TCRLA_Public/050308.mbx         T R O U B L E D   C O M P A N Y   R E P O R T E R

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

           Tuesday, March 8, 2005, Vol. 6, Issue 47

                            Headlines


A R G E N T I N A

ALBIZZATE S.A.: Judge Approves Bankruptcy Plea
ARACUA S.A.: Court Designates Trustee for Bankruptcy
BUENOS AIRES EXIMPORT: Seeks Reorganization Approval
CAPEX: $19B Project Pre-feasibility Studies Expected Soon
CENTRO DE TOMOGRAFIA: Court Orders Liquidation

CLINICA PRIVADA LIBERTAD: Court Resets Reorganization Schedule
COMPANIA MEGA: S&P Affirms Senior Notes Rating
CORBAMIL S.A.: Initiates Bankruptcy Proceedings
CORFAL S.A.: Begins Liquidation Process
ENAN S.A.: Debt Payments Halted, Set To Reorganize

GATICUER S.A.: Enters Bankruptcy on Court Orders
GATILAR S.A.: Court Rules to Liquidate
GUGLIO S.A.: Liquidates Assets to Pay Debts
METROGAS: Reports FY 2004 Net Loss of ARS122.98 Million
PRODUSEM S.A.: Reorganization Concluded

SANTA ANDREA: Enters Bankruptcy on Court Orders


B E R M U D A

ANNUITY & LIFE: Details Cash Bonuses Awarded to Officers
LORAL SPACE: Compensation Committee OKs 2004 Cash Bonus Payments
SEA CONTAINERS: Director Steps Down, Announces Mgmt. Changes


B R A Z I L

BANCO SANTOS: Debt Plan Nets 70% Creditor Acceptance Rate
TELEMAR: MTN Announcement Leaves S&P Ratings Unchanged
TELEMAR: Regulator Questions Discount Offering


H O N D U R A S

STANDARD FRUIT: Workers Seek $137M in Damages


M E X I C O

AHMSA: Records Positive Results in 2004
CORPORACION DURANGO: New Common Share Trading Follows Debt Deal


V E N E Z U E L A

EDC: Board Approves VEB17.1/Shr Dividend
PDVSA: Signs Economic Deal With India
PDVSA: Lukoil Seeks to Supply Russian Crude to Citgo
SIDOR: President Announces Improved Matesi Output


     - - - - - - - - - -

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

ALBIZZATE S.A.: Judge Approves Bankruptcy Plea
----------------------------------------------
Albizzate S.A. was declared bankrupt after Court No. 7 of Buenos
Aires civil and commercial tribunal endorsed the liquidation
petition of Albizzate S.A.

Argentine daily La Nacion reports that the court assigned Mr.
Roberto Leonardo Sapollnik to supervise the liquidation process
as trustee. He will validate creditors' proofs of claims until
May 4.

The city's Clerk No. 14 assists the court in resolving this
case.

CONTACT: Mr. Roberto Leonardo Sapollnik, Trustee
         Parana 851
         Buenos Aires


ARACUA S.A.: Court Designates Trustee for Bankruptcy
----------------------------------------------------
Buenos Aires accountant Luciano Arturo Melegari was assigned
trustee for the bankruptcy of local company Aracua S.A. relates
Infobae.

The trustee will verify creditors' claims until May 4, the
source adds. After that, he will prepare the individual reports
that are to be submitted in court on May 4.

The city's Court No. 24 holds jurisdiction over the Company's
case.

CONTACT: Mr. Luciano Arturo Melegari, Trustee
         Bartolome Mitre 1131
         Buenos Aires


BUENOS AIRES EXIMPORT: Seeks Reorganization Approval
----------------------------------------------------
Buenos Aires Eximport SACFI, a local agricultural company, has
requested court-authorized reorganization after failing to pay
its liabilities since the beginning of this month.

The reorganization petition, once approved by the court, will
allow the company to negotiate a settlement with its creditors
in order to avoid a straight liquidation. The case is pending
before Court No. 21 of the city's civil and commercial tribunal.
Clerk No. 41 assists the court on this case.

CONTACT: Buenos Aires Eximport SACFI
         Teniente General Juan Domingo Peron 315
         Buenos Aires


CAPEX: $19B Project Pre-feasibility Studies Expected Soon
---------------------------------------------------------
Energy company Capex wants to start in two months pre-
feasibility studies on a US$19-billion project to generate
16,000MW of wind power, Business News Americas reports, citing
company development and new business director Jorge Llera.

The goal of this project is to produce 13.3 million cubic meters
a year of hydrogen, a clean burning fuel that could be mixed
with natural gas for power generation, used in domestic
appliances and also as a vehicular fuel.

The project, which has the potential to generate some 40 million
tonnes of carbon credits a year, requires an investment of US$19
billion to cover the wind turbines, hydrogen production
infrastructure and delivery to port.

However, Capex cannot finance the investment alone, and so it
would associate with other companies already involved in
hydrogen technology should the project proceed to further
studies, Llera said.

Capex produces gas and generates electric power at the wellhead
in Neuquen province.

CONTACT:  Capex SA
          5/F DepartmentC
          948/950 Av Cordoba
          Buenos Aires
          Argentina
          Phone: +54 11 4322 4884
          Home Page: http://www.capex.com.ar
          Contact:
          Enrique Gotz, Chairman
          Dr. Alejandro Enrique Gotz, Vice Chairman


CENTRO DE TOMOGRAFIA: Court Orders Liquidation
----------------------------------------------
Centro de Tomografia Computada Directorio S.A. prepares to wind-
up its operations following the bankruptcy pronouncement issued
by Court No. 20 of 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 appointed Mr. Ricardo Felix
Fernandez as trustee. Mr. Fernandez will be reviewing creditors'
proofs of claims until April 18. The verified claims will be the
basis for the individual reports to be presented for court
approval on May 30. Afterwards, the trustee will also submit a
general report on July 11.

Clerk No. 39 assists the court on this case that will end with
the disposal of the company's assets to repay its liabilities.

CONTACT: Mr. Ricardo Felix Fernandez, Trustee
         Tucuman 1567
         Buenos Aires


CLINICA PRIVADA LIBERTAD: Court Resets Reorganization Schedule
--------------------------------------------------------------
Key events in the Clinica Privada Libertad S.A. reorganization
case have been moved to the following dates, says Infobae:

- Claims Verification Deadline: March 29, 2005
- Individual Reports Submission: May 10, 2005

All proof of claims must be submitted to trustee Jorge Luis
Blazquez for authentication by the said deadline. Failure to
comply with the submission cut-off will disqualify creditors
from the restructuring proceedings.

Court No. 11 of Buenos Aires' civil and commercial tribunal
handles this case with assistance from Clerk No. 22.

CONTACT: Mr. Jorge Luis Blazquez, Trustee
         Fray Justo Santa Maria de Oro 2381
         Buenos Aires


COMPANIA MEGA: S&P Affirms Senior Notes Rating
----------------------------------------------
On March 4, 2005, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services affirmed
its 'B' ratings on Compania Mega S.A.'s (Mega) $168.9 senior
notes series G after the early cancellation of outstanding
Series D and E notes for approximately $150 million and the
modification of several terms and conditions for the outstanding
bonds. The outlook remains stable.

According to Standard & Poor's expectations, Mega prepaid
financial obligations for approximately $150 million and relaxed
the terms and conditions on the project's outstanding financing,
allowing dividend payments, lifting some of the protections
provided by the collateral package, and eliminating the
sponsors' guarantees. Mega's sponsors held the project's total
debt due to the exercise of call options on the notes in late
2004.

In addition, the strong financial performance of the project
allowed to significantly reduce debt during 2004. "Because of
the financial flexibility provided by the fact that all the
outstanding debt is held by the sponsors, the smooth maturity
profile and the economic incentives for the sponsors to support
the operation, Standard & Poor's considers that the credit
quality of the project has improved," said Standard & Poor's
credit analyst Pablo Lutereau. "Nevertheless, the ratings remain
unchanged because of Standard & Poor's perception of the
Argentine country risk."

The ratings on Mega reflect the risks associated with operating
in the country's unsettled economic and social environment,
particularly the potential risks of higher governmental
intervention in light of the current natural gas crisis in
Argentina.

The ratings also reflect the company's exposure to market price
volatility. However, those risks are partially offset by a
strong export revenue base (more than 60% of Mega's revenues),
strong parental support, and the project's sound operating
performance.

The stable outlook reflects Standard & Poor's opinion that the
company's strong operating and financial performance and higher
degree of parental support would be enough to mitigate
increasing uncertainties originated by the natural gas crisis in
Argentina and the potential government intervention.

Mega is an operating project involving a natural gas separation
plant, a pipeline, and a gas fractionation facility devoted to
the separation of natural gas into ethane, butane, natural
gasoline, and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). YPF S.A. (38%),
Brasoil Alliance Co. (34%), and Dow Investment Argentina S.A.
(28%) own Mega. Mega commenced operations in 2001.


CORBAMIL S.A.: Initiates Bankruptcy Proceedings
-----------------------------------------------
Court No. 7 of Buenos Aires' civil and commercial tribunal
declared Corbamil S.A. "Quiebra," reports Infobae. Mr. Jorge L.
Berisso, who has been appointed as trustee, will verify
creditors' claims until May 4 and then prepare the individual
reports based on the results of the verification process.

The city's Clerk No. 14 assists the court on the case that will
close with the liquidation of the Company's assets to repay
creditors.

CONTACT: Mr. Jorge L. Berisso, Trustee
         Paraguay 866
         Buenos Aires


CORFAL S.A.: Begins Liquidation Process
---------------------------------------
Corfal S.A. will begin liquidating its assets after Court No. 14
of Buenos Aires' civil and commercial tribunal declared the
company bankrupt. Infobae reveals that the bankruptcy process
will commence under the supervision of court-appointed trustee
Hugo Javier Mancusi.

Mr. Mancusi will review claims forwarded by the company's
creditors until April 22. After claims verification, the trustee
will submit the individual reports for court approval on May 9.
The general report submission will follow on July 19.

Clerk No. 28 assists the court on this case.

CONTACT: Mr. Hugo Javier Mancusi, Trustee
         Montevideo 581
         Buenos Aires


ENAN S.A.: Debt Payments Halted, Set To Reorganize
--------------------------------------------------
Court No. 21 of Buenos Aires' civil and commercial tribunal is
currently reviewing the merits of a reorganization petition
presented by Enan S.A. La Nacion recalls that the company filed
the petition following cessation of debt payments on May last
year.

Reorganization will allow the aircraft repair and maintenance
firm to avoid bankruptcy by negotiating a settlement with its
creditors.

Clerk No. 41 assists the court on this case.

CONTACT: Enan S.A.
         Viamonte 1592
         Buenos Aires


GATICUER S.A.: Enters Bankruptcy on Court Orders
------------------------------------------------
Gaticuer S.A. enters bankruptcy protection after Court No. 7 of
Buenos Aires' civil and commercial tribunal ordered its
liquidation. The order places the company's affairs as well as
its assets under the control of court-appointed trustee Manuel
Cibeira.

As trustee, Mr. Cibeira is tasked with verifying the
authenticity of claims presented by the company's creditors. The
verification phase is ongoing until May 4.

Infobae reports that Clerk No. 14 assists the court on this
case, which will end with the disposal of the company's assets
in favor of its creditors.

CONTACT: Mr. Manuel Cibeira, Trustee
         Avda Cordoba 1247
         Buenos Aires


GATILAR S.A.: Court Rules to Liquidate
--------------------------------------
Court No. 7 of Buenos Aires' civil and commercial tribunal
ordered the liquidation of Gatilar S.A. after the company
defaulted on its debt obligations, Infobae reveals.

The pronouncement will effectively place the company's affairs
as well as its assets under the control of Mr. Jorge L. Berisso,
the court-appointed trustee. Mr. Berisso will verify creditors'
proofs of claims until May 4.

Clerk No. 14 assists the court on this case that will end with
the disposal of the company's assets in favor of its creditors.

CONTACT: Mr. Jorge L. Berisso, Trustee
         Paraguay 866
         Buenos Aires


GUGLIO S.A.: Liquidates Assets to Pay Debts
-------------------------------------------
Buenos Aires-based Guglio S.A. will begin liquidating its assets
following the bankruptcy pronouncement issued by Court No. 7 of
the city's civil and commercial tribunal, reports Infobae.

The ruling places the company under the supervision of court-
appointed trustee Jorge D. Alvarez. The trustee will verify
creditors' proofs of claims until May 4.

Proceeds from the sale of the Company's assets at the end of the
proceedings will be used to repay its debts.

CONTACT: Mr. Jorge D. Alvarez, Trustee
         Bartolome Mitre 1738
         Buenos Aires


METROGAS: Reports FY 2004 Net Loss of ARS122.98 Million
-------------------------------------------------------
Argentine natural gas distributor Metrogas (MGS) had a full year
2004 net loss of ARS122.98 million and net assets of ARS652.7
million as of Dec. 31, 2004, according to a company filing to
the stock exchange.

Dow Jones Newswires says the filing didn't offer further details
for Metrogas' results or comparative figures for past periods.

Metrogas has been seeking new repayment terms for US$440 million
in debt and launched a debt offer in November 2003. Just
recently, the company extended the deadline for its debt offer
until April 1. As of March 1, the company said it has lined up
deals for US$86 million of the debt's principal.

U.K. energy company BG Group PLC (BRG) and Spain's Repsol-YPF
(REP) together control a 70% stake in Metrogas through a
consortium called Gas Argentino. Metrogas' employees own 10% of
the company's shares and the rest float on the stock exchange.

CONTACT: MetroGAS S.A.
         Gregorio Araoz de Lamadrid 1360
         C 1267 AAB Buenos Aires, Argentina
         Phone: 5411-4309-1000


PRODUSEM S.A.: Reorganization Concluded
---------------------------------------
The settlement plan proposed by Produsem S.A. for its creditors
acquired the number of votes necessary for confirmation. As
such, the plan has been endorsed by the court and will now be
implemented by the company.

Produsem S.A. is a leading company that offers high quality
products and services for the agricultural, diary and cattle
farmers of Argentina. Produsem S.A. it is located in Pergamino,
Buenos Aires Province, 220 kilometers North West of the Capital
City of Buenos Aires.

CONTACT: Produsem S.A.
         Ruta 32 Nž 450 (B2700 HDA)
         Pergamino
         Buenos Aires
         Phone: 54 2477 436275
         Fax: 54 2477 436274
         E-mail: desarrollo@produsemsa.com.ar


SANTA ANDREA: Enters Bankruptcy on Court Orders
-----------------------------------------------
Santa Andrea S.A. enters bankruptcy protection after Court No.
26 of Buenos Aires' civil and commercial tribunal ordered the
company's liquidation. The order effectively transfers control
of the company's assets to a court-appointed trustee who will
supervise the liquidation proceedings.

Infobae reports that the court selected Mr. Jorge Alberto Arias
as trustee. He will be verifying creditors' proofs of claims
until the end of the verification phase on April 26.

Argentine bankruptcy law requires the trustee to provide the
court with individual reports on the forwarded claims and a
general report containing an audit of the company's accounting
and business records. The individual reports will be submitted
on June 9 followed by the general report that is due on July 22.

CONTACT: Santa Andrea S.A.
         Avda Triunvirato 5745
         Buenos Aires

         Mr. Jorge Alberto Arias, Trustee
         Rivadavia 1227
         Buenos Aires



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

ANNUITY & LIFE: Details Cash Bonuses Awarded to Officers
--------------------------------------------------------
At its meeting on March 1, 2005, the Board of Directors of
Annuity and Life Re (Holdings), Ltd., based upon recommendations
from the Compensation Committee of the Board of Directors, made
he following cash bonus awards for 2004 to the specified named
executive officers of the Company:

Name              Title                  Cash Bonus

John F. Burke     President and          $  250,000
                  Chief Executive
                  Officer

John W. Lockwood  Senior Vice President  $  100,000
                  and Chief Financial Officer

William Mawdsley  Vice President and     $  125,000
                  Chief Actuary

At its March 1, 2005 meeting, the Board of Directors also
approved an increase in Mr. Mawdsley's annual salary from
190,000 o $200,000 for 2005, and an increase in Mr. Mawdsley's
monthly housing and travel allowance under his employment
agreement with he Company from $8,333 per month to $10,000 per
month.

CONTACT: Annuity & Life Re (Holdings), Ltd.
         Cumberland House
         1 Victoria St.
         P.O. Box HM 98
         Hamilton, HM AX
         Bermuda
         Phone: 441-296-7667


LORAL SPACE: Compensation Committee OKs 2004 Cash Bonus Payments
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Compensation Committee of Loral Space & Communications Ltd.
(the "Company") approved 2004 cash bonus payments totaling $8.8
million for the employees of the Company and its subsidiaries,
including $0, $480,000, $360,000, $271,109 and $170,000 to be
paid to each of Bernard L. Schwartz, Eric J. Zahler, Richard J.
Townsend, C. Patrick DeWitt and Avi Katz, respectively.

The bonus payments are discretionary payments by the Company
based on various factors including individual performance.

On July 15, 2003, Loral Space & Communications Ltd. and certain
of its subsidiaries filed voluntary petitions for reorganization
under chapter 11 of title 11 of the United States Code in the
United States District Court for the Southern District of New
York and parallel insolvency proceedings in the Supreme Court of
Bermuda in which certain partners of KPMG were appointed as
joint provisional liquidators.

CONTACT:  Loral SpaceCom Corporation,
          600 Third Avenue
          New York, New York 10016
          Telephone: (212) 697-1105


SEA CONTAINERS: Director Steps Down, Announces Mgmt. Changes
------------------------------------------------------------
Sea Containers Ltd. (NYSE: SCRA and SCRB, www.seacontainers.com)
marine container lessor, rail and ferry operators and leisure
industry investor, announced Friday that its board of directors
had:

- Appointed Ian C. Durant as Senior Vice President and Chief
Financial Officer with effect from January 1, 2005 upon the
retirement of Daniel J. O'Sullivan. Mr. Durant joined Sea
Containers as Vice President and Deputy Chief Financial Officer
in June, 2004, having served previously as Finance Director of
Thistle Hotels plc, and Finance Director of Dairy Farm
International Ltd. and Hong Kong Land Holdings, units of the
Jardine Matheson Group.

- Promoted Angus R. Frew to the position of Senior Vice
President - Containers with effect from February 7, 2005.  Mr.
Frew has served as Vice President - Containers since he joined
the company in January, 2002 upon the retirement of Robert S.
Ward.  Mr. Frew previously served with Seagram Spirits and Wine
Group in central and Eastern Europe.

- Accepted the resignation of Philip J.R. Schlee who has had to
step down for health reasons.  Mr. Schlee was one of the three
founders of Sea Containers Ltd. in 1965 and has served on the
board for 40 years.  He has accepted the position of Director
Emeritus of the company and has kindly offered to provide advice
to the board without remuneration.  The board has commenced a
search for a director to replace Mr. Schlee to be proposed to
the shareholders at a future annual meeting of shareholders.

CONTACT: Mr. Steve Lawrence
         Public Relations and Communications
         Sea Containers Services Ltd.
         Sea Containers House
         20 Upper Ground
         London SE1 9PF.
         Phone: +44 020 7805 5830
         E-mail: steve.lawrence@seacontainers.com



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

BANCO SANTOS: Debt Plan Nets 70% Creditor Acceptance Rate
---------------------------------------------------------
Creditors holding 70% of Banco Santos' debt have accepted the
intervened bank's proposed debt-restructuring plan to avoid
liquidation, reports Business News Americas. The percentage,
which represents claims totaling US$1.6 billion (US$598
million), is expected to climb to 72% as some creditors are
currently close to joining the plan.

Banco Santos has been under the central bank's intervention
since November last year after the financial institution ran out
of cash to cover its bad loans. Various credit groups have
publicly declared they prefer to avoid a liquidation of the bank
but have also called for the bank's owner, Edemar Cid Ferreira,
to put up his own money to save Santos.

Last week, federal police raided Ferreira's house in the search
for evidence to back up fraud charges against him. Public
prosecutors have charged Ferreira of skimming off the top of
financial resources provided by Brazil's federal development
bank, the BNDES.


TELEMAR: MTN Announcement Leaves S&P Ratings Unchanged
------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said Friday that Telemar
Participacoes S.A.'s (Telemar, local currency: BB/Stable/--;
foreign currency: BB-/Stable/--) announcement of dividend
distribution in the amount of BrR250 million does not affect its
'B+' rating on Telemar's MTN. The main factor supporting the
rating is Telemar's position as controlling shareholder of Tele
Norte Leste Participacoes S.A. (TNL, local currency: BB/Stable/-
-; foreign currency: BB-/Stable/--) and the fact that TNL is
Telemar's only source of funds. Although the dividend
distribution leads to a tighter cash flow at the time of
disbursement, we expect Telemar to be able to manage its cash
flow adequately and to refinance its short-term debt. Telemar
has a total debt of BrR570 million.

To repay its debt, the company counts on shares and dividends
from TNL, in addition to a cash position of approximately BrR230
million in January 2005. Moreover, the company enjoys access to
banking credit and capital markets and benefits from the
market's perception that its credit risks are strongly
correlated with those of TNL. The ratings on Telemar's debt
remain two notches lower than TNL's local currency rating to
reflect subordination to all debt at TNL's level.


TELEMAR: Regulator Questions Discount Offering
----------------------------------------------
Telecoms regulator Anatel has ordered phone company Tele Norte
Leste Participacoes SA (Telemar) to stop offering customers a
31% discount on calls made for connecting to the Internet
through its recently launched Internet service provider, reports
Dow Jones Newswires.

Anatel said Telemar may be treating other ISPs operating within
its concession area unfairly by offering the discounts.

Telemar has a virtual monopoly on fixed line services within its
area of operations across the southeast, northeast and north of
Brazil. This means dial-up Internet users within these regions
invariably use Telemar's fixed line network to call in to the
plethora of ISPs that provide the final link to the World Wide
Web.

Therefore, the discount for users of Telemar's own ISP may
discriminate against rival ISPs, Anatel said, adding it will now
examine the "commercial relationship" between Telemar and its
ISP, called Oi Internet, to "guarantee equal and
nondiscriminatory treatment of the other providers of Internet
services."

Anatel said it will lift the suspension only if Telemar proves
it is operating within the law and that it is not discriminating
against other ISPs.

CONTACT: TNE - Investor Relations
         Mr. Roberto Terziani
         E-mail: invest@telemar.com.br
         Phone: 55 21 3131 1208

         Mr. Carlos Lacerda
         E-mail: carlosl@telemar.com.br
         Phone: 55 21 3131 1314
         Fax: 55 21 3131 1155



===============
H O N D U R A S
===============

STANDARD FRUIT: Workers Seek $137M in Damages
---------------------------------------------
Standard Fruit Co.'s plight with banned pesticide Nemagon
continues as the company faces another US$137.2-million lawsuit
at the Honduran Court. 680news reports that 707 banana
plantation workers, led by Jose Amado Mancia, filed the
complaint to seek damages after being exposed to the toxic
chemical that they claim caused sterility, birth defects, kidney
ailments and cancer.

Nemagon, whose active ingredient is the pesticide
dibromochloropropane, gained notoriety after tests showed that
it causes sterility and cancer in laboratory animals. The U.S.
banned the pesticide in 1977.

Settlement for Nemagon related diseases reached as high as US$41
million in 1997 after fruit giants Chiquita, Dole and Del Monte
paid workers who became sterile after prolonged contact with the
chemical.

Standard Standard Fruit and two other companies still face an
ongoing US$490 million suit involving 583 banana workers exposed
to Nemagon. The case has been transferred to U.S. courts, after
a Nicaraguan judge awarded the case to the complainants in 2002.

CONTACT: Mr. David Sesing
         Chief Executive
         Standard Fruit Company Honduras
         Fax: +504 443 0973



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

AHMSA: Records Positive Results in 2004
---------------------------------------
Altos Hornos de Mexico, S.A. de C.V. ("AHMSA" or the "Company"),
announced its 2004 Fourth Quarter Results. All figures herein
are unaudited and based on generally accepted accounting
principles in Mexico (Mexican GAAP) and have been restated in
constant pesos as of December 31, 2004.

In the fourth quarter of 2004, AHMSA had sales for Ps. 5,944
million (US$525 million), an operating income of Ps. 1,345
million (US$119 million), a net income of Ps. 1,803 million
(US$159) million and an EBITDA of Ps. 2,077 million (US$183
million).

Nevertheless, these positive results were reduced by about US$35
million as a result of new equipment installed last November in
the Hot Rolling Area and also for the expenditures caused by the
legal situation of some members of the Board. Without those non-
recurring causes, EBITDA would have been superior to US$210
million.

Comments made by the Board of Directors regarding the positive
results achieved in the Fourth Quarter suggested that they
reflected the increase in international steel prices and that
the Company has maintained its operational costs because it
produces its own main raw materials.

Due to this higher income, for 2005 AHMSA and Subsidiaries has
established a complete Capex plan and a maintenance program in
its steelworks and mines. These investments will generate a
higher EBITDA and will increase the production of its raw
materials to have an advantage over other domestic and
international steel producers. As a consequence, long-term
margins will be assured.

The Board of Directors was informed that the Company is up-to-
date in the payment of all its obligations and that besides the
work prepared by the external auditors Deloitte & Touche, AHMSA
has hired the firm Ernst & Young to make a full review of its
financial operations as preparation for the debt restructure
process that will begin shortly.

About AHMSA

Located in Monclova, in the state of Coahuila, AHMSA is the
largest integrated steel producer in Mexico. The Company is
Mexico's leader in the production of flat products and also
manufactures higher value-added coated products. AHMSA owns and
operates iron and metallurgical coal-mines that produce raw
materials used in the Company's steelmaking process. Through its
subsidiary MICARE, the Company is also engaged in the production
and sale of steam coal for power generation.

CONTACT: AHMSA
         International Operations
         Prolongacion Juarez s/n
         Monclova, Coah., 25770
         Phone: + 52 (866) 649 34 00
         Fax: + 52 (866) 649 23 10
         E-mail: sales@ahmsa.com
         Web site: http://www.ahmsa.com.mx


CORPORACION DURANGO: New Common Share Trading Follows Debt Deal
---------------------------------------------------------------
After completing its US$700 million debt restructuring, Mexican
paper and packaging concern Corporacion Durango SA will begin
trading its new class B common shares on the local stock
exchange this week. According to Dow Jones Newswires, the
shares, which represent 17% of Corporacion Durango's equity,
resulted from the capitalization of debt and interest.

The B shares carry the same rights as the company's A shares,
which are restricted to Mexican shareholders. The shares will be
distributed among creditors in the next few days, the company
said.

For the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2004, Corporacion Durango's
net sales increased 11% to MXN8.19 billion. Net loss from
continuing operations before US GAAP adj. fell 95% to MXN159.8
million. Results reflect higher volume sales, reduced operating
expenses, and increased foreign exchange gains.

Corporacion Durango S.A. de C.V. is a vertically integrated
producer of paper and packaging products, supplying companies in
the maquiladora sector, as well as the traditional Mexican
export sector.

CONTACT:  CORPORACION DURANGO SA DE CV
          Potasio 150, Ciudad Industrial
          Durango, Mexico
          Phone: (212) 815-4372
          Fax: (212) 571-3050
          Web Site: http://www.corpdgo.com/



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

EDC: Board Approves VEB17.1/Shr Dividend
----------------------------------------
The board of C.A. La Electricidad de Caracas y Companias
Filiales (EDC) has authorized a VEB17.1 per share dividend,
reports Dow Jones Newswires. In a statement, EDC said some VEB54
billion, or little more than US$25 million, will be disbursed to
cover the dividend payment.

The statement noted that the company reported a loss of VEB4.6
billion last year due to increased costs without the government
allowing an adjustment in electricity rates.

It added that the utility restructured its debt load last year,
extending its debt curve by another four years. As part of that
restructuring, EDC secured a VEB200-billion syndicated loan, and
a US$260 million 10-year bond issuance.

EDC, an affiliate of U.S. power company The AES Corporation
(AES), provides electricity mainly to the Caracas Metropolitan
Area and is the largest private utility in Venezuela. Each share
of EDC is transacted in the Bolsa de Valores de Caracas (Caracas
Stock Exchange). EDC American Depositary Receipts (ADRs) are
dealt in U.S. "over-the-counter" market under the symbol
"ELDAY."

CONTACT: C.A. La Electricidad de Caracas
         Avenida Vollmer
         Caracas, Venezuela

         Scarlett Alvarez
         Directora: Relaciones con Inversionistas
         Tel: 0212 502-2950
         E-mail: edcinversionistas@aes.com


PDVSA: Signs Economic Deal With India
-------------------------------------
Venezuela and India gave a step forward in the strengthening of
the South-South energy secure supply, economic cooperation and
sustainable development, with the endorsement of a Cooperation
Agreement in Hydrocarbons, a Memorandum of Understanding for the
development of oil exploration and production joint projects, as
well as other agreements in health, science and technology,
transportation and other.

The Cooperation Agreement in Hydrocarbons signed by Venezuela's
Foreign Minister, Ali Rodriguez Araque, and India's Foreign
Minister, Natwar Singh, will set up the general cooperation
framework in the areas of liquid and gaseous hydrocarbons and
derivates, as well as hydrocarbons' research and development,
exploration, production, processing, refining, marketing, and
transportation, as well as training of human resources.
Likewise, both parties signed the corresponding Confidentiality
Agreement.

The Memorandum of Understanding, signed between Petroleos de
Venezuela (PDVSA) and ONGC Videsh LTD permits both state-owned
companies to initiate conversations and negotiations aimed at
establishing general conditions that shall rule the definition
and design of oil exploitation and production joint projects in
Venezuela, which shall be presented to the consideration of the
Minister of Energy and Oil and the Bolivarian Republic of
Venezuela's National Assembly.

Additionally, the Venezuelan officials met with Indian
governmental and entrepreneurial representatives who reiterated
their trust and interest in materializing joint business in the
hydrocarbon and other areas. In response to an invitation
extended by the National Government, an Indian delegation will
visit Venezuela 's oil facilities in the coming weeks.

These first steps acknowledge the benefits and mutual
cooperation opportunities offered by the hydrocarbon sector and
materialize the conversations held by both countries authorities
in 1995 and 1996.

"Venezuela is the fifth hydrocarbon producing country in the
world and India is the fifth hydrocarbon importing country in
the world, so we have an excellent opportunity to complement our
resources", stated India's Oil and Natural Gas Minister, Mani
Shankar Aiyar, during a private conversation with President
Chavez and the Venezuelan delegation.

In an exclusive interview, India 's Minister said these
initiatives represent a bridge between two important countries
that, historically, have had very low energetic cooperation.
"Now that we have agreed on a comprehensive package of mutual
cooperation agreements, we can move forward and set up the
example for other Southern countries to follow, by showing that
this is the way in which we should support one another in
different sectors, specially in such a vital area as energy
secure supply".

Minister Rodriguez Araque reaffirmed the impulse that President
Higo Chavez' administration is giving to complementation and
sustainable development initiatives. "We are moved by actions
aimed at guaranteeing the right of every human being to
development and the promotion of a new economic order based on
solidarity, interdependency, sovereign equality and free
determination".

In the last few months, the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and
PDVSA have decidedly strengthened multi-polar partnerships and
partners and markets diversification by signing a series of
comprehensive cooperation agreements, specially in the
hydrocarbons sector and have taken actions to boost Petrosur,
Petrocaribe, and South-South, among others.

Special mention goes to: the Economic Cooperation Agreement with
Argentina, Interven's opening and the creation of ENARSA/PDV in
Argentina; the endorsement of 5 agreements between PDVSA and
CNPC (China National Petroleum Corporation) for joint projects
in the oil and gas sector; the endorsement of 14 agreements
between PDVSA and Petrobras, in the oil, gas and petrochemical
sectors; a Memorandum of Understanding between PDVSA and
GAZPROM, which is part of the Energy Cooperation Agreement with
the Russian Federation to identify potential energy and
hydrocarbon projects; the endorsement of a Letter of Intent with
Jamaica to evaluate the possibility of carrying out joint
businesses in fuel refining, marketing and distribution in that
country, and more recently, with the Eastern Republic of Uruguay
with the Montevideo Declaration on Petrosur, the Comprehensive
Energy Cooperation Agreement and Caracas Energy Cooperation
Agreement.

CONTACT: Petroleos de Venezuela S.A.
         Edificio Petroleos de Venezuela
         Avenida Libertador, La Campina, Apartado 169
         Caracas, 1010-A, Venezuela
         Phone: +58-212-708-4111
         Fax: +58-212-708-4661
         http://www.pdvsa.com.ve


PDVSA: Lukoil Seeks to Supply Russian Crude to Citgo
----------------------------------------------------
Russian oil giant Lukoil is planning to build a refinery in
Venezuela and is considering supplying Venezuela's own U.S.
refineries with Russian crude, MosNews.com reports, citing
Lukoil CEO Vagit Alekperov.

"I will travel to Venezuela on May 23 with concrete proposals.
We hope to get approval from Venezuelan President [Hugo Chavez]
and the oil ministry, so the contract could be ready by the
year-end," Alekperov told reporters.

"We have got an offer to build a refinery in Venezuela for
further re-export of products to the United States," he added.

Lukoil could also supply Russian crude to Venezuelan state oil
firm PDVSA's US refining subsidiary Citgo to boost sales of
products to Lukoil's 2,700 US gas stations, Alekperov said.

PDVSA and Lukoil signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) in
Moscow last November to study possible joint venture projects,
including refining projects, and sharing information on projects
of mutual interest.


SIDOR: President Announces Improved Matesi Output
-------------------------------------------------
Output at Venezuelan steelmaker Sidor's hot-iron briquette plant
Matesi has improved, Business News Americas reports, citing a
company executive. The plant has achieved better results than
when it was controlled by Posven, Sidor president Julian Eguren
said without providing comparative statistics.

"The maximum before was 46 consecutive days of operation -
Matesi has done better since November," Mr. Eguren said.

Materiales Siderurgicos (Masisa), which is made up of Tenaris
(50.2%) and Sidor (49.8%), finalized the acquisition of Matesi
in July last year for US$120 million. Matesi has a capacity of
1.5Mt/y of pellets.

Sidor, which produced 3.4Mt of steel products in 2004, is 59.7%-
controlled by the Amazonia consortium, with Venezuela's
government and Sidor employees holding the rest. Amazonia is
made up of Mexico's Hylsamex, Italy's Techint, Brazil's Usiminas
and Venezuela's Sivensa.



                            ***********


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., Fairless
Hills, Pennsylvania, USA, and Beard Group, Inc., Frederick,
Maryland USA. John D. Resnick, Edem Psamathe P. Alfeche and
Lucilo Junior M. Pinili, Editors.

Copyright 2005.  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 * * *