million) of bonds due in one year. A purchase wouldn't take place
this year.

"We've strongly attacked the cost side," said Munoz, adding,
"We're using all of our cash for a net reduction of our debt."

Telefonica CTC needs to reduce debt to reverse losses that began
after the government, in a bid to foster competition, cut the
former state-run monopoly's calling rates and fees charged other
providers to use its network, says Bloomberg. The reductions in
1999 made local service, which is the Company's biggest business,
unprofitable, adding to annual losses in three of the past four
years that total CLP178 billion.

CONTACT:  TELEFONICA CTC CHILE
          Gisela Esobar, gescoba@ctc.cl
          Veronica Gaete, vgaete@ctc.cl
          M.Jos, Rodriguez, mjrodri@ctc.cl
          Florencia Acosta, macosta@ctc.cl
          Tel: 562-691-3867
          Fax: 562-6912392



===============
C O L O M B I A
===============

EDT: Unions Approve Redundancy Model
------------------------------------
The administrators of Colombian municipal telco EDT have reached
an accord with unions over a voluntary redundancy plan, reports
Business News Americas.

According to EDT intervener Enrique Vengoechea, the plan is based
on models used in other restructuring processes. On August 11,
management will adjust the model in line with the standard
structure of telecoms operators. The unions have accepted the
goal of one administrative employee for every three technicians.

Currently, EDT is the most overstaffed telco in the country, with
538 employees - 4.2 workers per 1,000 lines compared to the
national average of 2.4 workers per 1,000 lines, Vengoechea said.



=============
E C U A D O R
=============

PACIFICTEL: Gets Green Light To Sign $4.9M Contract With Huawei
---------------------------------------------------------------
Ecuador's state-run fixed line operator Pacifictel obtained
approval from the government to sign a US$4.9-million contract
with Hong Kong-based Huawei for the supply of fiber optic
infrastructure.

Citing local daily Expreso, Business News Americas reports that
the contract covers five fiber rings, totaling 164km, to
interconnect Pacifictel's switching centers in the city of
Guayaquil, as well as accessing international submarine cables.

Pacifictel has obtained financing with a five-year term for the
project, 80% of which is covered by the China Export-Import Bank.


PETROECUADOR: Joint Venture Offers Treatment To Up Production
-------------------------------------------------------------
The Ecuadorian government received an offer from Florida-based
oil and gas well treatment company, Geotec Thermal Generators and
Ecuador's Barki Cia to treat Petroecuador's oil wells to increase
production.

Geotec and Barki Cia has formed a joint venture for the offer.
According to their projections, they should finish initial
treatments and price contracts for wells in five fields operated
by Petroecuador. Some 420 operating wells and more than 400 shut-
in wells are included in the plans. After that, the venture hopes
to receive approval and the first payment within a few weeks,
said Business News Americas.

"We can expect an initial order for our technology for treatment
of wells that are currently producing 100-200b/d per day," said
Barki Cia's Zeev Kidron.

Average wells produce about 500 barrels per day, while newly
drilled ones bring out 600-1,000 barrels. The country reportedly
wants to step up production to 300,000 barrels per day from the
current average of 210,000 b/d.



=============
J A M A I C A
=============

C&WJ: Strikes Marketing Deal With Courts Jamaica
------------------------------------------------
Cable & Wireless Jamaica agrees to sell its new Global System for
Mobile Communications (GSM) phones at the twenty-five outlets of
furniture and electrical goods company, Courts Jamaica.

"It is our policy to have range in our products and we want to
provide our customers with all the best brands to choose from.
Courts also distributes Digicel's phones as part of its selection
of mobile phones to ensure that its product offering is not
limited in variety," said Courts' managing director Hayden Singh
as quoted by the Jamaica Gleaner's Wednesday edition.

Courts' Deputy managing director Dennis Harris said that
marketing is usually a co-op arrangement. He admitted that
details for the marketing of C&WJ's phones have not been worked
out yet.

Earlier, Courts agreed to sell C&WJ competition Digicel's mobile
phones. The report said that it is generally regarded as normal
practice for a single retailer to market competing brands.


JUTC: Ministry Studies Fare Hike Proposal
-----------------------------------------
Jamaica's Transport Ministry is conducting a final review on the
proposed revisions to the fare structure of Jamaica Urban Transit
Company. The cash-strapped company submitted its formal
application for a fare increase to the Office of Utilities
Regulation (OUR) in May.

RJRNews said that Transport Minister Robert Pickersgill is set to
make an announcement by the end of this month. The minister said
that the government is planning to introduce the fare hike next
month as the school year starts. The Company implemented its last
fare hike in June 2001.

The ministry declined to comment on the 90% hike recommended by a
team of Swedish consultants hired to review the ailing company's
operations. Reports say that the current fare structure returns
only 55% of the company's operating costs.

In the meantime, the ministry said that it expects the company to
suffer another billion-dollar loss this year.



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

ALESTRA: Strikes Distribution Accord With WalMart
-------------------------------------------------
Mexican long distance operator Alestra will now distribute
prepaid long-distance AT&T cards to WalMart de Mexico following
the signing of a distribution agreement.

Alestra will distribute the cards through WalMart's retail
outlets WalMart Supercenter, Sam's Club, Bodega Aurrer  and
Superama.

The accord is part of Alestra's strategy to invest US$10 million,
which is aimed at guaranteeing national coverage and greater
availability of products.

It is estimated that the prepaid telephone market in Mexico is
worth more than MXN2 billion (US$187 million) per year and it is
still developing. This is why the companies have struck this deal
to cover the high demand of consumers, of whom a large number are
tourists, students, and foreign residents, as well as Mexicans.

AT&T has a 49% stake in Alestra. Onexa - a 50:50 joint venture
between local bank BBVA Bancomer and Mexican industrial group
Alfa - holds the other 51%.


PEMEX: Places $624M, 10-Yr. Bonds To Finance Pidiregas Projects
---------------------------------------------------------------
In an effort to raise funds for its Pidiregas long-term
productive infrastructure projects, Mexico's state oil company
Pemex placed EUR550 million (US$624mn) in ten-year bonds at end-
July, Business News Americas reports, citing a company statement.

The bonds, which expire August 5, 2013, pay 6.25% interest per
semester and will yield 6.42%, 234 basis points above the German
Treasury bond benchmark. Investment banks JP Morgan and Deutsche
Bank managed the issue, which was channeled through the Pemex
Master Trust financing vehicle.

Pemex placed US$750 million in 10-year bonds in June, EUR750
million in 7-year bonds in April, US$500 million in 20-year bonds
in March, US$750 million in 5.5-year bonds in February and GBP250
million in January.


SPEIZMAN INDUSTRIES: Gets Nasdaq Listing Extension
--------------------------------------------------
Speizman Industries, Inc. (Nasdaq: SPZN) reported Thursday that,
pursuant to a hearing request before a Nasdaq Listing
Qualification Panel, the Company received an extension to
continue the listing of the Company's securities on The Nasdaq
SmallCap Market until September 29, 2003, by which time the
Company must evidence a closing bid price in its stock of at
least $1.00 per share and, immediately thereafter, a closing bid
price of at least $1.00 per share for a minimum of ten
consecutive days.

Speizman Industries is a leader in the sale and distribution of
specialized industrial machinery, parts and equipment. The
Company acts as exclusive distributor in the United States,
Canada, and Mexico for leading Italian manufacturers of textile
equipment and is a leading distributor in the United States of
industrial laundry equipment representing several United States
manufacturers.



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

ESSAP: Seeks Finance Ministry's Aid Again To Meet Payments To IDB
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Paraguay's state water utility Essap must pay close to US$5
million to cover the monthly debt service payments for September
and October on a loan from the Inter-American Development Bank
(IDB), reports Business News Americas.

But since it doesn't have enough cash to make the payments, the
utility has again asked the finance ministry to pay the said
obligations. The payments correspond to a US$79.6-million loan
approved by the IDB in 1995 for a US$140-million urban water
supply and sewerage project.

In May, President Luis Gonzalez Macchi ordered the finance
ministry to pay the IDB US$2.33 million to prevent the utility
from defaulting at that time.

According to Essap, the utility expects to take in some US$26
million this year, although costs are expected to reach US$12.3
million and foreign debt service close to US$17.5 million.



===========
P A N A M A
===========

BLADEX: Reports Second Quarter 2003 Net Income of $67.1 Million
---------------------------------------------------------------
Banco Latinoamericano de Exportaciones, S.A. (NYSE: BLX - News;
"BLADEX" or the "Bank"), a specialized multinational bank
established to finance trade in the Latin American and Caribbean
region, reported Thursday results for the second quarter ended
June 30, 2003.

For the latest quarter, the Bank reported net income of $67.1
million, or $3.65 per share, compared with a reported net loss of
$300.1 million, or $(17.32) per share, in the second quarter of
2002. The second quarter loss in 2002 reflected a $259.9 million
increase in the allowance for credit losses and a $42.0 million
charge representing an impairment loss on securities, both
related to the Bank's Argentine portfolio.

June 30, 2003 year-to-date results amount to net income of $77.5
million, versus a $299.7 million loss for the same period in
2002. Earnings per share were $4.32 for the six months ended June
30, 2003, and a loss of $17.31 for the six months ended June 30,
2002.

Common shares outstanding at the end of the second quarter of
2003 were 39.3 million, reflecting the rights offering completed
on June 27, 2003, compared with 17.3 million common shares
outstanding at June 30, 2002. The earnings per share are based on
the average number of shares outstanding during each period. The
average number of shares outstanding during the second quarter of
2003 was 18.3 million shares, compared to 17.3 million shares
during the second quarter of 2002.

Commenting on the latest quarterly figures, Jose Castaneda, Chief
Executive Officer of BLADEX, said, "The results of the second
quarter of 2003 reflect our success along two critically
important fronts:

First, we completed our capitalization project through a rights
offering that raised $147 million in new capital. Our unique
shareholding composition proved to be a winning combination,
whereby our Latin American government shareholders, along with
the IFC and other multilateral agencies, provided us with support
in the form of more than $100 million in commitments to purchase
any shortfall in demand for the new shares. At the same time our
public shareholders provided us with an equal vote of confidence
on our business model by oversubscribing the rights issue.

Second, during the quarter there was clear evidence of improving
liquidity and value in our Argentine portfolio. On April 23,
2003, we announced the sale of Argentine obligations with a face
value of $166.5 million and later in the quarter we sold an
additional $3 million of Argentine obligations, which resulted in
a reversal of provisions for loan losses and resulting gains of
more than $57 million. It is well worth noting that the ratio of
the Bank's total exposure in Argentine, net of fair value
adjustments of investment securities, and net of the allowance
for credit losses, to stockholders' equity has improved from 1.69
as of June 30, 2002, to 0.64 as of June 30, 2003.

The success of the Bank's business strategies during the quarter
was demonstrated through two critical indicators: first, the
ratio of medium- term, non-trade-related credits (based on
remaining maturities and excluding Argentina) to total
stockholders' equity declined from 76% at the end of the first
quarter of 2003 to 45% at the end of the second quarter of 2003;
and secondly, the amount of short-term trade-related loans
(excluding Argentina) grew by 21% from March 31, 2003 to June 30,
2003.

Funding was also an area where we achieved significant progress
during the quarter. On June 12, we signed a $125 million stand-by
funding agreement with the IFC to fund our trade financing
activities in the Latin American Region, marking the return of
the Bank to medium-term funding markets after more than a year.
The agreement contemplates the signing of two parallel loan
agreements with another multilateral institution and a government
owned financial institution that would increase the aggregate
size of the available financing to $230 million and would permit
its use for medium-term funding. These two additional loan
facilities are being negotiated but there is no assurance they
will be signed.

An important subsequent event, but one that reflected an effort
largely conducted during the second quarter, was BLADEX's
announcement on July 25, 2003 of the strategic alliance
established with Bank of America to provide our clients with
international payment services. This new relationship is tangible
evidence of progress in executing our strategy to diversify and
expand our trade-related product range at minimum cost and risk
to our organization.

Importantly, developments in the second quarter of 2003 had a
positive effect on the Bank's credit ratings. On August 5, 2003,
Fitch upgraded the Bank's long-term rating from BB+ back to an
investment grade rating of BBB- with a "stable" outlook, as well
as our individual rating. On July 2, 2003, Standard and Poor's
raised our "BBB-" investment grade rating outlook from "negative"
to "stable" and, on July 21, 2003, Moody's confirmed the "stable"
outlook for our "Baa3" investment grade rating and upgraded our
Bank Financial Strength Rating. We expect these favorable
developments to have a positive impact on our cost of, and access
to, funding. While gratified by the results achieved during the
second quarter of 2003, we are fully aware of the challenges
ahead in our markets, and have clearly defined plans to address
them. From a macroeconomic and political perspective, we are
operating in a region where volatility remains high and economic
growth is anemic, at best. The resulting slack credit demand by
high quality clients is creating a perverse situation where
margins are shrinking while risk levels remain unchanged.

Our response to this situation is twofold: first, we will
maintain our client-focus and trade finance orientation with a
consistent lending strategy and disciplined underwriting
approach.

Second, in order to reduce our dependency on interest income, we
are continuing to diversify and expand our product range through
strategic agreements such as the one with Bank of America.

Another market reality is significantly impacting our financial
results: unusually low interest rates. Low rates improve the debt
servicing capacity of our clients, even in the context of
challenging conditions in the region, a particularly important
factor in Argentina. However, low interest rates are reducing
earnings on our available capital funds.

Looking forward, we remain convinced that Latin America and
BLADEX will benefit from the recovery in trade volumes expected
to occur once demand on the part of the OECD countries picks up.
Our plan is to be ready with adequate capital, an expanded
product offering, a first-rate client franchise and skilled
people once the turnaround begins.

It is important that investors understand our strategy for
employing our new capital. An immediate consequence of the new
funds was to strengthen our capital ratios. With a Tier 1 ratio
at June 30, 2003 of 36.44%, this objective has unquestionably
been achieved. The second objective of our capital raising effort
was to create a strong base to re-leverage our balance sheet by
deploying additional assets to expand our market share and
improve our top line growth.

BLADEX is modifying its internal structure and marketing
orientation to anticipate the growth we see in the future, but we
will only re-leverage the balance sheet with attention to asset
quality. Should quality credit demand remain lackluster, we will
stay on course, focusing our attention on the management of our
Argentine portfolio and the deployment of new products, until
market conditions are again conducive to prudent growth in our
portfolio", Mr. Castaneda concluded.

SUMMARY ANALYSIS OF OPERATING RESULTS The following table sets
forth the condensed income statements of the Bank for the first
and second quarters of 2003, the second quarter of 2002, and for
the first six months of 2003 and 2002.

- (In $ millions)
                6M02        6M03      2Q02     1Q03       2Q03
Net interest
  income (1)    34.1        27.3      11.0     13.8       13.5
Provision for loan
  losses and
  off-balance
  sheet credit
  risk (2)    -279.9        44.3    -259.9     -0.3       44.6
Commission income,
  expense and other
  charges        5.2         4.3       2.4      2.4        1.8
Derivatives and
Hedging
  activities    -4.6        -1.1      -4.3     -0.8       -0.3
Provision for fair
  Value
  guarantees     0.0         0.0       0.0     -0.1        0.1
Gain on the sale
  of loans, securities
  available for
  sale and foreign
  currency
  exchange (3)   0.2        12.8       0.0      0.0       12.8
Impairment loss
  on
  securities
  (4)          -42.0        -0.9     -42.0      0.0       -0.9
Gain on early
  extinguishment
  of debt (5)    0.0         0.8       0.0      0.0        0.8
Other income     0.1         0.0       0.0      0.0        0.0
Operating
  Expenses     -10.4       -10.0      -5.7     -4.6       -5.4
Loss from operations
  and disposal of
  business
  segment       -2.2         0.0      -1.6      0.0        0.0
Net income    -299.7        77.5    -300.1     10.4       67.1

(1) Includes interest received on non-accruing assets of $1.1
million in 2Q02, $7.0 million in 1Q03, and $6.1 million in 2Q03,
as well as $3.0 million during the first six months of 2002 and
$13.1 million during the first six months of 2003.

(2) Includes a reversal in the provision for loan losses of $44.1
million as a result of the sale of Argentine loans during the
2Q03.

(3) Includes gain on the sale of Argentine bonds of $13.4 million
in the 2Q03.

(4) Includes an $875 thousand decrease in the fair value of an
investment security of an Argentine bank in the 2Q03.

(5) Includes a gain of $789 thousand related to the purchase of a
debt instrument (liability) of the Bank.

BLADEX, with $2.7 billion in assets, is a specialized
multinational bank established to finance trade in the Latin
American and Caribbean region. Its shareholders include central
banks from 23 countries in the region and 142 commercial banks
(from the region, as well as international banks) and private
investors. Its mission is to channel funds for the development of
Latin America and the Caribbean, and to provide integrated
solutions for the promotion of the region's exports. BLADEX is
listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Further investor
information can be found at www.blx.com.

CONTACT:  BLADEX, Head Office
          Calle 50 y Aquilino de la Guardia
          Panama City, Panama
          Attention: Carlos Yap, Senior Vice President, Finance
          Tel. no. (507) 210-858
          E-mail: cyap@blx.com,
                  -or-
          THE GALVIN PARTNERSHIP
          76 Valley Road, Cos Cob, CT 06807
          Attention: William W. Galvin
          Tel. no. (203) 618-9800
          E-mail: wwg@galvinpartners.com



=================================
T R I N I D A D   &   T O B A G O
=================================

BWIA: Airplane Sale Rushed, Union Leader Claims
-----------------------------------------------
Christopher Abraham, president of the Aviation Communications and
Allied Workers Union said that troubled carrier BWIA could have
prevented further losses has it delayed its fleet rationalization
exercise.

"When your finances improve then you change your fleet. They
should have changed their plan. Your expenses would have been
reduced and the aircraft would have been yours and shareholders'
interest would have been protected," Mr. Abraham was quoted by
the Trinidad Guardian as saying.

Mr. Abraham was commenting on BWIA's annual report, which showed
that the fleet restructuring exercise cost the airline some $90
million (US$14 million) in losses. BWIA said that the sale of its
old L-1011s resulted "impairment loss" of more than $55 million
(US$8 million).

The union leader said that although the airline wouldn't have
profited from the airline's sale, the loss would have been less
had it delayed the sale.

The aviation industry was showing signs of recovery late last
year, which would have added to the airline's revenues had it
kept the planes longer, said Mr. Abraham.



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

CANTV: No Intention of Defaulting on Debts
------------------------------------------
Contradicting comments made earlier, CA Nacional Telefonos de
Venezuela (CANTV), the country's largest telephone company, said
it has no intention to default on its foreign debt as it expects
to get dollars.

In a conference call with analysts, CANTV officials said
Venezuela's foreign exchange commission is making more dollars
available and the Company has US$125 million in dollar reserves
outside the country.

"We are working with the exchange agency," CANTV Chief Financial
Officer Armando Yanes said, adding, "We expect to be successful."

Earlier, the Company, which is 28.9% owned by Verizon
Communications Inc., said it might default on some of its US$230
million in debt because of delays by the government in selling
dollars. Venezuela imposed the restrictions in January to protect
foreign reserves after a nationwide strike slashes sales of oil,
the country's largest dollar earner.


CITGO: Exec Dispels Rumors of PdVSA Divestment Plan
---------------------------------------------------
Luis Marin, the newly-appointed president of Petroleos de
Venezuela S.A.'s subsidiary CITGO, met with United States
Department of Energy officials to dispel rumors that Venezuela's
state oil company is thinking of selling CITGO.

"While Citgo isn't planning major expansions of its refining
capacity, it is trying to increase the share of Venezuelan
processed crude and the amount of relatively low-quality heavy
crude it can refine," said Mr. Marin, as quoted by local news
portal Vheadline.Com.

"We need to invest in deep conversion (of heavy crude oil to
lighter oil) in some of the refineries in order to process more
heavy oil ... we have already some plans for the next two years
in the budget," he adds, "PDVSA is honoring all its gasoline
contracts with CITGO, including reformulated gasoline."

The executive said that CITGO plans to invest US$200 million to
increase heavy crude processing capacity at its Lake Charles
(Louisiana) refinery, which averages 320,000 barrel a day. The
company has also laid out plans to upgrade its Corpus Christi
refinery.


PDVSA: Hires New President
--------------------------
Venezuelan state-owned oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA
(PDVSA) now has a new president.

Reuters and Dow Jones reports that President Hugo Chavez Frias
has appointed Infrastructure (Minfra) Minister Diosdado Cabello
to lead PDVSA, replacing Ali Rodriguez Araque.

The reports came out before Sunday, when Cabello's planned
appointment announcement was officially scheduled.

Cabello is described as an engineering professional without any
previous petroleum sector experience but is fervently loyal to
Constitutional rule and the pursuit of Venezuela's new-found
participative democracy.

No reasons have been provided as to why Rodriguez Araque has left
the post but there is speculation he is in lined for a more
important role.



               ***********


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 America 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
written permission of the publishers.

Information contained herein is obtained from sources believed to
be reliable, but is not guaranteed.

The TCR Latin America subscription rate is $575 per half-year,
delivered via e-mail.  Additional e-mail subscriptions for
members of the same firm for the term of the initial subscription
or balance thereof are $25 each.  For subscription information,
contact Christopher Beard at 240/629-3300.


* * * End of Transmission * * *