TCRLA_Public/060505.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

          Friday, May 5, 2006, Vol. 7, Issue 89

                            Headlines

A R G E N T I N A

ALE HERMANOS: Court Closes Reorganization Case
ASOCIACION MUTUAL: Trustee Stops Accepting Claims on June 12
BANCO DE ENTRE: Creditors Must Submit Proofs of Claim by Aug. 4
HIDROELECTRICA: Moody's Puts B3 Global Scale Rating on Bonds

B A H A M A S

WINN-DIXIE: Res Judicata Bars Louise Clark's US$3 Billion Claim

B E R M U D A

INTELSAT: Inks Contract with Sea Launch to Orbit Spacecraft
SEA CONTAINERS: Moody's Junks Corp. Family & Sr. Unsec. Debt
SEA CONTAINERS: S&P Lowers Corp. Credit Rating to CCC- from CCC+

B O L I V I A

PAN AMERICAN: S&P Retains BB- Ratings Despite Uncertainties

* BOLIVIA: Not Ready to Sell Natural Gas to Mexico
* BOLIVIA: Pres. Morales Defends Hydrocarbons Nationalization

B R A Z I L

BANCO ITAU: Fitch Affirms B Foreign & Local Currency Ratings
BANCO NACIONAL: Funds Expansion of Grupo Votorantim's Plant
BRASKEM S.A.: Board Okays Implementation of Shares Buy-Back
CAMARGO CORREA: S&P Affirms BB Long-Term Corporate Credit Rating
PARMALAT BRASIL: Report Says Perdigao & LatAm Equity Win Auction

VARIG SA: Halts Service to Portugal and Sends Passengers to TAP

* BRAZIL: Plans to Sell More Real-Denominated Bonds Overseas

C A Y M A N   I S L A N D S

ASTER CITY: Creditors Must File Proofs of Claim by May 19
BRUTON LIMITED: Sets May 19 for Final Shareholders Meeting
DEXON STRATEGIC: Holds Final Shareholders Meeting on May 26
HARTVILLE GROUP: BDO Seidman Raises Going Concern Doubt
KAZAKHSTAN INVESTMENT: Final Shareholders Meeting Set for May 19

MERCANTILE INTERNATIONAL: Sets May 9 as Claims Filing Deadline

C H I L E

EMPRESA ELECTRICA: First Quarter 2006 Net Losses Increase

C O L O M B I A

* COLOMBIA: Raises Benchmark Lending Rate to 6.25 Percent

C O S T A   R I C A

* COSTA RICA: Will Invest Over US$17 Mil. in Agriculture Program

E C U A D O R

* ECUADOR: Bolivia Must Respect Accords with Foreign Firms

G U A T E M A L A

* GUATEMALA: Inter-American Bank Approves US$30 Million Loan

H A I T I

DIGICEL: Launches Telecommunications Operations in Haiti

M E X I C O

COMISION FEDERAL: Will Call for Offers to Sell Gas to Mexico
GRUPO MEXICO: Fitch Puts BB Issuer Default Ratings
MINERA MEXICO: Fitch Lifts Currency Issuer Ratings to BBB-
SOUTHERN COPPER: Moody's Ups Ba1 Rating on Sr. Notes to Baa2

N I C A R A G U A

* NICARAGUA: Energetica Corinto Favors Oil Pact with Venezuela
* NICARAGUA: Obtains US$7 Mil. Telecom Financing from World Bank

P A N A M A

KANSAS CITY SOUTHERN: S&P Junks Preferred Stock Ratings

P E R U

AMERICAS MINING: Fitch Puts BB Long Term Rating
BANCO DE CREDITO: Posts PEN154.7 Million Net Income

* PERU: May Supply Natural Gas to Mexico

P U E R T O   R I C O

DORAL FINANCIAL: Posts Results for First Three Quarters of 2005
KMART CORP: Trade Creditors Sell Claims Exceeding $114,227,955
MUSICLAND HOLDING: Panel Taps Giuliani Capital as Fin'l Advisor
MUSICLAND HOLDING: Suncoast Holding Files Schedules

* PUERTO RICO: Lawmakers Fail to Resolve Financial Crisis

U R U G U A Y

* URUGUAY: Seeks More Dialogue to Resolve Pulp Mill Conflict

V E N E Z U E L A

PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Continues Operations at Dacion & Eni

* VENEZUELA: Will Lend Support to Bolivia's Gas Nationalization


                          - - - - -

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


ALE HERMANOS: Court Closes Reorganization Case
----------------------------------------------
The reorganization case of Ale Hermanos S.R.L. has been
concluded, Infobae reports.

The settlement plan proposed by Ale Hermanos S.R.L. to its
creditors acquired the number of votes necessary for
confirmation.

The plan has been endorsed by a court based in Salta and will
now be implemented by the company.


ASOCIACION MUTUAL: Trustee Stops Accepting Claims on June 12
------------------------------------------------------------
Ruben Eduardo Suez, the trustee appointed by a Buenos Aires
court for the bankruptcy proceeding of Asociacion Mutual de
Autonomos de La Republica Argentina aka AMPARA, will stop
validating claims from the company's creditors after June
12,2006.  Infobae relaets that creditors whose claims are not
validated will be disqualified from receiving any payment that
the company will make.

Infobae did not reveal the dates for the submission of the
individual and general reports.

The trustee can be reached at:

         Ruben Eduardo Suez
         General Cesar Diaz 2324
         Buenos Aires, Argentina


BANCO DE ENTRE: Creditors Must Submit Proofs of Claim by Aug. 4
---------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of bankrupt company Banco de Entre Rios S.A. aka
B.E.R.S.A. are required to submit proofs of claim by Aug. 4,
2006.  Infobae relates that Estudio Cerini y Asociados, the
court-appointed trustee, will validate the claims

A Parana court handles B.E.R.S.A.'s bankruptcy case.

The debtor can be reached at:

         Banco de Entre Rios S.A.
         Colon 453, Parana
         Entre Rios, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

         Estudio Cerini y Asociados
         Avenida Etchevehere 223, Parana
         Entre Rios, Argentina


HIDROELECTRICA: Moody's Puts B3 Global Scale Rating on Bonds
------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service has assigned a B3 Global Scale Rating
and Baa1.ar National Scale Rating to US$120 million bonds of
Hidroelectrica El Chocon.  The rating outlook is stable.

Moody's National Scale Ratings aka NSRs are intended as relative
measures of creditworthiness among debt issues and issuers
within a country, enabling market participants to better
differentiate relative risks.  NSRs in Argentina are designated
by the ".ar" suffix.  NSRs differ from global scale ratings in
that they are not globally comparable to the full universe of
Moody's rated entities, but only with other rated entities
within the same country.

The US$120 bonds are currently the company's only debt
outstanding. The B3 rating is based on the company's adequate
operating performance and the strong debt reduction over the
last 4 years, that will amount US$80 million after a payment to
be done next May, even in a very uncertain regulatory regime.
Operating a low cost hydro plant, the company has recovered
profitability, has been generating positive cash flows and
profits and cash flows are expected to continue to be positive
in the near future.  However the company continues to face risks
arising from regulatory uncertainties, potential adverse
hydrology and currency devaluation.

Because of the current electricity market, where there is
limited competition due to excess demand, and the prospect of no
new capacity coming to the market at least during the next two
years, the company's business risk is considered as medium risk.
HECSA is a hydro, low cost producer and sales are to the
wholesale market -- MEM- (comprising approximately 70% of total
sales), mainly to supply distribution utilities without long-
term contracts.  The remaining 30% is sold under contracts to
diverse industrial clients.

Despite the fact that generation is deregulated, the government
is currently intervening in the prices and tariffs setting
process.  Moody's views the regulatory framework as a relatively
high risk factor given the government's interference, the
unclear regulations and the lack of support for the
profitability of the companies as well as the lack of incentives
for long term investments.

Financial ratios are relatively more robust than in other B
rated generation companies.  In Moody's view, however, those
higher metrics are required to off set the higher than average
business and regulatory risks.

The stable outlook recognizes the current adverse regulatory
framework however demand is expected to continue growing and
revenues for HECSA are expected to remain at least stable over
the near term.  Cash flow generation is expected to continue to
be consistent with current debt level, even if the company
dedicates more cash to increase payments to shareholders.

Hidroelectrica El Chocon was incorporated on July 1993.  The
company was granted the concession for a 30-year period for the
generation and sale of electricity of the El Chocon and Arroyito
hydroelectric complex, located in the province of Neuquen.  El
Chocon main shareholders are:

    -- Endesa Argentina S.A., with 47.5% ownership,
    -- Provincia del Neuquen, 29.9%,
    -- CMS Generation Company, 17.2%,
    -- Employees, 2%, and
    -- Others, with 3.4%.

The Endesa group also acts as technical operator for El Chocon
operations.



=============
B A H A M A S
=============


WINN-DIXIE: Res Judicata Bars Louise Clark's US$3 Billion Claim
---------------------------------------------------------------
As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on April 18, 2006,
Judge Funk of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District
of Florida sustained Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc., and its debtor-
affiliates' objection to Louise Clark's $3,000,000,000 claim.

Louise Clark's claim for personal injury damages was twice
asserted and twice dismissed, with prejudice, in the North
Carolina State Courts.  Accordingly, the Court finds that the
issue presented is whether res judicata bars Ms. Clark from
reasserting that personal injury claim in the Bankruptcy Court
for the Middle District of Florida.

Because the prior dismissals occurred in North Carolina State
Courts, the Bankruptcy Court must look to North Carolina law to
determine the preclusive effect of those prior dismissals on Ms.
Clark's claim.  Under North Carolina law, preclusive effect is
given under the doctrine of res judicata, to judicial acts,
which meet three requirements:

    (1) a final judgment on the merits in an earlier suit;

    (2) an identity of the causes of action in both the earlier
        and the later suit; and

    (3) an identity of the parties or their privies in the two
        suits.

Judge Funk says that these requirements have been established.

Because Ms. Clark is barred by res judicata from re-litigating
her claim under North Carolina law, the Bankruptcy Court is
precluded by Section 1738 of the Judicial Procedures Code from
retrying her Claim in the Debtors' Chapter 11 cases.  Because
Ms. Clark's claim is barred by res judicata, the Bankruptcy
Court need not decide whether Ms. Clark's claim is barred by the
applicable statute of limitations.

For these reasons, Judge Funk concludes that Ms. Clark's claim
is barred by the doctrine of res judicata.  Thus, the Debtors'
objection is sustained and the Claim is disallowed.

Headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida, Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc.
-- http://www.winn-dixie.com/-- is one of the nation's largest
food retailers.  The Company operates stores across the
Southeastern United States and in the Bahamas and employs
approximately 90,000 people.  The Company, along with 23 of its
U.S. subsidiaries, filed for chapter 11 protection on Feb. 21,
2005 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Case No. 05-11063, transferred Apr. 14,
2005, to Bankr. M.D. Fla. Case Nos. 05-03817 through 05-03840).
D.J. Baker, Esq., at Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP, and
Sarah Robinson Borders, Esq., and Brian C. Walsh, Esq., at King
& Spalding LLP, represent the Debtors in their restructuring
efforts.  Paul P. Huffard at The Blackstone Group, LP, gives
financial advisory services to the Debtors.  Dennis F. Dunne,
Esq., at Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy, LLP, and John B.
Macdonald, Esq., at Akerman Senterfitt give legal advice to the
Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors.  Houlihan Lokey &
Zukin Capital gives financial advisory services to the
Committee.  When the Debtors filed for protection from their
creditors, they listed $2,235,557,000 in total assets and
$1,870,785,000 in total debts.  (Winn-Dixie Bankruptcy News,
Issue No. 36; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc., 215/945-
7000).



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


INTELSAT: Inks Contract with Sea Launch to Orbit Spacecraft
-----------------------------------------------------------
Intelsat Ltd. has signed a firm launch contract with Sea Launch
to orbit the Intelsat Americas-9 aka IA-9 spacecraft in the
fourth quarter of 2007.  This mission will be Sea Launch's
second with Intelsat.  The IA-8 mission was successfully
completed in June 2005.

IA-9 is currently under construction at Space Systems/Loral aka
SS/L in Palo Alto, Calif.

"We are proud to welcome back Intelsat for another Sea Launch
mission," said Rob Peckham, interim president and general
manager of Sea Launch.  "We view this new contract as a
testament to Intelsat's confidence in our launch system and our
team. We won't let them down."

The IA-9 spacecraft is a high-power, C-band and Ku-band
satellite that will provide communications service to North
America, Central America and the Caribbean.  Intelsat currently
plans to operate the satellite from an orbital location at 97
degrees West longitude. IA-9 will become Intelsat's newest
satellite covering North America.

                     About Sea Launch

Headquartered in Long Beach, Calif., Sea Launch Company, LLC, is
the world's most reliable heavy-lift commercial launch service.
This international partnership offers the most direct and cost-
effective route to geostationary orbit.  With the advantage of a
launch site on the Equator, the robust Zenit-3SL rocket can lift
a heavier spacecraft mass or provide longer life on orbit,
offering best value plus schedule assurance. Sea Launch is
building a legacy, with one successful launch, one satisfied
customer, at a time.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on April 28, 2006,
Fitch currently has Intelsat and its subsidiaries' debt on
Rating Watch Negative, and rates its debt as follows:

   Intelsat, Ltd.

     -- Issuer default rating: B-
     -- Senior unsecured notes: CCC/RR6

   Intelsat (Bermuda), Ltd.

     -- Senior unsecured discount notes: B-/RR4

   Intelsat Subsidiary Holding Company Ltd.

     -- Senior secured credit facilities: BB-/RR1
     -- Senior unsecured notes: B+/RR2


SEA CONTAINERS: Moody's Junks Corp. Family & Sr. Unsec. Debt
------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service downgraded all debt ratings of Sea
Containers Ltd -- corporate family rating to Caa1.  The ratings
remain under review for possible downgrade, continuing the
review that was initiated on March 23, 2006.

The rating actions reflect the continuing uncertainty of Sea
Containers' financial position and liquidity, due to a further
unspecified delay in the filing of the Form 10-K for 2005 and
the likely delay in the filing of the Form 10-Q for the first
quarter of 2006, as well as the uncertainty of Sea Containers'
current cash burn rate coupled with the on-going challenges in
each of the operating segments.

Moody's is concerned about the adequacy of Sea Containers'
liquidity for meeting debt maturities as scheduled, particularly
a $115 million note due October 15, 2006.

This concern is heightened by Sea Container's disclosure that it
now expects to incur losses from operations throughout 2006. The
company also disclosed that once the financial statements are
completed, the independent auditors are expected to provide an
unqualified audit opinion in which the auditors will raise
substantial doubt about Sea Containers' ability to continue as a
going concern.

Moody's believes that the window for realizing a reasonable
price from the sale of Silja Oy Ab is diminishing as the
Baltic's peak summer ferry season nears.  As well, provisions in
the indenture of the 10.50% Unsecured Notes due 2012 could
require the company to tender for certain of its public notes,
which could limit the cash balances available for meeting other
scheduled debt maturities.  Moreover Sea Containers' disclosed
its intent to "engage the public note holders" as part of its
plans to restructure its operations, which could imply a debt
restructuring.

The Caa2 senior unsecured rating reflects Moody's expectation
that note holders could receive less than full recovery in a
negotiated debt restructuring.  The B3 rating on the $85 million
senior secured credit facility is up one notch from the
corporate family rating, because the facility is secured by a
portion of Sea Containers' legacy container fleet, and Moody's
believes the realizable value of the related container
collateral would be sufficient to cover this facility's
obligation in the event of liquidation.

All ratings remain on review for further downgrade due to the
heightened prospects of a debt restructuring given Sea
Containers' intent to hold discussions with public note holders,
and the uncertainties of the timing of the closing of a sale of
Silja Lines.

In its review, Moody's will focus on the resolution of the
prompt sale of Silja Lines.  With respect to the potential sale
of Silja Lines, Sea Containers could be challenged to close a
transaction before the quickly approaching peak summer ferry
season, and Moody's believes that a closing beyond June 2006
could be for lower value since the benefit of peak traffic would
not accrue to the acquirer.  Additionally, the sale transaction
will likely require regulatory approval which could delay the
closing of a transaction.

In addition, provisions in the indenture governing the notes due
2012, could require Sea Containers to use some of the proceeds
from the sale of the Orient Express shares to tender for certain
of the notes outstanding.

The Indenture requires 75% of Excess Cash Proceeds from sales of
shares of Oriental Express to be returned to note holders via
tender offers. These tenders, if required, will significantly
reduce Sea Containers liquidity.

Sea Containers last reported cash of approximately $89 million
as of September 30, 2005, and subsequently sold the Orient
Express shares for gross proceeds of approximately $300 million.

Ratings downgraded:

    1) Sea Containers Ltd.:

        -- Corporate Family Rating to Caa1 from B2
        -- senior secured to B3 from B2
        -- senior unsecured to Caa2 from B3 and
        -- Issuer Rating to Caa2 from B3

Sea Containers Ltd. headquartered in Hamilton Bermuda, is a
provider of ferry services, primarily in the Baltic Sea, the
franchisee-operator of the Great Northern Railroad in the U.K.,
and a lessor of cargo containers to the shipping industry.


SEA CONTAINERS: S&P Lowers Corp. Credit Rating to CCC- from CCC+
----------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services lowered its ratings on Sea
Containers Ltd., including lowering the corporate credit rating
to 'CCC-' from 'CCC+'.  All ratings remain on CreditWatch with
negative implications; ratings were initially placed on
CreditWatch on Aug. 25, 2005, and lowered on Feb. 16, 2006, and
again on March 24, 2006.

The rating action follows the company's announcement that it is
continuing to evaluate a range of strategic and financial
alternatives, including the "appropriate level of debt capacity,
with the intent to engage the public note holders and other
stakeholders."

"The announcement appears to imply that the company could
approach note holders with a proposal to restructure their
debt," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Betsy Snyder.  "If
such a restructuring were to occur and did not provide full
value to the note holders, ratings on these notes would likely
be lowered to 'SD'."

Sea Containers expects its 2005 financial statements to include
language "raising substantial doubt about the company's ability
to continue as a going concern."  In addition, late last week
the company received the decision regarding its dispute with GE
Capital relating to GE SeaCo, and is "evaluating the
consequences of the decision for the company," and will make an
announcement shortly.

In the meantime, the company is continuing with the sale of its
ferry assets.  The company had previously stated that its exit
from the ferry operations would result in a noncash, pretax
impairment charge of approximately $500 million, to be taken in
the fourth quarter of 2005.  The charge would reduce Sea
Containers' net worth by approximately $475 million, and result
in noncompliance with certain net worth covenants in certain of
its bank agreements.  The company is currently in discussions
with the bank lenders regarding covenant waivers or amendments.
If the company is unsuccessful with its restructuring plans, a
Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing could result.

Standard & Poor's will monitor the:

   * potential financial restructuring of the company;

   * progress on the sale of the ferry operations;

   * progress on waivers or amendments to the covenants in the
     bank facilities; and

   * resolution of the arbitration with General Electric
     to resolve the CreditWatch.



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


PAN AMERICAN: S&P Retains BB- Ratings Despite Uncertainties
-----------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said that the release of
Bolivian Supreme Decree No. 28701 establishing the
nationalization of all hydrocarbons in the country and other
related measures does not affect its recently upgraded ratings
on Pan American Energy LLC (PAE, BB-/Stable/--).

The current ratings already incorporate major uncertainties
regarding the Bolivian institutional environment as well as
S&P's concerns about the company being able to benefit from
Bolivian reserves and production in the medium term.

S&P considers PAE's exposure to Bolivia as limited.  In terms of
reserves, Bolivia represents less than 35%, particularly less
than 10% in terms of crude oil, PAE's main driver for
profitability and cash flow generation.  From a producing
perspective, during 2005, less than 10% of total production came
from Bolivia -- less than 5% of total crude oil production.

Although the decree establishes that the State of Bolivia will
be the owner of reserves and production in the country and that
it will also retake control of midstream and downstream
activities, the final implementation of this regulation is still
uncertain.  Even considering full expropriation of PAE's assets
in Bolivia, S&P considers that the company's credit metric will
compare very favorably for the rating category.

The impact on the business profile of the company will also be
limited despite the significant reduction in natural gas
reserves because of the low development of Bolivian natural gas
reserves and the low incidence of natural gas as a driver of
PAE's profitability.  S&P would consider PAE's reserve life of
12 years when excluding reserves from Bolivia still adequate.

Standard & Poor's will continue to monitor the developments in
Bolivia to determine further implications of these measures.


* BOLIVIA: Not Ready to Sell Natural Gas to Mexico
--------------------------------------------------
Bolivia is not ready to make Mexico one of its clients for
natural gas, Fernando Canales Clariond, Mexico's secretary of
energy, told Xinhua News Agency.

Mr. Clariond revealed to Xinhua that if Bolivia does not
participate in a public bidding for selling gas in Mexico, the
government would buy natural gas from Peru.

According to Xinhua, Mr. Clariond said that Federal Electricity
Commission aka CFE, Mexico's state-run firm, will call for bids
for selling gas at the end of this month.

Mr. Clariond told reporters during a presentation of new
franchise accords for state-run Petroleos Mexicanos that Peru
could win the bid to sell natural gas to Mexico.

"Peru has a land exit to the sea, a gas pipeline from its main
Camisea gas field to the port, and a plant for liquefied natural
gas," Mr. Clariond was quoted by Xinhua saying.

                        *    *    *

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


* BOLIVIA: Pres. Morales Defends Hydrocarbons Nationalization
-------------------------------------------------------------
Bolivian President Evo Morales defended his decision to
nationalize the country's hydrocarbons industry.

According to President Morales, Bolivia is seeking "partners,
not owners" to help harvest its natural resources, the
Associated Press states.

After he made the announcement on May 1, objections were raised
by foreign governments -- particulary Brazil and Spain.

Brazil is the biggest buyer of Bolivian gas and the owner of
Petroleo Brasileiro SA, one of Bolivia's biggest gas producers.

Petrobras President Sergio Gabrielli said officials were seeking
"to secure our rights" to Bolivian gas and the US$1.6 billion
that Petrobras has invested in Bolivia since the mid-1990s.

Spanish-Argentine Repsol YPF petroleum company is one of the
largest foreign players in Bolivia, and Argentina is the second-
biggest market for Bolivian gas.  Other investors include
Britain's BG Group PLC and BP PLC, France's Total SA and U.S.-
based Exxon Mobil Corp.

"With this move, he risks alienating natural and otherwise
sympathetic partners like Brazil and Spain," said Michael
Shifter, a Latin American analyst at the Inter-American Dialogue
think tank in Washington, told the Associated Press.  "Ordering
the military to seize the natural gas fields is unnecessarily
confrontational and antagonistic."

A person familiar with the situation told the Financial Times
that relations between Brazil and Bolivia remained "very
complicated" but efforts were being made at all levels to reach
a negotiated settlement.  "The big question here is regional
energy security," the person said.  "[The move] makes no sense
from Bolivia's point of view. [Bolivia] has shot itself in the
foot."

Spain warned that the nationalization would have "consequences
for the bilateral relationship," which could lead to the ending
of debt relief to Bolivia, the FT relates.

Bolivia's Hydrocarbons Chamber, which represents the foreign
energy companies operating in the country, issued a statement
Tuesday saying while it wanted "productive dialogue" with the
government, its "unilateral, negative" move would substantially
affect energy companies.

                          Summit

The Bolivian president will attend a summit on Thursday in the
Argentinian border town of Puerto Iguazu in an effort to resolve
the tension sparked by the nationalization of the country's
natural gas industry.  He will be discussing with the presidents
of Argentina, Brazil and Venezuela the nationalization
announcement and its possible impact on investors in the region.

The meeting, called by Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da
Silva, will attempt to find a regional diplomatic solution to
tensions created by Bolivia's decision.


                    Controlling Plans

Bolivia has also declared that the government will extend its
control over mining, forestry and other sectors of the economy,
a move that might further scare investors off the country.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez supported Bolivia's decision
and believes that the move would help meet the needs of
Bolivia's poor.

"We're not expelling any company, but they will not earn much
-- not like before," Morales told Venezuela's Telesur TV network
late Tuesday. "We hope they'll remain partners and if they don't
respect these laws, we'll make them respect them with political
force."

                        *    *    *

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



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


BANCO ITAU: Fitch Affirms B Foreign & Local Currency Ratings
------------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has affirmed the B short-term foreign and local
currency ratings of Banco Itau Holding Financeira aka BIHF,
following the announcement of an agreement between Bank of
America Corporation aka BAC for the acquisition by BIHF of BKB
Banco Multiplo S.A., BankBoston's Brazilian subsidiary.
Conclusion of the transaction is contingent upon Central Bank of
Brazil approval, with closing date estimated for approximately
90 days of agreement date.  The Rating Outlook is Positive for
the IDR and Stable for the National Ratings.

Fitch also affirmed these ratings on BIHF:

     --Long-term foreign currency IDR 'BB-';
     --Long-term local currency IDR 'BB+';
     --Individual 'B/C';
     --National long term 'AA(bra)';
     --National short term 'F1+(bra)'; and
     --Support '4'.

BAC is to subscribe a new issuance of 68,518 thousand BIHF
preferred shares in payment for BKB's Brazilian operations,
equivalent to 5.8% of BIHF's equity, which is to be priced at
the market quote on closing date.  The current average price of
BIHF preferred shares puts the acquisition price at roughly
BRL4.5 billion.

The shares issued in this transaction are subject to a three-
year lock-up period, after which their sale in the market will
be limited to 15% of the average daily trading volume or block
trade.  The agreement establishes a ceiling of 20% for BAC
ownership of BIHF stock and BIHF will have first right of
refusal should BAC decide to sell its stake in BIHF.  BAC will
not have first right of refusal in the event that BIHF were sold
but will have tag along rights.  It will also be entitled to a
seat on BIHF's Board.

The BankBoston brand name is not included in the transaction.
BIHF management estimates that the BKB operation will be fully
integrated within six months of closing date. All 66 BKB
branches will be incorporated into BIHF's branch network.

In addition to the Brazilian operation, the transaction provides
BIHF with exclusive rights for a term of 90 days to evaluate its
interest in acquiring the BankBoston operations in Chile --
about US$2.4 billion in assets and US$389 million in equity --
and Uruguay, about US$823 million in assets and US$56 million in
equity, in addition to BKB's cross border loans and
international private banking assets.

BIHF's management indicated that the integration of the acquired
operation is expected to reduce the current costs of the BKB
operation by at least 30% over time.  The overlap in client base
is significant, estimated at 30% for high net worth individuals,
37% for middle market clients and 12% for corporate clients.
BIHF expects the acquisition will expand revenue growth through
cross selling of retail products to BKB's customer base, and by
providing BKB's well-renowned cash management services,
investment banking products and cross border transactions to its
own corporate client base.

Following its usual practice, BIHF intends to fully write down
goodwill estimated at approximately BRL2.2 billion after-tax in
the same quarter of closing date.  The combined banks will have
total assets estimated at BRL181.2 billion -- US$81 billion at
the current BRL/USD exchange rate -- total equity of about
BRL18.9 billion, about US$8.4 billion, and about BRL168.7
billion in assets under management -- approximately US$75
billion.  The acquisition will strengthen BIHF's presence in the
high end of Brazil's retail market, as well as reinforce the
bank's product offerings for the rapidly expanding middle-market
segment.  BIHF estimates that the incorporation of BKB assets
will have only a marginal effect on its strong capital ratios,
and that the larger bank will return to BIHF's historical level
of profitability by the first-half of 2007.  While Fitch will
monitor the integration process, BIHF's successful track record
of integrating acquisitions, and the maintenance of its balance
sheet fundamentals contribute to the affirmation of BIHF's
ratings.

BIHF is the second largest private financial conglomerate in
Brazil, with domestic market shares of about 12% of core
deposits and 11% of loans, 22% of credit cards, 19% of auto
loans, and 13% of the insurance market.  Its local currency IDR
above Brazil's IDR and its national ratings reflect the group's
broad and diversified franchise and history of deposit
stability, proven access to its natural money markets, a history
of conservative management, a consistent track record of solid
performance and the ability to anticipate trends and react
promptly to changes in the Brazilian economy.  The foreign
currency IDR is constrained by Brazil's IDR.  BIHF's Individual
rating reflects its lower exposure to Brazilian government debt,
a significant presence abroad, and ample international liquidity
which provide an important cushion against Brazilian volatility
and set BIHF apart from its regional peers.  BIHF is 88.8%
controlled by Itausa, which in turn is 60.6% controlled by the
Egydio de Souza Aranha family.

BKB's ratings reflect the franchise and support of its parent
BAC through closing date, consistent operating performance over
the past several years and a well-defined focus in its market
niches.  Present in Brazil since 1947, BKB enjoys a strong
reputation in corporate banking and retail banking for high net
worth individuals, and ranked tenth largest in Brazil by assets
at fiscal year-end 2005.


BANCO NACIONAL: Funds Expansion of Grupo Votorantim's Plant
-----------------------------------------------------------
The board of Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Economico e
Social aka BNDES approved a financing to Grupo Votorantim's
Companhia Nitro Quimica Brasileira.  The credit operation, in
the amount of BRL27.3 million, is equivalent to 42% of the
investment and will propitiate that the company modernizes its
industrial process and extend to 33 thousand tons/year capacity
of producing nitrocellulose, which currently is of 24 thousand
tons a year.

Nitro Quimica is the largest Brazilian producer of
nitrocellulose, hydrofluoric acid and aluminum fluoride.  It
also manufactures sulfuric acid, especially for the own use,
with surplus commercialized in the domestic market, for
applications in mining, metallurgy, chemical and petrochemical
industry.

By expanding and modernizing the nitrocellulose plant, located
in Sao Miguel Paulista, Nitro Quimica will reinforce its rank in
the printing ink domestic market and expanding the exports for
the American, European and Asian markets.

Most part of the benefited fluorite is destined to the plant of
Sao Miguel Paulista, for the manufacture of hydrofluoric acid.
The surplus is commercialized for welding electrode and steel
industries in several regions of the country.

Currently, Nitro Quimica counts on approximately 620 employees.
The expansion project expects the hiring of 19 permanent
employees, besides the creation of 120 temporary jobs during the
implantation.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on March 3, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services raised its foreign currency
counterparty credit rating on Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento
Economico e Social S.A. aka BNDES to 'BB' with a stable outlook
from 'BB-' with a positive outlook.  The company's local
currency credit rating was also shifted to 'BB+' with a stable
outlook from 'BB' with a positive outlook.


BRASKEM S.A.: Board Okays Implementation of Shares Buy-Back
-----------------------------------------------------------
The board of directors of Braskem S.A. authorized its management
to implement a buy-back program to repurchase common and class
preferred shares in accordance with the terms of CVM Instruction
No. 10/80, as follows:

    Purpose: the purchase of Braskem's common and class ""
             Preferred shares to be held in treasury and
             subsequently resold or cancelled, without reducing
             Braskem's capital;

    Term: 180 days from May 3;

    Number of shares currently outstanding in the market:
    189,009,414 shares, of which 19,808,264 are common shares,
    168,397,784 class "" preferred shares and 803,066 class ""
    preferred shares;

    Number of shares to be purchased: Braskem may purchase up to
    13,896,133 class "" preferred shares representing 8.75% of
    the total number of preferred shares outstanding in the
    market, and 1,400,495 common shares, representing 7.1% of
    the total number of common shares outstanding in the market.
    These percentages, together with the number of shares
    currently in treasury, aggregate to a maximum of 10% per
    class of shares that may be retained in treasury in
    accordance with Brazilian law;

    Brokerage Firms: the brokerage firms that have been
                     authorized by Braskem to effectuate the
                     buy-back are:

                         * Credit Suisse Brasil S/A CCTVM,
                         * Itau CV S/A,
                         * Agora Senior CTVM S/A,
                         * Hedging-Griffo CV S/A, and
                         * UBS CCVM S/A.

This initiative is intended to capture an important potential
for value creation due to the current price of the company's
shares.

The program aims to create value for all of shareholders, Mr.
Grubisich revealed to reporters.

The company told Reuters it intends to buy back up to 1.4
million voting shares and up to 13.89 million class A
preferential shares.

Jose Carlos Grubisich, Braskem's Chief Executive Officer, said,
"This buy-back program is additional evidence of Braskem's
strategic vision to create value for all of its shareholders and
of its long-term commitment to the domestic and international
capital markets."

According to Reuters, Mr. Grubisich declined to estimate how
much the buyback might cost the company.

The program will start on Thursday and will take place over the
next six months, Reuters reports.

Braskem -- http://www.braskem.com.br/-- is a thermoplastic
resins producer in Latin American, and is among the three
largest Brazilian-owned private industrial companies.  The
company operates 13 manufacturing plants located throughout
Brazil, and has an annual production capacity of 5.8 million
tons of resins and other petrochemical products.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on April 10, 2006,
Fitch Ratings and Standard& Poor's Ratings Services assigned
these ratings to Braskem S.A.:

   Fitch Ratings Services:

     -- BB- on the proposed offering of US$200 million senior
        unsecured perpetual bonds to be issued.

   Standard & Poor's Ratings Services:

     --  BB on local- and foreign-currency corporate credit
         ratings; and

     -- BB on forthcoming US$200 million perpetual bonds.


CAMARGO CORREA: S&P Affirms BB Long-Term Corporate Credit Rating
----------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said that it affirmed its
'BB' long-term corporate credit rating on Camargo Correa
Cimentos S.A., as well as its 'brAA' Brazilian National Scale
ratings.  At the same time, Standard & Poor's affirmed its 'BB'
rating on CCC's US$150 million notes due in 2015 in the Global
Scale and its 'brAA' rating in the Brazil National Scale on
CCC's BRL360 million debentures due in 2009.  The outlook on the
corporate credit ratings is stable.

"The affirmation reflects Camargo Correa's exposure to the
swings in cement demand in Brazil, which has been sluggish in
the past few years and is only now gradually recovering, and a
fierce competitive environment that significantly reduced cement
prices in the Southeast of the country, compressing the
company's margins to low levels in 2005," said Standard & Poor's
credit analyst Juliana Gallo.  Camargo Correa has also levered
its financial profile to finance part of the acquisition of Loma
Negra, weakening its cash-flow protection measures.  On the
other hand, Camargo Correa's smooth amortization schedule,
financial policy consistent with that of its parent company,
implicit parental support from Camargo Correa Group, favorable
location of its plants in Southeast Brazil -- close to the
largest consumption centers in the country -- and its
competitive cost position in cement production support the
ratings at the current level.

In 2005, Camargo Correa Group took over the holding company that
holds the control of Loma Negra C.I.A.S.A. (B+/Stable/--), whose
operations are now combined with those of Camargo Correa. Loma
Negra is the largest cement producer in Argentina, with a
production of 3.1 million tons per year.  The acquisition
strengthens Camargo Correa's business position in the South
American cement industry, increasing its geographic
diversification and raising its total production to about 5.7
million tons per year, with a total capacity for 13 million tons
per year.  S&P sees strong fundamentals for the cement market in
Argentina in the medium term, with increasing demand and steady
prices.

Full consolidation of Loma Negra's results will start being
perceived only in 2006.  In 2005, Camargo Correa's consolidated
financial statements take account of only one month of Loma's
operations, as the acquisition was finally approved by Argentine
antitrust body only by the end of 2005.  Even though the
consolidation of Loma Negra brought some US$200 million debt to
Camargo Correa's balance sheet, the company will add up a strong
annual cash generation of about US$150 million, offsetting the
decline in margins in Brazil faced in 2005 and that is only now
recovering.  Sluggish demand and fierce competition have put
significant downward pressure on cement prices in Brazil,
particularly in the Southeastern region, which coupled with some
cost pressures in energy and raw materials, directly affected
Camargo Correa's profitability in 2005.  While near-term
prospects remain challenging and recovery is expected to come
only gradually, S&P believe that infrastructure and housing
investments in Brazil combined with the strong cash generation
from Loma Negra will allow the company to bring margins to
satisfactory levels in the medium term. We expect the Brazilian
operation to report EBITDA margin gradually recovering to 25% in
2006 from depressed levels of 13% last year, still below
historic levels around 30-35%.

S&P also expects credit metrics to gradually but consistently
rebuild within the next several quarters, not only due to the
strengthening cash flow in Brazil but also to possible debt
reductions in Argentina.  Camargo Correa has reported financial
policies consistent with those of its parent company, and S&P
expects Camargo Correa to support its subsidiary whenever
necessary to maintain financial leverage limited to the group's
targets, as has already been evidenced through a capital
injection in August 2004 and soon after the acquisition of Loma
Negra in 2005.

The stable outlook on Camargo Correa reflects our expectation
that the company's financial policies will remain conservative,
consistent with those of its parent company.  Therefore, a
negative action on the ratings and outlook may come from an
increase in leverage and deterioration of credit measures under
a scenario of relaxed financial policy targets for the company
and/or the whole group.  A positive rating action would
therefore depend on CCSA's ability to strengthen the combined
credit quality of its business portfolio, by improving business
profiles without causing indebtedness to grow.


PARMALAT BRASIL: Report Says Perdigao & LatAm Equity Win Auction
----------------------------------------------------------------
Perdigao SA and Latin America Equity Partners fund may have won
a bidding to buy the operating assets of Parmalat Brasil
Industria de Alimentos SA, Parmalat Finanziaria SpA's Brazilian
unit, Bloomberg News reports, citing a report from Valor
Economico.

Perdigao is a producer and distributor of meat and poultry
products.

Parmalat Brasil's creditors will accept the offer from the
winning bidder after the deal is formalized, Valor Economico
said, citing an unnamed creditor as its source.

Perdigao's offer for Parmalat Brazil's assets was not disclosed.

According to Valor Economico, Perdigao will also buy Parmalat
Brasil's subsidiary, Batavia, for BRL100 million to BRL120
million.  Perdigao will also assume and pay for the Brazilian
unit's bank debts, aggregating BRL100 million to BRL150 million.

GP Investimentos and Grupo Lala SA also expressed interest to
acquire the unit.

The sale of Parmalat Brasil's assets is in accordance with its
reorganization plan confirmed in February by Justice Alexandre
Alves Lazzarini, of the First District Company Recovery and
Bankruptcy Court of Justice of Sao Paulo.

Proceeds from the sale will be used to pay off part of Parmalat
Brasil's BRL800 million debt and to reinforce its working
capital.

Parmalat Brasil filed for bankruptcy protection on June 24,
2005, under Brazil's new bankruptcy law.  The filing came after
the unit's creditors denied the extension of the BRL800-million
payment deadline for the Company's debt.


VARIG SA: Halts Service to Portugal and Sends Passengers to TAP
---------------------------------------------------------------
As widely reported, VARIG, S.A., will suspend flights to
Portugal beginning May 15, 2006, as part of its restructuring
strategies.

VARIG will transfer its passengers to TAP Portugal.  VARIG and
TAP Portugal are parties to a code-sharing agreement.

VARIG serves six or seven weekly flights between Brazil and
Portugal.  VARIG's decision will end 40 years of VARIG service
to Portugal, AFX News Limited says, citing Jornal de Negocios.

                        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. 18; Bankruptcy
Creditors' Service, Inc., 215/945-7000)


* BRAZIL: Plans to Sell More Real-Denominated Bonds Overseas
------------------------------------------------------------
Carlos Kawall, Brazil's Treasury Secretary, told Bloomberg News,
that the country intends to offer more real-denominated bonds to
overseas investors with maturities longer than 10 years.

In September 2005, Brazil sold 3.4 billion reals (US$1.6
billion) of 10-year bonds, its first ever sale of local currency
securities in international markets.  Since then, yields on the
bonds have dropped and the government will be able to further
lower borrowing costs, Bloomberg relates.

"We want to both reinforce the liquidity of the 2016 bonds
already issued as well as extend maturities beyond that date,"
Secretary  Kawall told Bloomberg.

By selling real-denominated bonds overseas, the Brazilian
government is cushioning itself against devaluation of its
currency.  Additionally, Brazil also pays less to borrow in
reals abroad than by selling to local investors.

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Brazil:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling    BB-      Nov. 18, 2004
   Long Term IDR      BB-      Dec. 14, 2005
   Short Term IDR     B        Dec. 14, 2005
   Local Currency
   Long Term Issuer
   Default Rating     BB-      Dec. 14, 2005



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


ASTER CITY: Creditors Must File Proofs of Claim by May 19
---------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of Aster City Cable Europe Private (Cayman) Limited
are required to submit particulars of their debts or claims by
before May 19, 2006, to William G. Neisel, the company's
appointed liquidator.  Failure to do so will disqualify them
from receiving the benefit of any distribution that the company
will make.

The company started liquidating assets on April 3, 2006.

Creditors must send their full names, addresses, descriptions
and the full particulars of their debts or claims and the names
and  addresses of their solicitors (if any) to the liquidator.

The liquidator can be reached at:

           William G. Neisel
           c/o Stuarts Walker Hersant, Attorneys-at-law
           P.O. Box 2510, Cayman Financial Centre
           36A Dr. Roy's Drive, George Town
           Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands


BRUTON LIMITED: Sets May 19 for Final Shareholders Meeting
----------------------------------------------------------
Bruton Limited will have a final shareholders meeting on
May 19, 2006, at the company's registered office.  Accounts on
the company's liquidation process will be presented
during the meeting.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on May 2, 2006,
Bruton Limited started liquidating assets on March 29, 2006.
Creditors of the company are required to submit particulars of
their debts or claims on or before May 18, 2006, to the
company's appointed liquidator, Ogier Corporate Services (UK)
Limited.

The liquidator can be reached at:

             Ogier Corporate Service (UK) Limited
             Equitable House, 47 King William Street
             London, EC4R 9JD


DEXON STRATEGIC: Holds Final Shareholders Meeting on May 26
-----------------------------------------------------------
Dexon Strategic Fund will hold a final shareholders meeting on
May 26, 2006, at 9:00 a.m. at the registered office of the
company.

Accounts on the company's liquidation process will be presented
during the meeting.  The shareholders will also authorize the
liquidators to retain the records of the company for a period of
six years, starting from the dissolution of the company.

Any person who is entitled to attend and vote at this meeting
may appoint a proxy to attend and vote in his stead.  A proxy
need not be a member or a creditor.

The liquidator can be reached at:

            Richard L. Finlay
            Attention: Krysten Lumsden
            P.O. Box 2681, George Town
            Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
            Tel: (345) 949-1040
            Fac: (345) 949-1048


HARTVILLE GROUP: BDO Seidman Raises Going Concern Doubt
-------------------------------------------------------
BDO Seidman, LLP, raised substantial doubt about the ability of
Hartville Group, Inc., to continue as a going concern after
auditing the company's consolidated financial statements for the
years ended Dec. 31, 2004, and 2005.  The auditing firm pointed
to the company's recurring losses from operations, substantial
accumulated deficit, and impending due dates of some material
financial obligations.

Hartville Group, Inc., filed its consolidated financial
statements for the year ended Dec. 31, 2005, with the Securities
and Exchange Commission on March 30, 2006.

The company reported a $8,017,062 net loss on $136,797 of total
reinsurance income for the year ended Dec. 31, 2005.

At Dec. 31, 2005, the company's balance sheet showed $9,417,651
in total assets, $3,942,431 in total liabilities, and $5,475,220
in total stockholders' equity.

                   ASPCA (R) Partnership

On Feb. 23, 2006, Hartville entered into a three-year strategic
partnership with the American Society for the Prevention of
Cruelty to Animals(R) as the preferred provider of pet insurance
to the ASPCA's one million-plus supporters.

"Since joining the Company in April of 2005, we have instituted
a series of corporate initiatives designed to prepare Hartville
for profitable future growth," Dennis Rushovich, the Company's
chief executive officer, commented.

"We eliminated unprofitable marketing programs, significantly
improved our operating infrastructure and customer service
capabilities, revamped and enhanced our financial reporting,
initiated spending control policies and stabilized our
relationship with our bondholders.

"Additionally, our new relationship with the American Society
for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals(R), is a significant
partnership which we expect to drive an increase in policies
sold in 2006 and beyond as we validate our product and expand
our marketing efforts.

"We now have a more streamlined organization, appropriate
financial discipline focused on profits, and a significantly
upgraded marketing team and strategy to build consumer awareness
for pet insurance.  We believe these factors should enable us to
capitalize on the large and under penetrated market of uninsured
pets."

A full-text copy of the company's 2005 Annual Report is
available for free at http://ResearchArchives.com/t/s?88c

                 About Hartville Corporation

Hartville Group, Inc. -- http://www.hartvillegroup.com/-- is a
holding company whose wholly owned subsidiaries include
Hartville Re Ltd. and Petsmarketing Insurance.com Agency, Inc.
Hartville is a reinsurance company that is registered in the
Cayman Islands, British West Indies.  Hartville was formed to
reinsure pet health insurance that is being marketed by the
Agency.  The Agency is primarily a marketing/administration
company concentrating on the sale of its proprietary health
insurance plans for domestic pets. Its business plan calls for
introducing its product effectively and efficiently through a
variety of distribution systems. The Company accepts
applications, underwrites and issues policies.


KAZAKHSTAN INVESTMENT: Final Shareholders Meeting Set for May 19
----------------------------------------------------------------
Shareholders of Kazakhstan Investment Fund Limited will convene
for a final general meeting on May 19, 2006, at 10:00 a.m. at
the registered offices of:

            Nelson & Company, Attorneys-at-Law
            No. 31, The Strand, 46 Canal Point Road
            Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands

Accounts on the company's liquidation process will be presented
during the meeting.  The shareholders will also authorize the
liquidator to retain the records of the company for a period of
five years, starting from the dissolution of the company.
Destruction of the records may then be allowed after such
period.

Any person who is entitled to attend and vote at this meeting
may appoint a proxy to attend and vote in his stead.  A proxy
need not be a member or a creditor.

The company's liquidator can be reached at:

          Steven J. Barrie
          Nelson & Company, Attorneys-at-Law
          P.O. Box 2075 George Town,
          Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands


MERCANTILE INTERNATIONAL: Sets May 9 as Claims Filing Deadline
--------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of Mercantile International Petroleum are required to
submit particulars of their debts or claims on or before
May 9, 2006, to Thomas F. Hackett, the company's appointed
liquidators.  Failure to do so will exclude them from receiving
the benefit of any distribution that the company will make.

The company started liquidating assets on March 30, 2006.

The liquidator can be reached at:

             Thomas F. Hackett
             Attention: Rochelle Sealy
             P.O. Box N-3910, Providence House
             East Hill Street, Nassau, The Bahamas
             Tel: (242) 302-5373
             Fax: (242) 302-5350



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


EMPRESA ELECTRICA: First Quarter 2006 Net Losses Increase
---------------------------------------------------------
Empresa Electrica del Norte Grande S.A aka Edelnor reported that
its net losses rose to US$4.8 million in the first quarter of
2006 from the US$256,000 in the year-ago period, Business News
Americas reports.

BNamericas states that the company's total revenues dropped 7.5%
to US$26.6 million in the first quarter of 2006 due to higher
tariffs for regulated clients and higher prices in spot market.

According to BNamericas, the physical energy sales of the
company plunged to 640MWh in the first quarter of this year from
646MWh of last year.  Revenues from energy sales also dropped to
US$24.1 million from US$26.6 million.

On the other hand, operating costs increased to US$29.7 million
from US$25.5 million the previous year.  The company told
BNamericas that it is mainly a result of higher fuel costs.

Operating losses, says BNamericas, amounted to US$5.3 million in
the first quarter 2006 while last year, the company saw US$1.2
million operating profits in the first quarter of 2005.

BNamericas reveals that the company's power generation rose to
717GWh from the 704GWh in the 2005 period.

Non-operating loss was US$809,000, lesser than the US$1.18
million loss in 2005, BNamericas states.

BNamericas informs that The net equity of Edelnor dropped to
US$363 million at end of first quarter 2006.  Last year in the
same quarter, net equity was US$366 million.

Edelnor is owned by state copper company Codelco and Suez Energy
Andino, a subsidiary of Belgian company Suez Energy through
their Inversiones Tocopilla holding company

                        *    *    *

As reported on Nov. 11, 2005, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services
raised its corporate credit and senior secured debt ratings on
Chilean thermal power generator Empresa Electrica del Norte
Grande S.A. to 'B+' from 'B', mainly reflecting the improvement
of its debt-service coverage ratios as a result of higher-than-
expected cash generation combined with a prepayment of 12.1% of
its US$217.6 million outstanding debt certificates in May 2005.
S&P said the outlook is stable.

The 'B+' ratings reflect the operation in a very competitive
market environment and its still weak financial profile, which
mainly derives from its volatile cash flow and weak financial
flexibility.  These weaknesses are partly offset by Edelnor's
diversified generation base (mainly natural gas and coal),
ownership of transmission assets, and its 21% equity stake in
the Gasoducto Norandino pipeline, which somewhat mitigate the
company's high cash flow volatility.



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


* COLOMBIA: Raises Benchmark Lending Rate to 6.25 Percent
---------------------------------------------------------
Colombia's central bank raised its benchmark lending rate to
6.25% from a three-year low to ward off inflation as the economy
expands at its fastest pace in a decade, Bloomberg News reports.

Majority of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg was caught by
surprise when policymakers in Brazil raised the overnight rate.

"This was unexpected," Jose Ignacio Lopez, an economist at Banco
Santander, a unit of Spain's Banco Santander Central Hispano SA,
told Bloomberg.  "The bank is seeking to stay ahead of the curve
as the weakening peso and sustained consumer demand lead to
expectations of inflationary pressures in the second half of the
year."

As previously reported, finance minister Alberto Carrasquilla,
said that the country will likey raise interest rates to curb
inflation.  "Interest rates in Colombia, like in other
countries, were very low to respond to an unusual situation of
economic slowdown," Mr. Carrasquilla has said.  "As the
Colombian economy normalizes, conditions in financial markets
also normalize quickly.  I believe that interest rates will have
to adjust to this new reality."

The bank had cut the rate four times since February 2004,
bringing it down from 7.25 percent.  The last time the bank
raised its lending rate was in April 2003.

"This does not put a brake to the economy's expansion," Mr.
Carrasquilla told reporters in Bogota.  "The new rate is in
accordance with the economy's 5 percent growth."

                        *    *    *

As reported on Mar. 13, 2006, Moody's Investor Service changed
the outlook on Colombia's 'Ba2' foreign currency country ceiling
for bonds and 'Ba3' foreign currency country ceiling for
deposits to stable from negative.  The outlook for the
government's 'Ba2' foreign currency bond rating is also changed
by Moody's to stable.

At the same time, Moody's placed the government's 'Baa2'
domestic currency bond rating on review for possible downgrade.
The Local Currency Guideline and the Local Currency Deposit
Ceiling remain unchanged at 'A1'.

Moody's said that the move to stable on the foreign currency
ratings was supported by the significant improvement in the
country's external finances, including a steep decline in the
ratios of external debt to current account receipts and to GDP.
In addition, the government's active debt management policies
have reduced the amount of government debt denominated in
foreign currencies.  These factors have lessened the country's
vulnerability to external shocks and reduced the burden of
servicing the foreign-currency debt, according to Moody's.



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


* COSTA RICA: Will Invest Over US$17 Mil. in Agriculture Program
----------------------------------------------------------------
Costa Rica's President Abel Pacheco told Xinhua News Agency on
Wednesday that the government will invest above US$17 million in
a sustainable agriculture program.

The program is also supported by US14 million worth of loans
from the Inter-American Development Bank, the president told
Xinhua.

President Pacheco explained at the country's Agriculture
Ministry that the program aims to boost productivity through
technical assistance and technology transfer, according to
Xinhua.

The exports of agricultural products of Costa Rica was about
US$1.634 billion last year, Xinhua reports.

                        *    *    *

Costa Rica is rated by Moody's:

   -- CC LT Foreign Bank Depst Ba2
   -- CC LT Foreign Curr Debt  Ba1
   -- CC ST Foreign Bank Depst NP
   -- CC ST Foreign Curr Debt  NP
   -- Foreign Currency LT Debt Ba1
   -- Local Currency LT Debt   Ba1

Fitch assigned these ratings to Costa Rica:

   -- Foreign currency long-term debt, BB
   -- Local currency long-term debt, BB
   -- Foreign currency short-term debt, B

Costa Rica carries these ratings from Standard & Poor's:

   -- Foreign Currency LT Debt BB
   -- Local Currency LT Debt   BB+
   -- Foreign Currency ST Debt B
   -- Local Currency ST Debt   B



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


* ECUADOR: Bolivia Must Respect Accords with Foreign Firms
----------------------------------------------------------
Ecuador will support Bolivian President Evo Morales' decision to
nationalize Bolivia's hydrocarbons resources if contracts with
foreign firms are respected, Merco Press reports.

According to Merco Press, Ivan Rodriguez, Ecuador's energy
minister, refused to comment on the Bolivian leader's decision
but said that he would only support a decision that respects
contracts between each country and the multinational
corporations.

The Ecuadorian energy minister told Merco Press, "What is
essential is that contracts are respected as we are doing with
the hydrocarbons legislation review which demands the sharing of
windfall profits not contemplated in the original contracts."

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on May 3, 2006,
President Morales declared on May 1, the renationalization of
his country's hydrocarbons industry.

The state reclaimed control of energy companies privatized
in the 1990s.  President Morales ordered the military to seize
gas fields and asked foreign energy companies to send their
locally produced supplies to the state or exit Bolivia within
six months.

The foreign oil majors operating in Bolivia include:

  -- Brazil's state-run company Petroleo Brasileiro SA;
  -- Spanish-Argentine company Repsol YPF;
  -- British company BP PLC;
  -- British company British Gas Group; and
  -- France's Total SA; Exxon Mobil holds a stake in Total's oil
     field.

                        *    *    *

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



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


* GUATEMALA: Inter-American Bank Approves US$30 Million Loan
------------------------------------------------------------
The Inter-American Development Bank approved a US$30 million
loan for the first phase of a project to support rural
development in Guatemala and boost the incomes of rural
households, particularly in indigenous communities.

The project will promote investments to increase the
competitiveness of rural enterprises in the departments of
Totonicapan, Solola, Sacatepequez, San Marcos, Chimaltenango,
Alta Verapaz, Huehuetenango and Quetzaltenango.

The Guatemalan Presidency's Office of Planning aka SEGEPLAN will
be the executing agency, with support from the Social Investment
Fund aka FIS and the Ministry of Economy aka MINECO.  The
project seeks to clear obstacles to economic progress in rural
areas by improving public infrastructure and expanding access to
financial and business development services, technical
assistance and market information.

Besides favoring a community-based approach to developing
competitiveness, the project will support the establishment of
rural supply chains and finance investments to increase their
productivity, said IDB project team leader Carlos Miranda.

MINECO will administer a new line of credit for banks and credit
unions to make loans to rural organizations and businesses to
finance working capital, productive infrastructure construction
and the purchase or leasing of machinery and equipment.

FIS will manage investments in small-scale infrastructure
projects, such as the rehabilitation of access roads or the
construction of storage facilities, irrigation systems and rural
electrification.

The project will also strengthen SEGEPLAN, FIS and MINECO and
support the use of a public management model that takes into
account local conditions and involves stakeholders.

The IDB worked closely on this project with the World Bank,
which has approved a parallel US$30 million loan.  Additionally,
Swedish and Japanese funds financed studies on rural supply
chains, access to financial services, environmental strategies
and indigenous issues.

The IDB loan is for a 25-year term, with a four-year grace
period and a variable interest rate.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Guatemala:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling    BB+      Feb. 22, 2006
   Long Term IDR      BB+      Feb. 22, 2006
   Short Term IDR     B        Feb. 22, 2006
   Local Currency
   Long Term Issuer
   Default Rating     BB+      Feb. 22, 2006

Fitch also rated Guatemala's senior unsecured bonds:

Maturity Date          Amount        Rate       Ratings
-------------          ------        ----       -------
Aug. 3, 2007        $150,000,000     8.5%         BB+
Nov. 8, 2011        $325,000,000    10.25%        BB+
Aug. 1, 2013        $300,000,000     9.25%        BB+
Oct. 6, 2034        $330,000,000     8.125%       BB+



=========
H A I T I
=========


DIGICEL: Launches Telecommunications Operations in Haiti
--------------------------------------------------------
Digicel Limited has launched operations in Haiti with a wide-
range of customer-focused services aimed at revolutionizing the
local telecommunications market.  This highly anticipated launch
brings an investment of over US$130 million to the nation, the
largest corporate investment ever made in Haiti by an
international company.

Digicel's expansion signals confidence in Haiti's future as it
enters a new era led by President elect Rene Preval.

For the first time in the country's history, Digicel will offer
Haiti's 8.5 million residents reliable nationwide coverage,
superior 24/7 customer care, a wide range of state-of-the-art
handsets, and first to market high-value services such as per
second billing, international roaming, and free activation.

Speaking at launch activities in Port-au-Prince today, Digicel
founder and chairman, Mr. Denis O'Brien said, "Haiti represents
Digicel's largest launch to date, and we anticipate significant
demand for our service.  Communications technology is at the
heart of all nations and the people of Haiti have put up with
woefully inadequate services for far too long.  Digicel Haiti
will provide innovative and accessible telecommunications
services that meet and exceed customer demand, and advance
Haiti's mobile technology to an entirely new level.

"Digicel is committed to making an important contribution to the
growth and development of Haiti economically and socially.  Our
launch has already resulted in significant job creation and
social and community initiatives," added Mr. O'Brien.

Earlier this year, Digicel signed an unprecedented four-year,
multimillion sponsorship with the Haitian Football Federation
designed to grow Haitian football to its true potential.

Since receiving a license in Haiti in June 2005, Digicel has
established a well-trained workforce of more than 300 employees
led by Ms. Ghada Gebara, CEO of Digicel Haiti, who has ten years
of management experience in mobile technology and wireless
services.  She has held senior positions at Asiacell, a major
mobile phone provider in Iraq, and CELLIS, France Telecom Mobile
Lebanon, in Beirut.

Digicel Haiti's local partner, the GB Group, is one of the most
successful commercial and industrial entities in Haiti.  Mr.
Gilbert Bigio, Chairman of the GB Group, said, "We welcome our
partnership with Digicel and share a vision of providing a
world-class telecommunications service in Haiti.  Combining our
local market experience with this dynamic company, we are
confident that Digicel Haiti will have a positive impact on the
lives of the people of Haiti."

Digicel has moved quickly in the first six months of 2006
continuing its steady expansion across the region.  The launch
of Digicel Haiti follows the completion of its purchase of
Bouygues Telecom Caraibe, the wholly owned subsidiary of
Bouygues Telecom with assets in Martinique, Guadeloupe and
French Guiana.

After five years of operation, Digicel has operations in 20
Caribbean countries in its effort to create a seamless Pan-
Caribbean network. Digicel's investment in the Caribbean region
currently stands at US$1 billion.  The company expects its
current staff of more than 1,500 to increase 33% by 2007.

Digicel Limited is a wireless services provider in the Caribbean
region founded in 2000, and controlled by Denis O'Brien.  The
company started operations in Jamaica in April 2001 and now
offers GSM mobile services in 13 countries of the Caribbean
including Jamaica, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, Aruba, Grenada,
Barbados, Cayman, and Curacao among others.  Digicel finished
FY2005 with 1.722 million total subscribers -- 97% pre-paid --
estimated market share of 67% and revenues and EBITDA of US$478
million and US$155 million, respectively.

                        *    *    *

On Mar. 10, 2006, Fitch affirmed the 'B' rating of Digicel
Limited, senior unsecured debt, including the US$300 million
senior notes due 2012, following the announcement that it is in
the process of acquiring Bouygues Telecom Caraibe.  Fitch said
the Outlook for the Ratings is Stable.



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


COMISION FEDERAL: Will Call for Offers to Sell Gas to Mexico
------------------------------------------------------------
CFE aka Comision Federal de Electricidad will invite bids for
purchasing gas to Mexico at the end of May, Fernando Canales
Clariond, the secretary of energy, told Xinhua News Agency.

Xinhua reports that Mr. Clariond told reporters during a
presentation of new franchise accords for state-run Petroleos
Mexicanos that Peru is most likely to win the bid.

"Peru has a land exit to the sea, a gas pipeline from its main
Camisea gas field to the port, and a plant for liquefied natural
gas," Mr. Clariond told Xinhua.

The secretary revealed to Xinhua that if Bolivia does not
participate in the public bidding, Mexico may buy natural gas
from Peru.

Mr. Clariond was quoted by Xinhua saying that Bolivia is not yet
ready to sell natural gas to Mexico.

Mr. Clarion said that Mexico is also considering offers from
Australia, Indonesia and Russia, according to Xinhua.

                        *    *    *

CFE is a state-owned integrated power company that dominates
generation, transmission and distribution in Mexico.  It has
20.6 million clients, 39,182km of transmission infrastructure,
156,647MVA transformation capacity and 163 generation plants
that at end-March 2003 had 40,350MW combined capacity.  Seventy-
five per cent of sales are direct to the client, 24.5% are to
Mexico City distributor Luz y Fuerza del Centro and the
remaining 0.5% are exports.  The industrial sector accounts for
61% of direct sales, followed by residential (23%), commercial
(7%), agriculture (5%) and services (4%).

The company incurred increasing losses for 2003 and 2004.  CFE
incurred MXN6.2 billion loss in 2003, and MXN119 billion loss in
2004.


GRUPO MEXICO: Fitch Puts BB Issuer Default Ratings
--------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings place BB issuer default ratings on Grupo Mexico
S.A. de C.V.

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.


MINERA MEXICO: Fitch Lifts Currency Issuer Ratings to BBB-
----------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has upgraded the foreign and local currency issuer
default ratings of SCC's direct subsidiary, Minera Mexico, S.A.
de C.V., to 'BBB-' from 'BB+', along with the local and foreign
currency issuer default rating aka IDR of Southern Copper
Corporation aka SCC, its parent company.  Fitch has also
upgraded The Rating Outlook is Stable.

These rating actions also apply to the companies' long-term debt
issuances.  Fitch has upgraded the foreign currency rating of
SCC's US$600 million of 7.5% notes due 2035 and US$200 million
of 6.375% notes due 2015 to 'BBB-' from 'BB+'.  On May 2, 2006,
SCC announced that it is reopening its 7.5% notes due 2035 with
an issuance of US$400 million.  This issuance will also be rated
'BBB-'.  Fitch has also upgraded the foreign currency rating of
Minera Mexico's US$173 million 8.25% Guaranteed Notes (Yankee
Bonds) due in 2008 and its US$125 million 9.25% Guaranteed Notes
(Yankee Bonds) due in 2028 to 'BBB-' from 'BB+'.

These upgrades reflect SCC's continued strong cash flow
generation, low leverage and a favorable near- to medium-term
outlook for the copper industry.  The upgrades take into
consideration the risks that could be brought about by a new
government in Peru and factor in the volatile nature of the
copper industry, which led to copper prices averaging US$1.67
per pound in 2005 after never averaging more than US$0.82 per
pound in any year between 1998 and 2003.

SCC and its subsidiary Minera Mexico generated US$2.4 billion of
operating income plus depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) in
2005, an increase from US$1.7 billion in 2004.  Total debt at
year-end 2005 decreased 12% to US$1.2 billion resulting in a
consolidated total debt-to-EBITDA ratio of 0.5 times.  SCC's
debt is composed of US$600 million of notes due 2035, US$200
million of notes due 2015 and a US$80 million collateralized
loan from Mitsui & Co. Ltd., while Minera Mexico's debt consists
of about US$298 million of Yankee bonds as of March 31, 2006.
The Yankee bonds are not guaranteed by SCC and SCC's 2015 and
2035 notes are not guaranteed by Minera Mexico and its
subsidiaries.  In 2005, Minera Mexico accounted for about 48% of
consolidated revenues and 42% of operating EBITDA.

The proposed US$400 million issuance would bring SCC's
consolidated debt to approximately US$1.6 billion.  As of March
31, 2006, SCC generated EBITDA of US$686 million.  With US$776
million in cash as of March 31, 2006, SCC's pro forma annualized
credit ratios indicate total debt-to-EBITDA of 0.6 times and net
debt-to-EBITDA of 0.3 times.  SCC's credit ratios remain strong
for the 'BBB-' rating category and reflect a high point in the
copper price cycle.

SCC is completing a modernization project for its Ilo copper
smelter totaling US$500 million, including amounts invested
prior to 2004.  The project aims to bring the company's Ilo
smelter operations into compliance with the established
environmental standards by January 2007.  The smelter's annual
copper production capacity in anode form should remain about
290,000 tons, 640 million pounds.  SCC's total debt is not
expected to change significantly in the future, as the capital
expenditures for the company's smelter modernization and various
expansion projects can be funded from the cash balances, free
cash flow and the proceeds of the proposed US$400 million
issuance.

The ratings of SCC are supported by the company's competitive
cost structure and favorable market position as a leading copper
producer and exporter.  The ratings positively factor in the
fully integrated nature of the company's operations from mining
through smelting and refining, as well as a production cost
structure that ranks among the lowest in the world.  As a
relatively low-cost producer, SCC is able to remain competitive
during troughs in the price cycle.  The ratings also consider
the company's large copper reserves, which will allow it to grow
through a number of brownfield and greenfield projects with
reasonably low levels of capital investment.

Balanced against these strengths are a number of risks,
including the upcoming presidential election in Peru, as well as
the volatile nature of the pricing cycle of copper.  At this
point in time, the winner of the run-off election between
Ollanta Humala and Alan Garcia cannot be predicted.  Should
Humala win, it is possible that adverse measures could be taken
by his government against copper mining companies in Peru.
Under the most likely adverse scenario, an increase in taxes or
mining fees, SCC is expected to be able to maintain an
investment grade credit profile.  Further factored in the
company's 'BBB-' ratings is the expectation that SCC's
relationship with unionized employees, while improved, will
continue to be difficult.

On April 1, 2005, Grupo Mexico, through its subsidiary, Americas
Mining Corporation aka AMC, sold to SCC all of its shares in
Minera Mexico, Mexico's largest copper producer, in return for
the issuance to AMC of 67.2 million shares of SCC.  After
completing the transaction, SCC now owns 99% of Minera Mexico,
and Grupo Mexico owns, through AMC, 75% of SCC.  SCC's credit
quality and that of Minera Mexico have become more closely
linked.

SCC is one of the world's largest private sector copper
producers and exporters and as of April 1, 2005, owns Mexico's
largest copper producer, Minera Mexico.  Although SCC is
incorporated under Delaware law, the company's mines and plants
are located in Mexico and Peru.  Operations in Peru consist of
two large-scale, open-pit, copper mining units -- Toquepala and
Cuajone -- along with integrated smelting and refining
facilities in the port town of Ilo.  Minera Mexico's principal
copper mining facilities, Mexicana de Cobre and Mexicana de
Cananea, are located in northern Mexico and include two open-pit
copper mines, a smelter and a refinery. In 2005, SCC and Minera
Mexico together produced 689,929 tons, 1.5 billion pounds, of
mined copper.  The company is owned directly or through
subsidiaries by Grupo Mexico (75.1%) and common shareholders
(24.9%).


SOUTHERN COPPER: Moody's Ups Ba1 Rating on Sr. Notes to Baa2
------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service upgraded Southern Copper Corporation's
senior unsecured notes to Baa2 from Ba1.  In related rating
actions, Moody's withdrew the company's Ba1 corporate family
rating and its SGL-1 speculative grade liquidity rating.
Additionally, Moody's affirmed the Ba2 senior unsecured ratings
of Minera Mexico, a subsidiary of Southern Copper.  The rating
outlook is stable.

The upgrade recognizes Southern Copper's progress in
strengthening its operating platform following the successful
integration of Minera Mexico, its balanced capital structure and
improved financial metrics.  In addition, copper fundamentals,
although currently at unsustainably high levels in Moody's view,
are expected to remain solid over the medium term given low
inventory levels and lack of significant additional capacity
coming on stream, thereby allowing Southern Copper to sustain
improved financial metrics.

The upgrade also anticipates that the company will continue to
prudently evaluate the level of dividend payouts relative to
cash flow generation and capital investment requirements and
will not pressure its balance sheet or liquidity position with
excessive dividends.  However, Moody's ratings for Southern
Copper reflect the cyclicality inherent in the copper industry
as well as the political and labor environments in which the
company operates. The rating outlook is stable.

These ratings were upgraded:

Southern Copper Corporation

   * $ 200 million notes due 2015 to Baa2 from Ba1

   * $ 600 million notes due 2035 to Baa2 from Ba1

These ratings were withdrawn:

Southern Copper Corporation

   * Ba1 Corporate Family Rating

   * SGL-1 Speculative Grade Liquidity Rating

This rating was affirmed:

   * Minera Mexico -- Ba2 senior unsecured notes

Southern Copper, a Delaware incorporated company 75% owned by
Grupo Mexico, conducts its operations through its branch in Peru
and its Mexican subsidiary, Minera Mexico.  Earnings and cash
flow generation are roughly balanced between the Peruvian and
Mexican operations.  Despite cost pressures from energy and
other input cost increases, which Moody's expects to continue,
robust copper prices have contributed to significant earnings
and cash flow improvement, indicating Southern Copper's high
leverage to copper prices.

Moody's previous rating action on Southern Copper was the July
11, 2005 assignment of Ba1 ratings to the company's senior
unsecured note issues aggregating $800 million.

Southern Copper Corporation, headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona,
a majority owned subsidiary of Grupo Mexico S.A. de C.V. , is a
leading global producer of copper and other metals with major
mining and processing operations in Peru and Mexico.  Revenues
in 2005 were $4.1 billion.



=================
N I C A R A G U A
=================


* NICARAGUA: Energetica Corinto Favors Oil Pact with Venezuela
--------------------------------------------------------------
Energetica Corinto, the first generator of thermal energy in
Nicaragua, said in statement that it favors an oil supply
agreement entered into by Venezuela and 51 Nicaraguan mayors.

Under the terms of the accord, Venezuela will supply 10 million
barrels a year of fuel to Nicaraguan communities at preferential
terms.   Venezuela will receive 60% of payment within 90 days of
shipment, and the remaining 40% will be paid off over 25 years
at 1% interest, including a two-year grace period.

The Nicaraguan-American Energetic Corinto considered that the
country should cash in on payment preferential conditions to be
granted by Venezuela to the mayoralties in order to buy refined
oil.

"Nicaragua consumes 10 million barrels annually. This is the
same amount of what we are talking about in that agreement, and
if it is cheaper, we should capitalize on it," Cesar Zamora, the
corporate manager and representative of Enron, was quoted by El
Universal as saying.

                        *    *    *

Moody's Investor Service assigned these ratings on Nicaragua:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Long Term          Caa1     June 30, 2003
   Senior Unsecured
   Debt                B3      June 30, 2003


* NICARAGUA: Obtains US$7 Mil. Telecom Financing from World Bank
----------------------------------------------------------------
The World Bank's Board of Directors approved a US$7 million,
zero-interest credit to Nicaragua in order to increase access to
and reduce costs of telecommunications services in rural areas.

"Despite Nicaragua's considerable progress in telecommunication
services over the last decade, the country continues to have one
of the lowest telephone density and ICT levels in Latin
America," said Jane Armitage, World Bank director for Central
America.  "This project supports the Government of Nicaragua's
modernization efforts where telecommunications contribute to
poverty reduction by significantly lessening the economic and
social isolation of rural areas."

The Rural Telecommunications Project will help spur competition
in telecommunications and continue to bring phone service to
remote areas, reducing the cost of services and connecting rural
communities with the outside world.

Specifically, the project will support these following
activities:

   a) Expand the telecommunication infrastructure in rural areas
      by co-financing a competitive award of funding to private-
      sector operators. The private-sector operators will be
      responsible for installing, operating, and maintaining the
      new telecommunications systems on a commercial basis.
      This component will result in the doubling of the number
      of rural communities with populations greater than 400
      people that have public payphones, as well as the
      extension of cellular telephone network to cover rural
      areas that are not presently covered.

      This component will also establish a network of Internet
      points of presence -- POPs -- in 103 municipal heads that
      currently do not have access to the Internet, or it is too
      expensive. The Internet POPs will benefit nearly 830,000
      people (16% of Nicaragua's population) by enabling
      approximately 676 public entities, including secondary
      schools, universities and municipalities, as well as NGOs
      and businesses to access the Internet for the first time
      and at affordable rates.

   b) Provide technical assistance to strengthen the sector
      regulator and capacity-building to communities.  This
      component will finance technical assistance to continue
      the organizational restructuring of the Regulatory Agency.
      Additionally, it will finance Internet applications and
      capacity-building for a number of existing educational,
      health, finance and e-government initiatives that will
      take advantage of the fact that rural communities will
      gain access to the Internet as a result of the first
      component of this project.

"This project will not only bring telecommunications and
Internet services to rural areas that would not be served if
left entirely to market forces, but it will also provide an
important foundation for other important economic development
and good governance initiatives in Nicaragua," said Eloy E.
Vidal, World Bank task manager for the project.

The new project builds upon the achievements of the Government
of Nicaragua, which with the assistance of the World Bank-
financed Telecommunications Sector Reform Project, fully
privatized the Empresa Nicaragense de Telecomunicaciones
(ENITEL) in 2001, and established a regulatory agency for the
telecommunications and postal sectors, Instituto Nicaragense de
Telecomunicaciones y Correos.  As a result, the country
experienced a five-fold increase in the number of fixed and
mobile phones from 194,000 in 1999 to more than 700,000 phones
in 2004.

The US$7 million, zero-interest credit from the International
Development Association is repayable in 40 years, including 10
years of grace.

                        *    *    *

Moody's Investor Service assigned these ratings to Nicaragua:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Long Term          Caa1     June 30, 2003
   Senior Unsecured
   Debt                B3      June 30, 2003



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


KANSAS CITY SOUTHERN: S&P Junks Preferred Stock Ratings
-------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services lowered its preferred stock
ratings on Kansas City Southern to 'C' from 'CCC'.  The ratings
remain on CreditWatch with negative implications, where they
were initially placed on March 23, 2006; ratings were lowered on
April 4 and maintained on CreditWatch.

At the same time, Standard & Poor's withdrew its rating on
subsidiary Kansas City Southern Railway Co.'s old bank credit
facility, which was replaced by a new credit facility on April
28, 2006.  Standard & Poor's assigned its 'BB-' rating and a
recovery rating of '1' to the new credit facility on April 26,
2006.  The rating on the new credit facility is on CreditWatch
with negative implications, along with all other Kansas City
Southern (B/Watch Neg/--) ratings.

"The preferred stock downgrade reflects our expectation that
Kansas City Southern will not make the preferred dividend
payments due in mid-May 2006 because of bond indenture covenant
restrictions," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Lisa
Jenkins.

At Dec. 31, 2005, Kansas City Southern failed to meet the
consolidated coverage ratio (EBITDA to interest expense)
threshold of 2.00:1 included in its bond indentures.  The
company has stated that it expects to remain below this
threshold until the end of the third quarter of 2006.  Failure
to meet this threshold limits its ability to pay cash dividends
and to incur additional debt (except to repay existing debt.)
Once the dividend payments are missed, the ratings on the
preferred stock will be lowered to 'D'.

Kansas City Southern called for a shareholder meeting in late
March 2006 to vote on a proposed amendment to terms of its 4.25%
redeemable cumulative convertible preferred stock, series C, to
allow for the payment of dividends in stock (the current terms
allow only for payment of dividends in cash), but the meeting
was adjourned due to failure to achieve a quorum.  While the
company is allowed to pay stock dividends on its 5.125%
cumulative convertible perpetual preferred stock, series D, it
cannot do so unless it can also pay dividends on the series C
preferred stock.



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


AMERICAS MINING: Fitch Puts BB Long Term Rating
-----------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings placed a BB long term rating on Americas Mining
Corporation aka AMC.

AMC is Grupo Mexico's sub-holding company that groups mining
operations in Mexico, and Peru.

Grupo Mexico, through Americas Mining Corporation, ranks as the
world's third largest copper producer, second in molybdenum,
fourth largest producer of silver and eight largest producer of
zinc. It also ranks as the world's second largest company and
first among companies publicly listed in stock markets in terms
of copper ore reserves.

Southern Copper Corporation aka SCC is 75.1% owned by Grupo
Mexico through its subsidiary AMC


BANCO DE CREDITO: Posts PEN154.7 Million Net Income
---------------------------------------------------
Banco de Credito del Peru disclosed net income of PEN154.7
million, Reuters reports.

According to Reuters, the 12.8% increase in the net income was
due to Peru's strong economic growth.

Government and analyst forecasts say the country's US$75 billion
economy, which has been growing since 2002, is expected to
expand up to 5% this year, Reuters reports.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Jan. 10, 2005,
Standard & Poor's Rating Services said that ratings on
Banco de Credito del Peru (CREDITC1.VL; BB-/Stable/B) would
remain unaffected after the bank announced its agreement to
acquire BankBoston N.A.'s $403 million loan portfolio in Peru.
The portfolio is largely concentrated in the commercial segment
and is allocated among 1,300 customers.  The transaction is
expected to be finalized by the end of January and will be
financed with BCP's existing excess liquidity. T he bank's BIS
capitalization ratio will remain at comfortable levels-above
13%-following the acquisition. The transaction consolidates the
bank's already significant leadership position, increasing its
market share in loans to 33% from 30%.  BCP is the largest bank
in Peru.  The institution is engaged in retail banking, asset
management, private banking, and treasury and corporate banking
activities directly or through subsidiaries.  BCP has Peruvian
new soles 23.1 billion ($6.9 billion) in assets as of September
2004, with the largest branch network nationwide.


* PERU: May Supply Natural Gas to Mexico
----------------------------------------
Mexico could buy natural gas from Peru, Mexican Secretary of
Energy Fernando Canales Clariond told Xinhua News Agency.

Mr. Clariond revealed to Xinhua that if Bolivia does not
participate in a public bidding for selling gas in Mexico, the
government would proceed with the plan.

Mr. Clariond was quoted by Xinhua saying that Bolivia is not yet
ready to sell natural gas to Mexico.

According to Xinhua, Mr. Clariond said that Federal Electricity
Commission aka CFE, Mexico's state-run firm, will call for bids
for selling gas at the end of this month.

Mr. Clariond told reporters during a presentation of new
franchise accords for state-run Petroleos Mexicanos that Peru
could win the bid to sell natural gas to Mexico.

"Peru has a land exit to the sea, a gas pipeline from its main
Camisea gas field to the port, and a plant for liquefied natural
gas," Mr. Clariond was quoted by Xinhua saying.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Peru:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling     BB      Nov. 18, 2004
   Long Term IDR       BB      Dec. 14, 2005
   Short Term IDR      B       Dec. 14, 2005
   Local Currency
   Long Term Issuer
   Default Rating      BB+     Dec. 14, 2005



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


DORAL FINANCIAL: Posts Results for First Three Quarters of 2005
---------------------------------------------------------------
Doral Financial Corporation, a diversified financial services
company, posted its results for the first three quarters of 2005
and nine months ended Sept. 30, 2005, and the filing of its
quarterly reports on Form 10-Q for the first three quarters of
2005.

"With the filing of our quarterly reports, the company has
completed another important step towards returning to timely
financial reporting," stated John A. Ward III, the company'
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.  The company is moving
forward to file its 2005 Form 10-K as soon as practicable.

For the first nine months of 2005, Doral Financial earned
US$57.4 million, compared to US$88.6 million for the same period
of 2004, a decrease of 35.3%.  Consolidated earnings per diluted
share were US$0.29 for the first nine months of 2005, compared
to US$0.57 for the corresponding period of 2004, a decrease of
49.1%.  Net income (loss) for the quarters ended March 31, June
30, and Sep. 30, 2005, amounted to US$39.2 million, US$(22.7)
million and US$40.9 million, respectively, compared to US$35.0
million, US$29.6 million and US$24.1 million for the comparable
quarters of 2004.

The company's results for the first nine months of 2005 reflect
these factors:

   -- The flattening of the yield curve since the third quarter
      of 2004 adversely impacted the company's net interest
      margin.  Net interest income for the nine months ended
      Sep. 30, 2005, was US$214.5 million, compared to US$250.2
      million for the 2004 period.

   -- Reduced volume of mortgage loan sales reflects the
      company's inability to use its traditional sales channels
      in Puerto Rico for non-conforming loans due to the
      uncertainty of the accounting treatment for sale
      transactions in light of the restatement.  Net gain on
      mortgage loan sale and fees decreased to US$41.9 million
      for the first nine months of 2005, compared to US$68.7
      million for the comparable period of 2004.

   -- Increases in short and medium-term interest rates during
      2005 adversely affected the market value of the company's
      IOs and securities held for trading.  Net loss on
      securities held for trading for the first nine months of
      2005 was US$8.3 million, compared to a net loss of US$90.2
      million for the 2004 period.

      Net loss on securities held for trading for the first nine
      months of 2005 included a net loss of US$7.2 million with
      respect to derivative instruments, compared to a net loss
      of US$119.3 million for the comparable period of 2004.

   -- The restatement process resulted in a significant increase
      in non-interest expenses.  Non-interest expenses for the
      nine months ended Sep. 30, 2005, were US$192.3 million,
      compared to US$153.3 million for the comparable period of
      2004, an increase of 25.4%.  For the nine months ended
      Sep. 30, 2005, restatement expenses amounted to
      approximately US$21.0 million.

Net interest income for the nine months ended Sep. 30, 2005,
amounted to US$214.5 million, compared to US$250.2 million for
the same period of 2004, a decrease of 14.3%.  The decrease in
net interest income was due to a significant reduction in the
company's net interest margin, offset in part by a significant
increase in the average balance of interest-earning assets,
principally loans and mortgage-backed securities.  Doral
Financial's net interest spread and margin for the first nine
months of 2005 were 1.44% and 1.59%, respectively, compared to
2.44% and 2.65% for the corresponding 2004 period.  The average
rate paid by Doral Financial on its interest-bearing liabilities
increased by 71 basis points during the first nine months of
2005, while the average yield earned on its interest-earning
assets decreased by 29 basis points, compared to the first nine
months of 2004.

Average interest-earning assets grew by 43% to US$18.0 billion
for the nine months ended Sep. 30, 2005, compared to the same
period of 2004.  The increase in average interest-earning
assets, particularly in its loan portfolio and mortgage-backed
securities, was driven by a strong level of originations and the
company's strategy to increase its tax-exempt income by
investing in mortgage-backed securities through its
international banking entity subsidiary, which interest income
and gain on sale, if any, is exempt from Puerto Rico income
taxation and excluded from federal income taxation.  The
increase in the volume of interest-earning assets was funded
through a combination of deposits and secured borrowings,
including repurchase agreements.

Loan production, defined as internal originations and loan
purchases with the related servicing rights, for the first nine
months of 2005 was US$4.2 billion, a slight increase from the
US$4.0 billion for the comparable 2004 period.  Purchases of
mortgage loans with the related servicing rights from third
parties were US$374.2 million and US$392.9 million for the first
nine months of 2005 and 2004, respectively.

Non-interest income for the nine months ended Sep. 30, 2005, was
US$82.9 million, compared to US$11.4 million for the first nine
months of 2004.  The increase in non-interest income was driven
by a significant reduction in losses on trading securities as
compared to 2004, mainly as a result of lower losses in the
value of the company's derivatives instruments undertaken for
risk management purposes.  Net loss on securities held for
trading, which includes realized and unrealized gains or losses
on securities held for trading, including IOs, options, futures
contracts and other derivatives used for interest rate risk
management purposes, resulted in a loss of US$8.3 million for
the first nine months of 2005, compared to a loss of US$90.2
million for the comparable period of 2004.  During 2004, as the
yield curve flattened, the company experienced significant
realized and unrealized losses with respect to derivative
instruments undertaken for risk management purposes, which were
not adequately aligned to the sensitivity of the company's
assets and liabilities to interest rate changes.  Increases in
medium and long-term interest rates during the first and third
quarters of 2005 helped offset losses on derivative instruments
during the first nine months of 2005.

Net gains on mortgage loan sales and fees were adversely
affected by the rise in short-term interest rates and the
flattening of the yield curve.  For the nine months ended Sep.
30, 2005, the company's net gain on mortgage loan sale and fees
was US$41.9 million, compared to US$68.7 million for the
comparable 2004 period, a decrease of 39%.  The decrease was the
result of lower gain on sale margins as well as a reduction in
the sale of non-conforming loans, in particular after the first
quarter of 2005, due to the company's inability to use its
traditional sales channels.

Net servicing income for the nine months ended Sep. 30, 2005,
was US$15.6 million, compared to a loss of US$2.0 million for
the corresponding period of 2004.  The increase in net servicing
income was due principally to decreased impairment charges of
mortgage servicing assets resulting from an increase in the
estimated fair value of the Company's mortgage servicing rights.
An increase in interest rates and the associated decrease in
forecasted mortgage prepayment rates led to the increase in the
value of the company's MSRs as of Sep. 30, 2005.  As a result,
for the first nine months of 2005, Doral Financial recovered
US$3.0 million of its previously recognized impairment
allowance.  For the same period in 2004, the company recorded
net impairment charges of US$10.7 million.

Net gain on sale of investment securities decreased to US$7.6
million for the first nine months of 2005, compared to US$10.6
million for the comparable period of 2004, mainly due to a
decreased volume of sales.

Commissions, fees and other income increased 8.2% to US$26.2
million for the first nine months of 2005, compared to US$24.2
million for the corresponding 2004 period.  Commissions and fees
earned in the banking and insurance agency operations were
responsible for the increase.

Non-interest expenses increased by 25.4% to US$192.3 million for
the nine months ended September 30, 2005, compared to US$153.3
million for the corresponding 2004 period.  The increase in non-
interest expenses was due to the expansion of the company's
mortgage banking and banking operations during the period, as
well as the accounting, legal and other expenses associated with
the restatement.

           Factors Affecting 2005 Fourth Quarter Results

The company expects earnings for the fourth quarter of 2005 to
be substantially lower than for the third quarter of 2005.
Earnings for the fourth quarter of 2005 were principally
impacted by these factors:

   -- a reduction in mortgage loan sales and related gain on
      sales as a result of the continued inability of the
      company to use its traditional sales channels for non-
      conforming loans to local financial institutions, as well
      as reduced gain on sale margins resulting from the
      interest rate environment;

   -- reduced net interest income as a result of the continued
      rise in short-term interest rates and the flattened yield
      curve;

   -- losses of approximately US$43 million incurred on the sale
      of US$1.2 billion of lower-yielding investment securities
      during the fourth quarter of 2005; and

   -- legal, accounting and other expenses related to the
      restatement of approximately US$11.5 million.

       Recent Loan Production Data and Future Operations

Doral Financial's mortgage loan production for the fourth
quarter of 2005 was US$1.2 billion, compared to US$1.4 billion
for the fourth quarter of 2004.  For the first quarter of 2006,
mortgage loan production was US$859.3 million, compared to
US$1.3 billion for the first quarter of 2005.  The decrease in
loan production during the first quarter of 2006 reflects a
decrease in total originations in the Puerto Rico market,
coupled with the adoption of more stringent underwriting
standards and an adjustment of the company's pricing and product
offerings to more closely align its origination of non-
conforming loans to the requirements of new secondary market
outlets.  The company is currently working to develop new sales
outlets for its non-conforming loan production both in the local
Puerto Rico and United States secondary markets.  In addition,
the company continues to experience significant competition in
the Puerto Rico market.

Mr. Ward said, "During 2005, the mortgage market in Puerto Rico
underwent significant changes.  Doral Financial has a process
underway to strategically adapt its business model to these
changes in order to assure that it is well positioned to
capitalize on its strong mortgage franchise in the marketplace."

As previously disclosed in Doral Financial's amended 2004 Annual
Report on Form 10-K, commencing in 2006, Doral Financial is
implementing certain changes to its business strategy that are
designed to produce revenue and earnings streams that are more
stable, transparent and easier to protect from interest rate
risk.  One of the changes in business strategy is the retention
of more loans in Doral Financial's portfolio.  The company
anticipates that, as a greater proportion of mortgage loans are
retained in its portfolio, gains from mortgage loan sales will
be a less important source of revenue and net interest income,
fee income and trading income will become more important sources
of revenue.  The company also intends to diversify and increase
its loan and service offerings beyond residential loans.

The company has commenced a major reengineering project with the
assistance of Proudfoot Consulting designed to substantially
reduce non-interest expenses and to make the company's
operations more efficient.

Doral Financial is currently engaged in negotiations with
several local financial institutions to restructure the terms of
certain prior mortgage loan transfers and related servicing
arrangements, certain of which had been recharacterized as
secured borrowings.  The negotiations contemplate a number of
different alternatives including, negotiation of loan
documentation for transactions previously recharacterized by
Doral Financial as secured borrowings, the sale into the market
of loans that have now been recharacterized as being owned by
Doral Financial, the repurchase of loans from counterparties and
the sale of IOs to counterparties owning the underlying
mortgages.

As part of these negotiations, on April 19, 2006, Doral
Financial entered into an agreement with Banco Santander Puerto
Rico aka BSPR, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Santander Bancorp,
pursuant to which Doral Financial agreed to acquire from BSPR
approximately $617 million of mortgage loans previously sold by
Doral Financial to BSPR during 2004 and the first quarter of
2005.  This transaction, which is scheduled to close by May 15,
2006, is subject to certain conditions including receipt of all
required regulatory approval and the approvals of the Board of
Directors of both institutions.

Under the original sale agreements with BSPR, Doral Financial is
required to pay BSPR a floating pass-through rate tied to LIBOR.
Doral Financial also retained a call option, which grants it a
right to repurchase the mortgage loans at par if the floating
pass-though rate equals or exceeds the weighted-average interest
rate on the underlying mortgages.  The sale treatment for these
transactions was not revised as part of the Company's
restatement of its financial statements for the five-year period
ended Dec. 31, 2004.  However, during the first quarter of 2006,
as a result of the continued rise in short term interest rates,
the floating pass-through rate exceeded the weighted- average
interest rate on the underlying mortgages, causing the call
right to become exercisable.  Under accounting rules, because
the call right became exercisable at the option of Doral
Financial, the mortgage loans were brought back on Doral
Financial's balance sheet during the first quarter of 2006.

Doral Financial was approached by BSPR, which contrary to Doral
Financial has recharacterized the transactions as secured
borrowings, about the possibility of selling the loans to Doral
Financial and thus eliminating a possible loan-to-one borrower
violation for BSPR.  Doral Financial believes that the terms of
the proposed transaction are favorable to it because the
negotiated price of 99.125% of the aggregate principal amount of
the loans being repurchased is below the call price set forth in
the original agreements, and it can finance the acquisition at a
cost below the pass-though rate payable to BSPR.  Doral
Financial is currently examining various alternatives with
respect to the loans being repurchased, including retaining them
in its portfolio to earn interest income or selling them.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on April 10, 2006,
Doral notified the New York Stock Exchange, Inc., that it would
not be able to file on time its Annual Report on Form 10-K for
the year ended Dec. 31, 2005, this is in connection with the
filing of its restated financial statements for the periods from
Jan. 1, 2000, to Dec. 31, 2004.

The NYSE will monitor the company and the filing status of the
2005 Form 10-K.  If the company has not filed the 2005 Form 10-K
within six months of the filing due date, the NYSE, in its sole
discretion, may grant the company up to an additional six-month
trading period to file the 2005 Form 10-K or commence suspension
and delisting procedures against the company.

Doral is working diligently to complete the preparation of its
quarterly unaudited selected financial information for each of
the three quarters of 2005 and its annual audited consolidated
financial statements for the year ended Dec. 31, 2005, and
expects to file its 2005 Form 10-K before the initial six-month
period provided.

The company has also announced that it does not expect to
distribute its annual report to shareholders for the year ended
Dec. 31, 2005, in time for the regular date of the annual
meeting, which is generally held during the third week of April.
As a result, the company will not be able to comply with Rule
203.01 of the NYSE's Listed Company Manual, which requires that
a listed company deliver an annual report to shareholders within
120 days after the close of each fiscal year.

                    About Doral Financial

Doral Financial Corporation -- http://www.doralfinancial.com/
-- a financial holding company, is the largest residential
mortgage lender in Puerto Rico, and the parent company of Doral
Bank, a Puerto Rico based commercial bank, Doral Securities, a
Puerto Rico based investment banking and institutional brokerage
firm, Doral Insurance Agency, Inc. and Doral Bank FSB, a federal
savings bank based in New York City.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on March 27, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service downgraded to B1 from Ba3 the senior
debt ratings of Doral Financial Corporation, and reiterated the
negative rating outlook.  Moody's action follows cease and
desist orders placed by banking regulators on Doral and some of
its subsidiaries, including Doral Bank, San Juan, Puerto
Rico.  When Moody's last downgraded Doral's debt on Oct. 28,
2005, it issued a negative rating outlook, but noted that any
credit deterioration including regulatory consequences or
liquidity issues could result in a review for possible downgrade
or an outright downgrade.


KMART CORP: Trade Creditors Sell Claims Exceeding $114,227,955
--------------------------------------------------------------
From Jan. 6, 2004, to Jan. 12, 2006, the Clerk of Court for the
U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Illinois
recorded over 90 claim transfers, aggregating more than
US$114,227,955.

The transfers include:

Original Claimant         Transferee                     Amount
-----------------         ----------                     ------
A&R Knitwear Co., Inc.    Contrarian Funds LLC         $981,473

Bell Sports Inc.          SPCP Group LLC              3,307,556

Bluff Retail              Seminole Mall                   4,452
Associates LP             Acquisition LLC

Del Laboratories Inc.     Contrarian Funds LLC        2,880,000

Epson America Inc.        Contrarian Funds LLC          255,728

Florida Power &           Fireman's Fund              1,539,250
Light Company             Insurance Company

Gore Bros. Inc.           Brookings Limited              98,893
                            Partnership

Greased Lightning         Contrarian Funds LLC          194,631
International Inc.

Hub Group Distribution    Contrarian Funds LLC          450,542
Services

Johnson City              BNY Trust Company of          620,722
Tennessee Realty LLC      Missouri

Monessen Hearth           Contrarian Funds LLC          745,632
Systems

Next Factors Inc.         NF Capital Inv                582,033

OZ Master Fund, Ltd.      Oz Special Master Fund Ltd. 2,010,575

OZF Credit Opportunities  Oz Special Master Fund Ltd.   655,573
Master Fund Ltd.

OZF Credit Opportunities  Oz Special Master Fund Ltd.   707,299
Master Fund II Ltd.

Paris Presents Inc.       Merrill Lynch Credit        7,267,620
                            Products LLC

Polaroid Corporation      Goldman Sachs Credit        4,005,000
                            Partners LP

Recreational Water        Contrarian Funds LLC          589,209
Products Inc.

Saltru Associated         Alpine Associates          16,522,956
Joint Venture

St. Charles Partners      The Chase Manhattan Bank      318,842

U.S. Bank National        Alpine Associates           2,525,787
Association

US Security               Contrarian Funds LLC          179,160
Associates Inc.

In addition, Oz Special Master Fund Ltd. transferred claims to:

    * OZF Credit Opportunities Master Fund, Ltd. for
      $16,341,775;

    * OZF Credit Opportunities Master Fund II, Ltd. for
      $13,744,517; and

    * OZ Master Fund, Ltd. for $37,698,730.

Headquartered in Troy, Michigan, Kmart Corporation (n/k/a KMART
Holding Corporation) -- http://www.bluelight.com/-- operates
approximately 2,114 stores, primarily under the Big Kmart or
Kmart Supercenter format, in all 50 United States, Puerto Rico,
the U.S. Virgin Islands and Guam.  The Company filed for chapter
11 protection on January 22, 2002 (Bankr. N.D. Ill. Case No.
02-02474).  Kmart emerged from chapter 11 protection on May 6,
2003.  John Wm. "Jack" Butler, Jr., Esq., at Skadden, Arps,
Slate, Meagher & Flom, LLP, represented the retailer in its
restructuring efforts.  The Company's balance sheet showed
$16,287,000,000 in assets and $10,348,000,000 in debts when it
sought chapter 11 protection.  Kmart bought Sears, Roebuck &
Co., for $11 billion to create the third-largest U.S. retailer,
behind Wal-Mart and Target, and generate $55 billion in annual
revenues.  The waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino
Antitrust Improvements Act expired on Jan. 27, without complaint
by the Department of Justice.  (Kmart Bankruptcy News, Issue No.
109; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc., 215/945-7000)


MUSICLAND HOLDING: Panel Taps Giuliani Capital as Fin'l Advisor
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Musicland
Holding Corp. and its debtor-affiliates asks the U.S. Bankruptcy
Court for the Southern District of New York's for permission to
retain Giuliani Capital Advisors LLC as its financial advisor,
nunc pro tunc to January 20, 2006.

The Committee believes that Giuliani Capital are thoroughly
familiar with and experienced in Chapter 11 matters and have
served as advisors for creditors' committees and debtors in many
other Chapter 11 cases.

The Committee anticipates that Giuliani Capital will provide
financial advisory services as needed throughout the course of
the Debtors' Chapter 11.

Giuliani Capital will:

   a. advise the Committee regarding:

      -- the Debtors' business plans, cash flow forecasts,
         financial projections and cash flow reporting;

      -- available capital restructuring, sale and financing
         alternatives including but not limited to a DIP
         facility, including recommending specific courses of
         action and assisting with the design, structuring and
         negotiation of alternative restructuring and
         transaction structures;

      -- financial information prepared by the Debtors and in
         its coordination of communication with interested
         parties and their advisors;

      -- preparation for, meeting with, and presenting
         information to interested parties and their advisors;

      -- the development of a plan of reorganization for the
         Debtors and negotiation with parties-in-interest or in
         the sale of a portion or substantially all of the
         assets of the Debtors, whether structured as a stock
         transfer, merger, purchase and assumption transaction
         or other business combination;

      -- the Debtors' proposals from third parties for new
         sources of capital or the sale of the Debtors;

   b. assist and advise the Committee and its counsel in the
      development, evaluation and documentation of any plan of
      reorganization or strategic transaction, including
      developing, structuring and negotiating the terms and
      conditions of potential plans, financing or strategic
      transaction and strategic alternatives for recovery, and
      the consideration that is to be provided to unsecured
      creditors;

   c. provide testimony in the Bankruptcy Court; and

   d. perform other services as may be reasonably requested in
      writing from time to time by the Committee and its counsel
      and agreed by Giuliani Capital.

Giuliani Capital will be paid:

   a. a $125,000 monthly compensation for the first three months
      while employed by the Committee and $100,000 per month
      thereafter.  Monthly payments will be prorated for any
      partial month period;

   b. a $300,000 completion fee on the consummation of either:

      -- the sale of substantially all of the Debtor's assets;
         or
      -- the confirmation of a Chapter 11 plan;

   c. an incentive fee of:

      -- 1% of a transaction amount in the case of any party
         introduced by GCA that purchases, provides financing or
         equity to the Debtors; or

      -- 50% of a transaction amount in the case of any party
         introduced by another party-in-interest.

The Transaction Amount will be the amount of:

   a. a DIP credit facility or exit or other loan facility; or

   b. cash, liquidity, property or liabilities assumed in a
      proposed acquisition of all or substantially all of the
      Debtors' assets or plan of reorganization completed by an
      investor or purchaser.

Up to 50% of the Incentive Fee will be credited against the
Completion Fee, but the credit should not exceed the lesser of
$250,000 or 50% of the Completion Fee earned and received by
Giuliani Capital.

The Completion Fee and the Incentive Fee will be payable to
Giuliani Capital on the earlier of the effective date pursuant
to a plan of reorganization or as earned pursuant to a sale of
any or all of the assets on the closing date of each that sale.

Giuliani Capital will also receive monthly reimbursements for
reasonable out-of-pocket expenses it incurs.

David S. Miller, Giuliani Capital's managing director, assures
the Court that his firm is "disinterested" within the meaning of
Section 101(14) of the Bankruptcy Code.

                  Informal Committee Objects

The Informal Committee of Secured Trade Vendors asserts that the
services of Giuliani Capital have not provided any benefit to
the Debtors or their estates, nor will they do so on a going
forward basis.

According to Richard S. Toder, Esq., at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius
LLP, in New York, none of Giuliani Capital's proposed services
has any applicability to a liquidation, which is effectively
what the Debtors' cases have become.

Accordingly, the Informal Committee asks the Court to deny
Giuliani Capital's retention and fee requests.  At the very
least, Giuliani Capital's proposed Monthly Advisory Fee should
be sharply reduced and terminated as of the recent sale of
substantially all of the Debtors' assets, the Informal Committee
contends.

The Informal Committee objects to the proposed Success Fees
because Giuliani Capital actually opposed the consummated
transactions during the course of the Debtors' Chapter 11
cases.  Clearly, Giuliani Capital did not assist or add value to
those transactions, Mr. Toder maintains.

If Giuliani Capital's retention were to be approved in some
modified form, the Informal Committee asserts that several
provisions of the Retention Application require substantial
alteration or clarification.

                     About Musicland Holding

Headquartered in New York, New York, Musicland Holding Corp., is
a specialty retailer of music, movies and entertainment-related
products in the United States, Puerto Rico and the Virgin
Islands.  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 US$100
million in assets and debts.  (Musicland Bankruptcy News, Issue
No. 10; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc., 215/945-7000)


MUSICLAND HOLDING: Suncoast Holding Files Schedules
---------------------------------------------------

A.     Real Property                                        $0

B.     Personal Property                                     -

       TOTAL SCHEDULED ASSETS                               $0

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                          None

F.     Unsecured Non-priority Claims              Undetermined

       TOTAL SCHEDULED LIABILITIES                $204,416,981

                     About Musicland Holding

Headquartered in New York, New York, Musicland Holding Corp., is
a specialty retailer of music, movies and entertainment-related
products in the United States, Puerto Rico and the Virgin
Islands.  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. 10; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc., 215/945-7000)


* PUERTO RICO: Lawmakers Fail to Resolve Financial Crisis
---------------------------------------------------------
Puerto Rico's Gov. Anibal Acevedo Vila and lawmakers failed to
resolve the lack of budget, leading to the government's partial
shutdown, the Associated Press reports.

The country's leader and the legislature are unable to reach an
agreement on how to get the country out of the situation, AP
relates.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on May 2, 2006,
Gov. Vila and the lawmakers worked late into the night on Sunday
in fear that the financial crisis, worsen by unresolved
political feud would result to the closing down of schools and
key public services on Monday morning.

According to The Orlando Sentinel, the House of Representatives
had approved an immediate US$532 million loan from Puerto Rico's
Government Development Bank to help ease the country of its US$1
billion budget deficit.  The loan would cover commonwealth
workers' salaries for the remainder of the fiscal year, which
ends June 30, and would be repaid by the increasing the taxes on
large corporations retroactively.

However, Gov. Vila said in a televised interview he could not
support the House's plan.  He said there has been no retroactive
tax in the history of Puerto Rico and that there are serious
doubts over its legality and constitutionality.  He explained
that it is not a long-term solution and would still result to a
bankruptcy next year.

The Sentinel relates that the House also approved in April Gov.
Vila's US$638 million loan proposal.  The loan would be paid off
by a 7% sales tax, as Puerto Rico currently has no sales tax.

The House, however, said it would support only a 4% sales tax
and refused to consider the governor's plan, according to AP.

Gov. Vila eventually told AP he would agree on a 5.9% sales tax,
which was offered under one Senate proposal.

The leaders of the House of Representatives, however, said they
would support only a 4% sales tax.

According to AP, almost 100,000 Puerto Ricans of the 200,000
employed by the government were laid off as salaries constitute
about 80% of the government's operational costs.  All 1,600
public schools were closed Monday, along with 43 government
agencies.

AP states that many basic functions of the government were not
available but Gov. Vila said essential services, such as police
and hospitals, would continue during the shutdown.  Municipal
governments that provide services like garbage collection
continued operations.

The governor had explained to AP that the shutdown was necessary
as the island no longer has enough money in its budget to get
through the fiscal year ending June 30.

AP reports that Puerto Rico has a US$740 million budget deficit.
Gov. Vila and the legislature controlled by the members of the
New Progressive Party have been arguing on a spending plan since
2004.  The two sides never agreed on the 2005 or the 2006
budgets.  The government is currently using the 2004 budget to
operate as the country's debts grow.

The Voice of America relates that Governor Vila blamed the
shutdown on legislative inaction.

VOA states that laid off government workers waited in long lines
at the Department of Labor for unemployment benefits of up to
US$130 a week.

AP reports that protesters had marched in front of the Capitolio
against the government.

Unions have planned to hold demonstrations outside the capitol
in San Juan and elsewhere to protest the shutdown, the Canadian
Press reports.

Standard & Poor's and Moody's Investors Service placed Puerto
Rico's economic outlook at negative.  The rating agencies have
also put Puerto Rico on a special watch status, with the
possibility of downgrading the government's credit rating.



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


* URUGUAY: Seeks More Dialogue to Resolve Pulp Mill Conflict
------------------------------------------------------------
Uruguayan President Tabare Vazquez called for further discussion
on the pulp mill conflict with Argentina, Dow Jones Newswires
reports.

President Vazquez said in a speech at a conference sponsored by
the Council of the Americas that the dispute over the
construction of the plants hinders the strengthening of ties of
members of Mercosur, a trade bloc between South American
nations.

More dialogue would resolve regional disputes, President Vazquez
was quoted by Dow Jones saying.  The governments should be
capable of diplomatically resolving the pulp mill conflict, as
well as other potential disputes.

President Vazquez told Dow Jones, "We want a bigger and better
Mercosur, not only in terms of customs, but in terms of energy
and infrastructure, complementary production, complementation in
science and technology, rational use of natural resources,
conserving the environment, et cetera."

However, President Vazquez's call for more dialogue did nothing
to ease the conflict between his country and Argentina, Dow
Jones states.  The Argentine government said direct negotiation
had been exhausted.

The government of Argentina has designated three diplomats to
represent the country at the International Court of Justice in
the Hague, where officials are planning to file a complaint
against Uruguay, Dow Jones reports.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigns 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

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigns these ratings on Uruguay:

                     Rating     Rating Date
                     ------     -----------
   Country Ceiling     BB-      Mar. 7, 2005
   Long Term IDR       B+      Dec. 14, 2005
   Short Term IDR      B       Dec. 14, 2005
   Local Currency
   Long Term Issuer
   Default Rating      BB-      Mar. 7, 2005



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


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Continues Operations at Dacion & Eni
------------------------------------------------------------
According to El Universal, Petroleos de Venezuela has held talks
with workers in oil fields Dacion and Jusepin and asked them to
continue working and ensure continuity of operations.

The Dacion and Jusepin fields -- operated by Total SA and Eni
SpA respectively -- were seized by PDVSA after its former
operators refused to sign the revised joint venture pacts with
the state oil firm.

The two fields have a total output of 100,000 barrels of oil per
day.  Production at the Dacion field dropped 8,000 bpd after it
was taken from Eni, sources close to Eni was quoted by El
Universal as saying.  In 2005, Dacion produced an average of
63,000 bpd.

Petroleos de Venezuela SA aka 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, 2006, 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.


* VENEZUELA: Will Lend Support to Bolivia's Gas Nationalization
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Venezuelan government said that it will help Bolivia achieve
sovereignty in its hydrocarbons industry following the
nationalization announcement made by Bolivian President Evo
Morales on May 1, El Universal reports.

Venezuelan Foreign Trade Minister Gustavo Marquez said:
"Venezuela has a large experience in this matter of hydrocarbons
and we are ready to give all our support to the Bolivian people
to go ahead and build upon their own development by managing
their natural resources and succeeding in being sovereign and
free," El Universal reports.

Minister Marquez said that Bolivia is now taking a historical
role in reclaiming its natural resources held by private firms
and use them for the people's welfare, El Universal relates.

                        *    *    *

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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