TCRLA_Public/031007.mbx         T R O U B L E D   C O M P A N Y   R E P O R T E R

                   L A T I N   A M E R I C A
  
          Tuesday, October 7, 2003, Vol. 4, Issue 198

                          Headlines


A R G E N T I N A

AGROPECUARIA: Receiver Ends Credit Verification Process
AHOLD: Fitch Maintains Rating Watch Negative
ALICIA PERRONE: Court Approves Bankruptcy Motion
AXESOR: Court Assigns Receiver For Reorganization
BACK SWING: Submits Reorganization Petition To Court

BANCO RIO: Shareholders Approve Authorized Capital Boost
CAISSA: Court Approves Official Reorganization
CASINOS: Seeks Court's OK For Reorganization
CENTRAL COSTANERA: Cuts New Debt Accord With Mitsubishi
CORREDORES VIALES: Reorganization Converted to Bankruptcy

CTI MOVIL: Slim To Invest $150M In Technology Upgrades
DEMAN: Court Approves Petition For Reorganization
IMPRESSION: Court Orders Bankruptcy
INFORMATION: Credit Verification For Bankruptcy Ends Today
INSTITUTO DON JAIME: Court Expects Individual Reports Today

LINEA 543: Claims Filing Period Ends December 3
PETROBRAS ENERGIA: To Make $8M Interest Payment
SOINCO: Individual Reports Due Today
TEXTIL IMPERIO: Reorganization Ends in Bankruptcy
TRANSPORTADORA PATAGONICA: Receiver Prepares Individual Reports

VISION ARGENTINA: Court Sets Schedule for Bankruptcy Process


B R A Z I L

AES TIETE: Fitch Lowers Certificates Grantor Trust to 'B-'
MRS LOGISTICA: Nears 86Mt Moved Cargo Target
SKY BRASIL: Moody's Downgrades Ratings on $200M Of Notes
USIMINAS: S&P Assigns BBB+ Rating, Affirms Positive Outlook


C O L O M B I A

BANCAFE: Three Groups Contemplating Privatization Move
BAVARIA: Moody's Assigns Ba3 Rating to $400M Bonds
SEVEN SEAS: Updates Reorganization Details, Contract Termination


E C U A D O R

PETROECUADOR: Upstream Unit To Counter Sue Drillfor


J A M A I C A

JPSCO: Unions Signal Willingness to Negotiate Further


M E X I C O

GRUPO TMM: Tax Attorney Files For Review on VAT Ruling
NEGT: Bankruptcy Court Authorizes New Company Name


P E R U

SIDERPERU: Equilibrium Downgrades Rating to Default


V E N E Z U E L A

SIDOR: Expects Boost in DIR After Completing $13.5M Upgrade


     - - - - - - - - - -


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

AGROPECUARIA: Receiver Ends Credit Verification Process
-------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of Buenos Aires-based Agropecuaria Holambra S.R.L. must
have their claims authenticated by the Company's receiver as the
deadline for the verification process expires today. As ordered
by the court, the receiver, Mr. Jorge Gomez, will prepare the
individual reports on the results of the credit check.

The Troubled Company Reporter - Latin America earlier reported
that judge Dr. Garibotto of Buenos Aires' Court No. 2 approved a
petition for bankruptcy filed by the Company's creditor for
nonpayment of debt.

CONTACT:  Agropecuaria Holambra S.R.L.
          5th Floor A
          Ave. Cordoba 1304
          Buenos Aires

          Jorge Gomez
          5th Floor
          Tte. Gral. Juan D. Peron 1558
          Buenos Aires


AHOLD: Fitch Maintains Rating Watch Negative
--------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings, the international rating agency, said on Friday it
was maintaining its Rating Watch Negative status on both the 'BB-
' (BB minus) Senior Unsecured debt and 'B' Short-term ratings of
Koninklijke Ahold N.V. ("Ahold"), the Netherlands-based
international food retailer. The company's news conference on 02
October clarified the group's level of profitability, up until
its FY02 "lost year", but did little to address the issues facing
the group and its ratings.

Fitch's 'BB-' (BB minus) rating for Ahold reflects the view that
the company remains a viable operating entity. However, many of
the reasons for Fitch's Rating Watch Negative remain,
particularly the amount of recent interim secured funding within
the group, together with the control and structural subordination
mechanisms this may afford, the reliance on continued support
from core banks for available credit facilities, and near-term
(including 2005's bulk) debt maturities. It is questionable if
the US Foodservice profit margin can increase from FY02's 1.7%
level. The company has to maximise cash, either from operational
cashflow, sale of activities, or a rights issue. The company does
not expect to report on these issues, or H103's results, until
mid-October.

The company also published its accounts yesterday, clarifying the
level of profitability within the US Foodservice activities for
FY02 and presented (Dutch GAAP) accounting methodologies as to
the value and contingent liabilities of the Ahold group.
Presentation of the audited accounts was one requirement for bank
lines continuing.

The market has yet to see figures on H103's performance and the
on-going effect on sales and profits from a potential working
capital squeeze (due to a loss of confidence), and the
distraction of management from running the business in a
competitive and economic environment that even peers'
operationally fully-focused management has found challenging.

To date, after the reported repayment of the September 2003
EUR0.7 billion convertible, Ahold reports continued use of the
USD1.3bn plus EUR0.6bn secured tranches but no immediate need for
the additional USD0.9bn unsecured facility. YE02 net debt of
EUR11.9bn (not an operating lease-adjusted figure) has reportedly
decreased by a net EUR0.8bn.

CONTACT:  John Hatton
          London
          Phone: +44 (0)20 7417 4283

          Jonathan Pitkanen
          London
          Phone: + 44 (0)20 7417 4201

          Media Relations:
          Alex Clelland
          London
          Phone: +44 20 7417 4222


ALICIA PERRONE: Court Approves Bankruptcy Motion
------------------------------------------------
Judge Ojea Quintana of Buenos Aires Court No. 12, approved a
petition for the bankruptcy of local company Alicia Perrone
Equipamientos S.R.L., reports Argentine newspaper La Nacion. The
Company's creditor, Saul Moises Kleiman, filed the petition on
grounds of the Company's failure to pay its debts to him.

Working with Clerk No. 23, Dr. Perea, the court assigned Mr.
Salvador Militello, as the Company's receiver. He will verify
creditors' claims until November 26 this year. The receiver is
also required to prepare the individual and general reports on
the process. However, the source did not reveal whether the court
has set the deadlines for the submission of these reports.

CONTACT:  Alicia Perrone Equipamientos S.R.L.
          Ave. Cordoba 744
          Buenos Aires

          Salvador Militello
          4th Floor, Room 402
          Tucuman 1506
          Buenos Aires


AXESOR: Court Assigns Receiver For Reorganization
-------------------------------------------------
A petition for reorganization filed by Buenos Aires-based company
Axesor, earned court approval earlier, reports Argentine news
portal Infobae. The city's Court No. 20, which works with Clerk
No. 40, approved the Company's "Concurso Preventivo" motion.

A local accountant, Estudio Cardero, Rojas, Munoz, was assigned
as the Company's receiver. Its tasks include the verification of
credit claims until November 21, and the preparation of the
individual and general reports.

The source, however, did not mention whether the court has chosen
the deadlines for the receiver's reports and the date for the
informative assembly.

CONTACT:  Axesor S.A.
          Bernardo de Irigoyen 722
          Buenos Aires

          Estudio Cardero, Rojas, Munoz
          Doblas 674
          Buenos Aires


BACK SWING: Submits Reorganization Petition To Court
----------------------------------------------------
Argentine tricot maker Back Swing S.A. filed a motion for
"Concurso Preventivo" at Buenos Aires' Court No. 16. Judge
Kolliker Frers handles the Company's case with assistance from
Clerk No. 32, Dr. Yacante, reports local newspaper La Nacion.

If the Company's motion is approved, the Company will undergo
reorganization. A receiver will be assigned to verify creditors'
claims and prepare the required reports. In the meantime, the
source did not mention whether the court is likely to approve the
petition or not.

CONTACT:  Back Swing S.A.
          1st Floor, Room 2
          Nazarre 2953
          Buenos Aires


BANCO RIO: Shareholders Approve Authorized Capital Boost
--------------------------------------------------------
Argentina's Banco Rio de la Plata, a wholly owned subsidiary of
Spanish banking group Banco Santander Central Hispano S.A.,
informed the Buenos Aires Stock Exchange Thursday that it has
gained shareholders' approval to increase its authorized capital
by ARS100 million, relates Dow Jones.

The approval, which came at a shareholder meeting Sept. 30, will
pave the way for the cancellation of its debts with parent Banco
Santander.

Banco Rio will use the additional authorized capital to issue new
shares, which Banco Santander and its subsidiaries are expected
to take as payment on the US$161 million the Argentine unit owes
them. Minority shareholders, who only have a 1% stake in the
Company, will also be able to buy the shares, Banco Rio said in
its filing.

The move is the final stage in the Company's efforts to complete
the refinancing of US$1.5 billion in debt to 45 creditors, says
Dow Jones.

CONTACT:  BANCO RIO DE LA PLATA S.A.
          Bartolome Mitre 480
          1036 Buenos Aires, Argentina
          Phone: +54-14-341-1081-1580
          Fax: +54-14-341-1074-1084
          Home Page: http://www.bancorio.com.ar
          Contacts:
          Ana Patricia B. S. de Sautuola y O'Shea, Chairman
          Jose L. E. Cristofani, Executive Vice Chairman and CEO
          Pablo Caride, Corporate Finance


CAISSA: Court Approves Official Reorganization
----------------------------------------------
Buenos Aires' Court No. 12 approves the petition for
reorganization filed by local company Caissa S.A., according to a
report by Argentine news source Infobae. Clerk No 24 assists the
court on the case.

The Company's creditors are given until November 28 to have their
claims authenticated by the receiver, Mr. Hugo Pantaleo. The
receiver will then prepare the individual reports once the credit
check is through. He is also to prepare a general report after
that, but the source did not reveal whether the court has set the
deadlines for the submission of these reports.

The court has not set the date for the informative assembly,
which is one of the last steps in reorganization.

CONTACT:  Caissa S.A.
          San Martin 201
          Buenos Aires

          Hugo Pantaleo
          Ave Corrientes 1450
          Buenos Aires


CASINOS: Seeks Court's OK For Reorganization
--------------------------------------------
Casinos S.A., based in Mar del Plata, seeks to undergo
reorganization. According to a report by Argentine newspaper La
Nacion, the Company has presented its "Concurso Preventivo"
motion to Court No. 16, under Judge Kolliker Frers. In its
filing, the Company, which operates the Casino Central in Mar del
Plata revealed that it has stopped making debt payments since
April this year.

The province's Clerk No. 31, Dr. Ibarzabal, assists the court on
the case. The source did not mention whether the court is likely
to approve the Company's petition.

CONTACT:  Casinos S.A.
          Boulevard Maritimo 2282
          Mar del Plata

          
CENTRAL COSTANERA: Cuts New Debt Accord With Mitsubishi
-------------------------------------------------------
Argentine thermo generator Central Costanera, a subsidiary of
Endesa Chile, reached a new restructuring deal with Japan's
Mitsubishi Corp., says Dow Jones. The deal, according to
Costanera in a filing with the stock exchange, allows it to
reschedule to a later date the US$16.4 million it was due to
repay Mitsubishi in 2003.

As a result of this new accord, Costanera will face extra
payments of US$4.92 million in December 2006, US$6.54 million in
June 2007 and $4.94 million in December 2007.

Earlier this year, the two sides also reached an accord giving
the Argentine firm until 2006 to pay back some US$18.9 million in
debt it was due to pay in 2002.

In 1996, the Japanese bank lent Costanera US$192.5 million to
build a turnkey 851.2 MW electricity plant at an interest rate of
7.42% per year. The credit was to be repaid over 12 years.
However, after Argentina's peso lost around 70% of its value in
2002, the Company was unable to settle its debts on time.

Apart from the rescheduled debts of 2002 and 2003, the Argentine
utility said it will keep to the original terms of its credit.


CORREDORES VIALES: Reorganization Converted to Bankruptcy
---------------------------------------------------------
Corredores Viales S.A., which is domiciled in the Argentine
province of Quilmes, enters bankruptcy on orders from the
province's Civil and Commercial Tribunal. Local news portal
Infobae relates that the Company was undergoing reorganization.

The province's Court No. 7, which handles the Company's case,
ordered that the credit verifications will be done 'por via
incidental'. The source, however, did not reveal the name of the
receiver assigned nor the deadlines for the filing of the
receiver's reports.

CONTACT:  Corredores Viales S.A.
          Jujuy 807
          Quilmes


CTI MOVIL: Slim To Invest $150M In Technology Upgrades
------------------------------------------------------
Mexican telecom magnate Carlos Slim Helu said he is willing to
invest up to US$150 million in Argentine unit CTI Movil S.A. to
upgrade the Company's technology, Dow Jones reports. Mr. Slim, in
an interview published Friday in local daily Clarin, said he will
use part of the money to give CTI "the most modern plant in the
world, with the most complete services."

In July, Slim's America Movil announced it had secured an option
to acquire Argentina's CTI Movil if creditors write off more than
75% of the Argentine unit's US$1.1 billion debt. Slim told Clarin
that deal is now completed.


DEMAN: Court Approves Petition For Reorganization
-------------------------------------------------
Deman S.R.L., which is based in the Argentine province of
Mendoza, will undergo reorganization after the province's Civil
and Commercial Tribunal approved its motion for "Concurso
Preventivo". Local news source Infobae reports that the
province's Court No. 2 handles the Company's case.

The receiver assigned to the case is Mr. Pedro Ricardo Martinez,
the report adds. He will verify creditors' claims until October
31 this year. After that, he will prepare the individual reports
on the results of the verification process to be passed on March
3 next year.

The court also requires the receiver to prepare a general report
after the individual reports are processed at court. This report
must be submitted on May 26 next year.

The court has also set September 22 next year as the date for the
informative assembly, Infobae adds, without indicating the venue
for the meeting.

CONTACT:  Deman S.R.L.
          Concordia 249
          Guaymallen, Mendoza

          Pedro Ricardo Martinez
          San Juan 1412
          Mendoza


IMPRESSION: Court Orders Bankruptcy
-----------------------------------
Impression S.A., which is domiciled in Buenos Aires, enters
bankruptcy on orders from the city's Court No. 25. Argentine news
source Infobae adds that the city's Clerk No. 50 works with the
court on the case. A local accountant, Mr. Marcos Gonzales, was
assigned as the Company's receiver, the source adds. Creditors
must present their claims to Mr. Gonzales for verification before
the November 20 deadline expires.

The court also requires the receiver to prepare the individual
and general reports on the bankruptcy process. However, the
source did not mention whether the court has set the deadlines
for the submission of these reports. It is expected that the
Company's assets will be liquidated at the end of the bankruptcy
process to reimburse its creditors.

CONTACT:  Impression S.A.
          M Cervantes 1354
          Buenos Aires

          Marcos Gonzales
          Lavalle 1537
          Buenos Aires


INFORMATION: Credit Verification For Bankruptcy Ends Today
----------------------------------------------------------
The bankruptcy of Buenos Aires-based company Information S.A.
proceeds with the Company's receiver preparing the individual
reports. The credit verification process, which establishes the
amount and nature of the Company's debts, is due to end today.

The Company's receiver, Mr. Jorge Vilarino, will prepare the
general report after the individual reports are processed at
court. Local sources, however, did not reveal the deadlines for
the filing of the receiver's reports.

Buenos Aires' Court No. 24 ordered the Company's bankruptcy, the
Troubled Company Reporter - Latin America reported earlier. The
city's Clerk No. 47 works with the court on the case.

CONTACT:  Information S.A.
          Maipu 812
          Buenos Aires

          Jorge Vilarino
          Fonrouge 1246
          Buenos Aires


INSTITUTO DON JAIME: Court Expects Individual Reports Today
-----------------------------------------------------------
The individual reports for the reorganization of Instituto Don
Jaime S.R.L. are due for filing at San Martin's Court No. 9
today, according to an earlier report by the Troubled Company
Reporter - Latin America.

Ms. Norma Alicia Balmes, receiver assigned to the case prepared
the reports after the credit verification process was completed.
She is also required to prepare a general report, which is to be
submitted on November 19, after the individual reports are
processed at court.

CONTACT:  Norma Alicia Balmes
          Mitre 3885
          San Martin


LINEA 543: Claims Filing Period Ends December 3
-----------------------------------------------
Creditors of Argentine company Linea S.R.L. have until December 3
this year to have present their proofs of claim for verification,
according to a report by local news source Infobae. The Company's
receiver, Mr. Bernardino Margolis, will authenticate the claims.

The source adds that Buenos Aires Court No. 15 ruled that the
Company is "Quiebra Decretada". Clerk No. 30 works with the court
on the case. In the meantime, Infobae did not reveal whether the
court has set the deadlines for the submission of the receiver's
reports.

CONTACT:  Linea 543 S.R.L.
          Ave de Mayo 1370
          Buenos Aires

          Bernardino Margolis
          Parana 426
          Buenos Aires


PETROBRAS ENERGIA: To Make $8M Interest Payment
-----------------------------------------------
Argentina's Petrobras Energia told the Buenos Aires stock market
earlier that it was going to pay on Friday [October 3] the US$8-
million interest for the four series of debentures totaling
US$599 million. According to a report released by Business News
Americas, the interest corresponds to the period July 7 to
October 3.

The four series of debentures were issued when Petrobras Energia
was known as Pecom Energia, as part of US$848.6 million
refinancing that extended short-term debt by up to five years.
The refinancing paved the way for Brazil's federal oil company
Petrobras to complete the purchase of Pecom's parent, Perez
Companc.

CONTACT:  Petrobras Energia Participaciones S.A.
          Piso 22
          Maipu1
          Buenos Aires
          Argentina C1084ABA
          Phone: +54 11 4344 6000
          Fax: +54 11 4344 6315
          Home Page: http://www.pecom.com.ar
          Contact:
          Jose Eduardo de Barros Dutra, Chairman
          Nestor Cunat Cervero, Vice Chairman


SOINCO: Individual Reports Due Today
------------------------------------
Ms. Alejandra Aureli, the receiver for Argentine company Soinco
S.A.C.I., must submit the individual reports for the Company's
reorganization today. The reports will focus on the results of
the credit verifications, which ended last August 25.

The Civil and Commercial Tribunal of Cordoba in Argentina earlier
declared the Company bankrupt. The province's Court NO. 7 handles
the case with assistance from Clerk NO. 28. The receiver will
also prepare a general report after the individual reports are
processed at court. The court expects this report to be filed on
November 28 this year.

CONTACT:  Soinco S.A.
          Avenida Estrada 230
          Cordoba

          Alejandra Aureli
          Colon 172
          Cordoba


TEXTIL IMPERIO: Reorganization Ends in Bankruptcy
-------------------------------------------------
Textil Imperio S.R.L., which was undergoing reorganization enters
bankruptcy, reports Argentine news source Infobae. The Civil and
Commercial Tribunal of Rio Cuarto in Cordoba, which issued the
bankruptcy ruling, ordered the credit verification be done "por
via incidental".

The receiver, Mr. Eduardo Pereyra, who will verify creditors'
claims, will also prepare the individual and general reports on
the process. The source, however, did not reveal whether the
court has set the deadlines for the filing of these reports.

Rio Cuarto's Court No. 5 handles the Company' case, Infobae adds.

CONTACT:  Textil Imperio S.R.L.
          Suipacha 151
          Rio Cuarto, Cordoba

          Edgardo Pereyra
          Dean Funes 663
          Rio Cuarto, Cordoba


TRANSPORTADORA PATAGONICA: Receiver Prepares Individual Reports
---------------------------------------------------------------
The credit verification process for the reorganization of Trelew-
based company Transportadora Patagonica S.A. ends today,
according to an earlier report by the Troubled Company Reporter -
Latin America. The Company's receiver, Mr. Daniel Julio, who
authenticated the claims, will prepare the individual reports,
which would focus on the results of the verification process. The
receiver is also required to prepare a general report after the
individual reports are processed at court. However, local sources
did not reveal whether the court has set the deadlines for the
submission of these reports.

The Civil and Commercial Tribunal of Trelew in the Argentine
province of Chubut approved the Company's motion for "Concurso
Preventivo", the TCR-LA earlier said. The province's Court No. 1
and Clerk No. 2 are handling the case.

CONTACT:  Transportadora Patagonica S.A.
          La Rioja 287
          Trelew, Chubut

          Daniel Julio
          Belgrano 581
          Trelew, Chubut


VISION ARGENTINA: Court Sets Schedule for Bankruptcy Process
------------------------------------------------------------
Buenos Aires's Court No. 14, which handles the bankruptcy case of
local company Vision Argentina S.A., has set the deadlines for
the submission of the receiver's reports. Local online news
source Infobae relates that the individual reports are to be
submitted on December 30 this year followed by the general report
on March 12, 2004.

The receiver, Ms. Amelia Marta Iglesias, will prepare the
individual reports after the credit verification process is
completed on November 14 this year. Creditors are required to
present their proofs of claim to the receiver before the said
date.

CONTACT:  Amelia Marta Iglesias
          Pareja 4152
          Buenos Aires



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

AES TIETE: Fitch Lowers Certificates Grantor Trust to 'B-'
----------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has downgraded the AES Tiete Certificates Grantor
Trust (certificates) to 'B-' from 'BB-' and has maintained the
Rating Watch Negative status. The downgrade reflects near term
concerns that expected negotiations between the issuer and
bondholders regarding debt service payments in December 2003 and
possibly, June 2004, hold the potential to result in a distressed
debt exchange and may lead to a further downgrade of the
certificates.

Fitch remains concerned regarding AES IHB Cayman, Ltd.'s (IHB,
the issuer of the certificates) ability to meet all of its
financial obligations scheduled in December 2003, which include
the replenishment of the debt service reserve account (DSRA) of
approximately US$22 million, the repayment of approximately BRL70
million of intercompany debt with AES Tiete S.A. (Tiete), the
operating company, and scheduled interest and principal of US$22
million due under the certificates.

Tiete reported cash balances of BRL212 million (US$73 million) as
of June 2003. After paying approximately BRL88 million (US$30
million) to the Brazilian wholesale electricity market (MAE) in
July 2003, and generating approximately BRL20 million of cash
flow monthly, Tiete should hold estimated cash balances of more
than BRL 180 million. Tiete continues to generate positive cash
flow sufficient to service all of its debt.

Despite having cash on hand at the operating company, Tiete
appears unlikely to be able to upstream sufficient funds via
either a new intercompany loan, as was the case in the past, or
through dividends. The Brazilian sector regulator, Aneel, which
had approved the previous intercompany loan, is not expected to
allow additional loans this time. Until recently, AES and the
Brazilian government had been at odds over the resolution of past
due debt with the state-owned Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento
Economico (BNDES), which had limited government support for AES'
Brazilian entities. Further, while recent monthly inflation has
returned to manageable levels, the accounting impact on Tiete's
income statement is still likely to affect reported net income
and limit the amount of dividends that can be paid. IHB is
therefore unlikely to receive sufficient funds to meet all of its
financial obligations coming due December. To resolve this
situation, the company is expected to negotiate with the
bondholders prior to the December debt service payment due date.

Fitch believes that Tiete's net income levels and IHB's liquidity
situation should improve in 2004 and thereafter as it receives
greater dividends due to the growth in net earnings as the new
purchase power agreement (PPA) with Eletropaulo at higher prices
ramps up through 2006. The PPA provides additional cushion in the
out years, while the minimum coverage was projected to be in the
early years.
  
CONTACT:  Fitch Ratings
          Jason Todd
          Chicago
          Phone: 312-368-3217

          Daniel Kastholm, CFA
          Chicago
          Phone: 312-368-2070

          Jayme Bartling
          Sao Paulo          
          Phone: +55 11-287-3177

          James Jockle(Media Relations)
          Phone: 212-908-0547   
   

MRS LOGISTICA: Nears 86Mt Moved Cargo Target
--------------------------------------------
Brazilian railroad concessionaire MRS Logistica is moving closer
to its goal of moving a total of 86 million tons of cargo this
year. A report by Business News America cited a statement from
the country's transport ministry saying the Company has moved a
total of 63.4 million tons of cargo for the first nine months of
2003.

The increased load from local steelmaker CSN has helped the
Company improve shipping figures. The Company reported a total of
7.72 million tons moved last month and expects to move at least 8
million tons more this month.

The Company has added 32 new locomotives and expects 10 more GE
C30-7 locomotives next week to meet increased demands, BNAmericas
noted.

CSN controls 32.2% of MRS, while Mineracoes Brasileiras Reunidas
has a 32.7% stake, iron ore miner Mineracao 10.4%, steelmaker
Usiminas 10.2% and others 14.5%, the report adds.


SKY BRASIL: Moody's Downgrades Ratings on $200M Of Notes
--------------------------------------------------------
Concluding a review initiated on February 26, 2003, Moody's
Investors Service lowered the rating on US$200 million of senior
secured notes issued by Sky Brasil Servicos Ltda. to Caa2 from
Caa1. At the same time, the ratings agency confirmed the Caa2 and
Ca ratings for Sky Brasil's senior implied and senior unsecured
ratings, respectively. The rating outlook remains negative.

The downgrade of Sky Brasil's senior secured debt rating reflects
mainly on Moody's reduced expectations with regard to the
Company's ability to service its debt as a stand-alone entity
after the recent conclusion of Sky Brasil's negotiations with its
programming providers.

The ratings continue to principally reflect Moody's expectation
that the Company's balance sheet may need to be restructured,
that current and likely projected operations are inadequate in
terms of supporting the present capitalization structure, and
that credit losses may subsequently ensue over the forward rating
horizon.

More specifically, the ratings incorporate the Company's
continuing negative free cash flow and its dependence on
uncommitted equity sponsor capital contributions from News Corp
and Liberty to fund debt service and transponder lease payments,
in addition to near term refinancing risk associated with the
maturity of its senior secured debt in August 2004.

The ratings also reflect the likely continued lack of capital
contributions from Globopar, and an expected recovery rate for
all existing obligations of less than full value in an event of
default scenario, particularly if further support from equity
sponsors is not forthcoming.

The negative outlook reflects Moody's concerns regarding the
Company's unclear strategy for the August 5, 2004 maturity date
on its Senior Secured Notes.

As of June 30, 2003, SKY Brasil had US$441 million in total debt,
with US$209 million related to the senior secured notes due 2004
and US$232 million related to PanAmSat lease annuity financing
for satellite transponders.

Headquartered in Sao Paulo, SKY Brasil Servicos Ltda. is the
leading direct-to-home pay television service provider in Brazil
serving approximately 760,000 subscribers.


USIMINAS: S&P Assigns BBB+ Rating, Affirms Positive Outlook
-----------------------------------------------------------
Standard and Poor's took various rating actions on Brazilian flat
steelmaker Usiminas, reports Business News Americas. The ratings
agency assigned a BBB+ rating to the BRL240 million (US$83mn) in
debentures issued by the Belo Horizonte-based steelmaker's
subsidiary Sao Paulo-based Cosipa. The debentures mature
September 2007. S&P also changed Usiminas' outlook to positive
from negative.

At the same time, S&P reaffirmed Usiminas' BBB+ corporate credit
rating and the BBB rating for Usiminas' BRL100-million real
debenture issue maturing in November 2003.

The rating actions, according to S&P, reflect Usiminas' strong
market position in Brazil's steel industry, competitive cash
structure, solid operational profitability and strong cashflow.
However, the steelmaker's high debt position and short-term debt
repayment profile could push the ratings downward, the ratings
agency indicated.

CONTACT:  Breno Julio de Melo Milton
          bmilton@usiminas.com.br
          Tel: (55 31) 3499-8710

          Paulo Esteves
          paulo.esteves@thomsonir.com.br
          Tel: (55 11) 3897-6466



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

BANCAFE: Three Groups Contemplating Privatization Move
------------------------------------------------------
Three groups have expressed their interests in the upcoming
privatization of Colombian state bank Bancafe. The interested
groups, according to local news service La Nota, are the local
Gilinski family and fellow Colombian group Sarmiento. The third
one is an international group, which has no direct presence in
Colombia.

Business News Americas recalls that Bancafe was intervened in
1999 due to severe financial deterioration and Colombia's deposit
insurance agency Fogafin took over the bank that same year. The
insurance agency currently holds 99.99% of the bank's equity and
has spent a lot of money cleaning up and streamlining Bancafe
since its take-over.

Now, the Colombian government is bent on selling Bancafe in the
short-term, and the International Finance Corporation has
announced it is considering investing up to US$20 million in a
minority stake to help attract interest in the sale. IFC's board
is slated to make a final decision on whether to invest in
Bancafe later this month.

The Colombian government has hired CSFB and local investment bank
Inverlink to handle the upcoming sale of Bancafe. Baker &
McKenzie Bogota was also hired as legal advisor.

CONTACT:  BANCAFE
          Street 28 Not 13 To 15
          Bogota District of Colombia
          Phone:  5600999 EXT. 4338
          E-mail:  ma.pulido@bancafe.com.co
          Fax:  336 76 77
          Home Page: www.bancafe.com
          Contact:
          Pedro Nel Ospina Santamaria, Legal Representative


BAVARIA: Moody's Assigns Ba3 Rating to $400M Bonds
--------------------------------------------------
Moody's assigned a first-time rating of Ba3 to Colombian beer
producer Bavaria S.A.'s proposed seven-year, US$400-million
senior unsecured bonds. The rating outlook is stable.

The Ba3 rating, said Moody's, is based on the Company's solid
market leadership positions in all of its countries of operation:
Colombia (98% share), Peru (99% share), Ecuador (95% share), and
Panama (80% share). These dominant positions translate into price
leadership and result in generally strong and stable cash flows.

However, Bavaria has incurred a significant amount of debt while
pursuing its growth strategy, much of which is relatively short-
tenured, said Moody's

Total debt to EBITDA was about three times in 2002 or 3.5 times
when adjusted for guarantees. Debt represented more than 100% of
2002 pro-forma revenues. A key goal of the proposed financing is
to lengthen the firm's debt maturity profile. While Moody's does
not see significant integration risk arising from the acquisition
of well-established operations in other countries, the growth
strategy reflects a deviation from the historic organic growth
pattern of the Company, and represents new challenges for the
management team, including those of managing its more levered
financial profile.

The stable rating outlook assumes that the Company will continue
to generate solid cash flows from its markets and that it will
reduce debt and improve its debt protection measures,
notwithstanding certain planned purchases of minority interests.

Bogota-based Bavaria is the second largest beer producer in Latin
America. It also produces and sells soft drinks, malt beverages,
bottled water and juices.


SEVEN SEAS: Updates Reorganization Details, Contract Termination
----------------------------------------------------------------
Seven Seas Petroleum Inc. announced Friday that the Company has
received notice from Ecopetrol confirming termination of the Deep
Dindal Association Contract. The Company must meet statutory
obligations with the Ministry of Mines and Environment of
Colombia before plugging and abandoning the well. The Company has
escrowed the necessary funds to cover budgeted plugging and
abandonment costs.

As previously announced, the Company has no source of cash flow
and is working to create value from several contingent assets for
the benefit of its creditors, whom the Company owes over
$150,000,000. Pursuant to the Plan of Reorganization approved by
the bankruptcy court, effective August 14, 2003, all secured,
unsecured and administrative claims will be paid before the
Company's shareholders.

The contingent assets consist of potential recoveries from
litigation against the Company's former directors and officers,
historical net operating losses in the Company's Colombian
subsidiaries, and the Company's estimated 2003 Colombian tax
refund. Value of the contingent assets is highly speculative and
it is uncertain whether any of the contingent assets will result
in recoveries for the Company's creditors.

Even if Seven Seas is successful in obtaining maximum value for
each of the contingent assets, it currently appears unlikely that
there will be any recovery for the Company's shareholders.

CONTACT:  Seven Seas Petroleum Inc.
          Daniel Drum, Investor Relations
          Phone: +1-713-622-8218

          Home Page: http://www.sevenseaspetro.com/



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

PETROECUADOR: Upstream Unit To Counter Sue Drillfor
---------------------------------------------------
Just days after Ecuadorian oil field services company Drillfor
started legal proceedings against state-owned upstream company
Petroproduccion for suspending a US$50-million contract,
Petroproduccion revealed plans to counter sue Drillfor.

Petroproduccion, state oil company Petroecuador's production
subsidiary, awarded the contract to Drillfor in August. The
contract involved hiring two rigs from Drillfor to renew drilling
activities in the Shushufindi and Lago Agrio oil fields.

However, Petroproduccion annulled the contract, claiming that the
Drillfor rigs did not pass its technical inspections. This
angered Drillfor, which subsequently filed a suit against
Petroproduccion. Drillfor CEO Pablo Olaciregui called
Petroproduccion's reason as just a "pretext" not to sign the
contract.

Now, Petroproduccion is planning to counter sue Drillfor for loss
of income during the first six months of 2003. The Company said
it was unable to drill any wells during this period because a
legal dispute with Drillfor prevented it from hiring another
company.



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

JPSCO: Unions Signal Willingness to Negotiate Further
-----------------------------------------------------
Unions at Jamaica Public Service Company (JPSCo) maintained their
diplomacy despite their disappointment to the Company's decision
to appeal a ruling by the Industrial Disputes Tribunal on
retroactive payments. RadioJamaica relates that the unions have
indicated in a letter to JPSCo that they are willing to resume
wage negotiations with the management on behalf of the Company's
employees.

The meeting, scheduled for Thursday, October 9, will be held
despite differences involving JPSCo's management and unions over
a reclassification exercise at the company.

The unions representing the JPSCo's more than one thousand
employees announced that they are disappointed with the
management's decision to contest the IDT ruling. They believe
that the Company's decision to take the matter to court was in an
effort to avoid paying the workers money, which the IDT said they
were due. Even so, the unions agreed not to resort to industrial
action.



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

GRUPO TMM: Tax Attorney Files For Review on VAT Ruling
------------------------------------------------------
Grupo TMM, S.A. announced that, in connection with the
reimbursement of TFM, S.A. de C.V. (TFM)'s Value Added Tax
ordered by the Mexican Fiscal Court on August 13, a ruling which
was issued to comply with the judgment (ejecutoria de amparo) of
the Federal Court of the First Circuit dated June 11, 2003, the
Tax Attorney of the Mexican Government (Procuraduria Fiscal de la
Federacion) has filed for a review of the ruling.

TMM's legal advisors will evaluate the contents of this review
request and its legal basis. The company will provide additional
information when it is available.

Headquartered in Mexico City, Grupo TMM is a Latin American
multimodal transportation company. Through its branch offices and
network of subsidiary companies, Grupo TMM provides a dynamic
combination of ocean and land transportation services. Grupo TMM
also has a significant interest in TFM, which operates Mexico's
Northeast railway and carries over 40 percent of the country's
rail cargo. Grupo TMM's web site address is www.grupotmm.com and
TFM's web site is www.tfm.com.mx.

CONTACT:  Grupo TMM
          Brad Skinner, Senior Vice President
          Investor Relations
          Phone: 011-525-55-629-8725
                 203-247-2420
          Email: brad.skinner@tmm.com.mx

          Marco Provencio
          Media Relations, Proa/StructurA
          Phone: 011-525-55-629-8708
                 011-525-55-442- 4948
          Email: mp@proa.structura.com.mx

          Dresner Corporate Services
          (general investors, analysts and media)
          Kristine Walczak
          Phone: 312-726-3600
          Email: kwalczak@dresnerco.com


NEGT: Bankruptcy Court Authorizes New Company Name
--------------------------------------------------
National Energy & Gas Transmission, Inc. (NEGT) announced Friday
that the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Maryland has
authorized this new company name. Formerly known as PG&E National
Energy Group, the change reflects NEGT's pending separation from
its parent, PG&E Corporation (NYSE: PCG).

While the change is immediate and the company is now phasing in
the new name, NEGT will not become legally separated from PG&E
Corporation until NEGT emerges from bankruptcy and its Plan of
Reorganization (POR) is effective. If implemented, PG&E
Corporation's equity interest in NEGT would be eliminated.

The company's subsidiaries also have changed their names to
delete references to PG&E. The new names include Gas Transmission
Northwest Corporation (formerly PG&E Gas Transmission, Northwest
Corporation), which is not in bankruptcy.

The company's other major subsidiary, USGen New England, Inc. did
not change its name. USGenNE filed Chapter 11 in July and its
case is being separately administered.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md, NEGT voluntarily filed for Chapter
11 on July 8, 2003, as part of its ongoing restructuring efforts.
The company has more than 7,300 megawatts of generation including
a mix of natural gas, coal/oil, hydroelectric, waste coal and
wind power at numerous facilities across the country. With more
than 1,350 miles of gas pipelines, the company's Pacific
Northwest system has the ability to transport 2.9 million cubic
feet of natural gas per day from cost-competitive abundant
supplies in Western Canada to markets in California, Nevada and
the Pacific Northwest. The company also owns the 80-mile North
Baja pipeline in Southern California, which has capacity to ship
500 million cubic feet of natural gas from U.S. producing regions
to markets in Northern Mexico and Southern California.

CONTACT:  National Energy & Gas Transmission, Inc.
          Natalie Wymer, +1-301-280-5654



=======
P E R U
=======

SIDERPERU: Equilibrium Downgrades Rating to Default
---------------------------------------------------
Peruvian credit rating agency Equilibrium downgraded financially
troubled steel company Siderperu to D from CC, relates Business
News Americas. The rating agency attributed the action to
Siderperu's failure to make a principal payment on a bond issue
by the September 28 deadline.

On Wednesday, Siderperu told the Conasev regulator that it was
paying or making available to its creditors US$1.57 million,
including US$72,323 for interest payments on the bonds for the
three months ending September 30. But according to Equilibrium
analysts, Siderperu had 90 days from June 30 to make a principal
payment on the bonds and it has failed to do so.

The good news for Siderperu is that competition regulator
Indecopi has agreed to allow a creditors' meeting to go ahead to
discuss rescheduling debts that had already been restructured
once under an agreement reached with lenders in April last year.
But according to an analyst, who asked not to be named, no date
has yet been set for the meeting.

In July this year, Indecopi turned down the request from
Siderperu, but "on further reflection" the regulator has changed
its stance, the analyst told Business News Americas.

The Company's proposal included postponing payments to creditors
due on June 30, September 30 and December 30, Siderperu said
previously.



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

SIDOR: Expects Boost in DIR After Completing $13.5M Upgrade
-----------------------------------------------------------
Sidor is forecasting its direct reduced iron (DRI) capacity to
reach 4.2Mt/y of iron for use in steelmaking after the Company
did some technology upgrades on module C at its Midrex II plant,
Business News Americas reports. According to a company
spokesperson, Sidor invested US$13.5 million in the upgrades.

Puerto Ordaz-based Sidor is 60% owned by the Amazonia consortium,
made up of Mexico's Hylsamex of the Alfa group and Tamsa of the
Techint Group; Argentina's Siderar, also of the Techint group;
Usiminas of Brazil and Venezuela's Sivensa. State conglomerate
CVG owns the remaining 40%



               ***********


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 * * *