TCRLA_Public/060413.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

          Thursday, April 13, 2006, Vol. 7, Issue 74

                            Headlines

A R G E N T I N A

ABEL GONZALEZ: Sets Apr. 25 As Last Day to File Proofs of Claim
COMPANIA DE ALIMENTOS: ABN AMRO Will Auction Assets
FIBRACIL SA: Creditors Must Submit Proofs of Claim by May 30
FIDEICOMISOS FINANCIEROS: S&P Arg Puts D Rating on US$140M Debt
GRABAR S.R.L: Claims Verification Deadline Moved to May 26

ICEBERG PRODUCCIONES: Creditors Must File Claims by May 19
INDUSTRIAS METALURGICAS: Fitch Arg Affirms C & D Debt Ratings
REPSOL YPF: Resumes Natural Gas Shipments to Chile This Week
RIGON S.R.L: Files Reorganization Petition in Buenos Aires Court
TELECOM ARGENTINA: Paying Amortization for Two Notes on Apr. 18

* ARGENTINA: Cordoba Pays Cliba US$38 Mil. for Cleaning Services
* ARGENTINA: Compares Loan Charges for Economic Transparency
* ARGENTINA: Government Announces AYSA's Investment Plan
* ARGENTINA: Bolivia Temporarily Stops Natural Gas Exports

B E R M U D A

GLOBAL CROSSING: Expands Global VoIP Services to Europe

B O L I V I A

* BOLIVIA: Temporarily Stops Natural Gas Exports to Argentina

B R A Z I L

ELETROBRAS: Will Appeal Belo Monte Licensing Process Suspension
PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Building US$3 Billion Petrochemicals Plant
TELEMAR: Securities Agency Approves BRL 2.16 Bil. Bond Issuance
VARIG S.A.: Needs More Time to Pay Brazilian Government Debt

* BRAZIL: Continues Receiving Natural Gas Exports from Bolivia

C A Y M A N   I S L A N D S

ALMATIS DEBT 3: Filing of Proofs of Claim Ends on April 24
ALMATIS DEBT 4: Creditors Have Until April 24 to File Claims
ALMATIS EQUITY: Liquidator Stops Accepting Claims by April 24
GPF ALMATIS DEBT: Creditors Must File Proofs of Claim by Apr. 24
GPF ALMATIS HOLDINGS: Claims Verification Ends on April 24

C H I L E

AES GENER: Plans to Build New Plants in Chile
EMPRESA NACIONAL: Completes LNG Consumer Pool, Two Firms Opt Out

C O L O M B I A

* COLOMBIA: Expects to Raise COP300 Bil. from Isagen Stake Sale

C O S T A   R I C A

* COSTA RICA: ICE Fears Unfair Competition Under US CAFTA

C U B A

* CUBA: Inks Joint Venture Pact with Venezuela for Plant Restart

E C U A D O R

* ECUADOR: Occidental Petroleum Offers US$1B to Settle Dispute

G U A T E M A L A

BANCO INDUSTRIAL: IFC Approves US$30 Mil. Subordinated Loan

J A M A I C A

KAISER ALUMINUM: District Court Consolidates Appeals

M E X I C O

DIRECTV GROUP: Innova's Tender Offer Expired on April 11
GRUPO MEXICO: Declares Force Majeure Due to Ongoing Strike

P U E R T O   R I C O

MUSICLAND HOLDING: Files Schedules of Assets and Liabilities
MUSICLAND HOLDING: Purchasing's Schedule of Assets & Liabilities

U R U G U A Y

BANCO HIPOTECARIO DEL URUGUAY: Jan-Feb Profit Drops 79% in 2006

V E N E Z U E L A

PDVSA: Buying 33 Mil. Petrolera del Cono Shares for US$15 Mil.
PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Inks Joint Venture Accord with Cuba

* VENEZUELA: Three Companies Agree to Pay Taxes Totaling US$182M

                         - - - - -

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


ABEL GONZALEZ: Sets Apr. 25 As Last Day to File Proofs of Claim
---------------------------------------------------------------
The reorganization of Abel Gonzalez S.A. has progressed into
bankruptcy.  Argentine news source Infobae relates that a Buenos
Aires court ruled that the Company is "Quiebra Decretada."

The report adds that the court assigned Clorinda Paula Donato as
trustee, who will verify creditors' proofs of claims until April
25.

The trustee can be reached at:

             Clorinda Paula Donato
             Maipu 42
             Buenos Aires, Argentina


COMPANIA DE ALIMENTOS: ABN AMRO Will Auction Assets
---------------------------------------------------
Compania de Alimentos Fargo SA told the Argentine Stock market
through ABN AMRO bank, the decision of executing in the next 60
days guarantees done over some assets of the company.  The sale
will include some of Fargo brands and factories.  The bank could
postpone the auction if it reaches an agreement in order to
suspend the "concurso de acreedores."

Fargo is Argentina's largest producer and distributor of
packaged bread with a 51% market share, according to Fitch
Ratings Argentina.  It is also the sole bread supplier for
McDonald's in the country.

Fargo is controlled by the Mexican investor Chico Pardo (70%)
and the Bimbo group (30%).  The company has a debt of US$185
million, from which US$120 million belong to Obligaciones
negociables.


FIBRACIL SA: Creditors Must Submit Proofs of Claim by May 30
------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of the bankrupt estate of Fibracil S.A. are required
to submit proofs of claim by May 30, 2006.  Infobae relates that
the claims will undergo a verification phase.  Claims that are
verified will then be submitted in court as individual reports
on July 26, 2006.

A general report, which will contain the company's audited
business records as well as a summary of events pertaining to
the liquidation, will be presented in court on Sept. 7, 2006.

Fibracil S.A. was declared bankrupt by a Buenos Aires court.
Humberto Perez Vanmorlegan was appointed as trustee.

The trustee can be reached at:

         Humberto Perez Vanmorlegan
         Blanco Encalada 3012
         Buenos Aires, Argentina


FIDEICOMISOS FINANCIEROS: S&P Arg Puts D Rating on US$140M Debt
---------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's International Ratings, LLC, Sucursal Argentina
assigned a raD rating on Fideicomisos Financieros Gain Trust
Títulos de Deuda Vto. 2005's Titulos de deuda for US$140
million.


GRABAR S.R.L: Claims Verification Deadline Moved to May 26
----------------------------------------------------------
The deadline for the verification of creditors' claims against
Grabar S.R.L. -- company under reorganization -- has been moved
to May 26, 2006, Infobae reports.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on April 3, 2006,
the verification deadline was initially set for April 11, 2006.

Individual reports will be prepared by Mauricio Mudric -- the
court-appointed trustee -- out of the validated claims.  These
reports will be presented in Buenos Aires' Court No. 13 on July
27, 2006.

The court also requires the trustee to present an audit of the
company's accounting and business records through a general
report due on Sept. 8, 2006.

The date of the informative assembly has also been moved to Feb.
28, 2007, from Nov. 22, 2006.  During the assembly, creditors
will vote on a settlement proposal prepared by the company.

The debtor can be reached at:

         Grabar S.R.L.
         Hipolito Yrigoyen 2359
         Buenos Aires, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

         Mauricio Mudric
         Tucuman 893
         Buenos Aires, Argentina


ICEBERG PRODUCCIONES: Creditors Must File Claims by May 19
----------------------------------------------------------
Iceberg Producciones SA's creditors are required to present
their claims against the company to Julio Salaberry, the
company's trustee, by May 19, 2006.

Argentine daily La Nacion relates that Buenos Aires' Court No.
26 declared the company's bankruptcy in favor of the company's
creditor Mr. Martin Rubinstein for nonpayment of about $373,652
in debt.

Clerk No. 52 assists the court with the proceedings.

The debtor can be reached at:

         Iceberg Producciones
         Gurruchaga 2196
         Buenos Aires, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

         Julio Salaberry
         Uruguay 766
         Buenos Aires, Argentina


INDUSTRIAS METALURGICAS: Fitch Arg Affirms C & D Debt Ratings
-------------------------------------------------------------
The Argentine arm of Fitch Ratings affirms the C(arg) rating on
IMPSA aka Industrias Metalurgicas Pescarmona SA's Obligaciones
Negociables for US$250 million.  Also, the Obligaciones
Negociables Serie 2 for US$150 million were confirmed in
category D (arg).

The C(arg) rating given to the program of Obligaciones
Negociables shows the uncertainty associated with the paying
capacity of its financial commitments because of a high level of
debt in relation to its generation of funds and the reduction of
the amount on which it operates.  The D(arg) rating was also
given to the remaining US$804,000 and US$342,649 of interests,
from the Serie 2 of the ON, which remains due and unpaid.

The high level of debt of IMPSA in relation to its generation of
funds, together with its high level of interests, determinate a
limitation for getting new funds. Nevertheless, the signment of
a new contract might happen. At date, IMPSA continues analysing
different options that would allow the company to decrease its
debt and improve its structure of capital.

Also, the results have shown a positive sign for the first time
in three years, though keeping reduced levels.  On Oct. 2005,
the EBITDA level resulted on a 12% showing a positive trend
compared to the negative levels of the same period of the
previous year.

On Oct. 2005 the incomes of IMPSA continued to be positive, as
during the first semester, showing a strong recovery and
predicting a level of incomes for the end of the exercise for
more than US$550 million.  The net sells on Oct. 2005 resulted a
85% larger than the amount registered on Oct. 2004, reaching
US$460.9 million.

On July 2005 the company had net incomes for US$322.3 million
for the sell of actives, which allowed a reduction on the debt
for US$236 million.  This, added to the net operative result of
US$7.1 million on July 2005, produced a positive net variation
of US$91.8 million at the end of the semester.  This will allow
IMPSA to continue reducing debt.

At Oct. 2005, the 31% of the debt was to due in the short term
(92% on Jan. 2002), among which are included the ON for US$15.2
million (Series 8, 9, 11 and 12 including an extraordinary
payment for US$10 million) in concept of capital and interests.
The due of the interests of the ONs Series 8, 9, 10 and 12,
operating on Nov. 30, 2005, were totally cancelled.  Also, on
Jan. 31, 2006, the company cancelled  the whole of the third and
last installment of the Serie 13 for US$2.36 million.

IMPSA has three main areas of business.  The most important one
being the development and production of goods of capital (59% of
sales on Oct. 2005).  Also, its provides environmental services
(20%) and sells 'Autopartes' (19%).  Around the 71% of the
incomes come from abroad, 0mainly from the southeast of Asia.
The main shareholder of IMPSA, holding 93.73% stake, is the
Pescarmona family.


REPSOL YPF: Resumes Natural Gas Shipments to Chile This Week
------------------------------------------------------------
Dow Jones Newswires reports that Repsol YPF has continued its
natural gas shipments to Chile either today or tomorrow.  The
shipments were halted due to damage in Repsol's gas pipelines in
Bolivia.

An industry official told Dow Jones that once Argentina receives
gas from Bolivia, and then Argentina will be able to ship gas to
Chile.

Petroleos Brasileiro SA or Petrobras, Brazil's state-run oil
firm, stated that shipments to Brazil that were affected by
damaged pipeline would also return to normal next week.

Repsol sent a letter to Chile explaining that the delay was a
force majeure.  The company also said that domestic needs in
Argentina have to be met first that is why there was a need to
cut gas shipments to Chile.

Before the pipeline was damaged, Repsol delivered about 5
million cubic meters per day of Bolivian gas to northern
Argentina, which also produces the same volume per day.  Heavy
rains caused the damage, which consequently cut the shipment in
half.

Gas shipments from Argentina to Chile via the Methanex PAE
pipeline reached about 1.7 mcm/day and through the Methanex SIP
pipeline was about 1.1 mcm/day.

                       *    *    *

On June 20, 2005, Moody's Investors Service upgraded the ratings
of Spanish-Argentine oil company Repsol YPF's local subsidiary
YPF S.A. Moody's upgraded YPF's senior unsecured rating to Ba3
from B1 and the unit's domestic currency issuer rating to Baa2
from Baa3.

YPF's foreign currency issuer rating of Caa1 remained unchanged,
as it is constrained by the sovereign ceiling of Argentina.
YPF's Corporate Family Rating (formerly known as the senior
implied rating) is aligned with the foreign currency issuer
rating at Caa1.


RIGON S.R.L: Files Reorganization Petition in Buenos Aires Court
----------------------------------------------------------------
Rigon S.R.L. has requested for reorganization approval before a
Buenos Aires Court after failing to pay its liabilities.

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 debtor can be reached at:

          Rigon S.R.L.
          Cordoba 417
          Buenos Aires, Argentina


TELECOM ARGENTINA: Paying Amortization for Two Notes on Apr. 18
---------------------------------------------------------------
Telecom Argentina S.A. (NYSE: TEO) (BASE: TECO2) will make a
payment for its Series A Notes due 2014 and Series B Notes due
2011, on April 18, 2006, or as soon as practicable.  The note
payment will result in the payment in whole of the principal
amortization scheduled to be paid on October 15, 2008, and April
15, 2009, (in total equivalent to 7.54% of Serie A Notes and
15.00% of Series B Notes).

The payment of the principal amortization scheduled for October
15, 2008, will be made entirely with Excess Cash as of December
31, 2005. The principal amortization payment scheduled for April
15, 2009, will be partially made with Excess Cash as of December
31, 2005, and partially made as a voluntary prepayment.  The
voluntary prepayment will result in a reduction of Excess Cash
amounts payable under the Notes on the next Mandatory Prepayment
Date (as defined in the Indenture of the Notes).

Payment shall be made to the holders of the Notes held in global
form through the settlement systems of DTC, Euroclear and
Clearstream, as applicable.  Payments to holders of Notes in
certificated form will be made by wire transfer to the accounts
of the respective holders.

Headquartered in Buenos Aires, Telecom Argentina S.A. --
http://www.telecom.com.ar/index-flash.html-- is the fixed-line
operator for local and long-distance services in northern and
southern Argentina.  It also provides cellular and PCS phone
services in Argentina, as well as in Paraguay through a 68%
stake in Nocleo.  France Telecom formerly controlled the company
through its Nortel Inversora venture with Telecom Italia.
France Telecom sold most of its stake in 2003 to the Werthein
Group, an Argentine agricultural concern owned in part by vice
chairman Gerardo Werthein. Nortel continues to be Telecom
Argentina's largest shareholder with a 55% stake.  Nortel is
owned by Sofora, a consortium owned by Telecom Italia (50%), the
Werthein Group (48%), and France Telecom (2%).

                        *    *    *

Telecom Argentina's $64,128,000 and $54,124,000 notes due Oct.
15, 2014, carry Standard & Poor's and Fitch's B- ratings.


* ARGENTINA: Cordoba Pays Cliba US$38 Mil. for Cleaning Services
----------------------------------------------------------------
The province of Cordoba, Argentina, will be paying Cliba, which
belongs to the Roggio Group, for US$38 million.  Cliba is in
charge of the collection of bins and the cleaning of streets in
the city.  The debt is for a difference registered in 2001.  The
company has demanded US$62 million for unpaid services.

The company also asked for a 7.5% increase on the rates of its
services.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Argentina:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling     RD      Dec. 14, 2005
   Long Term IDR       B       Dec. 14, 2005
   Short Term IDR      B-      Jun.  3, 2005
   Local Currency
   Long Term Issuer
   Default Rating      B       Jun.  3, 2005


* ARGENTINA: Compares Loan Charges for Economic Transparency
------------------------------------------------------------
Dow Jones Newswires reports that the Argentine Economy Ministry
released a report that compares commercial banks' loan charges.
The move aims to attack inflation and to improve transparency in
the economy.

The report, cited by Dow Jones, showed that the bank with the
least expensive total financial cost for personal loans is Banco
Ciudad de Buenos Aires.  The government-owned bank has a nominal
rate of 14% for the fixed rate of interest for 2,000-peso two-
year personal loan and a total financial cost of 24.95% already
with insurance, administrative charges and other costs added.
It also offers the lowest variable-rate personal loans at a
nominal rate of 11% and total financial cost of 20.52%

The fourth least expensive choice for fixed rate loans is Banco
Macro Bansud SA.

At ninth place is BankBoston, which is the largest wholly
foreign-owned bank.  Citigroup Inc.'s Citibank Argentina SA and
HSBC Holdings PLC's (HBC) HSBC Bank precede BankBoston, in
places sixth and seventh, respectively.

Three of the most expensive banks are Banco de Galicia y Buenos
Aires SA, Banco Hipotecario SA and Banco Banex at seventeenth,
nineteenth and twentieth places respectively.

Banco de Galicia has a total financial cost for fixed rate
personal loans of 47.63%, while Banco Hipotecario has 50.49%
total financial cost for fixed rate personal loans and a nominal
rate of 25%.

Inversiones y Representations SA or IRSA, Banco Hipotecario's
managing shareholder, faced legal problems with the Economy
Ministry last year. The ministry still controls the largest
block of shares in the bank.  The bank recently filed to list
American Depositary Receipts in New York.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Argentina:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling     RD      Dec. 14, 2005
   Long Term IDR       B       Dec. 14, 2005
   Short Term IDR      B-      Jun.  3, 2005
   Local Currency
   Long Term Issuer
   Default Rating      B       Jun.  3, 2005


* ARGENTINA: Government Announces AYSA's Investment Plan
--------------------------------------------------------
Infobae reports that the Argentine President Nestor Kirchner has
announced the infrastructure and investment plan of the recently
created company, Aguas y Saneamiento Argentinos, which has
replaced Aguas Argentinas and remains in charge of the
distribution of water in Buenos Aires.

The governement will invest 400 million pesos for the period
2006 to 2007.  Almost half of this amount would be given this
year.

The concession of water was taken from Aguas Argentinas in March
after the government accused the company of poor service and
breach of contract.

AYSA is 90% owned by the government and the rest belongs to its
employees.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Argentina:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling     RD      Dec. 14, 2005
   Long Term IDR       B       Dec. 14, 2005
   Short Term IDR      B-      Jun.  3, 2005
   Local Currency
   Long Term Issuer
   Default Rating      B       Jun.  3, 2005


* ARGENTINA: Bolivia Temporarily Stops Natural Gas Exports
----------------------------------------------------------
Bolivia's natural gas exports to Argentina was temporarily
stopped, the Associated Press reports.  Bolivia wants to focus
on making exports to Brazil.

Jorge Alvarado -- president of state energy firm Yacimientos
Petroliferos Fiscales de Bolivia aka YPFB -- explained to AP
Bolivia's decision, saying that Bolivia favored Brazil because
the two countries have a 20-year gas-supply accord while
Bolivia's deal with Argentina was only temporary.

AP relates that the damage in the gas pipeline due to heavy
rains a week ago affected Bolivia's exports to Brazil, which
gets half of its natural gas from Bolivia.  Gas exports dropped
to 21 million cubic meters a day from the usual 26 million cubic
meters a day.  Repair work was hampered by road blockades by
protesters in a local land dispute.

As of Tuesday morning, Argentina did not get any exports from
Bolivia, which normally sends 4.5-5 million cubic meters daily
to the former, YPFB said to AP.

Julio de Vido -- Argentine Planning Minister -- however made
downplayed the significance of the cuts in supply, according to
AP.  Instead, the minister emphasized the expected progress on
an accord with Bolivia to increase gas exports to Argentina
later this year.

Chile was most affected by Bolivia's decision, AP states.
Authorities of Argentina made up for the absence of Bolivian gas
by cutting their own gas deliveries to Chile.

Brazilian state energy firm Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. aka
Petrobras, which runs the damaged pipeline with Transredes S.A.,
is still trying to fix the duct, AP reports.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Bolivia:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling    B-       Jun. 17, 2004
   Long Term IDR      B-       Dec. 14, 2005
   Local Currency
   Long Term Issuer
   Default Rating     B-       Dec. 14, 2005

                      *    *    *

As reported on April 6, 2006, Fitch assigned these ratings to
Brazil:

    -- Foreign currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) 'BB-';
    -- Local currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) 'BB-';

Fitch said the rating outlook is positive.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Argentina:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling     RD      Dec. 14, 2005
   Long Term IDR       B       Dec. 14, 2005
   Short Term IDR      B-      Jun.  3, 2005
   Local Currency
   Long Term Issuer
   Default Rating      B       Jun.  3, 2005


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


GLOBAL CROSSING: Expands Global VoIP Services to Europe
-------------------------------------------------------
Global Crossing announced it is broadening the scope and reach
of its Voice over Internet Protocol or VoIP services for
enterprise customers around the world by introducing Enterprise
VoIP Outbound and VoIP Local Services to countries across
Europe, complementing existing Enterprise VoIP service
availability in North America.

"Global Crossing's Enterprise VoIP Service is perfect for
customers that rate security, network coverage, and reliability
as their top criteria for selecting a vendor," said Anthony
Christie, Global Crossing's chief marketing officer.  "Our VoIP
services, now available across Europe as well as North America,
are an ideal solution for customers that require high-quality
call completion nationally and internationally, for both managed
and non-managed calling applications."

A fully interoperable voice network enables an enterprise to
maintain existing handsets and premises equipment and operate in
a hybrid environment as they transition to an all IP voice
solution at their own pace.  Global Crossing's private IP
backbone ensures that VoIP packets receive the highest priority
which translates into minimized latency, packet loss and jitter
as well as call quality that is consistent and predictable
qualities not possible with voice services based on public
Internet transport.

With Global Crossing's VoIP Outbound Service, IP voice traffic
will be transported across Global Crossing's private VoIP
platform for off net TDM completion via the local public
switched telephone network or PSTN. This service is now
available for both national and international calling from:

   -- France,
   -- Germany,
   -- Italy,
   -- Netherlands,
   -- United Kingdom,
   -- United States of America

and for international calling from:

   -- Belgium,
   -- Denmark,
   -- Ireland,
   -- Norway,
   -- Spain,
   -- Sweden
   -- Switzerland

National calling will be introduced to these countries in phases
as part of the continuing VoIP development program.

Global Crossing VoIP Local Service offers the ability to
originate traffic on the public switched telephone network in
different countries using geographic and non-geographic numbers.
The traffic is then converted to VoIP on Global Crossing's
network for delivery to the customer's IP network via an IP
interconnect.  This service eliminates traditional time division
multiplexing or TDM, private line and foreign exchange service
fees by providing a single IP connection alternative. Direct
Inward Dial numbers can be provided from:

   -- Ireland,
   -- Netherlands,
   -- Sweden,
   -- Denmark,
   -- Finland,
   -- France,
   -- Norway,
   -- United Kingdom
   -- United States of America

Global Crossing has also entered into a channel partner
agreement with Britannic Technologies to provide them with
enterprise VoIP and IP VPN services in Europe.  Britannic
Technologies is a UK-based systems integration company
specializing in providing customers with IP communications and
applications development.

"The market has changed considerably over recent years with the
convergence of voice, data and video communications and
Britannic has aligned their development and portfolio
accordingly to help customers take advantage of the many
business improvements made possible with IP communications,"
said Jonathan Sharp, Britannic Technologies' marketing director.
"We elected to partner with Global Crossing as we felt they
complimented our convergence strategy and enabled us to deliver
a truly holistic solution to the market.  With Global Crossing
we are able to offer our customers high-performance, secure,
converged IP services backed by a state-of-the-art network over
which we can provide the integrated solutions to meet their
business needs."

This partnership enables Britannic Technologies to leverage
Global Crossing's fully interoperable voice and data service
portfolio, running over a global IP network, and backed by
industry-leading customer satisfaction scores and Service Level
Agreements.

Customers choosing Global Crossing's Enterprise VoIP Service
deploy a VoIP solution that provides carrier-class quality,
reliability and security.  The company's VoIP services enable a
converged IP network solution that helps maximize savings on
overall telephony costs and reduce the total cost of ownership.

As a standard practice, Global Crossing supports several access
methods to connect to its VoIP service portfolio, including
Global Crossing's IP VPN Service, Global Crossing Dedicated
Internet Access, and standard public Internet access.

This announcement follows Global Crossing's recent introduction
of Applications Performance Management to the company's fully
managed, converged IP services portfolio.  APM strengthens the
portfolio by adding end-to-end, real-time performance
monitoring, robust troubleshooting and one-second increment data
gathering at every site throughout a converged IP network.

A leader in fully interoperable, secure VoIP services for
enterprise and carrier customers, Global Crossing's VoIP traffic
grew to more than 100 million IP interconnected minutes per
month by year end 2005, representing an increase of more than
350 percent.  Global Crossing currently runs more than two
billion minutes per month on its private VoIP global platform,
which represents more than 70 percent of all its voice traffic.
Global Crossing was one of the first service providers to
announce the replacement of legacy switches with VoIP switches
in its network core, enhancing the seamless delivery of
converged IP services.

                  About Global Crossing

Headquartered in Florham Park, New Jersey, Global Crossing
Ltd. -- http://www.globalcrossing.com/-- provides
telecommunications solutions over the world's first integrated
global IP-based network, which reaches 27 countries and more
than 200 major cities around the globe including Bermuda,
Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, Panama Peru and Venezuela.
Global Crossing serves many of the world's largest corporations,
providing a full range of managed data and voice products and
services.  The company filed for chapter 11 protection on Jan.
28, 2002 (Bankr.S.D.N.Y. Case No. 02-40188).  When the Debtors
filed for protection from their creditors, they listed
$25,511,000,000 in total assets and $15,467,000,000 in total
debts.  Global Crossing emerged from chapter 11 on Dec. 9, 2003.

As of Dec. 31, 2005, Global Crossing's balance sheet reflects a
$173 million equity deficit compared to a $51 million of
positive equity at Dec. 31, 2004.


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


* BOLIVIA: Temporarily Stops Natural Gas Exports to Argentina
-------------------------------------------------------------
Bolivia's natural gas exports to Argentina was temporarily
stopped, the Associated Press reports.  Bolivia wants to focus
on making exports to Brazil.

Jorge Alvarado -- president of state energy firm Yacimientos
Petroliferos Fiscales de Bolivia aka YPFB -- explained to AP
Bolivia's decision, saying that Bolivia favored Brazil because
the two countries have a 20-year gas-supply accord while
Bolivia's deal with Argentina was only temporary.

AP relates that the damage in the gas pipeline due to heavy
rains a week ago affected Bolivia's exports to Brazil, which
gets half of its natural gas from Bolivia.  Gas exports dropped
to 21 million cubic meters a day from the usual 26 million cubic
meters a day.  Repair work was hampered by road blockades by
protesters in a local land dispute.

As of Tuesday morning, Argentina did not get any exports from
Bolivia, which normally sends 4.5-5 million cubic meters daily
to the former, YPFB said to AP.

Julio de Vido -- Argentine Planning Minister -- however made
downplayed the significance of the cuts in supply, according to
AP.  Instead, the minister emphasized the expected progress on
an accord with Bolivia to increase gas exports to Argentina
later this year.

Chile was most affected by Bolivia's decision, AP states.
Authorities of Argentina made up for the absence of Bolivian gas
by cutting their own gas deliveries to Chile.

Brazilian state energy firm Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. aka
Petrobras, which runs the damaged pipeline with Transredes S.A.,
is still trying to fix the duct, AP reports.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Bolivia:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling    B-       Jun. 17, 2004
   Long Term IDR      B-       Dec. 14, 2005
   Local Currency
   Long Term Issuer
   Default Rating     B-       Dec. 14, 2005

                      *    *    *

As reported on April 6, 2006, Fitch assigned these ratings to
Brazil:

    -- Foreign currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) 'BB-';
    -- Local currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) 'BB-';

Fitch said the rating outlook is positive.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Argentina:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling     RD      Dec. 14, 2005
   Long Term IDR       B       Dec. 14, 2005
   Short Term IDR      B-      Jun.  3, 2005
   Local Currency
   Long Term Issuer
   Default Rating      B       Jun.  3, 2005


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


ELETROBRAS: Will Appeal Belo Monte Licensing Process Suspension
---------------------------------------------------------------
Federal power holding firm Eletrobras will file before a federal
court in Para, Brazil, an appeal together with Ibama -- a
federal environmental protection agency -- on the suspension of
the start of the 11,184MW Belo Monte hydroelectric generation
project's licensing process, Business News Americas reports.

An Eletrobras spokesperson told BNamericas that the company will
decide on the appeal after Easter holiday.

BNamericas recalls that the court suspended the licensing
process on March 29, 2006, in favor of the federal prosecutors,
who had argued that last year's congressional approval of a
specific law authorizing the licensing process did not include
consultations with the indigenous people living in reserves who
would be affected by the project.

According to BNamericas, the prosecutors argued that since Belo
Monte will be located on the Xingu river it could affect the
Arara, Kararaho, Koatinemo, Paquicamba and Trincheira Bacaja
Indian reserves on its banks.

BNamericas states that the congress approved the permitting and
that the supreme court ruled in favor of the process in December
last year saying indigenous communities would be heard at a
later stage.

Luiz Kunz -- president of Ibama -- said in a statement that the
interference from the public prosecutor's office has reached the
limit.

An Ibama spokesperson told BNamericas that Ibama has only just
started drafting the licensing guidelines to be used by
Eletrobras in carrying out its environmental impact studies.  As
part of the technical process, local communities are being
consulted for the guidelines.

The Brazilian government has plans to put the project up for
concession next year, BNamericas reports.  The start of
commercial operations is scheduled in 2012.

                        *    *    *

As reported on Nov. 15, 2005, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services
has assigned its 'BB-' rating to Eletrobras - Centrais Eletricas
Brasileiras S.A.'s forthcoming US$300 million unsecured and
unsubordinated notes due in 2015.  The global scale corporate
credit ratings at 'BB-' foreign currency and 'BB' local currency
were also affirmed.  S&P said the outlook is positive.


PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Building US$3 Billion Petrochemicals Plant
---------------------------------------------------------------
Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. -- together with private petrochemicals
group, Ultra -- plans to build a US$3 billion petrochemicals
complex in Itaborai, Rio Grande do Sul state in Brazil, Business
News Americas reports.

According to BNamericas, the heavy-crude refinery petrochemicals
plant could attract an equal amount of investment from
petrochemicals companies that would operate near the complex.

Rio de Janeiro's state government will grant tax incentives to
Petrobras and Ultra equivalent to 8-9% of the project's total
value, BNamericas relates.

The Itaborai investment is part of Petrobras' plan to increase
and modernize its refinery-petrochemicals park.  The Brazilian
company and Venezuela's state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela
SA are preparing to invest US$2.5 billion in a 200,000 barrel-a-
day heavy crude refinery in northeast Brazil, BNamericas
relates.

Petrobras owns 98% of Brazil's 2 million barrel-a-day refining
park through 11 refineries.

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Petroleo Brasileiro
S.A. aka Petrobras was founded in 1953.  The company explores,
produces, refines, transports, markets, distributes oil and
natural gas and power to various wholesale customers and retail
distributors in the country.

                        *    *    *

Petroleo Brasileiro SA's long-term corporate family rating is
rated Ba3 by Moody's and its foreign currency long-term debt is
rated BB- by Fitch.

                        *    *    *

Fitch assigned these ratings to Petroleo Brasileiro's senior
unsecured notes:

  Maturity Date           Amount        Rate       Ratings
  -------------           ------        ----       -------
  April  1, 2008        $400,000,000    9%          BB-
  July   2, 2013        $750,000,000    9.125%      BB-
  Sept. 15, 2014        $650,000,000    7.75%       BB-
  Dec.  10, 2018        $750,000,000    8.375%      BB-


TELEMAR: Securities Agency Approves BRL 2.16 Bil. Bond Issuance
---------------------------------------------------------------
Comissao de Valores Mobiliarios, Brazil's securities commission,
has approved Tele Norte Leste Participacoes SA aka Telemar's
issue of non-convertible debentures valued at 2.16 billion reals
(US$1.6 billion).

In February, Telemar announced its intention to issue a
debenture totaling BRL1.6 billion, but due to strong demand, the
company decided to increase the offer, Dow Jones Newswires
states.

According to Dow Jones, the debenture is the largest of its kind
ever issued for a non-banking company in Brazil.  The largest
debenture of any kind in Brazil was a BRL5 billion debenture
issued in 2005 by Brazil's ninth-largest bank, Banco Safra.

The issuance will be given in two tranches:

     -- one totaling BRL1.62 billion, and
     -- the second worth BRL540 million.

It will be coordinated by Banco do Brasil Investimentos SA, an
arm of state bank Banco do Brasil (BBAS3.BR).

The board of Telemar has already approved an interest rate for
the debenture equal to 3% over the local interbank rate,  know
as CDI, for the first tranche, with a maturity of five years.
The second tranche, maturing in seven years, will pay the full
CDI yield plus an interest rate of 0.55% per year, Dow Jones
relates.

Telemar provides telecommunication services in South America.
It offers local, intra-regional long distance, and data
transmission services in 16 Brazilian states, which covers
approximately 64% of the country.  Mobile services are provided
through its wireless unit Oi, and it has acquired data
transmission services provider Pegasus.

                        *    *    *

As reported on Mar. 2, 2006, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services
said it placed the 'BB' ratings of Telemar Norte Leste S.A. on
CreditWatch with positive implications following the raising of
the foreign and local currency sovereign credit ratings on
Brazil.


VARIG S.A.: Needs More Time to Pay Brazilian Government Debt
------------------------------------------------------------
The Associated Press reports that Marcelo Bottini, CEO of VARIG
S.A., met with Waldir Pires, Brazil's Defense Minister, to ask
the Brazilian government for:

   -- a three-month delay to pay Infraero, Brazil's airport
      authority; and

   -- a two-month delay to pay BR Distribuidora, an affiliate of
      Brazilian government-owned oil company Petrobras.

VARIG owes airport authority about $54 million and spends about
$422,000 a day for airport fees, AP relates.

                  New Short-Term Financing

VARIG is also seeking financing to cover airport fees and fuel
costs, and to tide the airline over the offseason.

Bloomberg says VARIG is asking the Brazilian government for a
short-term credit line through Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento
Economico e Social, the government-run national development
bank.

However, according to Investnews (Brazil), the new BNDES chair
Demian Fiocca said a likely support to VARIG will go through
technical analyses as all financings granted by the bank.

Brazil's Finance Minister Guido Mantega also told Investnews
that it is not the government's role to help VARIG.  Mr. Mantega
said the government has done everything that could be done
through  BNDES when the bank granted loans for the purchase of
VarigLog and VEM.

Mr. Bottini denied local reports that the airline will suspend
flights and ground its planes unless it gets financing.

                       About VARIG

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, VARIG S.A. is Brazil's
largest air carrier and the largest air carrier in Latin
America.  VARIG's principal business is the transportation of
passengers and cargo by air on domestic routes within Brazil and
on international routes between Brazil and North and South
America, Europe and Asia.  VARIG carries approximately 13
million passengers annually and employs approximately 11,456
full-time employees, of which approximately 133 are employed in
the United States.

The Company, along with two affiliates, filed for a judicial
reorganization proceeding under the New Bankruptcy and
Restructuring Law of Brazil on June 17, 2005, due to a
competitive landscape, high fuel costs, cash flow deficit, and
high operating leverage.  The Debtors may be the first case
under the new law, which took effect on June 9, 2005.  Similar
to a chapter 11 debtor-in-possession under the U.S. Bankruptcy
Code, the Debtors remain in possession and control of their
estate pending the Judicial Reorganization.  Sergio Bermudes,
Esq., at Escritorio de Advocacia Sergio Bermudes, represents the
carrier in Brazil.

Each of the Debtors' Boards of Directors authorized Vicente
Cervo as foreign representative.  In this capacity, Mr. Cervo
filed a Sec. 304 petition on June 17, 2005 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Case
Nos. 05-14400 and 05-14402).  Rick B. Antonoff, Esq., at
Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP represents Mr. Cervo in the
United States.  As of March 31, 2005, the Debtors reported
BRL2,979,309,000 in total assets and BRL9,474,930,000 in total
debts. (VARIG Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 17; Bankruptcy
Creditors' Service, Inc., 215/945-7000)


* BRAZIL: Continues Receiving Natural Gas Exports from Bolivia
--------------------------------------------------------------
Bolivia's natural gas exports to Argentina was temporarily
stopped, the Associated Press reports.  Bolivia wants to focus
on making exports to Brazil.

Jorge Alvarado -- president of state energy firm Yacimientos
Petroliferos Fiscales de Bolivia aka YPFB -- explained to AP
Bolivia's decision, saying that Bolivia favored Brazil because
the two countries have a 20-year gas-supply accord while
Bolivia's deal with Argentina was only temporary.

AP relates that the damage in the gas pipeline due to heavy
rains a week ago affected Bolivia's exports to Brazil, which
gets half of its natural gas from Bolivia.  Gas exports dropped
to 21 million cubic meters a day from the usual 26 million cubic
meters a day.  Repair work was hampered by road blockades by
protesters in a local land dispute.

As of Tuesday morning, Argentina did not get any exports from
Bolivia, which normally sends 4.5-5 million cubic meters daily
to the former, YPFB said to AP.

Julio de Vido -- Argentine Planning Minister -- however made
downplayed the significance of the cuts in supply, according to
AP.  Instead, the minister emphasized the expected progress on
an accord with Bolivia to increase gas exports to Argentina
later this year.

Chile was most affected by Bolivia's decision, AP states.
Authorities of Argentina made up for the absence of Bolivian gas
by cutting their own gas deliveries to Chile.

Brazilian state energy firm Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. aka
Petrobras, which runs the damaged pipeline with Transredes S.A.,
is still trying to fix the duct, AP reports.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Bolivia:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling    B-       Jun. 17, 2004
   Long Term IDR      B-       Dec. 14, 2005
   Local Currency
   Long Term Issuer
   Default Rating     B-       Dec. 14, 2005

                      *    *    *

As reported on April 6, 2006, Fitch assigned these ratings to
Brazil:

    -- Foreign currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) 'BB-';
    -- Local currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) 'BB-';

Fitch said the rating outlook is positive.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Argentina:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling     RD      Dec. 14, 2005
   Long Term IDR       B       Dec. 14, 2005
   Short Term IDR      B-      Jun.  3, 2005
   Local Currency
   Long Term Issuer
   Default Rating      B       Jun.  3, 2005



===========================
C A Y M A N   I S L A N D S
===========================


ALMATIS DEBT 3: Filing of Proofs of Claim Ends on April 24
----------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of Almatis Debt 3 Limited are required to submit
particulars of their debts or claims on or before April 24,
2006, to the company's appointed liquidator, Westport Service
Limited.  Failure to do so will exclude them from receiving the
benefit of any distribution that the company will make.

Almatis Debt 3 started liquidating assets on March 13, 2006.

The liquidator can be reached at:

          Westport Services Limited
          Attention: Patricia Tricarico
          P.O. Box 1111
          Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
          Tel: (345) 949-5122
          Fax: (345) 949-7920


ALMATIS DEBT 4: Creditors Have Until April 24 to File Claims
------------------------------------------------------------
Almatis Debt 4 Limited's creditors are required to submit
particulars of their debts or claims on or before April 24,
2006, to the company's appointed liquidator, Westport Services
Limited.  Failure to do so would mean disqualification from the
benefit of receiving any distribution that the company will
make.

Almatis Debt 4 started liquidating assets on March 13, 2006.

The liquidator can be reached at:

           Westport Services Limited
           Attention: Patricia Tricarico
           P.O. Box 1111
           Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
           Tel: (345) 949-5122
           Fax: (345) 949-7920


ALMATIS EQUITY: Liquidator Stops Accepting Claims by April 24
-------------------------------------------------------------
Westport Services Limited -- the liquidator of Almatis Equity
Limited -- will stop accepting claims from the company's
creditors by April 24, 2006.  Creditors with unverified claims
will be excluded from receiving the benefit of any distribution
that the company will make.

Almatis Equity started liquidating assets on March 13, 2006.

The liquidator can be reached at:

            Westport services Limited
            Attention: Patricia Tricarico
            P.O. Box 1111
            Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
            Tel: (345) 949-5122
            Fax: (345) 949-7920


GPF ALMATIS DEBT: Creditors Must File Proofs of Claim by Apr. 24
----------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of GPF Almatis Debt Limited, which is being
voluntarily wound up, are required to present proofs of claim on
or before April 24, 2006, to Westport Services Limited, the
company's liquidator.

Creditors are required to present proofs of claim personally or
through their solicitors at the time and place that the
liquidator specified.  Failure to present claims would mean
exclusion from the benefit of any distribution that the company
will make.

The liquidator can be reached at:

           Westport Services Limited
           Attention: Patricia Tricarico
           P.O. Box 1111
           Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
           Tel: (345) 949-5122
           Fax: (345) 949-7920


GPF ALMATIS HOLDINGS: Claims Verification Ends on April 24
----------------------------------------------------------
Verification of creditors' claims against GPF Almatis Holdings
Limited -- company under voluntary liquidation -- will end on
April 24, 2006.  Creditors with unverified claims will be
disqualified from the benefit of receiving any distribution that
the company will make.

GPF Almatis Holdings Limited started liquidating assets on March
13, 2006.

The liquidator can be reached at:

            Westport Services Limited
            Attention: Patricia Tricarico
            P.O. Box 1111
            Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
            Tel: (345) 949-5122
            Fax: (345) 949-7920


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


AES GENER: Plans to Build New Plants in Chile
---------------------------------------------
Reuters reports that AES Gener, AES Corp.'s Chilean unit,
disclosed that it is planning to build two new plants in Chile:

    -- a hydro plant in central Chile and
    -- a coal-to-power electric generator in the north.

Chief Executive Felipe Ceron told Reuters that the new plants
were planned as addition to the two power coal-burning plants
that the company planned to operate in 2009.

Electric companies in Chile seek to expand their generating
capacity.  They also want to be independent on natural gas and
petroleum combined-cycle plants like the ones run by AES Gener.
The country mainly acquires its natural gas from Argentina.

Reuters says that demand for power is growing in Chile,
especially in its northern part where large copper mining
operations are running.

AES Gener S.A., formerly known as Gener SA, a subsidiary of AES
Corp., generates, transmits and distributes electrical energy;
extracts and trades coal; explores, extracts, transports and
distributes natural gas; explores oil; and provides services for
the operation and maintenance of thermal generating plants.
Chilean power accounted for 70% of 2001 revenues; international
power and new business, 21%; infrastructure and fuels, 8%;
engineering and services, nominal; and other, 1%.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings to AES Gener S.A.:

                  Rating      Rating Effective
                  ------      ----------------
Long term rating    BB        Sept. 6, 2005
Local currency
long term rating    BB        Sept. 6, 2005

Fitch also rated BB the company's US$400 million 7.5% bond due
Mar. 25, 2014.


EMPRESA NACIONAL: Completes LNG Consumer Pool, Two Firms Opt Out
----------------------------------------------------------------
Chilean state energy company Empresa Nacional de Petroleo SA has
finalized the consumer pool for its liquefied natural gas
project, but two major power companies bowed out of the project,
Dow Jones Newswires reports.

The pool previously included Empresa Nacional de Electricidad de
Chile, a unit of Spanish power utility Endesa SA and gas
distributor Metrogas; and Enap.

According to Dow Jones, the consumers' joint venture, GNL Chile,
"will work at their maximum to supply LNG a year earlier" in
2008, Enap added in a statement.  The power generators' exit
doesn't threaten the project, the companies said.

Regional gas distributors Gasvalpo, a unit of Australian Gas
Light Co. and Sempra Energy unit Energas have joined GNL Chile.

Dow Jones relates that Endesa had previously estimated 2009 as
the likely date for the US$350 million regasification plant and
terminal to begin supplying Chile's gas grid.  However,
diversifying sources of energy has become a policy priority for
the Chilean government as rising demand faces dwindling
resources, posing a major mid-term threat to growth.

Empresa Nacional de Electricidad S.A. (Endesa-Chile) and its
subsidiaries generate and supply electricity.  The Company owns
and operates generating plants, and offers civil, mechanical,
and electrical engineering, architectural environmental, and
project management services.

                        *    *    *

Moody's Investor Service assigned a Ba1 foreign currency long-
term debt rating to Empresa Nacional de Electricidad SA (Chile)
on Jan. 26, 2005.


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


* COLOMBIA: Expects to Raise COP300 Bil. from Isagen Stake Sale
---------------------------------------------------------------
The sale of Colombia's 20% stake in state-run power Isagen S.A.
will bring about COP300 billion to the government, Fernando Rico
-- Isagen's Chief Executive -- told Dow Jones Newswires last
week.

Mr. Rico informed Dow Jones in an interview that the stake will
probably sold to the public on the stock market in late August
or early September, after the government offers shares to
cooperative associations in June and July.

"It's not exactly an initial public offering, it's a secondary
sale. The revenue will go to the main shareholder, the nation,
not to Isagen," Mr. Rico told Dow Jones.

Dow Jones relates that the government wants to sell the stake as
it did with Interconexion Electrica SA -- the transmission grid
operator -- in 2000.

Mr. Rico revealed to Dow Jones that the shares were originally
planned to be sold in June.  However, paperwork took more time
than expected.

According to Dow Jones, Isagen is 77%-owned by the government.
The public utility Empresas Publicas de Medellin aka EPM, holds
a 13% stake and a variety of public and private electricity
firms and government employees own the rest.

Dow Jones reports that about 90,000 minority shareholders own
about 28.2% -- one of the most liquid of the Colombian stock
market -- in Isagen.

Nicolas Patino -- a trader with local brokerage Alianza Valores
-- was quoted by Dow Jones saying that the market is excited
about the sale, adding that investors are very avid for new
listings in the Colombian market.

Isagen, as an electricity business, is very profitable in
Colombia.  It is an attractive diversification option. It is
completely unconnected from many of Colombia's traditional
corporations, Mr. Patino told Dow Jones.

                       *    *    *

On May 30, 2005, Fitch Ratings has affirmed Colombia's ratings
as:

      -- Long-term foreign currency 'BB';
      -- Country ceiling 'BB';
      -- Local currency 'BBB-';
      -- Short-term 'B'.

Fitch said the Rating Outlook is Stable.



===================
C O S T A   R I C A
===================


* COSTA RICA: ICE Fears Unfair Competition Under US CAFTA
---------------------------------------------------------
Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad -- ICE, Costa Rica's
state-run telephone monopoly, told the nation's Congress that a
free trade agreement with the United States threatens social
stability, the Dominican Today reports.

"This project (CAFTA), if approved as drafted, will have serious
implications for the model of social development this country
has followed, thus it will bring serious and grave consequences
for Costa Rican society," according to a document issued by ICE.

ICE stressed in its report that it is in no shape to compete
with the two biggest multinationals now active in the Latin
American telecoms market, Mexico-based America Movil and Spain's
Telefonica.

The CAFTA, signed by outgoing President Abel Pacheco, has yet to
be ratified by the Congress.

President Abel Pacheco argued that ICE can survive the
competition.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Mar. 10, 2006,
Fitch rates Costa Rica's foreign and local currency issuer
default ratings 'BB' and 'BB+', respectively.  Fitch said the
Rating Outlook is Negative.

Fitch said that while the victory of Oscar Arias in Costa Rica's
recent presidential elections bodes well for reforms, the narrow
victory margin could affect the pace of reforms.

Contrary to pre-election polls in which Mr. Arias was leading by
several percentage points, he won only by a very narrow margin.
President Arias is viewed to be in favor of the US-Central
American Free Trade Agreement aka CAFTA and is pro-fiscal reform
and pro-private enterprise, but a weaker election mandate could
undermine his ability to spearhead reforms.

"As the PLN -- the party of President Arias -- has failed to
obtain a simple majority in Congress, it remains to be seen how
quickly the new administration will be able to garner sufficient
support in a divided Congress to enact crucial reforms," said
Shelly Shetty, Senior Director in Fitch's Sovereign Group in New
York.

Fitch believes that the newly elected Arias administration needs
to make headway in CAFTA and fiscal reforms in order to place
the country on a higher growth trajectory.

Although the fiscal reform has passed the first vote in the
legislative assembly, it is unclear whether it would be passed
before the next administration takes over in May.  Fiscal reform
entailing revenue-raising measures is necessary to improve the
medium-term outlook for the Costa Rican public finances.

Although Fitch recognizes the recent reduction in Costa Rica's
fiscal deficit, it believes that a permanent reduction in the
general government deficit would require a revenue-enhancing
reform.

Inflation in Costa Rica ended at 14% last year, which is among
the highest in the Latin American region.  Additional tax
revenues are needed to recapitalize the central bank in order to
improve the effectiveness of monetary policy.  The central
bank's much lauded goal of moving toward a more flexible
exchange rate regime and reversing the widespread financial
dollarization could only be achieved after a fiscal reform is
passed.

Fitch also notes that Costa Rica is the only Central American
country that has not yet approved CAFTA in its Congress.

"Approval of CAFTA is critical to further strengthen Costa
Rica's position as a leading destination for foreign direct
investment flows in the Central American region.  It is hoped
that the new government uses its political honeymoon period to
seek a speedy approval of CAFTA," said Shetty.

Although the Pacheco government submitted CAFTA in Congress last
year, the approval of this crucial trade pact has not been easy
to obtain because of opposition from the unions and some
political parties.  The treaty will not only provide Costa Rica
with the opportunity to gain permanent access to the US market,
but it will also indirectly benefit private businesses in Costa
Rica, as the treaty requires the liberalization of state-
dominated telecom and insurance sectors.

Costa Rica's economy has experienced relatively high growth in
the past few years.  Benefiting from a favorable external
backdrop and robust tourism flows, the economy is estimated to
have grown at 4% in 2005.  However, the approval of CAFTA along
with fiscal reforms could make higher growth more sustainable.

In the coming months, Fitch will assess the ability of the Arias
administration to push through reforms in Congress.  Continued
fiscal restraint, passage of a tax-enhancing package and/or
implementation of CAFTA could help in stabilizing Costa Rica's
ratings.


=======
C U B A
=======


* CUBA: Inks Joint Venture Pact with Venezuela for Plant Restart
----------------------------------------------------------------
Cuba's state oil firm Cupet formed a joint venture with
Venezuela's Petroleos de Venezuela aka PDVSA for the
reactivation of Cuba's Cienfuegos refinery.  Cuba's President
Fidel Castro signed an agreement Monday at the Palace of the
Revolution in Havana with Rafael Ramirez -- the head of PDVSA.

The venture was called PDV-CUPET SA, in which both firms will
invest between $800 million and $1 billion.

As agreed, the plant will be 49% owned by PDVSA, which will
supply 70,000 barrels a day of unrefined oil and other products
needed in the refinery.  Cupet, on the other hand, will hold a
51% stake in the plant.

The Cienfuegos plant will refine and manufacture petroleum
products and operate storage and market oil derivatives in Cuba
and abroad.

The refinery was constructed in 1990 with Russian aid.  When the
Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, operations at the plant ceased
because of its high fuel consumption and the end of supplies of
oil from Russia.

PDVSA has been considering investing in the plant since
President Hugo Chavez took office in 1999.  Venezuelan oil
authorities had disclosed in 2005 a plan to invest from $60
million to $100 million to restart the refinery and make it
produce heavy sour Venezuelan crude rather than the lighter
Soviet oil it was created for.

The reactivation of the refinery would reduce Cuba's fuel
imports and would also increase exports to neighboring Caribbean
nations.

PDVSA is Venezuela's state oil company in charge of the
development of the petroleum, petrochemical and coal industry,
as well as planning, coordinating, supervising and controlling
the operational activities of its divisions, both in Venezuela
and abroad.

                        *    *    *

On Jan. 23, 2005, Fitch Ratings upgraded the local and foreign
currency ratings of Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. aka PDVSA to
'BB-' from 'B+'.  The rating of PDVSA's export receivable future
flow securitization, PDVSA Finance Ltd, was also upgraded to
'BB+' from 'BB'.  In addition, Fitch has assigned PDVSA a
'AAA(ven)' national scale rating.  The Rating Outlook is Stable.
Both rating actions follow Fitch's November 2005 upgrade of
Venezuela's sovereign rating.

                        *    *    *

Moody's assigned these ratings on Cuba:

      -- CC LT Foreign Bank Depst, Caa2
      -- CC LT Foreign Curr Debt, Caa1
      -- CC ST Foreign Bank Depst, NP
      -- CC ST Foreign Curr Debt, NP
      -- Issuer Rating, Caa1


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


* ECUADOR: Occidental Petroleum Offers US$1B to Settle Dispute
--------------------------------------------------------------
Peter Howard Wertheim, writing for the Oil and Gas Journal,
reports that Occidental Petroleum Corp. has offerred Ecuador's
government at least US$600 mullion and as much as US$1 billion
in disputed taxes, investments, and extra revenues to end a
legal dispute.

The dispute centers on whether the US firm in 2000 transferred
part of a field to Canada's EnCana Corp. without approval from
the Ecuador authorities, the Journal relates.

Occidental Petroleum proposes to pay least US$600 million in
extra revenues from the disputed area but denies any wrongdoing.
The company's offer also includes US$100 million for health and
social development projects.  Additionally, Occidental Petroleum
pledged to invest US$110 million in new projects with Ecuador's
state oil firm Petroecuador.  Furthermore, it will pay a US$50
million bonus for contract changes and US$13 million toward the
energy ministry's plans to modernize its tax system.

The company faces the possibility of having its Ecuador license
revoked.

Occidental Petroleum produces 100,000 barrels per day of oil in
Ecuador.

Ecuador's energy ministry is still studying the case, the
Journal says.

                 About Occidental Petroleum

Occidental Petroleum Corporation engages primarily in the
exploration, development, production, and marketing of crude oil
and natural gas in the United States and internationally.  As of
Dec. 31, 2005, it had proved reserves of approximately 2,082
millions barrels of oil and 3,478 billion cubic feet of natural
gas.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Ecuador:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling     B-      Aug. 29, 2005
   Long Term IDR       B-      Dec. 14, 2005
   Short Term IDR      B       Dec. 14, 2005


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


BANCO INDUSTRIAL: IFC Approves US$30 Mil. Subordinated Loan
-----------------------------------------------------------
In a move designed to spur the development of the banking sector
in Guatemala, the International Finance Corporation has signed
an agreement to provide Banco Industrial, S.A., the country's
largest financial institution, with a US$30 million subordinated
loan.

IFC's financing will help support Banco Industrial's plans to
expand its financing of large firms, the growing export sector,
and small and medium enterprises.  It will also help deepen the
bank's successful program for processing remittances from
Guatemalans abroad.  The loan will qualify as tier-II capital
for regulatory purposes.

Jyrki Koskelo, IFC's director for Global Financial Markets,
said, "By strengthening the capital base of the leading bank in
Guatemala, IFC will promote the consolidation of the country's
financial sector, which will further increase the stability of
the banking system."

IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, seeks to
support Central American countries as they work to increase
their competitiveness in the face of accelerating globalization.
IFC's financing is particularly timely as the Central America
Free Trade Agreement or CAFTA creates new opportunities and
challenges for the private sector and the governments of the
region.

In the financial sector, IFC has been providing leading banks in
Central America with investments tailored to strengthen their
capital bases so that they can take advantage of regional
expansion opportunities.

Atul Mehta, IFC's director for Latin America and the Caribbean,
said, "IFC's investment will constitute a signal of approval in
the international market and help put Banco Industrial on a very
competitive footing as CAFTA is implemented in the region."

Banco Industrial, founded in 1968, has consolidated assets of
US$3 billion and more than a 20 percent market share of assets
and deposits. Well established in the large corporate market
segment, it supports a client base, including key exporters, of
good credit quality with trade finance, working capital, and
financing for capital expansion.  In recent years, it has
increased its services for small and medium companies and
individual customers.  It is the largest processor of family
remittances from Guatemalans abroad.

Diego Pulido, Banco Industrial's CEO, said, "We very much
welcome the new relationship with IFC as its long-term financing
will help diversify the funding sources necessary to sustain
growth."

IFC is the private sector arm of the World Bank Group and is
headquartered in Washington, D.C.  IFC coordinates its
activities with the other institutions of the World Bank Group
but is legally and financially independent.  Its 178 member
countries provide its share capital and collectively determine
its policies.

                  *    *    *

On March 20, 2006, Moody's Ratings Services affirmed Banco
Industrial S.A.'s 'D' bank financial strength rating.

Moody's also affirmed Industrial's 'Baa2' and Prime-3 long and
short term global local currency deposit ratings, respectively,
and its 'Ba3' and Not Prime long and short term foreign currency
deposit ratings.  All the ratings have stable outlooks.


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


KAISER ALUMINUM: District Court Consolidates Appeals
----------------------------------------------------
As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Mar. 9, 2006,
Twenty-four insurers took an appeal from Judge Fitzgerald's
order and findings of fact and conclusions of law confirming the
Second Amended Plan of Reorganization filed by Kaiser Aluminum
Corporation and its debtor-affiliates, to the U.S. District
Court for the District of Delaware.

The Insurers want the District Court to review the Bankruptcy
Court's decision.

Kimberly D. Newmarch, Esq., at Richards, Layton & Finger, in
Wilmington, Delaware, relates that prior to filing their request
to consolidate all appeals filed by the 24 insurers and Duncan
McNeill with the U.S. District Court for the District of
Delaware, the Plan Proponents conferred with Columbia Casualty
Insurance Company and certain insurers.

The Plan Proponents are:

    -- the Reorganizing Debtors,

    -- the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors,

    -- the Official Committee of Asbestos Claimants,

    -- the Official Committee of Retired Employees,

    -- Martin J. Murphy, as Legal Representative for Future
       Asbestos Claimants, and

    -- Anne M. Ferrazi, as Legal Representative for Future
       Silica and Coal Tar Pitch Volatiles Claimants.

In that conference, the Insurers informed the Reorganizing
Debtors that they do not oppose consolidation of the Appeals but
opposed further briefing.

Although the Columbia Insurers' counsel indicated a willingness
to agree to an expedited briefing schedule, he advised he was
not authorized to make a proposal on behalf of the Insurers, Ms.
Newmarch says.

The Reorganizing Debtors' counsel tried, for several times, to
reach out with the Insurers regarding what would deem to be a
"reasonable" briefing schedule, but to no avail.

Ms. Newmarch points out that the Insurers' refusal belies their
assertions that they are interested in having the District Court
rule on the matter, "in a relatively short period of time."
Furthermore, Ms. Newmarch argues that the Insurers' argument
that further briefing is critical because one legal issue before
the Court "raises a matter of first impression in this Circuit"
and that they need to address the undisclosed "important
colloquy" between the Bankruptcy Court and the Insurers at the
confirmation hearing, is baseless.

Ms. Newmarch argues that contrary to the Insurers' contentions,
the Third Circuit in Combustion Engineering, 391 F.3d 190 (3d
Ch. 2005) answered the very question now before the Court.

Although the Insurers argue that the Third Circuit in Combustion
Engineering merely "affirmed the settled principle that an
interest of the debtor in property . . . is property of the
debtor's estate within the meaning of Section 541(c)(1) [of the
Bankruptcy Code], regardless of any contractual anti-assignment
provision," the Insurers' proposed reading of the opinion is
absurd, Ms. Newmarch contends.

"The issue before the Third Circuit in Combustion Engineering
was not whether the debtor's insurance rights became property of
the estate notwithstanding the anti-assignment provisions in the
policies," Ms. Newmarch continues.  "Rather, the issue contested
by the parties in the case was the same issue as now before the
Court -- whether the transfer of the right to insurance proceeds
by the estate to the section 524(g) trust is permissible
notwithstanding the anti-assignment provisions in the policies."

Ms. Newmarch further notes that the Bankruptcy Court's ruling,
which is the subject of the Appeals, is limited to a one-
sentence legal conclusion -- "Section 1123(a)(5) of the
Bankruptcy Code expressly permits the transfer of the
Reorganizing Debtors' rights to proceeds from the Included PI
Trust Insurance Assets under the Plan and preempts any anti-
assignment provisions of the Included PI Trust Insurance
Assets."

"Because this conclusion is purely legal, it is reviewed de
novo, and irrespective of the Bankruptcy Court's statements at
the confirmation hearing or any 'colloquy' that occurred, the
[District Court] must make an independent determination that the
legal conclusion is correct," Ms. Newmarch further asserts.
"The correctness of the legal conclusion is not dependent upon
the Bankruptcy Court's statements at the confirmation hearing or
its interaction with the Insurers' representatives."

Moreover, the Insurers fail to even set out or summarize the
colloquy they suggest is so important, Ms. Newmarch says.  The
Bankruptcy Court's reasoning at the confirmation hearing was
principally that:

    -- the issue had been addressed by the Third Circuit in
       Combustion Engineering; and

    -- Section 1123(a)(5)(B) is clear that "estate property can
       be transferred in whole or in part to one or more
       entities, whether organized before or after confirmation
       of the plan."

According to Ms. Newmarch, the Insurers incorrectly assert that
consummation of the Plan is not dependent on a resolution of the
preemption issue anytime soon.

"The Insurers could not be more wrong.  As the Insurers well
know, until [the District] Court issues or affirms the
Confirmation Order, as required by section 524(g)(3)(A) of the
Bankruptcy Code, the Reorganizing Debtors cannot consummate the
Plan," Ms. Newmarch explains.

Given the Insurers' refusal to even propose a briefing schedule
notwithstanding the narrow legal conclusion and the substantial
passage of time that has already occurred, the Plan Proponents
ask the District Court to:

    (a) overrule the Insurers' Response; and
    (b) set a hearing to consider oral argument.

               District Court Consolidates Appeals

The Delaware District Court grants the Plan Proponents' request
to consolidate the Appeals.

District Court Judge Farnan further grants the Plan Proponents'
request:

    -- for a de novo review of the Bankruptcy Court's findings
       of fact and conclusions of law regarding the confirmation
       of the Reorganizing Debtors' Plan; and

    -- to waive the mediation requirement.

The District Court holds that based on the nature of the
parties' dispute and the specific legal issues raised, mediation
would be inefficient and unproductive.

Judge Farnan, however, denies the Reorganizing Debtors' request
for an expedited hearing and treatment of the consolidated
cases.

The District Court declines to proceed in the manner suggested
by the Reorganizing Debtors.

The District Court believes that additional submissions by the
parties are necessary to a full adjudication of the issues.
Judge Farnan notes that the submissions can be made on a
modified schedule so that some measure of expedited treatment
may be afforded to the bankruptcy cases.

In lieu of formal briefing, Judge Farnan directs the parties to
submit memoranda on the issues presented.

The District Court will convene a hearing on the matter on
May 11, 2006, at 12:30 p.m., in Courtroom 4B, 4th Floor, Boggs
Federal Building in Wilmington, Delaware.

Headquartered in Foothill Ranch, California, Kaiser Aluminum
Corporation -- http://www.kaiseraluminum.com/-- is a leading
producer of fabricated aluminum products for aerospace and high-
strength, general engineering, automotive, and custom industrial
applications.  The Company, along with its Jamaican subsidiaries
-- Alpart Jamaica Inc. and Kaiser Jamaica Corporation -- filed
for chapter 11 protection on February 12, 2002 (Bankr. Del. Case
No. 02-10429), and has sold off a number of its commodity
businesses during course of its cases.  Corinne Ball, Esq., at
Jones Day, represents the Debtors in their restructuring
efforts.  On June 30, 2004, the Debtors listed $1.619 billion in
assets and $3.396 billion in debts.  (Kaiser Bankruptcy News,
Issue No. 93; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc., 215/945-7000)


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


DIRECTV GROUP: Innova's Tender Offer Expired on April 11
--------------------------------------------------------
Innova, a satellite-television joint venture between Mexican
broadcaster Grupo Televisa SA and DirecTV Group Inc., has
extended its its tender offer for US$195 million in debt until
April 11.

In addition, operator of Sky Mexico satellite television said in
a release it may increase the amount of notes it plans to buy
back.

Innova has received tenders for about US$280 million of the 9-
3/8% notes due 2013, or about 93% of the US$300 million
outstanding.

The company, owned 53% by Televisa and 47% by DirecTV, will
finance the buyback with a new bank facility, along with cash or
other financing sources.

The DIRECTV Group, Inc., formerly Hughes Electronics
Corporation, headquartered in El Segundo, California, is a
world-leading provider of multi-channel television
entertainment, and broadband satellite networks and
services.  The DIRECTV Group, Inc. with sales in 2004 of
approximately $11.4 billion is 34% owned by Fox Entertainment
Group, Inc., which is owned by News Corporation.  DIRECTV is
currently available in Latin American countries: Argentina,
Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador,
Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Puerto Rico,
Trinidad & Tobago, Uruguay, Venezuela and several Caribbean
island nations.

                        *    *    *

Moody's Investor Service assigned on June 8, 2005, a Ba2 rating
on DirecTV Group Inc.'s US$1.0 billion senior unsecured notes.


GRUPO MEXICO: Declares Force Majeure Due to Ongoing Strike
----------------------------------------------------------
Copper miner Grupo Mexico S.A. declared force majeure on some
molybdenum and copper deliveries due to the ongoing strike at
the La Caridad mine, the company told Dow Jones Newswires.

Dow Jones reports that Juan Rebolledo -- Grupo Mexico's vice
president for international affairs -- said the miner has
started notifying some clients of problems with deliveries.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on April 12, 2006,
the strike at the La Caridad mine went on even though the
smelter and refinery workers agreed to a revised contract

Dow Jones relates that Juan Rebolledo -- the company's spokesman
-- denied rumors that the strike was over because of the
agreement.  According to the spokesman, the more than 1,000
union workers who worked at the mine remained on strike.

"The smelter and refinery workers were in talks all day and have
agreed to a revised contract and are back at work after the
meeting," Mr. Rebolledo told Dow Jones, adding that those
workers might have been mistaken as the La Caridad mine workers.

Mr. Rebolledo informed Dow Jones that the smelter and refinery
are still in production using concentrate from Grupo Mexico's
Cananea mine.  However, as Dow Jones states, the La Caridad
demonstration is costing the company about 700,000 pounds of
copper a day.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on March 28, 2006,
workers at the La Caridad mine went on strike after the mine
operator Industrial Minera Mexico reportedly refused to conduct
a collective contract review.

The country's labor ministry has extended the review deadline
again, the STMMRM union complained to Business News.

According to Dow Jones Newswires, the deadline -- originally set
on March 5 -- had been put back several times.

The STMMRM said in the statement that the workers in the union's
section 298, which represents La Caridad, are demanding that
Grupo Mexico fulfill its legal obligation and negotiate the
collective contract.

As reported by the Troubled Company Reporter on Oct. 31, 2005,
that Grupo Mexico had agreed to pay each worker in the La
Caridad about MXN10,000 after a day of strike.

Dow Jones Newswires recalled that workers went on strike due to
Grupo Mexico's alleged refusal to share profits from 2003
results.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on April 3, 2006,
the union's ratification of Napoleon Gomez Urrutia's leadership
has been rejected by the Mexican Labor Ministry despite the
union's threat of taking further action alongside other unions.
The ministry was firm on its decision of recognizing Elias
Morales as the union's head.

The ministry said that the extraordinary general convention held
by the union between March 18 and 19 in Monclova -- where
majority of the 250,000-member union's 130 chapters ratified Mr.
Urrutia's leaderhip --failed to meet attendance and other
requirements set out in the union's laws.

According to Dow Jones, the ministry recognizes Mr. Morales as
the union's leader and cited a February 17 notification from the
union's oversight committee on Mr. Morales' appointment as union
head in place of Mr. Urrutia, who is being investigated by the
government for an alleged embezzlement of the $55 million
payment made by Grupo Mexico to the union last year.  One of the
supposed signatories, however, has denied having signed the
document.

The leadership conflict had sparked a nationwide strike that
started on walkouts at Grupo Mexico's La Caridad mine last week
due to a contract revision.

Several hundred members joined the demonstration outside the
ministry, demanding that the ministry accept the notification of
Mr. Urrtia's leadership, unfreeze union bank accounts and keep
Mr. Morales from involving in union affairs.

The union said it would remain on strike and refuse to resume
contract talks unless the negotiating team is appointed by Mr.
Urrutia.

Grupo Mexico SA de C.V. -- http://www.grupomexico.com/--  
through its ownership of Asarco and the Southern Peru Copper
Company, Grupo Mexico is the world's third largest copper
producer, fourth largest silver producer and fifth largest
producer of zinc and molybdenum.

                        *    *     *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings to Grupo Mexico SA de C.V.:

     -- foreign currency long-term debt, BB; and
     -- local currency long-term debt, BB.


=====================
P U E R T O   R I C O
=====================


MUSICLAND HOLDING: Files Schedules of Assets and Liabilities
------------------------------------------------------------

A.     Real Property
          Leasehold improvements                   $23,069,672
          CIP fixed assets                          12,152,535
          Accumulated depreciation                  (6,703,696)

B.     Personal Property
B.1    Cash on hand
B.13   Interests in partnerships
          Cash register funds                          928,640
          Investments                                  536,611
          Petty Cash                                       500
B.2    Bank accounts
          Wells Fargo tax disbursements                (23,125)
          A/P disbursement -- Norwest               (7,307,233)
          Payroll -- Norwest                        (2,245,434)
          Norwest concentration                        648,187
          ACH -- Norwest                                   284
          Wells Fargo purchasing collection          2,192,170
          UHC benefit disbursement                     200,000
          Cash in bank-stores                        3,349,574
          Cash clearing                               (169,963)
          Credit cards                               1,960,457
B.9    Interest in insurance policies
          St. Paul/Travelers                            49,000
          Royal                                         40,000
          ESIS                                          30,598
          REM                                           12,500
B.13   Stocks and interests
          MLG Internet, Inc.                      Undetermined
          Request Media, Inc.                     Undetermined
          Musicland Purchasing Corp.              Undetermined
          Media Play, Inc.                        Undetermined
          Sam Goody Holdings Corp.                Undetermined
          Suncoast Holdings Corp.                 Undetermined
B.16   Accounts receivable
          Employee advances                            273,519
          A/R-in-store charge                          214,133
          A/R-freight claims                           370,758
          Other receivables                             57,442
          A/R-other                                  2,412,336
          WCD carrier blng receivables                      36
          New bus. dev receivables                   1,591,888
          Manufacturer coupons                         340,838
          Layaway due                                  191,204
          Sub-tenant receivable                      1,668,333
          Marsh class action suit                       54,765
          Allowance for doubtful accounts             (227,000)
B.18   Other Liquidated Debts
          Tax refund from Philadelphia City             11,851
B.22   Intellectual property                      Undetermined
B.28   Office Equipment
          Office furniture                           2,699,631
          Accumulated depreciation                  (1,286,726)
B.29   Machinery, fixtures, equipment                        -
B.35   Others
          Lease deposit                                 35,490
          Other long-term assets                    (2,152,736)
          Deferred lease acquisition                   155,625
          Prepaid expenses                           7,798,926

       TOTAL SCHEDULED ASSETS                      $42,931,591


C.     Property Claimed As Exempt               Not applicable

D.     Secured Claims
          20th Century Fox Home Entertainment      $27,612,242
          Warner Home Video Inc.                    26,941,787
          Sony BMG Music Distribution               24,187,156
          Warner/Elektra/Atlantic Corp.             23,542,339
          Universal Music and Video Distribution    17,570,019
          Paramount Pictures, Home Video Div.       13,450,961
          Sony Pictures Home Entertainment          11,342,636
          Buena Vista Home Entertainment Inc.        7,976,515
          EMI Recorded Music, North America          7,705,060
          V.D.P IV, Inc.                             5,990,510
          Fleet Retail Finance, Inc.                 5,714,663
          Wachovia Bank, National Association        5,714,663
          National City Business Credit, Inc.        4,444,865
          The CIT Group/Business Credit, Inc.        4,444,865
          GMAC Commercial Finance LLC                3,174,686
          Westernbank Business Credit                3,174,686
          Lasalle Retail Finance                     2,539,977
          Textron Financial Corporation              2,222,242
          Wells Fargo Retail Finance, LLC            2,222,242
          Burdale Financial Limited                  1,904,888
          Grayson & Co.                              1,523,910
          Investment Advisor, Boston Management        889,202
          Eaton Vance Senior Income Trust              126,866
          The Bank of New York                    Undetermined
          Congress Financial Corp., Florida       Undetermined
          Ingram Book                             Undetermined

E.     Unsecured Priority Claims                          None

F.     Unsecured Non-priority Claims              Undetermined

       TOTAL SCHEDULED LIABILITIES                $204,416,981

Headquartered in New York, New York, Musicland Holding Corp., is
a specialty retailer of music, movies and entertainment-related
products.  The Debtor and 14 of its affiliates filed for chapter
11 protection on Jan. 12, 2006 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Lead Case No.
06-10064).  James H.M. Sprayregen, Esq., at Kirkland & Ellis,
represents the Debtors in their restructuring efforts.   Mark T.
Power, Esq., at Hahn & Hessen LLP, represents the Official
Committee of Unsecured Creditors.  When the Debtors filed for
protection from their creditors, they estimated more than $100
million in assets and debts.  (Musicland Bankruptcy News, Issue
No. 9; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc., 215/945-7000)


MUSICLAND HOLDING: Purchasing's Schedule of Assets & Liabilities
----------------------------------------------------------------

A.     Real Property                                        $0

B.     Personal Property
B.1    Cash on hand                                          -
B.2    Bank accounts                                         -
B.16   Accounts receivable                                   -
B.28   Office Equipment                                      -
B.29   Machinery, fixtures, equipment
          Store fixtures/equipment                  13,627,376
          Software                                   4,314,779
          Others                                     5,687,235
          Accumulated depreciation                  (5,429,535)
B.30   Inventory
          Audio                                     84,867,463
          Accessories                               59,083,627
          Video                                    131,175,347
          Books/magazines                           10,852,552
          Trend                                     11,922,821
          Used                                       6,255,670
          Inventory reserves                       (34,073,965)

       TOTAL SCHEDULED ASSETS                     $288,283,370

C.     Property Claimed As Exempt               Not applicable

D.     Secured Claims
          20th Century Fox Home Entertainment      $27,612,242
          Warner Home Video Inc.                    26,941,787
          Sony BMG Music Distribution               24,187,156
          Warner/Elektra/Atlantic Corp.             23,542,339
          Universal Music and Video Distribution    17,570,019
          Paramount Pictures, Home Video Div.       13,450,961
          Sony Pictures Home Entertainment          11,342,636
          Buena Vista Home Entertainment Inc.        7,976,516
          EMI Recorded Music, North America          7,705,060
          V.D.P IV, Inc.                             5,990,510
          Fleet Retail Finance, Inc.                 5,714,663
          Wachovia Bank, National Association        5,714,663
          National City Business Credit, Inc.        4,444,865
          The CIT Group/Business Credit, Inc.        4,444,865
          GMAC Commercial Finance LLC                3,174,686
          Westernbank Business Credit                3,174,686
          Lasalle Retail Finance                     2,539,977
          Textron Financial Corporation              2,222,242
          Wells Fargo Retail Finance, LLC            2,222,242
          Burdale Financial Limited                  1,904,888
          Grayson & Co.                              1,523,910
          Investment Advisor, Boston Management        889,202
          Eaton Vance Senior Income Trust              126,866

E.     Unsecured Priority Claims
          City of Chandler                              12,109
          Michigan Dept of Treasury                     10,454
          Baton Rouge Parish & City Revenue Div         31,751
          Bureau of Internal Revenue                    27,705
          City Hall Records                            226,879
          City of Durango                               11,606
          IBM Lockbox                                   22,622
          Idaho State Tax Commission                    20,308
          North Carolina Dept. of Revenue               29,606
          Jefferson City Revenue Dept.                  12,446
          Others                                        94,404

F.     Unsecured Non-priority Claims
          A.D. Vision Inc.                           3,240,492
          Activision                                 2,921,298
          AEC One Stop Group                         1,965,998
          Cingular Wireless                          1,213,897
          Fender Musical Instrument                 33,038,860
          Funimation Productions                     3,077,992
          Geneon Entertainment                       2,252,950
          Graphic Communications                     1,845,466
          Graphic Resource Group                     1,154,976
          Hal Leonard Corporation                    1,029,433
          Hasbro toy Group                           1,270,781
          In Minn/Ingram Book                        2,210,864
          Simmerman Partners Advertising             5,204,064
          The Good Bead                              1,046,335
          Thomas Grace Construction                  1,003,750
          UBI soft Inc.                              1,296,747
          Universal Home Video                       5,155,853
          US Music Corp                              1,337,870
          Ventura                                    7,220,864
          Virgin Mobile USA LLC                      1,223,342
          Vivendi Universal                          1,765,594
          Others                                    99,852,068

       TOTAL SCHEDULED LIABILITIES                $385,246,365

Headquartered in New York, New York, Musicland Holding Corp., is
a specialty retailer of music, movies and entertainment-related
products.  The Debtor and 14 of its affiliates filed for chapter
11 protection on Jan. 12, 2006 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Lead Case No.
06-10064).  James H.M. Sprayregen, Esq., at Kirkland & Ellis,
represents the Debtors in their restructuring efforts.   Mark T.
Power, Esq., at Hahn & Hessen LLP, represents the Official
Committee of Unsecured Creditors.  When the Debtors filed for
protection from their creditors, they estimated more than $100
million in assets and debts.  (Musicland Bankruptcy News, Issue
No. 9; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc., 215/945-7000)


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


BANCO HIPOTECARIO DEL URUGUAY: Jan-Feb Profit Drops 79% in 2006
---------------------------------------------------------------
Banco Hipotecario del Uruguay's -- BHU -- January to February
profit dropped 79% to UYU122 million in 2006 compared to the
same period last year, Business News Americas reports.

According to BNamericas, BHU's mortgage loans reached UYU16.8
billion at the end of February -- a 5.3% increase -- while
liabilities including deposits remained at UYU31.1 billion.

Past-due loans of the company was 69.1% of the total loans,
Bnamericas relates.  In 2005, these loans were only 67.2%.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on April 5, 2006,
BHU unveiled a restructuring plan that would allow it to return
to lending in the second half of this year.

Business News Americas relates that BHU's loan operations have
been suspended since 2002, when Uruguay suffered a severe
financial crisis, as an effect brought about by the Argentine
meltdown.

Business News reports that the restructuring plan includes the
creation of a new unit that will manage the bank's past-due
loans and cut operating costs as well as massive dismissals.

Moody's Investors Service had questioned BHU's viability last
year due to the bank's deteriorated balance sheet, Business News
recalls.  The ratings agency placed the bank at the lowest level
of E.

Business News adds that housing minister Mariano Arana said that
since 2002 the Uruguayan government has spent about US$82.6
million to capitalize BHU.

"To capitalize the bank does not mean to keep dumping money. To
capitalize means to recuperate BHU's bad loans effectively,
among other things," economy minister Danilo Astori was quoted
by Business News saying.

Press reports state that the International Monetary Fund said
that the Uruguayan government would need an additional US$400
million for the capitalization of BHU.

BHU, says Business News, had faced fierce resistance from
banking union AEBU even before the restructuring plan was
announced.  The union feared that the program would result to
firing employees.

Mr. Piperno revealed to Business News that BHU will spend about
US$1.4 million this year for the revamp of its technology
processes as well as the integration of its platforms.

BHU chose earlier in March the local unit of French bank Credit
Agricole, consulting firm KPMG and a law firm to structure the
securitization of 5% of its commercial loan book.  The
securities will be offered to both institutional and individual
investors. Proceeds from the transaction will be used to reopen
credit lines and increase the bank's liquidity, Business News
reports.

                       *    *    *

On Jan. 25, 2006, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned
'B-' foreign currency senior unsecured debt rating to Banco
Hipotecario S.A.'s $100 million issuance.  The issuance
constituted the second tranche of BH's Series IV notes due Nov.
16, 2010, issued under the $1.2 billion senior unsecured global
MTN program.  With this issuance, the series (whose first
tranche was rated 'B-' on Nov. 16, 2005) will total US$250
million.  At the same time, Standard & Poor's affirmed its
ratings on the Argentine bank's outstanding debt and its 'B-
/Stable/--' counterparty credit ratings.  S&P said the outlook
is stable.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on March 28, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services raised the foreign and local
currency counterparty credit ratings on Banco Hipotecario S.A.
At the same time, Standard & Poor's placed the ratings on
several Argentine entities on CreditWatch with positive
implications.  These rating actions follow the upgrade on the
Republic of Argentina.

Earlier, S&P raised our global foreign and local currency
ratings on Argentina to 'B' from 'B-' and the ratings on the
national scale to 'raAA-' from 'raA', reflecting Argentina's
improved external and fiscal flexibility.

The outlook on the sovereign rating is stable.

S&P's transfer and convertibility risk assessment for Argentina
was raised to 'BB-', two notches higher than Argentina's foreign
currency rating.

S&P raised the rating on Banco Hipotecario one notch to
'B/Stable/--', in tandem with the sovereign upgrade on
Argentina, reflecting the close linkage between the credit
quality of the sovereign and that of its financial system.



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


PDVSA: Buying 33 Mil. Petrolera del Cono Shares for US$15 Mil.
--------------------------------------------------------------
Ancsol -- a subsidiary of Uruguayan state oil company Ancap --
has agreed to sell more than 33 million shares in compatriot
fuel distributor Petrolera del Cono Sur to Venezuela's state oil
firm PDVSA for US$15 million, Ancsol said in a statement.

The shares represent 46.1% of Petrolera's social capital.

Anscol and PDVSA will both control 46.1% of the distributor
after the share transfer scheduled for April 28, the statement
said.

According to previous reports, Ancap decided to sell its shares
in Petrolera, which posted a US$26 million loss in 2004, after
attempts to bring the distributor into the black failed.

According to Business News Americas, Petrolera has to purchase
naphtha and diesel from third parties due to its lack of oil
reserves and refining capacity.  The distributor has 172 service
stations in Argentina.

PDVSA is Venezuela's state oil company in charge of the
development of the petroleum, petrochemical and coal industry,
as well as planning, coordinating, supervising and controlling
the operational activities of its divisions, both in Venezuela
and abroad.

                        *    *    *

On Jan. 23, 2005, Fitch Ratings upgraded the local and foreign
currency ratings of Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. aka PDVSA to
'BB-' from 'B+'.  The rating of PDVSA's export receivable
future flow securitization, PDVSA Finance Ltd, was also upgraded
to 'BB+' from 'BB'.  In addition, Fitch has assigned PDVSA a
'AAA(ven)' national scale rating.  The Rating Outlook is
Stable.  Both rating actions follow Fitch's November 2005
upgrade of Venezuela's sovereign rating.


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Inks Joint Venture Accord with Cuba
-----------------------------------------------------------
Venezuela's state-run oil firm Petroleos de Venezuela aka PDVSA
formed a joint venture with its Cuban counterpart Cupet for the
reactivation of Cuba's Cienfuegos refinery.  Cuba's President
Fidel Castro signed an agreement Monday at the Palace of the
Revolution in Havana with Rafael Ramirez -- the head of PDVSA.

The venture was called PDV-CUPET SA, in which both firms will
invest between $800 million and $1 billion.

As agreed, the plant will be 49% owned by PDVSA, which will
supply 70,000 barrels a day of unrefined oil and other products
needed in the refinery.  Cupet, on the other hand, will hold a
51% stake in the plant.

The Cienfuegos plant will refine and manufacture petroleum
products and operate storage and market oil derivatives in Cuba
and abroad.

The refinery was constructed in 1990 with Russian aid.  When the
Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, operations at the plant ceased
because of its high fuel consumption and the end of supplies of
oil from Russia.

PDVSA has been considering investing in the plant since
President Hugo Chavez took office in 1999.  Venezuelan oil
authorities had disclosed in 2005 a plan to invest from $60
million to $100 million to restart the refinery and make it
produce heavy sour Venezuelan crude rather than the lighter
Soviet oil it was created for.

The reactivation of the refinery would reduce Cuba's fuel
imports and would also increase exports to neighboring Caribbean
nations.

PDVSA is Venezuela's state oil company in charge of the
development of the petroleum, petrochemical and coal industry,
as well as planning, coordinating, supervising and controlling
the operational activities of its divisions, both in Venezuela
and abroad.

                        *    *    *

On Jan. 23, 2005, Fitch Ratings upgraded the local and foreign
currency ratings of Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. aka PDVSA to
'BB-' from 'B+'.  The rating of PDVSA's export receivable future
flow securitization, PDVSA Finance Ltd, was also upgraded to
'BB+' from 'BB'.  In addition, Fitch has assigned PDVSA a
'AAA(ven)' national scale rating.  The Rating Outlook is Stable.
Both rating actions follow Fitch's November 2005 upgrade of
Venezuela's sovereign rating.

                        *    *    *

Moody's assigned these ratings on Cuba:

      -- CC LT Foreign Bank Deposit, Caa2
      -- CC LT Foreign Curr Debt, Caa1
      -- CC ST Foreign Bank Deposit, NP
      -- CC ST Foreign Curr Debt, NP
      -- Issuer Rating, Caa1


* VENEZUELA: Three Companies Agree to Pay Taxes Totaling US$182M
----------------------------------------------------------------
Oil majors Chevron Corp., ENI SpA and Total SA have agreed to
pay a total of US$182.2 million to the Venezuelan government for
alleged back taxes for the 2001 to 2004 period.

The announcement comes days after Venezuela seized oilfields
operated by ENI and Total.

                      Chevron's Payment

Jose Vielma, superintendent of the country's tax authority --
Seniat,  told Reuters that Chevron would pay US$74.9 million in
taxes, interest and fines to the Venezuelan government, an
increase of US$26.3 million over the initial fine which resulted
from Chevron not paying the amount as scheduled.  After its
payment, Chevron will still owe about US$1.6 million.

"Chevron has reviewed and resolved the 2001 to 2004 tax
assessment prepared by Seniat ... It is Chevron's policy not to
discuss the details of the assessment and its resolution," a
Chevron spokeswoman told Reuters.

                       ENI's Payment

Mr. Vielma also told Reuters that ENI had agreed to pay US$68.6
million in back taxes.

As previously reported, ENI threatened to sue Venezuela alleging
that the country of violating its contractual rights when it
took over the Dacion oilfield formerly after the company was
unable to reach a joint venture compromise as ordered by the
government.

ENI's accounts receivables were frozen per order of a tributary
court to ensure it paid its tax debt.  Seniat said the embargo
will be lifted since Seniat has agreed to pay.

                      Total's Payment

Mr. Vielma informed Reuters that Seniat has already received a
US$38.6 million payment from Total, which also had one of its
operations seized by energy authorities after failing to reach a
joint venture accord.

Total last week had made a partial payment of US$19.4 million
for a back tax fine that also resulted from the tax probe.

Seniat began its tax investigation in 2005 which focused largely
on 32 operating service agreements, a series of oil deals signed
during the 1990s that produced close to 500,000 barrels per day.

Under the 1990s deals, oil companies were taxed at 34%, but tax
authorities later ruled these operations should have paid 50%.

                        *    *    *

Venezuela's foreign currency long-term debt is rated B2 by
Moody's, B+ by Standard & Poor's, and BB- by Fitch.

                        ***********


S U B S C R I P T I O N   I N F O R M A T I O N

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Copyright 2006.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1529-2746.

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