TCRLA_Public/040616.mbx         T R O U B L E D   C O M P A N Y   R E P O R T E R

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

             Wednesday, June 16, 2004, Vol. 5, Issue 118

                            Headlines

A R G E N T I N A

COINDEL: Court Orders Liquidation
COMPANIA LACTEA: Verification Deadline Approaches
CONDUCTIL: Initiates Bankruptcy Proceedings
EXPRESO ANGELICA: Court Approves Concurso Motion
FRANCISCO SANCHEZ E HIJOS: Liquidates Assets to Pay Debts

GALTRUST I: Fitch Places Financial Trusts' Ratings at Junk Level
GARAVAGLIA Y CIA: Enters Bankruptcy on Court Orders
GRYNER: Proceeds to Bankruptcy
HEY DI ARGENTINA: Enters Bankruptcy on Court Orders
IEBA: $230M of Corporate Bonds Remain at Junk Level

IN & OUT: Credit Verification Continues
INVESTMENT TERMS: Court Orders Liquidation
JUAN CARLOS HERRERO: Verification Deadline Fixed
LECTRA: Court Issues Bankruptcy Ruling
NAPOLES DEL SUD: Court Declares Company Bankrupt

ORENGO: Court Favors Creditor's Bankruptcy Petition
PETROBRAS ENERGIA: Oil Production Down in May
TECNOLASER: Judge Approves Bankruptcy
TELECOM/AGUAS/DISCO: Judge Dismisses Probe Into Execs
TELEFONICA DE ARGENTINA: Robbery Leaves Clients Without Service

VIPLAN: Submits Extra-Judicial Settlement Proposal
VIRTU: Bankruptcy Process Begins By Court Order

* Another Bondholder Group Shuns Argentine Debt Offer


B E R M U D A

FOSTER WHEELER: Launches Equity for Debt Exchange Offer


B R A Z I L

AHOLD: Q1 2004 Results Negatively Impacted By Divestments
GERDAU: Enters New Phase in Gerdau Acominas Restructuring


M E X I C O

BANSI: S&P Affirms Ratings; Outlook Stable
EL INDEPENDIENTE: Publication Suspended After Huge Losses
GRUPO IUSACELL: Presents Information on Syndicated Credit
HYLSAMEX: To Raise $150M In Capital
SATMEX: Debt Accord With Creditors Nearing Completion

XIGNUX: S&P Affirms Ratings; Outlook Negative


T R I N I D A D   &   T O B A G O

CDC: Striking Workers To Appear Before Industrial Court

     -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -

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

COINDEL: Court Orders Liquidation
---------------------------------
Coindel S.A.I.C.F.I. y A.G. is preparing to close its operations
following the bankruptcy ruling issued by the Buenos Aires Civil
and Commercial Tribunal. The declaration effectively prohibits
the Company from administering its assets, control of which will
be transferred to a court-appointed trustee.

Infobae reports that the court assigned the accounting firm
Estudio Soto, Torresin, to serve as trustees. The firm will be
reviewing creditors' proofs of claims until August 27, 2004. The
verified claims will be the basis for the individual reports to
be presented for court approval on September 24, 2004.
Afterwards, the trustee will also submit a general report on
November 8, 2004.

CONTACT:  Coindel S.A.I.C.F.I. y A.G.
          Talcahuano 439
          Buenos Aires

          Estudio Soto, Torresin, Trustee
          French 2394
          Buenos Aires


COMPANIA LACTEA: Verification Deadline Approaches
-------------------------------------------------
The verification of claims for the Compania Lactea Argentina
S.A. bankruptcy will end on August 23, 2004 according to news
source Infobae.

Creditors with claims against the bankrupt company must present
proof of the liabilities to Mr. Ernesto Iob, the court-appointed
trustee, before the said deadline.

The bankruptcy process will conclude with the liquidation of the
Company's assets to pay its creditors.

CONTACT: Mr. Ernesto Iob, Trustee
         Presidente Peron 1186
         Buenos Aires


CONDUCTIL: Initiates Bankruptcy Proceedings
-------------------------------------------
A Buenos Aires Court has declared Conductil S.A.C.I.F.I.A.
bankrupt, reports Infobae. This declaration automatically
divests the Company of its assets, which would be eventually
sold to repay its debts.  

Accounting firm Chiaia Stoltzing & Asociados, court-appointed
trustees, will verify creditors' claims until August 17, 2004.
Creditors who fail to present their claims for validation cannot
participate in the payments that will be made once the Company's
assets are liquidated.

CONTACT: Chiaia Stoltzing & Asociados, Trustees
         Sarmiento 1574
         Buenos Aires


EXPRESO ANGELICA: Court Approves Concurso Motion
------------------------------------------------
Judge di Noto of Buenos Aires Court No. 15 approved a petition
for reorganization filed by Expreso Angelica S.A. According to a
notice from Argentine daily La Nacion, the transport company
claims assets of US$891,398.09 and liabilities totaling
US$986,919.35

Mr. Hector Garcia, the court-appointed trustee, will verify
claims forwarded by creditors until August 24, 2004. After
verifying the claims, the trustee will then submit the
individual and general reports to court. Dates for submission of
these reports are yet to be disclosed.

Dr. Tevez, Clerk No. 29, assists the court on the case.

CONTACT: Expreso Angelica S.A.
         Almirante Segui 309
         Buenos Aires

         Mr. Hector Garcia, Trustee
         Montevideo 734
         Buenos Aires

          
FRANCISCO SANCHEZ E HIJOS: Liquidates Assets to Pay Debts
---------------------------------------------------------
Francisco Sanchez e Hijos S.R.L. will begin liquidating its
assets following the pronouncement of Buenos Aires Civil and
Commercial Tribunal that the Company is bankrupt, Infobae
reports.

The ruling places the Company under the supervision of court-
appointed trustee, Ms. Nora Cristina Roger. The trustee will
verify creditors' proofs of claim until August 23, 2004. The
validated claims will be presented in court as individual
reports on October 4, 2004.

Ms. Roger will also submit a general report, containing a
summary of the company's financial status as well as relevant
events pertaining to the bankruptcy, on November 15, 2004.

The bankruptcy process will end with the disposal of company
assets in favor of its creditors.

CONTACT: Francisco Sanchez e Hijos S.R.L.
         Cramer 2175
         Buenos Aires

         Mr. Nora Cristina Roger
         Hipolito Yrigoyen 1349
         Buenos Aires


GALTRUST I: Fitch Places Financial Trusts' Ratings at Junk Level
----------------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Argentina Calificadora de Riesgo S.A. assigned junk
ratings to a total of US$400 million worth of financial trusts
issued by Galtrust I.

On its Web site, Argentina's securities regulator, the Comision
Nacional de Valores (CNV), reveals that Fitch assigned a
`C(arg)' rating to US$200 million worth of financial trusts
described as "Certificados de Participacion" and a `CCC(arg)'
rating to US$200 million worth of financial trusts described as
"Titulos de Deuda Clase B."

The maturity dates of both issues were not disclosed.

A `C(arg)' rating indicates a highly uncertain capacity for
timely payment of financial commitments relative to other
issuers or issues in the same country. Capacity for meeting
financial commitments is solely reliant upon a sustained,
favorable business and economic environment, said Fitch.

A `CCC(arg)' rating denotes an extremely weak credit risk
relative to other issues in the same country. Capacity for
meeting financial commitments is solely reliant upon sustained,
favorable business or economic developments.
  

GARAVAGLIA Y CIA: Enters Bankruptcy on Court Orders
---------------------------------------------------
A Buenos Aires court declared Garavaglia y Cia S.A. bankrupt
after the Company defaulted on its debt payments. The bankruptcy
order effectively places the Company's affairs as well as its
assets under the control of court-appointed Trustee, Mr. Alfredo
Ruben Dario Rodriguez.

As the Trustee, Mr. Rodriguez is tasked with verifying the
authenticity of claims presented by the Company's creditors. The
verification phase is ongoing until August 30, 2004.

CONTACT: Garavaglia y Cia S.A.
         25 de Mayo 196
         Buenos Aires

         Mr. Alfredo Ruben Dario Rodriguez, Trustee
         Marcelo T de Alvear 1775
         Buenos Aires

  
GRYNER: Proceeds to Bankruptcy
------------------------------
Buenos Aires-based Gryner S.A. enters the bankruptcy process
after a city court ordered the Company's liquidation, states
Infobae. The bankruptcy pronouncement transfers control of the
Company's assets to Ms. Eva Rodriguez, the court-appointed
trustee.

CONTACT: Ms. Eva Roriguez, Trustee
         Presidente Peron 1509
         Buenos Aires


HEY DI ARGENTINA: Enters Bankruptcy on Court Orders
---------------------------------------------------
Buenos Aires Civil and Commercial Tribunal declared Hey di
Argentina S.A. bankrupt after the Company defaulted on its debt
payments. The bankruptcy order effectively places the Company's
affairs as well as its assets under the control of court-
appointed Trustee, Mr. Roberto Alfredo Mazzarella.

As the Trustee, Mr. Mazarella is tasked with verifying the
authenticity of claims presented by the Company's creditors.
Infobae states that the verification phase is ongoing until
September 22, 2004.

Following claims verification, the trustee will submit the
individual reports based on the forwarded claims for final
approval by the court on November 5, 2004. A general report will
also be submitted on December 17, 2004.

CONTACT:  Mr. Roberto Alfredo Mazzarella, Trustee
          Laprida 1411
          Buenos Aires

          
IEBA: $230M of Corporate Bonds Remain at Junk Level
---------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's International Ratings, Ltd. Sucursal Argentina
maintains an `raD' on a total of US$230 million of corporate
bonds issued by Inversora Electrica de Buenos Aires S.A. (IEBA)

According to the CNV, the rating applies to US$130 million of
bonds described as" Obligaciones Negociables Simples no
convertibles en acciones", which will come due Sep. 16 this
year.

The rating also affects US$100 million of " Obligaciones
Negociables Simples no convertibles en acciones", which expired
on Sep. 16, 2002.

The rating action is based on IEBA's financial status as of
March 31, 2004.

S&P said that an `raD' rating is assigned when it is in payment
default or if the obligor has filed for bankruptcy. The rating
may also be used when principal payments are not made on the due
date even if the applicable grace period has not expired, unless
the ratings agency believes that such payments will be made
during such grace period.


IN & OUT: Credit Verification Continues
---------------------------------------
The submission of proofs of claim for the creditors of bankrupt
Argentine company In & Out S.R.L. will continue until August 3,
2004. Infobae states that creditors should present the claims to
Mr. Juan Carlos Rico, the court-appointed trustee, before the
deadline to qualify for the post-liquidation payments.

CONTACT:  Mr. Juan Carlos Rico, Trustee
          Viamonte 1546
          Buenos Aires


INVESTMENT TERMS: Court Orders Liquidation
---------------------------------------------
A Buenos Aires Judge ordered the liquidation of Investment Terms
S.A. after the Company defaulted on its debt payments, Infobae
reveals.

In line with the bankruptcy order, the court-appointed trustee,
Mr. Jorge Juan Gerhkovich, will verify creditors' proofs of
claim until August 6, 2004.

The verified claims will serve as basis for the individual
reports to be submitted in court on September 20, 2004. The
submission of the general report follows on November 2, 2004.

CONTACT: Mr. Juan Gerchkovich, Trustee
         Lavalle 1882
         Buenos Aires


JUAN CARLOS HERRERO: Verification Deadline Fixed
------------------------------------------------
Ms. Norma Elida Fistzen, court-appointed trustee for the Juan
Carlos Herrero S.A. bankruptcy case, will be accepting
creditors' proofs of claim for verification until August 30,
2004.

Analyzing these claims is important because the outcome of the
process will determine the amount each creditor will get after
all the assets of the Company are liquidated.

The case will conclude with the sale of the Company's assets in
order to pay its creditors.

CONTACT:  Ms. Norma Elida Fistzen, Trustee
          Viamonte 1446
          Buenos Aires


LECTRA: Court Issues Bankruptcy Ruling
--------------------------------------
Lectra S.A. will now enter bankruptcy after a Buenos Aires court
declared it "Quiebra," reports Infobae. The court named Ms.
Haydee Nelida Grumblatt de Nobile as trustee. She will verify
creditors' claims until July 15, 2004.

Following claims verification, the trustee will submit the
individual reports, which were prepared based on the
verification results, to the court on September 10, 2004. The
general report is due for submission on October 25, 2004.

The Company's bankruptcy case will close with the liquidation of
its assets to pay its creditors.

CONTACT:  Ms. Haydee Nelida Grumblatt de Nobile, Trustee
          Felipe Vallese 1195
          Buenos Aires


NAPOLES DEL SUD: Court Declares Company Bankrupt
------------------------------------------------
Napoles del Sud S.R.L. begins the bankruptcy process after a
Buenos Aires Court ordered the Company's liquidation, reveals
Infobae. The court assigned Ms. Raquel Steinhaus as trustee for
the proceedings. She is to verify creditors' claims until
September 7, 2004.

Creditors who fail to have their claims validated before the
deadline will be disqualified from receiving any payments to be
made after the Company's assets are liquidated.

The individual reports, which are due on October 19, 2004, are
to be prepared upon completion of the verification process. The
court also requires the trustee to prepare a general report and
file it on November 29, 2004. This report contains a summary of
the results in the individual reports.

CONTACT: Napoles del Sud S.R.L.
         Pacheco de Melo 2432
         Buenos Aires

         Ms. Raquel Steinhaus, Trustee
         Paraguay 577
         Buenos Aires


ORENGO: Court Favors Creditor's Bankruptcy Petition
---------------------------------------------------
Mr. Miguel Eboli successfully petitioned for the liquidation of
Orengo S.A. after Judge Dieuzeide of Buenos Aires Court No. 1
declared the Company bankrupt. La Nacion states that Mr. Eboli
sought for the Company's bankruptcy after the latter failed to
pay debts amounting to US$35,516.13.

With the court's order, the troubled food products distributor
will now start the bankruptcy process under the direction of Ms.
Marta Linares, the trustee.

Creditors must submit proofs of the Company's indebtedness to
the trustee before August 17, 2004 for authentication. Failure
to do so will mean a disqualification from the payments that
will be made after the Company's assets are liquidated.

Dr. Galli, Clerk No. 2, assists the court on the case, which
will end in the liquidation of all of its assets.

CONTACT: Orengo S.A.
         Cerrito 836
         Buenos Aires

         Ms. Marta Linares, Trustee
         Parana 145
         Buenos Aires


PETROBRAS ENERGIA: Oil Production Down in May
---------------------------------------------
Petrobras Energia SA, the Argentine unit of Brazilian oil giant
Petroleo Brasiliero SA, reported a reduction in its oil and gas
output last month, reports Dow Jones Newswires

The Company, in a filing to the local stock exchange, said it
produced only 167,800 daily equivalent oil barrels in May,
slightly lower than the previous month's 173,400. Oil production
in May was 118,000 daily barrels, compared with 125,600 barrels
in April and 114,700 barrels in May 2003, the filing said.

The filing showed that production in Argentina and Venezuela
accounted for almost all of the oil production decline, with
Argentine output dipping 4,100 barrels daily and the Company's
Venezuelan production dropping 1,800 barrels.

The filing didn't give reasons for the decline, says Dow Jones.
However, with Argentine hiking export duties on oil sales,
President Nestor Kirchner heavily criticizing oil companies for
an energy crisis and the government successfully pressing
companies to keep domestic fuel prices frozen, executives may
have decided to hold back output until the situation settled.

However, reduced output doesn't necessarily mean the Company saw
reduced revenue last month.

Production of gas rose in May, with 49,800 daily oil equivalent
barrels produced compared with 47,800 in April. Production in
Argentina rose in May to 36,700 daily barrels from 35,500 in
April.

CONTACTS:  Daniel E. Rennis
           E-mail: drennis@petrobrasenergia.com
           Alberto Jankowski
           E-mail: ajankows@petrobrasenergia.com
           Tel: (5411) 4344-6655


TECNOLASER: Judge Approves Bankruptcy
-------------------------------------
Tecnolaser S.A. was declared bankrupt after Judge Garibotto of
Buenos Aires Court No. 2 endorsed the petition of Electro
Tucuman S.A. for the Company's liquidation. La Nacion reports
that Electro Tucuman has claims totaling US$4,389.76 against the
insolvent construction company.

The court assigned Mr. Fernando Aquilino to supervise the
liquidation process as trustee. He will validate creditors'
proofs of claims until August 13, 2004.

CONTACT: Tecnolaser S.A.
         Gallardo 484
         Buenos Aires

         Mr. Fernando Aquilino, Trustee
         Lavalle 1459
         Buenos Aires
         

TELECOM/AGUAS/DISCO: Judge Dismisses Probe Into Execs
-----------------------------------------------------
Executives of Argentine firms Telecom Argentina, Aguas
Argentinas and Disco, who have been called to testify in a probe
into suspected tax evasion by the companies, are now off the
hook.

Dow Jones Newswires reports that lower court Judge Julio Speroni
dismissed the investigation into executives at the three
companies on Friday after declaring there was a lack of
evidence.

Two years ago, Argentina's tax agency AFIP, denounced suspected
evasion by the three companies, accusing the firms of using fake
billing to avoid paying income tax.

Previously, a source close to Disco said the retailer could have
unwittingly been on the receiving end of fake bills from
fraudulent companies and thus would be innocent of any tax
evasion charges.

The probe will continue into officials from some of the other
companies.

Telecom Argentina, one of the country's top two telephone
companies, is majority owned by Telecom Italia Spa and W de
Argentina, an affiliate of Argentinean investment company Los W
group.

Embattled waterworks concessionaire Aguas Argentinas is a unit
of French company Suez (SZE). The Company recently signed a
transitional agreement with the Argentine government committing
it to invest ARS242 million this year and requiring its parent
company to suspend a claim against Argentina in the World Bank's
arbitration tribunal.

Supermarket chain Disco, on the other hand, is a unit of the
troubled Dutch retail giant Royal Ahold NV. The unit is on the
process of being sold to Chilean retailer Cencosud.

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

          DISCO S.A.
          Larrea 847, Piso 1
          1117 Buenos Aires, Argentina
          Phone: +54-11-4964-8000
          Fax: +54-11-4964-8076
          Home Page: http://www.disco.com.ar


TELEFONICA DE ARGENTINA: Robbery Leaves Clients Without Service
---------------------------------------------------------------
Robbery of copper wire has left 381,000 clients of fixed-line
provider Telefonica de Argentina without service since the
beginning of the year, reports Dow Jones Newswires.

Telefonica de Argentina revealed 180 tons of copper telephone
wire, or about 68,000 kilometers, have been stolen so far this
year, with 85% of those thefts taking place in the suburbs of
Buenos Aires.

The Company said it "has intensified preventive measures," from
modifying the heights of telephone poles to installing alarms,
to ensure that the number of clients without service doesn't
reach the 1 million-plus levels of 2002. That year was the peak
of Argentina's economic crisis, which had provoked a widespread
crime wave.

CONTACT:  TELEFONICA DE ARGENTINA
          Tucuman 1, 18th Floor, 1049
          Buenos Aires, Argentina
          Phone: (212) 688-6840
          Home Page: http://www.telefonica.com.ar


VIPLAN: Submits Extra-Judicial Settlement Proposal
--------------------------------------------------
The settlement plan drafted by Viplan S.A. for its creditors is
due for court ratification. Infobae announces that all
oppositions regarding the terms of the proposed agreement must
be filed in court before June 28, 2004.

Once approved by the court, the settlement plan will be binding
to all acknowledged creditors and may not be attacked by future
or present creditors in the event that the Company liquidates.

CONTACT: Viplan S.A.
         Buenos Aires     


VIRTU: Bankruptcy Process Begins By Court Order
-----------------------------------------------
Virtu S.A. of Buenos Aires will begin liquidating its assets
after a city court ruled in favor of the Company's bankruptcy,
Infobae reveals. The declaration signals the Company to proceed
with the bankruptcy process, which will close with the
liquidation of its assets.

The court appointed Mr. Juan Jose Castronuovo as trustee who
will authenticate proofs of claim until August 2, 2004.
Afterwards, the trustee will prepare the individual reports
based on the results of the authentication and then submit these
reports to court on September 13, 2004. The trustee will also
submit a general report on October 25, 2004.

CONTACT:  Mr. Juan Jose Castronuovo
          Presidente Peron 1509
          Buenos Aires


* Another Bondholder Group Shuns Argentine Debt Offer
-----------------------------------------------------
German bondholders' association Interessengemeignschaft
Argentinien e. V. (IGA), which holds US$200 million of Argentine
defaulted debt, refuses to negotiate with Argentina any further
over the latter's planned debt restructuring.

"We left the table," IGA founder, Stefan Engelsberger, said,
adding "I have no time for this anymore."

Speaking to reporters after a meeting with Argentine Finance
Secretary Guillermo Nielsen and representatives of the
government's advisory banks, Engelsberger said Argentina had
treated Argentines with "bad faith," a reference to his and
other bondholders' claims that the country is in breach of a
commitment to the International Monetary Fund to conduct "good
faith" negotiations.

He said he would file a formal complaint with the German
representative to the International Monetary Fund "about the
lack of bona fide negotiations" and demand that the IMF refuse
to approve Argentina's compliance with commitments established
under its current financial program with the international
lender.

An IMF team is in Buenos Aires to initiate a review process of
those targets, one of which is that it will conduct good-faith
negotiations with its private creditors.

"We have leverage," Engelsberger said. "If the IMF continues to
authorize the program, it will be acting unlawfully. The German
constitutional court will have to rule on the case in pending
proceedings."

According to its recently unveiled debt proposal, Argentina
would pay investors 25 cents per $1 of defaulted debt as
measured by the discounted present value of the bond payments.
That's about half what Russia and Ecuador paid in debt
restructurings in the past six years.

Bondholder groups have said Argentina, South America's second-
largest economy, can afford to pay more with gross domestic
product expanding at a pace of 9 percent a year and tax revenue
surging to a record.

But the government said paying more would jeopardize the
economic recovery.



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

FOSTER WHEELER: Launches Equity for Debt Exchange Offer
-------------------------------------------------------
Foster Wheeler Ltd. (OTCBB: FWLRF - News) announced Monday that
its proposed equity for debt exchange offer has been launched.
Foster Wheeler is in the process of distributing the offering
materials to security holders. The offer will expire on July 12,
2004, unless extended.

A copy of the prospectus relating to these securities and other
related documents may be obtained from the information agent.
The information agent for this exchange offer and consent
solicitation is Georgeson Shareholder Communications Inc., 17
State Street, 10th Floor, New York, New York 10014. Georgeson's
telephone number for bankers and brokers is 212-440-9800 and for
all other security holders is 800-891-3214.

Individuals holding their securities through brokers are urged
to contact their brokers to receive a copy of the prospectus and
to tender their securities.

The dealer manager for the exchange offer and consent
solicitation is Rothschild Inc., 1251 Avenue of the Americas,
51st floor, New York, New York 10020. Contact Rothschild at 212-
403-3784 with any questions on the exchange offer.

Investors and security holders are urged to read the following
documents filed with the SEC, as amended from time to time,
relating to the proposed exchange offer because they contain
important information:

(1) the registration statement on Form S-4 (File No. 333-107054)
and (2) the Schedule TO (File No. 005-79124).

These and any other documents relating to the proposed exchange
offer, when they are filed with the SEC, may be obtained free at
the SEC's Web site at www.sec.gov, or from the information agent
as noted above.

The foregoing reference to the proposed registered exchange
offer and any other related transactions shall not constitute an
offer to buy or exchange securities or constitute the
solicitation of an offer to sell or exchange any securities in
Foster Wheeler Ltd. or any of its subsidiaries.

Foster Wheeler Ltd. is a global company offering, through its
subsidiaries, a broad range of design, engineering,
construction, manufacturing, project development and management,
research and plant operation services. Foster Wheeler serves the
refining, oil and gas, petrochemical, chemicals, power,
pharmaceuticals, biotechnology and healthcare industries. The
corporation is based in Hamilton, Bermuda, and its operational
headquarters are in Clinton, New Jersey, USA.

CONTACT: Foster Wheeler Ltd.
         Media Contact
         Ms. Maureen Bingert
         908-730-4444

         Investor Contact:
         Mr. John Doyle
         908-730-4270
     
         Other Inquiries:
         908-730-4000
     
         Web Site: www.fwc.com



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

AHOLD: Q1 2004 Results Negatively Impacted By Divestments
---------------------------------------------------------
Highlights of Q1 2004

- Net loss EUR 405 million (Q1 2003: net income EUR 84 million)
due to exceptional losses related to divestments

- Operating loss EUR 145 million (Q1 2003: operating income EUR
402 million) including exceptional losses on divestments of EUR
450 million (Q1 2003: no loss on divestments)

- Net sales EUR 15.4 billion, a decrease of 11.3% compared to Q1
2003. Net sales growth was approximately 1.3% excluding currency
impact and impact of divestments

- Net cash generated before financing activities was EUR 485
million (Q1 2003: EUR 24 million net cash outflow)

Ahold published Monday its first quarter 2004 results.

"We announced that 2004 will be a year of transition," said
Anders Moberg, Ahold President and CEO, commenting on the
results. "In March we sold Bompreco and Hipercard in Brazil and
we have completed our departure from Asia, all of which were
important milestones on our `Road to Recovery' program. The
results were heavily impacted by the exceptional losses that we
previously communicated relating to these divestments. Apart
from these exceptional losses that have no impact on equity or
cash, the main operating companies performed in line with our
expectations."

Summary

Net sales

In the first quarter of 2004 net sales amounted to EUR 15.4
billion, a decrease of 11.3% compared to the same period in
2003. Net sales growth was approximately 1.3% excluding currency
impact and the impact of divestments. Ahold's retail operations
in the United States have experienced ongoing challenging market
conditions. In the European retail operations net sales
excluding currency impact and the impact of divestments remained
unchanged compared to the same quarter of 2003. Net sales at
U.S. Foodservice increased in U.S. dollars by 4.6% to USD 5.5
billion, mainly driven by food price inflation.

Operating loss: mainly due to losses related to divestments

The operating loss amounted to EUR 145 million (Q1 2003:
operating income EUR 402 million) and was primarily caused by
exceptional losses of EUR 450 million (Q1 2003: EUR 0 million)
related to the divestments of Bompreco, Hipercard and operations
in Thailand. These exceptional losses were mainly caused by
accumulated foreign currency translation adjustments ("CTA
losses") and goodwill reversals. (See "Definitions" below for an
explanation of CTA losses and goodwill reversals.) These losses,
which were expected, have no impact on equity or cash.
Operating income from the U.S. retail operations was heavily
impacted by a weaker U.S. dollar. Furthermore, non-recurring
costs for the integration of Stop & Shop and Giant-Landover and
the U.S. corporate office (USD 25 million) impacted operating
income negatively. Ahold expects this integration to generate
significant benefits in 2005 and beyond. The operating loss at
U.S. Foodservice was lower than last year's quarter. Operating
income from the European retail operations was impacted by a
weaker performance in Spain and higher costs related to pensions
in the Netherlands. Both Albert Heijn and Central Europe
performed resiliently in the first quarter of this year.

Net loss: favorable impact of lower interest expenses

The net loss of EUR 405 million (Q1 2003: net income EUR 84
million) was primarily caused by the exceptional losses on
divestments as described above. Net interest declined by 29.2%
to EUR 223 million with the repayment of debt during 2003, the
increase of the cash balance to EUR 3.8 billion and much lower
bank fees.

Further reduction of net debt

Net debt was further reduced from EUR 7.5 billion at the end of
2003 to EUR 7.1 billion at the end of the first quarter of 2004,
the result of our ongoing efforts to strengthen our balance
sheet.

Strong cash flow generation

Net cash generated before financing activities was EUR 485
million in the first quarter of 2004 (Q1 2003: net cash outflows
EUR 24 million). This improvement was mainly due to cash inflows
from divestments and lower capital expenditure.

Full-year 2004: a year of transition

With regard to the outlook for 2004, Ahold refers to its full-
year 2003 financial statements, published on April 19, 2004.

As previously announced, exceptional items related to certain
divestments, of which a substantial portion was booked in the
first quarter, will have a significant impact on net income for
2004. However, this will have no impact on equity or cash.

Ahold Q1 2004 Results

Ahold prepares its financial statements in accordance with
accounting principles generally accepted in the Netherlands
("Dutch GAAP"). Dutch GAAP differs in certain material respects
from accounting principles generally accepted in the United
States ("US GAAP"). All financial information in this press
release is based on Dutch GAAP unless otherwise noted.

The quarterly figures reported in this press release are
unaudited.

In certain instances, results presented in this press release
either exclude the impact of fluctuations in currency exchange
rates used in the translation of Ahold's foreign subsidiaries'
financial results into Euro or are presented in local
currencies, which Ahold's management believes provides a better
insight into the operating performance of foreign subsidiaries.
For more information regarding the non-GAAP financial measure
`excluding currency impact', see "Definitions" below.
In addition, in certain instances, operating income for Ahold's
business segments is presented excluding the impact of the
impairment and amortization of goodwill and exceptional items.
Operating income before impairment and amortization of goodwill
and exceptional items is a non-GAAP financial measure. A
reconciliation of this non-GAAP financial measure to the Dutch
GAAP measure of operating income, as well as management's
explanation for the use of this measure, are set forth in Annex
B.

In this press release net cash flow before financing activities
refers to the sum of net cash from operating activities and net
cash from investing activities.

The results for Q1 2003 presented in this press release have
been adjusted to make them comparable to the results for Q1
2004. These adjustments to the Q1 2003 results relate to
accounting for vendor allowances, and reflect the following:

? In the fourth quarter of 2003 Ahold adopted EITF 02-16
"Accounting by a Customer (including a Reseller) for certain
Consideration Received from a Vendor"("EITF 02-16"). As the
adoption of EITF 02-16 in the fourth quarter includes the effect
of EITF 02-16 from December 30, 2002, Ahold adjusted the results
for Q1 2003 for the portion of the effect that related to Q1
2003, which resulted in an increase in net income for Q1 2003 by
EUR 27 million (as previously announced); and

? In response to the irregularities announced in February 2003
relating to vendor allowances we conservatively deferred the
recognition of certain vendor allowances in Q1 2003 until Q2
2003. After analyzing the accounting of our vendor allowance
arrangements Ahold determined that EUR 65 million of income from
vendor allowances, net of tax effect, could have been recognized
in Q1 2003 instead of Q2 2003 in accordance with the current
accounting policies.

The financial reporting calendar has been amended versus
previously announced: the results for Q4 2004 and year 2004 will
be published on March 29, 2005.

Net sales

In the first quarter of 2004 net sales amounted to EUR 15.4
billion, a decrease of 11.3% compared to the same period in
2003. Net sales growth excluding currency impact and impact of
divestments was approximately 1.3% in the first quarter. Net
sales were significantly impacted by lower currency exchange
rates against the Euro, in particular that of the U.S. dollar.

In challenging conditions, the U.S. retail operations
experienced net sales growth, excluding currency impact and the
impact of the divestment of Golden Gallon, of 0.3%. In the
European retail operations, net sales excluding currency impact
and the impact from divestments, remained unchanged compared to
the same quarter last year. U.S. Foodservice showed an increase
in net sales in U.S. dollar of 4.6%, mainly driven by food price
inflation.

Operating income

Operating income before impairment and amortization of goodwill
and exceptional items

The operating income before impairment and amortization of
goodwill and exceptional items, decreased by 22.9% to EUR 351
million, heavily impacted by the weak U.S. dollar against the
Euro.

In addition there were non-recurring costs in the first quarter
of USD 25 million relating to the integration process of Stop &
Shop, Giant-Landover and the U.S. corporate office. This
integration is expected to yield significant benefits in 2005
and beyond. Operating income from the European retail operations
was impacted by a weaker performance in Spain and higher costs
related to pensions in the Netherlands. Both Albert Heijn and
Central Europe performed resiliently in the first quarter of
this year.

U.S. Foodservice showed an improved operating income before
impairment and amortization of goodwill and exceptional items.
This improvement was largely due to currency impact and an
increased leverage of fixed costs over a higher amount of sales
in U.S. dollars.

Operating income

The operating loss of EUR 145 million (Q1 2003: operating profit
EUR 402 million) was mainly due to exceptional losses of EUR 450
million relating to the divestments of Bompreco and the
operations in Thailand. These exceptional losses, which were
expected and also discussed in prior press releases, have no
impact on equity or cash.

Goodwill amortization

Goodwill amortization in Q1 2004 amounted to EUR 46 million, a
decrease of 13.2% compared to Q1 2003. This decrease was
primarily due to a lower U.S. dollar exchange rate.

Goodwill impairment

No goodwill impairment charges were required in the first
quarter of 2004.

Loss on disposal of tangible fixed assets

In the first quarter the loss on disposal of tangible fixed
assets amounted to EUR 6 million compared to a gain of EUR 8
million in the same period last year.

Exceptional loss

An exceptional losses of EUR 450 million was recorded in Q1 2004
compared to no exceptional losses in Q1 2003. The Q1 2004
exceptional losses was related to the divestments of Bompreco,
Hipercard and operations in Thailand. Of these exceptional
items, EUR 322 million related to CTA losses and EUR 213 million
to the partial reversal of goodwill, both of which had
previously been charged to shareholders' equity. These negative
impacts were partly offset by a EUR 85 million gain representing
the difference between the selling price and the book value of
certain assets. See "Definitions" below.

Net loss

Ahold reported a net loss of EUR 405 million in Q1 2004 compared
to a net income of EUR 84 million in Q1 2003, mainly due to the
above-mentioned exceptional losses. The weakening of the U.S.
dollar against the Euro also had a negative impact.

Net financial expense showed a significant decrease

Net financial expense was EUR 218 million in Q1 2004 compared to
EUR 292 million in Q1 2003. Net interest amounted to EUR 223
million, a decrease of 29.2% compared to Q1 2003. The decrease
was primarily caused by lower banking fees, higher interest
income and lower interest expenses, related to the substantially
decreased net debt and the lower U.S. dollar exchange rate.

The gain on foreign exchange in Q1 2004 amounted to EUR 5
million, compared to EUR 23 million in Q1 2003, both mainly
related to the positive impact of the revaluation of the
Argentine Peso on U.S. dollar-denominated debt in Argentina.

Income taxes

The effective income tax rate, excluding the impact of non-tax-
deductible impairment and amortization of goodwill and
exceptional items, increased to 48.5% in Q1 2004 compared to
33.1% in Q1 2003, mainly as a result of the impact of a
different geographic mix of income and consequences of the
divestments.

Share in income (loss) of joint ventures and equity investees
Share in income of joint ventures and equity investees in the
first quarter of 2004 was in line with the same quarter last
year.

Further improved Balance Sheet

Ahold closed Q1 2004 with an improved balance sheet. Since year-
end 2003 Ahold reduced net debt by EUR 422 million to EUR 7.1
billion mainly due to cash inflows from divestments and lower
capital expenditure.

Balance sheet total is reduced, reflecting reduced capital
expenditure and divestments

The USD to EUR exchange rate went up to EUR 0.83 per U.S. dollar
at the end of Q1 2004 compared to EUR 0.80 at year-end 2003.
Despite the currency impact of the stronger U.S. dollar against
the Euro, the company continued to strengthen the balance sheet
by decreasing net debt. The balance sheet total decreased by EUR
130 million. The cash balance increased to EUR 3.8 billion. The
balance sheet total as per year-end 2003 of the companies
divested in March 2004 amounted to EUR 714 million.

Equity increased by almost EUR 0.3 billion

Details related to changes in equity are outlined in Annex C.

Net debt reduced by EUR 0.4 billion

In the first quarter of 2004 Ahold was in compliance with the
financial ratios contained in its December 2003 Credit Facility.
The main covenants consist of Net Debt / EBITDA and EBITDA / Net
Interest Expense Ratios. Net debt decreased due to cash inflows
mainly related to divestments and lower capital expenditure.

Cash flow

Net cash inflow before financing activities improved mainly as a
result of the divestment of Bompreco and Hipercard and the
operations in Thailand.

Operational Information

Lower operating income impacted by integration costs

Net sales in the U.S. retail trade operations in Q1 2004
decreased 1.2% in U.S. dollars compared to Q1 2003. Net sales in
the first quarter were negatively impacted by the Easter
calendar effect by approximately 0.8%; i.e. the first quarter of
2004 included the week after Easter, which in food retail is a
slow week, compared to 2003 where the first quarter ended with
the week before Easter, which is usually a strong week.
Excluding the impact of the divestment of Golden Gallon in 2003
net sales in U.S. dollars increased slightly by 0.3%. Identical
sales in U.S. dollars declined by 1.6% and comparable sales in
U.S. dollars declined by 1.0% in Q1 2004 compared to Q1 2003,
partly caused by the earlier-mentioned Easter calendar effect.

During the first quarter of 2004 Ahold began integrating the two
largest U.S. retail operating companies, Stop & Shop and Giant-
Landover, into one arena. The integration will improve long-term
competitiveness and cost-effectiveness of these companies. In
addition, Ahold started integrating the U.S. retail corporate
functions into this new arena. These steps will generate
significant benefits in 2005 and beyond. Operating income before
impairment and amortization of goodwill and exceptional items in
the U.S. retail trade business in U.S. dollars decreased by
12.6% compared to Q1 2003 impacted heavily by the non-recurring
integration costs (USD 25 million). Both Stop & Shop and Giant-
Carlisle showed a solid performance in the first quarter of
2004.

Resilient performance in the Netherlands and Central Europe
The net sales decline of 1.1% in the first quarter of 2004 in
the European retail operations is partly related to the
divestments of De Tuinen and Jamin in 2003. Excluding currency
impact in Central Europe and impact from divestments, net sales
were unchanged compared to the same quarter of 2003. In the
European retail operations, net sales were also negatively
impacted by the Easter calendar effect. Sales volume at Albert
Heijn increased as a result of the price repositioning campaign.
The impact of food price deflation was largely offset by a
higher sales volume. The identical sales at Albert Heijn
declined by 0.2% compared to the same quarter of 2003. (Note
that net sales at Albert Heijn were EUR 6 million lower versus
previously announced in the Q1 2004 trading statement resulting
from a final adjustment.)

Operating income before impairment and amortization of goodwill
and exceptional items in the European retail operations
decreased by 16.7%, primarily due to higher pension costs (EUR
15 million) and a weaker performance in Spain. At Albert Heijn
the price repositioning in combination with ongoing cost
reductions led to a slightly higher operating income. The
operations in Central Europe reported a lower operating loss due
to increased net sales, improved margins and cost reductions
resulting from the integration of the Central European retail
operations.

U.S. Foodservice

U.S. Foodservice showed an increase in net sales excluding
currency impact of 4.6%, primarily driven by food price
inflation. The operating loss at U.S. Foodservice in the first
quarter of 2004 was EUR 58 million, compared to a loss of EUR 73
million in the first quarter of 2003. This improvement was
largely due to currency impact and an increased leverage of
fixed costs over a higher amount of sales in U.S. dollars.

During the first quarter of 2004, U.S. Foodservice continued the
process of improving the effectiveness of its procurement
contracts and organization, as well as evaluating the
profitability of its largest customer accounts.

South America

Net sales in the South American retail trade operations in Q1
2004 were EUR 336 million, compared to EUR 581 million in the
same period last year. The decrease was primarily a result of
the divestments of Santa Isabel in 2003 and Bompreco in March
2004.

CTA loss and reversal of goodwill resulting from the divestment
of Bompreco heavily impacted operating income. Operating income
before impairment and amortization of goodwill and exceptional
items decreased from EUR 2 million in Q1 2003 to an operating
loss of EUR 1 million in Q1 2004.

Asia

Net sales in the Asian retail trade operations in Q1 2004
amounted to EUR 51 million, a decrease of 53.2% compared to Q1
2003. This decrease was primarily due to the divestments of the
operations in Malaysia and Indonesia completed in September 2003
and the divestment of the Thai operations in March 2004. The
operating loss increased from EUR 7 million to EUR 18 million
due to exceptional losses in the form of CTA loss and reversal
of goodwill related to the divestment of the Thai operations.

Other activities

Other activities mainly include operations of three real estate
companies that acquire, develop and manage store locations in
Europe and the U.S. and corporate overhead costs of the Ahold
parent company.


GERDAU: Enters New Phase in Gerdau Acominas Restructuring
---------------------------------------------------------
The Gerdau Group has completed a new phase in restructuring the
debts of Gerdau Acominas, the company responsible for its
steelmaking operations in Brazil, with the placement of the
second US$ 128 million tranche of its export receivable notes
program. The program, with a total value of US$ 400 million, is
secured with the company's future export sales.

Market demand was 30% higher than the company's proposed
starting price, and the notes are being purchased by
international investment funds, North American insurance
companies and global financial institutions.

The second tranche bears interest of 7.321% p.a. and matures in
April 2012 (eight years). The US$ 128 million will be amortized
quarterly as of July 2006. The operation was rated "BBB-" by
Fitch Ratings.

"Despite the nominal cost of 7.321% p.a., the real cost of the
operation was 6.798% p.a., because we contracted a parallel
derivative instrument called a US Treasury Lock," said Osvaldo
Schirmer, Executive Vice President for Finance and Director of
Investor Relations. "This mechanism protects the company from
fluctuations in the US government's debt instrument, which is
the basis for the calculation of the final cost of the
operation." The cost of the export receivable notes operation is
488 basis points below that of the Brazilian debt instrument of
equivalent maturity, and 292 basis points above the rate for
five year US Treasury notes.

The first US$ 105 million tranche of the Gerdau Acominas S.A.
export receivable notes program was placed in September 2003.

In the first quarter of 2004, Gerdau mills in Brazil exported
714,000 metric tons of steel products, generating revenues of
US$ 220 million. Export sales corresponded to 43.8% of sales by
volume, which totaled 1.6 million metric tons.

CONTACT: Press Office
         Tel: +55(51) 3323-2170
         E-mail: imprensa@gerdau.com.br
         Web Site: www.gerdau.com.br



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

BANSI: S&P Affirms Ratings; Outlook Stable
------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said Monday that it affirmed
its 'B+/B' counterparty credit ratings on Bansi S.A. (Bansi).
The outlook is stable.

The ratings on Bansi consider the improvement in its credit
portfolio performance during 2003 derived from collection
improvement, and management experience in its market. Ratings
are balanced by a still-high concentration of the business and
assets with a small client base and a declining profitability
trend.

As of June 2003, Bansi's nonperforming loans (NPLs) represented
4% of the total credit portfolio and have been increasing from
2002. "Bansi has strengthened its credit policies and collecting
efforts, implementing a stricter asset classification, and
improving legal collecting procedures.

This effort has been positive for the bank and has helped it to
improve its asset quality," said Standard & Poor's credit
analyst Silvia Ruiz. NPLs decreased almost 20% during the second
half of 2003. For March 2004, the bank reached a relatively
stable level of NPLs of 2.7%. Bansi expects to maintain NPLs
less than 3%. The current reserve coverage is good, higher than
3x NPLs.

Although the bank's activities are limited, they have been
consistently well focused on a market niche of small and middle-
market companies and high-income individuals, helping its market
penetration. Management's knowledge, experience, and business
contacts in the area have helped Bansi increase its customer
base and expand its loans and deposits.

Bansi maintains loan concentration by individuals and regions,
which heightens the overall risk of its loan portfolio and its
business. These concentrations are partly explained by the fact
that the bank's operations are originated in only two cities of
the country and because of the relatively small client base.
Even though management is taking steps to expand its
infrastructure and market reach, it does not expect this
characteristic to change dramatically in the medium term.

Like other banks in the system, Bansi faces a difficult
operating environment characterized by still-low credit demand
and decreasing margins. Management faces important challenges,
such as controlling NPLs and operating costs growth, and it
continues increasing its loan portfolio and deposits while
focusing on recovering its previous profitability levels.

ANALYSTS:  Silvia Ruiz, Mexico City (52) 55-5081-4418
           Angelica Bala, Mexico City (52) 55-5081-4405
           Ursula M Wilhelm, Mexico City (52) 55-5081-4407  


EL INDEPENDIENTE: Publication Suspended After Huge Losses
---------------------------------------------------------
The Mexican government suspended publication of El Independiente
newspaper Monday, saying the paper was no longer economically
viable, relates Dow Jones Newswires.

El Independiente is published by Nueva Perspectiva Editores,
which is owned by Argentine businessman Carlos Ahumada, who was
arrested in Cuba and deported to Mexico in April to face fraud
charges. Following Ahumada's arrest, the government intervened
the paper.

However, the paper, which had been operating for just over a
year, ran up liabilities of MXN240 million ($1=MXN11.4250) and
losses of MXN156 million, leaving the government with no other
choice but to suspend its publication.

Meanwhile, the Finance Ministry said the managers of El
Independiente, while deciding what to do with the newspaper,
will attempt to "safeguard the interests and rights" of
employees.

Options for the paper include shutting it down, filing for
bankruptcy, merging it or selling it, the ministry said.


GRUPO IUSACELL: Presents Information on Syndicated Credit
---------------------------------------------------------   
Grupo Iusacell, S.A. de C.V. (NYSE: CEL - News; BMV: CEL)
informed on June 11 that, in line with its disclosure in its
annual reports for fiscal year 2002 filed in June 2003 with the
Mexican Stock Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange (20-F),
and in accordance with the terms of the US$266 million Amended
and Restated Syndicated Credit Agreement (Syndicated Loan) dated
March 29, 2001 entered into by its principal subsidiary, Grupo
Iusacell Celular, S.A. de C.V., the maturity date for the total
principal amount under this credit was to be accelerated to
March 31, 2004 in the event that Grupo Iusacell Celular was
unable to refinance by such date its US$150 million 10% senior
notes due 2004.

Grupo Iusacell Celular has not reached any agreement with the
holders of its senior notes. Nonetheless, the company continues
to work on the process of restructuring its indebtedness.

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

CONTACT: Grupo Iusacell SA de CV
         Prolongacion Paseo, De La Reforma 1236
         Mexico, D.F.,  05348
         Phone: (525) 109-4400
         Web Site: http://www.iusacell.com.mx


HYLSAMEX: To Raise $150M In Capital
-----------------------------------
Mexican steelmaker Hylsamex informed Mexico City's bourse Monday
that it is eyeing a US$150 million a capital increase, relates
Business News Americas.

Last week, the Company announced plans to propose to
shareholders at a meeting scheduled for June 25, the issuance of
up to 180 million special 'L' shares. Share prices will be
established once the issue is cleared. The 'L' shares are
convertible into normal 'B' series shares, which carry voting
rights after being listed on the bourse for one year.

"Funds would be used to prepay debt as an additional step in the
administration's continuing process of strengthening Hylsamex's
capital structure and increasing its financial flexibility," the
filing said.

Hylsamex ended the first quarter of this year with a net debt of
US$962 million. But last Monday, the Monterrey-based company,
which is a unit of conglomerate Alfa SA, said it expects to
report earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and
amortization, or EBITDA, between US$190 million and US$210
million in the second quarter, compared with US$45 million in
the year-ago period.

CONTACT:  Hylsamex S.A. de C.V.
          101 Ave Munich Cuauhtemoc
          66452 San Nicolas de los Garza
          Nuevo Leon
          Mexico
          Phone: +52 81 8865 2828
          Fax: +52 81 8865 1210
          Home Page: http://www.hylsamex.com.mx
          Contact:
          Engr. Dionisio Garza Medina, Chairman
          Alejandro Elizondo Barragan, Chief Executive Engr


SATMEX: Debt Accord With Creditors Nearing Completion
-----------------------------------------------------
Satelites Mexicanos (Satmex) expects to conclude the almost 18-
month long debt restructuring talks with its creditors soon.
Insiders interviewed by local daily El Universal say that the
favorable response gained by the company from national and
foreign investors bodes well for the negotiations.       

Parties to the negotiations are currently discussing the
possibility of surrendering all Satmex share to creditors. Such
a move would prevent the company from going into bankruptcy and
cancel its debts at the same time.

Satmex's liabilities stand at US$555 mln, with US$320-million in
bonds and US$205 million at floating interest rates. Bonds worth
US$205 million are set to expire June 30, although the company
has a 30-day grace period to make the payments.

Aside from these debts, the company also owes the Mexican
government around US$190mln.


XIGNUX: S&P Affirms Ratings; Outlook Negative
---------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Rating Services affirmed Monday its 'BB-'
local and foreign currency corporate credit rating on Xignux
S.A. de C.V. (Xignux). Standard & Poor's also affirmed the
senior unsecured 'B+' ratings assigned to Xignux's notes due
August 2004 and its notes due 2009. The outlook is negative.

The ratings affirmation reflects the progress of Xignux's
refinancing plan, particularly the successful exchange and
issuance of new notes to meet the maturity of its notes due
August 2004. The negative outlook reflects that the failure to
successfully refinance the company's remaining debt maturities
and to improve its key financial indicators could lead to a
downgrade.

"The ratings on Xignux (formerly Axa S.A. de C.V.) reflect its
high leverage, the cyclical nature of some of its end-markets,
and increasing costs as a result of the strength of the Mexican
peso in recent years," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst
Jose Coballasi. "The ratings also consider Xignux's significant
market-share positions, product diversity, and vertical
integration. Its emphasis on high quality has attracted world-
recognized joint-venture partners, providing Xignux, a
diversified holding company, with low-cost access to state-of-
the-art technology and enhancement of its export possibilities."

Xignux is a diversified holding company whose subsidiaries
manufacture a variety of products, mostly for industrial
markets. The company sells auto parts, chemicals, food, cable,
foundry, power, and distribution transformers.

The outlook is negative. Failure to successfully refinance the
company's remaining debt maturities and to improve the company's
key financial indicators during the year could lead to a
downgrade. The successful refinancing of the company's short-
term debt maturities and an improvement in the company's key and
financial measures during the year could lead to a stable
outlook.

ANALYST:  Jose Coballasi, Mexico City (52) 55-5081-4414  



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

CDC: Striking Workers To Appear Before Industrial Court
-------------------------------------------------------
Striking workers at Caribbean Development Company (CDC) were
scheduled to appear before the Industrial Court yesterday
morning as part of their effort to seek an end to the ongoing
lockout, says the Trinidad Guardian.

The workers have asked the court to slap an injunction on the
Company's decision to lock them out.

CDC's management decided to lock workers out on May 24 after
learning that on the previous day, workers voted to go on
strike. The lockout action took place to protect the equipment
and the plant.

Members of the National Union of Government and Federated
Workers (NUGFW) voted to go on strike demanding a 17% increase
in salary, which is more than the Company's offer of a 12% hike.
In addition, the workers demand a special bonus plan whereby
workers will receive 50 cents on each saleable carton.

Aside from the demands, the union is also objecting to CDC's
proposal to include random drug testing in the collective
agreement, as well as reduce the number of union officers at the
plant.



                            ***********


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
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Copyright 2004.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1529-2746.

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* * * End of Transmission * * *