TCRLA_Public/060526.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 26, 2006, Vol. 7, Issue 104

                            Headlines

A R G E N T I N A

ANTU APLICACIONES: Trustee Stops Validating Claims After June 29
CHICKEN TRUCK: Sets June 21 as Claims Verification Deadline
CLINICA Y MATERNIDAD: Filing of Proofs of Claim Ends by June 14
CORRALON EL MILAGRO: Individual Reports Due in Court on June 28
ELECTRO GT: Creditors Must File Proofs of Claim by June 29

FRIGORIFICO EL TOLOSANO: Proofs of Claim Filing Ends by June 30
HACIENDAS DEL FORTIN: Filing of Proofs of Claim Ends on June 22
KOMUNICARTE S.R.L.: Verification of Claims Ends on June 26
PLANTA PROCESADORA: Enters Bankruptcy on Court Order
REPSOL YPF: Inks Exploration Agreement with OVL, CUPET & Norsk

* ARGENTINA: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B2 from B3
* BUENOS AIRES: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B2
* MENDOZA: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B2 from B3

B A H A M A S

WINN-DIXIE: Associated Grocers Buys Pompano Center for US$51M
WINN-DIXIE: Assuming 75 Store Leases on Plan's Effective Date

B E L I Z E

* BELIZE: Moody's Ups Long-Term Foreign Currency Rating to Caa1

B E R M U D A

GLOBAL CROSSING: Prices US$365M Proceeds of Public Offering
SOLVEST LTD: Fitch Junks Rating on Senior Unsecured Debt

B O L I V I A

REPSOL: Chairman Says Bolivian Crisis Won't Affect Earnings

* BOLIVIA: Moody's Ups LT Foreign Currency Rating to B2 from B3
* BOLIVIA: Will Ink 200 Trade Pacts with Venezuela

B R A Z I L

BANCO ITAU: Will Not Layoff Workers After BankBoston Acquisition
BANCO NACIONAL: Approves Rules to Operate With Project Finance
BRASIL TELECOM: Moody's Lowers Sr. Unsecured Debt Rating to Ba1
COMPANHIA VALE: Inks 19% Iron Ore Price Hike with Arcelor
EMBRATEL PARTICIPACOES: Acquires Globo Shares in Net Servicos

ESPIRITO SANTO: Moody's Upgrades Rating of US$114M Notes to Ba3
ESPIRITO SANTO: S&P Ups Corporate Credit Rating to BB- from B+
GLOBO COMUNICACAO: Sells Minority Shares in Net to Embratel
NET SERVICOS: Globo's Shares in Company Acquired by Embratel
PARANA BANCO: S&P Puts B Rating on US$5-Mil. Sr. Unsecured Notes

PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Effects Dividend & Interest on Own Capital
PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Forms Consortium for Block 18 Exploration
PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Obtains US$900M Financing for REVAP Project
TELEMAR NORTE: S&P Keeps BB Long-Term Credit Ratings on Watch

* BRAZIL: Moody's Ups Long-Term Foreign Currency Rating to Ba2
* CEARA: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to Ba2 from Ba3
* CURITIBA: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to Ba2 from Ba3
* SAO PAULO: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to Ba2 from Ba3

C A Y M A N   I S L A N D S

CALABASH RE: S&P Rates US$100 Million Class A-1 Notes at BB
DUPLEX FOURTH: Filing of Proofs of Claim Ends by June 1
ELC LTD. 1999-III: Liquidator Stops Accepting Claims by June 1
ELC LTD. 1999-III (C): Claims Verification Ends on June 1
ELC LTD. 2000-I: Creditors Must File Proofs of Claim by June 1

HH CAYMAN: Sets June 1 Deadline for Filing Proofs of Claim
MJT FUNDING: Schedules Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline on June 1
PRECEPT FOREIGN: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Set for June 2
PRECEPT FOREIGN (II): Holds Last Shareholders Meeting on June 2
PRECEPT MASTER: Schedules Final Shareholders Meeting on June 2

C H I L E

AES GENER: Moody's Upgrades Senior Unsecured Debt Rating to Ba1

C O L O M B I A

AES CHIVOR: Moody's Ups Corp. Family & Sr. Debt Ratings to Ba3

* BOGOTA: Moody's Upgrades Foreign Currency Rating to Ba1
* COLOMBIA: Contractual Stability Law on Investments Passed
* COLOMBIA: Moody's Ups Long-Term Foreign Currency Rating to Ba1
* COLOMBIA: Working on Reforms for Tax Reduction

C O S T A   R I C A

* COSTA RICA: Launches Fair on Trade Promotion in Germany
* COSTA RICA: Moody's Ups LT Foreign Currency Rating to Baa3

C U B A

* CUBA: Authorizes Deepwater Block Acquisition by Indian Firm
* CUBA: Moody's Affirms Caa1 Long-Term Foreign Currency Rating

D O M I N I C A N   R E P U B L I C

BANCO BHD: Launches Impact of the Free Trade Agreement Program

* DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: British Firms Mull Call Center Business
* DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Central Bank Auctions DOP2.5B Certificates
* DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B1

E C U A D O R

PETROECUADOR: Selling Barrels of Crude from Occidental's Fields

* ECUADOR: Moody's Affirms LT Foreign Currency Rating at Caa1
* ECUADOR: Will Hand Over Occidental Field to Foreign Hands

G U A T E M A L A

* GUATEMALA: Moody's Ups LT Foreign Currency Rating to Ba1

H A I T I

* HAITI: Full Membership in Caribbean Development Bank Expected

H O N D U R A S

* HONDURAS: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to Ba3 from B2

J A M A I C A

* JAMAICA: Moody's Ups LT Foreign Currency Rating to Ba3 from B1

M E X I C O

GRUPO MEXICO: Southern Copper Eyes Toromocho Copper Deposit
OCA INC: Taps Spencer Stuart as Executive Search Consultants

N I C A R A G U A

* NICARAGUA: Moody's Ups Long-Term Foreign Currency Rating to B3

P A N A M A

SOLO CUP: Posts US$22.1 Million Net Loss in First Fiscal Quarter

P A R A G U A Y

* PARAGUAY: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B3 from Caa1

P E R U

* PERU: Moody's Ups LT Foreign Currency Rating to Ba2 from Ba3

P U E R T O   R I C O

ADELPHIA: Asks Court to Approve Century/ML Settlement Accord
ADELPHIA COMMS: Sets Discovery Schedule Over Boies Schiller Fees

U R U G U A Y

* URUGUAY: Fitch Affirms Low B Local & Foreign Currency Ratings
* URUGUAY: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B1 from B3

V E N E Z U E L A

ARVINMERITOR: Debt Swap Prompts Fitch to Watch Ratings

* VENEZUELA: CenBank Incurs US$142M of Losses in First Quarter
* VENEZUELA: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B1 from B3
* VENEZUELA: Reports Say Full Membership to Mercosur Approved

* Moody's Revises Foreign Currency Ceilings


                          - - - - -   


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



ANTU APLICACIONES: Trustee Stops Validating Claims After June 29
----------------------------------------------------------------
Court-appointed trustee Hugo Adolfo D. Ubaldo will stop
validating claims against bankrupt company Antu Aplicaciones
Industriales Integradas S.A. after June 29, 2006, Infobae
reports.

Mr. Ubaldo will present the validated claims in court as
individual reports on Aug. 4, 2006.  The trustee will also
submit a general report on the case on Sept. 15, 2006.

A Buenos Aires court handles the company's bankruptcy case.

The trustee can be reached at:

         Hugo Adolfo D. Ubaldo
         Adolfo Alsina 1535
         Buenos Aires, Argentina


CHICKEN TRUCK: Sets June 21 as Claims Verification Deadline
-----------------------------------------------------------
Court-appointed trustee Jorge Luis Ruben Sanchez will stop
validating claims against bankrupt company Chicken Truck S.R.L.
after June 21, 2006, Infobae reports.

Mr. Sanchez will present the validated claims in court as
individual reports on Aug. 2, 2006.  The trustee will also
submit a general report on the case on Sep. 15, 2006.

A Buenos Aires court handles the company's bankruptcy case.

The debtor can be reached at:

         Chicken Truck S.R.L.
         Rincon 633
         Buenos Aires, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

         Jorge Luis Ruben Sanchez
         Paraguay 934
         Buenos Aires, Argentina


CLINICA Y MATERNIDAD: Filing of Proofs of Claim Ends by June 14
---------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors against Clinica y Maternidad Modelo S.A. Medico
Asistencial are required to submit proofs of claim by
June 14, 2006.  Infobae relates that the claims will undergo a
verification phase.  

Claims that are verified will then be submitted in court as
individual reports on Aug. 30, 2006.

A general report, which will contain the company's audited
business records as well as a summary of events pertaining to
the liquidation, will be presented in court on Sept. 29, 2006.

A court in Mar del Plata, Buenos Aires, declared the company
bankrupt and appointed Estudio Contable Ruggiero, Cordero &
Suarez, as trustee.

The debtor can be reached at:

         Clinica y Maternidad Modelo S.A. Medico Asistencial
         Mitre 2951, Mar del Plata
         Buenos Aires, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

         Estudio Contable Ruggiero, Cordero & Suarez
         Avenida Luro 3894, Mar del Plata
         Buenos Aires, Argentina


CORRALON EL MILAGRO: Individual Reports Due in Court on June 28
---------------------------------------------------------------
Court-appointed trustee Estudio Paganetti, Fernandez y Asociados
will present the validated claims of bankrupt company Corralon
El Milagro S.A.'s creditors in a court based in Salta on
June 28, 2006, Infobae reports.

The trustee stopped verifying the claims on May 15, 2006.  

A general report is expected in court on Aug. 24, 2006.  

The debtor can be reached at:

          Corralon El Milagro S.A.
          Cordoba 1169 Ciudad de Salta
          Salta, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

          Estudio Paganetti, Fernandez y Asociados
          Avenida Belgrano 1267
          Salta, Argentina


ELECTRO GT: Creditors Must File Proofs of Claim by June 29
----------------------------------------------------------
Miryam Lewenbaum, the court-appointed trustee of bankrupt
company Electro GT S.A., requires the creditors to submit proofs
of claim by June 29, 2006, or be excluded from receiving any
distribution or payment that the company will make.

Electro G.T. entered bankruptcy protection after a Buenos Aires
court ordered the company's liquidation.  The order effectively
transferred the control of the company's assets to the court-
appointed trustee.

Argentine bankruptcy law requires the trustee to provide the
court with individual reports on the forwarded claims and a
general report containing an audit of the company's accounting
and business records.

The dates of submission of these reports are yet to be
disclosed.

The debtor can be reached at:

         Electro GT S.A.
         Avenida San Martin 6350
         Buenos Aires, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

         Miryam Lewenbaum
         Montevideo 666
         Buenos Aires, Argentina


FRIGORIFICO EL TOLOSANO: Proofs of Claim Filing Ends by June 30
---------------------------------------------------------------
Court-appointed trustee Mariano Aristides Kepaptsoglou will not
entertain creditors' proofs of claim against bankrupt company
Frigorifico El Tolosano S.A. after June 30, 2006, Infobae
reports.  Creditors whose claims have not been verified by the
trustee will be disqualified from receiving any distribution or
payment from the company.

The validated claims will be used as basis for creating
individual reports that Mr. Kepaptsoglou will present in court
on Aug. 28, 2006.  A general report will also be presented in
Court on Oct. 9, 2006.

The debtor can be reached at:

         Frigorifico El Tolosano
         Calle 526 Numero 1209/1231, La Plata
         Buenos Aires, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

         Mariano Aristides Kepaptsoglou
         Calle 47 Numero 862, La Plata
         Buenos Aires, Argentina


HACIENDAS DEL FORTIN: Filing of Proofs of Claim Ends on June 22
---------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors with claims against Haciendas del Fortin S.A., a
bankrupt company, must present proofs of the company's
indebtedness to Carlos Daniel Grela, the court-appointed
trustee, by June 22, 2006.

Infobae relates that these claims will constitute the individual
reports to be submitted in court on Aug. 17, 2006.  The court
also requires the trustee to present an audit of the company's
accounting and business records through a general report due on
Sept. 29, 2006.

The trustee can be reached at:

         Carlos Daniel Grela
         Tucuman 1585
         Buenos Aires, Argentina


KOMUNICARTE S.R.L.: Verification of Claims Ends on June 26
----------------------------------------------------------
Court-appointed trustee Juan Angel Giannazo will stop validating
claims against bankrupt company Komunicarte S.R.L. on
June 26, 2006, Infobae reports.

Mr. Giannazo will present the validated claims in court as
individual reports on July 21, 2006.  The trustee will also
submit a general report on the case on Sept. 18, 2006.

The debtor can be reached at:

         Komunicarte S.R.L.
         Humberto Primo 985
         Buenos Aires, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

         Juan Angel Giannazo
         Jufre 21
         Buenos Aires, Argentina


PLANTA PROCESADORA: Enters Bankruptcy on Court Order
----------------------------------------------------
Planta Procesadora de Papel Justo Daract S.A. enters bankruptcy
protection after a court in Villa Mercedes, San Luis, ordered
the company's liquidation.  The order effectively transfers
control of the company's assets to a court-appointed trustee who
will supervise the liquidation proceedings.

Infobae reports that the court selected Eduardo Alfredo Betorz
as trustee, who will be verifying creditors' proofs of claim
until the end of the verification phase.  The deadline for the
verification phase is yet to be disclosed.

Argentine bankruptcy law requires the trustee to provide the
court with individual reports on the forwarded claims and a
general report containing an audit of the company's accounting
and business records.

The dates of submission of these reports are yet to be
disclosed.

The debtor can be reached at:

       Planta Procesadora de Papel Justo Daract S.A.
       San Luis 701 Justo Daract
       San Luis, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

       Eduardo Alfredo Betorz
       Belgrano 365 Villa Mercedes
       San Luis, Argentina


REPSOL YPF: Inks Exploration Agreement with OVL, CUPET & Norsk
--------------------------------------------------------------
Repsol YPF SA signed an International Economic Association
Contract in Havana, Cuba, with:

         -- Norway's Norsk Hydro,
         -- India's OVL and
         -- Cuba's CUPET.  

The agreement calls for sharing of exploration rights in six
offshore blocks in Cuba, AFX reports.

Repsol disclosed in a statement its decision to transfer 60% of
its ownership of the blocks to Hydro and OVL.  Hydro and OVL
will each have a 30% stake.

CUPET will maintain its rights as Cuba's state-owned company,
AFX says.

                        *    *    *

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

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


* ARGENTINA: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B2 from B3
--------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of Argentina under the revised
foreign currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: B2 from B3 with
      stable outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.


* BUENOS AIRES: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B2
---------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service has upgraded the foreign currency debt
rating of the City of Buenos Aires.  The foreign currency rating
affected have been raised to B2 from B3 in the global scale and
to Aa3.ar from A3.ar under the Argentina National Scale.  The
action was prompted by Moody's revision of its rating
methodology for assigning foreign currency country bond
ceilings.

In November 2005, Moody's published a Request for Comment,
entitled "Revised Policy with Respect to Country Ceilings".  
Based on supportive market responses, Moody's decided to revise
its methodology for assigning foreign currency country bond
ceilings.

The revised methodology resulted in upgrades to the foreign
currency bond ceilings of a number of countries including
Argentina, whose ceiling was raised to B2 from B3.  The higher
ceilings reflect Moody's view that in many countries, even if
the national government were to default on its own foreign
currency debt, the probability of a foreign currency moratorium
is less than 100%.

Moody's upgrades these ratings of the City of Buenos Aires under
the revised foreign currency ceilings:

   -- foreign currency rating in global scale: to B2 from B3;
      and

   -- foreign currency rating under the Argentina National
      Scale: to Aa3.ar from A3.ar.


* MENDOZA: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B2 from B3
------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service has upgraded the foreign currency debt
rating of the Province of Mendoza.  The foreign currency rating
affected have been raised to B2 from B3 in the global scale and
to Aa3.ar from A3.ar under the Argentina National Scale.  The
action was prompted by Moody's revision of its rating
methodology for assigning foreign currency country bond
ceilings.

In November 2005, Moody's published a Request for Comment,
entitled "Revised Policy with Respect to Country Ceilings".  
Based on supportive market responses, Moody's decided to revise
its methodology for assigning foreign currency country bond
ceilings.

The revised methodology resulted in upgrades to the foreign
currency bond ceilings of a number of countries including
Argentina, whose ceiling was raised to B2 from B3.  The higher
ceilings reflect Moody's view that in many countries, even if
the national government were to default on its own foreign
currency debt, the probability of a foreign currency moratorium
is less than 100%.

Moody's upgrades these ratings of the Province of Mendoza under
the revised foreign currency ceilings:

   -- foreign currency rating in global scale of bonds due 2018:
      to B2 from B3; and

   -- foreign currency rating under the Argentina National
      Scale: to Aa3.ar from A3.ar.

All ratings have a stable outlook.




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



WINN-DIXIE: Associated Grocers Buys Pompano Center for US$51M
-------------------------------------------------------------
As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on April 19, 2006,
Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc., and its debtor-affiliates sought
authority from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District
of Florida to:

    (a) sell the Pompano Beach Distribution Center together with
        all attached improvements, to Associated Grocers or to
        the party submitting a higher or better offer, free and
        clear of liens, claims and interests; and

    (b) take all actions reasonably necessary to effectuate the
        sale of the Assets in accordance with a Facility
        Agreement.

Associated Grocers of Florida, Inc., submitted the final bid of
US$51,000,000 representing the highest or otherwise best offer
for the debtors' Pompano Beach Distribution Center and attached
improvements.  

Accordingly, Judge Funk of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the
Middle District of Florida approves the Debtors' sale of the
assets to Associated Grocers.

Any agreements or other instruments executed in connection with
the sale may be modified or supplemented by the parties without
further Court order, provided however that:

    (a) the Debtors will first obtain prior written consent of
        the DIP Lender and the Official Committee of Unsecured
        Creditors, which consent will not be unreasonably
        withheld; and

    (b) any modification or supplement does not have a
        materially adverse effect on the Debtors' estates.

In accordance with the Final Financing Order and the
Loan Documents:

    * the senior liens and superpriority administrative Claims
      or Interests of the DIP Lender will attach to the proceeds
      of the sale; and

    * the Debtors will pay the net proceeds from the sale to the
      DIP Lender.

Judge Funk directs all entities presently in possession of the
Assets to surrender them to the Debtors.

Judge Funk clarifies that the Debtors' transfer of the Assets to
Associated Grocers will not result in Associated Grocers'
liability:

    (a) for any Claim Interest against the Debtors or against an
        insider of the Debtors; and

    (b) to the Debtors except as stated in the Facility
        Agreement and the Order.

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 US$2,235,557,000 in total assets and
US$1,870,785,000 in total debts.  (Winn-Dixie Bankruptcy News,
Issue No. 39; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc., 215/945-
7000).


WINN-DIXIE: Assuming 75 Store Leases on Plan's Effective Date
-------------------------------------------------------------
Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc., and its debtor-affiliates seek
authority from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District
of Florida to assume 75 store leases as of the effective date of
their plan of reorganization.

To the extent any default exists under any of the Leases, the
Debtors assure the Court that they will satisfy Section 365(b)
of the Bankruptcy Code by paying their landlords the necessary
cure amounts, if any, promptly after the Effective Date.

The 75 Leases and their proposed cure amounts are:

Store                                                   Proposed
No.   Store Location                                     Cure
-----  --------------                                   --------
   2   2220 County Rd 210 W Ste 200, Jacksonville, FL  US$21,807
   6   10915 Baymeadows Rd. Unit 12, Jacksonville, FL     93,213
  30   1080 New Santa Fe Blvd., High Springs, FL          10,875
  80   9866 Baymeadows Road, Jacksonville, FL             10,347
  81   800 S. Marion Street, Lake City, FL                     -
  84   1722 S. 8th Street, Fernandina Beach, FL           81,591
138   3260 Highway 17, Green Cove Springs, FL                 -
144   1436 Sr 121 & 1-10, Macclenny, FL                   8,427
153   7921 Normandy Blvd., Jacksonville, FL                   -
167   3000 Dunn Avenue, Jacksonville, FL                      -
176   8650 Argyle Forest Blvd., Jacksonville, FL              -
209   701 Nw 99th Ave., Pembroke Pines, FL                    -
217   1199 South Federal Hwy, Pompano Beach, FL          10,810
218   2581 North Hiatus Road, Cooper City, FL            57,383
221   2675 S. Military Trail, West Palm Beach, FL             -
222   901 North Nob Hill Road, Plantation, FL            71,770
231   5850 Nw 183rd Street, Miami, FL                   140,478
243   541 West 49th Street, Hialeah, FL                   1,500
250   17101 Miramar Pkwy, Miramar, FL                         -
254   11241 S.W. 40th Street, Miami, FL                       -
256   4770 N. Congress Avenue, Boynton Beach, FL              -
260   6600 Hypoluxo Road, Lake Worth, FL                289,506
265   1101 S. Military Trail, Deerfield Beach, FL        14,738
278   15859 Pines Blvd., Pembroke Pines, FL                   -
279   Federal Hwy & NE 6th St., Fort Lauderdale, FL           -
281   4105 State Road 7, Lake Worth, FL                 132,097
287   14655 SW 104th St., Miami, FL                      29,933
290   Federal Highway & NE 6th St., Fort Lauderdale, FL       -
328   92100 Overseas Highway, Tavernier, FL              23,595
348   7139 W Broward Blvd., Plantation, FL               39,729
353   9565 W Flagler St., Miami, FL                           -
356   6356 Forest Hill Blvd., Greenacres, FL             45,284
359   7480 SW 117 Ave., Miami, FL                             -
375   3131 Forest Hill Blvd., West Palm Beach, FL        14,839
426   1571 Westgate Parkway, Dothan, AL                  15,166
454   2131 Ross Clark Circle, Dothan, AL                 20,451
460   5841 Atlanta Highway, Montgomery, AL                    -
463   2730 Eastern Boulevard, Montgomery, AL              9,181
517   3925 Crosshaven Drive, Birmingham, AL              12,774
556   4751 Bayou Blvd., Pensacola, FL                         -
599   187 Baldwin Square, Fairhope, AL                   24,022
607   12975 Park Blvd., Seminole, FL                          -
611   18407 US Hwy 41, Lutz, FL                          32,045
631   2900 Highland Road, Lakeland, FL                   16,110
637   7851 Palm River Road, Tampa, FL                    43,693
651   2126 Collier Parkway, Land O' Lakes, FL            69,679
656   7400 44 Ave West, Bradenton, FL                    14,930
660   3500 53rd Ave. West, Bradenton, FL                 84,429
662   14483 S Tamiami Trail, North Port, FL              17,250
672   12120 Moon Lake Road, New Port Richey, FL           9,098
698   1049 62 Ave North, St Petersburg, FL               16,834
736   3280 Tamiami Trail, Port Charlotte, FL                  -
737   2000 Kings Highway, Port Charlotte, FL             94,409
777   9535 E Fowler Ave., Thonotosassa, FL                  900
1403   1841 Almonaster St., New Orleans, LA                1,400
1404   8601 Jefferson Highway, River Ridge, LA                 -
1449   804 W. Oak Street, Amite, LA                        4,291
1537   2302 W. Thomas Street, Hammond, LA                 46,526
1766   6825 Burlington Pike, Florence, KY                      -
1852   175 Haynes Bridge., Alpharetta, GA                      -
2211   2640 NE 14th St., Ocala, FL                        13,409
2213   4417 NW Blitchton Road, Ocala, FL                  84,435
2217   6405 W Gulf To Lake Hwy, Crystal River, FL          6,914
2230   190 Malabar Rd SW, Palm Bay, FL                    21,996
2258   1541 Nova Road, Holly Hill, FL                      8,629
2265   900 Cypress Parkway, Poinciana, FL                  8,987
2267   7382 E. Curry Ford Rd., Orlando, FL                 5,442
2289   8445 SW Hwy 200, Ste # 131, Ocala, FL                   -
2301   2722 N. Pine Hills Rd., Orlando, FL                13,869
2311   4025 S Nova Road, Port Orange, FL                  95,391
2323   5739 Edgewater Drive, Orlando, FL                       -
2330   1450 N. Courtenay, Merritt Island, FL               2,631
2333   5270 Babcock St. Units 29 & 30, Palm Bay, FL       69,509
2348   281 SW Port St. Lucie Blvd., Pt St Lucie, FL            -
2602   5134 Firestone Road, Jacksonville, FL              93,771

If there is no Effective Date, the Debtors tell the Court that
they will not assume the Leases and no payments will be made on
the cure amounts.

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 US$2,235,557,000 in total assets and
US$1,870,785,000 in total debts.  (Winn-Dixie Bankruptcy News,
Issue No. 39; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc., 215/945-
7000).




===========
B E L I Z E
===========


* BELIZE: Moody's Ups Long-Term Foreign Currency Rating to Caa1
---------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating to Belize under the revised foreign
currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: Caa1 from Caa3 with
      stable outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.




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


GLOBAL CROSSING: Prices US$365M Proceeds of Public Offering
-----------------------------------------------------------
Global Crossing disclosed the pricing of its concurrent public
offerings for total gross proceeds of US$365 million or US$420
million assuming the full exercise of underwriters' over-
allotment options.  The offerings consist of common stock for
gross proceeds of US$240 million or US$276 million assuming the
full exercise of underwriters' over-allotment options and senior
convertible notes for gross proceeds of US$125 million or US$144
million assuming the full exercise of underwriters' over-
allotment options.

The 12 million shares of common stock were priced at US$20.00
per share.  The US$125 million aggregate principal amount of
convertible senior notes mature in 2011; were priced at par;
will accrue interest at 5.0 percent per annum, payable semi-
annually in arrears; and have a conversion rate of 43.5161
shares of common stock per US$1,000 principal amount of notes,
subject to adjustment.

The 12 million-share common stock offering is expected to close
on May 30, 2006.  The offering was increased from the originally
announced offering size of 6.75 million shares.  The
underwriters have been granted an option to purchase at the
public offering price up to 1.8 million additional shares to
cover over-allotments, if any.

The sale of the US$125 million in aggregate principal amount of
senior convertible notes due in 2011 is expected to close on May
30, 2006.  The underwriters have been granted an option to
purchase up to an additional US$19 million principal amount of
the convertible notes to cover over-allotments, if any.

Proceeds from the offerings will be used for general corporate
purposes, which may include the acquisition of assets or
businesses that are complementary to Global Crossing's existing
business, as well as to purchase a portfolio of U.S. treasury
securities to collateralize the first six interest payments on
the notes and to pay fees and expenses related to the offerings.  
Neither of the offerings is contingent upon the consummation of
the other offering.

Goldman, Sachs & Co. is sole bookrunner and Morgan Stanley & Co.
is joint lead manager for the offerings. Copies of the final
prospectus relating to the offering may be obtained from:

          Goldman, Sachs & Co.
          Attention: Prospectus Department
          85 Broad St., New York,
          New York 10004
          Fax: +1 212 902 9316
          E-mail: prospectus-ny@ny.email.gs.com

                -- or --
          
          Morgan Stanley & Co. Incorporated
          Attention: Prospectus Department
          1585 Broadway, New York,
          New York 10036
          Fax: +1 866 718 1649
          E-mail: Prospectus@Morganstanley.com.


A registration statement relating to these securities was filed
and declared effective by the Securities and Exchange
Commission.

This press release is neither an offer to sell nor a
solicitation of an offer to buy the securities described herein,
nor shall there be any sale of these securities in any
jurisdiction in which such an offer, solicitation or sale would
be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the
securities laws of any such jurisdiction.

                   About Global Crossing

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

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


SOLVEST LTD: Fitch Junks Rating on Senior Unsecured Debt
--------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has removed Dole Food Company, Inc., from Rating
Watch Negative, where it was placed on April 10, 2006, and has
downgraded the company's Issuer Default Rating, unsecured debt,
and Recovery Ratings.  Fitch has withdrawn its credit rating on
Dole Holding Company, LLC's second-lien term loan, which was
refinanced by Dole Food Co. on April 12, 2006.

Fitch has these ratings:

   Dole Food Company, Inc. (Operating Company)

      -- Issuer Default Rating (IDR) to 'B-' from 'B';
      -- Senior secured bank facility to 'BB-/RR1' from
         'BB/RR1'; and
      -- Senior unsecured debt to 'CCC+/RR5' from 'BB-/RR2'.

   Solvest Ltd. (Bermuda-based Subsidiary)

      -- Senior secured bank facility to 'BB-/RR1' from
         'BB/RR1'.

   Dole Holding Company, LLC (Intermediate Holding Company)

      -- IDR to 'B-' from 'B'.

Fitch has also assigned these ratings:

   Dole Food Company, Inc.

      -- Secured asset-based revolving facility 'BB-/RR1'.

   Solvest Ltd.
      
      -- IDR 'B-'.

These rating actions affect Dole's approximate US$2.5 billion in
consolidated debt outstanding as of April 12, 2006.  The Rating
Outlook is Negative.

The ratings downgrade and Negative Outlook reflect Dole's high
leverage and the extremely weak operating fundamentals of the
fresh produce industry.  Elevated fuel and other commodity costs
disproportionately affect global fresh produce companies because
much of their production is imported from Latin and Central
America.  Also, effective Jan. 1, 2006, the cost to market
bananas increased as tariffs on bananas imported into the
European Union rose 135% to EUR176/metric ton.

The ratings also incorporate risks related to Dole's private
ownership structure and lack of material covenants in its credit
facilities and bond indentures.  While high debt levels increase
financial risk, the lack of significant near-term debt
maturities and over US$200 million of availability on its US$350
million asset-based revolver provides adequate near-term
financial flexibility.  Dole has US$390 million of debt
maturities in 2009 and its revolver expires in 2011.  If
improvement in operating fundamentals and leverage is not
apparent within the next several quarters, further downgrades to
Dole's ratings may be warranted.

Fitch's actions follow a review of Dole's first-quarter ended
March 25, 2006 results, final fiscal 2005 financial results, and
its recently renegotiated secured credit agreements.  Dole's
credit profile has weakened over the past 15 months due
primarily to significant declines in operating income and higher
debt levels.

For the latest 12 months ended March 25, 2006, total debt
(excluding holding company debt)-to-operating EBITDA was 7.2x,
operating EBITDA-to-interest incurred was 2.1x, and net cash
flow from operations-to-total debt was 0.4%.  In fiscal 2004,
these credit statistics measured 4.0x, 3.0x, and 11.6%,
respectively.

During the first quarter ended March 25, 2006, operating income
declined 77% versus the prior year period.  For the year ended
Dec. 31, 2005, operating income declined 29% versus the full
year 2004.  The deterioration has primarily been caused by
higher fuel, packaging and production costs.  Fuel and other
distribution related costs are estimated at about a third of
overall expenses.  Higher banana import tariffs contributed to
the decline during the March 25, 2006 period. Bananas have
historically represented about a third of gross profit.

Dole's debt balances have increased because of higher working
capital requirements.  Large working capital fluctuations are
not unusual for the commodity produce industry.  However, on
April 12, 2006, Dole expanded its secured credit facility to
US$1.425 billion from US$1.050 billion.  The company refinanced
Dole Holdings, LLC's second-lien term loan at the Dole Food Co.
level, thus

   -- lowering its cost of capital,
   -- raised the size of Solvest's term loan borrowings, and
   -- provided cash collateralization for its letters of credit.

Dole's new credit facilities do not have many financial
maintenance covenants and have limited restrictions related to
the financing of its wellness center projects.  The only
significant covenants are a minimum quarterly fixed-charge
coverage requirement of 1.0x and a limitation on the incurrence
of additional debt if total leverage exceeds 5.5x.  Fitch
anticipates that, over the intermediate term, Dole's leverage
can normalize below 5.5x.  This would be acceptable for the 'B-'
rating category.

In the near term, Fitch expects Dole's credit protection
measures to remain weak as the company manages through the new
European Union banana regime and as fuel and container-board
expenses remain elevated.  For the quarter ended March 25, 2006,
Dole received a waiver for certain covenants contained in its
secured credit facility that was subsequently refinanced in
April.  Maximum leverage in the old facility was 5.75x through
the third quarter of fiscal 2006, stepping down to 3.5x by year-
end 2009.  Dole's new credit facilities do not have a maximum
leverage covenant.  Nonetheless, Fitch anticipates that there is
high probability that Dole may need to obtain additional waivers
relating to its fixed-charge coverage covenant.  For the LTM
ended March 25, 2006, Fitch calculates that Dole's fixed-charge
coverage approached 1.0x.

In a distressed scenario, Fitch anticipates reduced recovery
prospects for Dole's senior unsecured indebtedness.  The 'RR5'
recovery rating reflects below-average recovery in the event of
default.  This is primarily due to the increased amount of
secured debt in Dole's capital structure.

Solvest's secured bank facility increased from roughly US$500
million of term loans and a revolver to US$700 million of term
loans.  While the subsidiary does not have any real assets, its
debt is guaranteed by DHM Holdings, Inc. and certain domestic
and foreign subsidiaries on a pari passu basis with Dole's
secured obligations.  Dole's credit facility has a special
provision applicable to lenders in a sharing of collateral
event. The provision describes a mandatory procedure that is
intended to result in equitable sharing of credit risk for all
tranches of debt, including that issued by Solvest.  The debt of
Solvest also has a claim on certain U.S. cash flows and assets.  
As a result, in a distressed scenario, recovery on Solvest's
secured debt is anticipated to be equal with that of Dole's
secured creditors.

Dole Food Company is one of the world's largest producers of
fresh fruit, fresh vegetables, and fresh-cut flowers.  
Approximately 54% of Dole's revenue is generated from outside of
the U.S. Dole's operations are fully integrated, with the vast
majority of growing, harvesting, processing and packaging done
in South America and the Far East; 58% of Dole's tangible assets
are outside of the U.S. Dole's four primary operating segments
contributed to 2005 revenue and operating income as:

   -- Fresh Fruit 63% of 2005 revenues and 68% of 2005 operating
      income;

   -- Fresh Vegetables 18% of revenues and 4% of operating
      income;

   -- Packaged Foods 15% of revenues and 29% of operating
      income; and

   -- Fresh-Cut Flowers, which contributed 3% of revenues but
      lost US$5.1 million.

Dole Foods is 100% owned by its CEO and chairman, David H.
Murdock.




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


REPSOL: Chairman Says Bolivian Crisis Won't Affect Earnings
-----------------------------------------------------------
Antoni Brufau, Repsol YPF SA's chairman, said during a
conference in Spain, that his company's production or earnings
will not necessarily be affected by the nationalization of
Bolivia's energy sector, AFX reports.

Mr. Brufau explained that the company's Bolivian gas reserves
constitute 2% to 3% of the company's total assets.

The chairman believes that a lot of things could happen in the
180 days that Bolivia gave the foreign companies to renegotiate
their operatings contracts.

                        *    *    *

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

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


* BOLIVIA: Moody's Ups LT Foreign Currency Rating to B2 from B3
---------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of Bolivia under the revised
foreign currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: B2 from B3 with
      stable outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.


* BOLIVIA: Will Ink 200 Trade Pacts with Venezuela
--------------------------------------------------
Bolivia will be signing 200 agreements with Venezuela involving
multi-million investments in oil, mining, agriculture and
cattle-raising, El Universal reports, citing AFP news agency.

Additionally, the two countries are promoting:

   -- the People's Trade Agreement as an alternative to the Free   
      Trade Agreements with the United States; and

   -- the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas to counter the
      United States' Free Trade Area for the Americas.

Venezuela's state-owned oil firm, Petroleos de Venezuela SA has
previously announced its plan to invest US$1.5 billion in
Bolivia's energy sector.

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

                        *    *    *

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: Will Not Layoff Workers After BankBoston Acquisition
----------------------------------------------------------------
No layoffs will occur after Banco Itau Holding Financeira
completes that acquisition of BankBoston's Brazilian subsidiary,
Business News Americas reports.

BNamericas relates BankBoston Brazil has 4,800 workers.  
According to a spokesperson from the union, Banco Itau's
directors had assured that the acquisition will not result to
dismissals.

Meetings have been scheduled for this week between the union and
Banco Itau, the spokesperson told BNamericas.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on May 4, 2006,
Banco Itau and Itausa -- Investimentos Itau S.A. -- entered into
an agreement with Bank of America Corporation dated May 1, 2006,
to acquire BankBoston in Brazil for BRL4.5 billion in shares.

Banco Itau has about 90 days to rename the BankBoston unit,
BNamericas states.

                      About BankBoston

BankBoston is one of the 10 largest banks in Argentina in terms
of assets, deposits and loans and it ranks among the top five
private banks.  It operates through 89 branches and has assets
of US$2.5 billion.

                     About Banco Itau

Banco Itau currently has 51 thousand employees serving more than
16 million clients, through its network of 2,391 branches and 22
thousand ATMs.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on March 9, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned a 'BB' currency
credit rating on Banco Itau S.A.


BANCO NACIONAL: Approves Rules to Operate With Project Finance
--------------------------------------------------------------
The board of Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Economico e
Social aka BNDES approved new rules that will allow the Bank to
operate with project finance, a financing modality that grants
credit to a specific project and not to a determined company.  
The aim of this initiative is to promote the expansion of the
private sector interest in infrastructure projects, meeting the
increasing demand for investments, especially in electric energy
and in highways.  Without the project finance, the private
sector ends up investing less in capital-intensive segments due
to the risks that involve large projects.

"It is the role of the development bank to stimulate investments
and increase credit offer for infrastructure.  That is what
international development banks regularly do", said Demian
Fiocca, the president of BNDES.  The infrastructure improvement
is crucial to avoid electric energy and logistic bottlenecks and
incite the growth potential of the economic activity.

By definition, project finance reduces the risk during the
construction phase, from contracts with insurers and capital
provision liabilities of the entrepreneurs.  In the operation
phase, guarantees are the assets and receivables, replacing the
presentation of guarantors.  The experience has showed that
loans in project finance are securer than traditional
financings.  The recovery loan rate, after the default
occurrence, reaches 75.4% in the project finances, higher than
the return of 68.9% of the credits granted with real guarantee.

The creation of a Specific Purpose Company segregates costs,
revenues and risks of the project and, allows return and risk
analysis based on the operation and not on the payment capacity
of the controller.  The necessity of guarantees concession by
the investors

   -- increases its exposure to the risk,
   -- occupies space in the balance sheets and
   -- eliminates the benefits of investments diversification.  

In the operation of the project finance, the personal guarantee
of the controller may be replaced by:

   -- the capital supplementary provision liability of the
      controllers,

   -- the turn key contract (fixed price and work contract) and

   -- the possible requirement of anticipated provision of
      capital of the controller.

Brazil faces infrastructure bottlenecks, especially in the
electric energy, highways and railways sectors.  In the energy
area, the Decennial Plan for Electric Energy Expansion 2
006-2015, main planning instrument of the Brazilian sector,
forecasts a generation offer of 41 thousand megawatts until
2015, equivalent to investments of BRL14 billion.  From this
total 31,000 MW of hydroelectric generation and 10,000 MW of
thermoelectric plants, utilizing several energy sources.  In the
hydro sector, the bank has already financed 15% (4,200 MW), is
analyzing over 15% and has prospect of, until 2007, financing
approximately 45% of the expected in the Plan, approximately
12,000 MW.

A large part of the investments may be carried out from the
project finance.  Currently, BNDES is analyzing 45 generation
projects, which will demand total investments of BRL18 billion
and will aggregate 4,000 MW.  Besides, they are also analyzing
seven projects of transmission lines, representing investments
of BRL2 billion.  In the railway sector, the Bank in prospect
demands for financing of BRL6 billion at short term.  In 2005,
the consultations for the infrastructure projects in BNDES
summed up BRL29.9 billion.  Historically, the infrastructure
sector is responsible for the most part of the BNDES
disbursements. Last year, they represented 48% or BRL17. 1
billion of the total BRL47 billion released.

                        *    *    *

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.


BRASIL TELECOM: Moody's Lowers Sr. Unsecured Debt Rating to Ba1
---------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service lowered Brasil Telecom S.A.'s long-
term global local currency senior unsecured debt rating and
issuer rating to Ba1 from Baa3, while Moody's America Latina
affirmed Brasil Telecom's Aa1.br Brazilian national scale issuer
and senior unsecured debt ratings.  The rating outlook is
stable.  This rating action concludes the review initiated
April 10, 2006.

"It is Moody's expectation that Brasil Telecom's EBITDA margins
are unlikely to recover to the healthier levels of FY 2003 and
FY 2004, when margins were above 40%," says Moody's analyst
Soummo Mukherjee.

Moody's cites the company's heavy reliance on fixed-line
telephony (81% of total revenues at the end of March 31, 2006),
which is subject to stagnant growth and fierce competition from
wireless and newer technologies.  "As the fourth player to enter
the highly competitive mobile market, Brasil Telecom has low
market share and is not expected to generate positive EBITDA
until 2007," says Mr. Mukherjee.  "The segment will also
continue to require high selling expenses, further pressuring
overall margins," he adds.

In addition, event risk related to the ongoing shareholder
dispute related to the possibility that Telecom Italia may
reacquire an indirect controlling interest in Brasil Telecom,
poses a threat to Brasil Telecom's operations, says Moody's.  
Brasil Telecom has mobile, national and international fixed-line
services in the same region as Telecom Italia's TIM operations
that would be at risk of being terminated by Anatel.  If, after
the 18-month period, expiring on October 28, 2006, the company
and Telecom Italia do not reach an agreement which resolves the
overlap, Anatel reserves the right to impose sanctions on any or
all involved parties.  A decision by Anatel to terminate Brasil
Telecom's ability to offer national and international fixed-line
services and/or mobile services in the same regions as TIM would
likely have a negative impact on Brasil Telecom's ratings.

Moody's believes that Brasil Telecom's high share in the local
market should help to marginalize any immediate threat from
increased competition.  However, the rating agency says that it
expects competition to increase in the medium term, primarily
because of the reduced wireline interconnection rates mandated
by Brazil's the regulatory model, the continued strong growth in
the mobile telecommunications industry, new technologies such as
VOIP, and the recent investments in Brazil's local service
segment by well-capitalized foreign fixed-line incumbents, such
as Telefonos De Mexico S.A. de C.V..

The stable outlook reflects Moody's expectation that Brasil
Telecom will maintain its dominant market share in its incumbent
wireline region and continue to grow its wireless data
businesses, enabling it to stabilize its EBITDA margin erosion
at the mid 30's level.

These ratings were downgraded:

   -- Global local currency issuer rating: to Ba1 from Baa3; and

   -- Senior unsecured BRL500 million debentures due in 2009:
      to Ba1 from Baa3.

These ratings were affirmed:

   -- Brazilian National Scale issuer rating at Aa1.br; and

   -- Senior unsecured BRL 500 million debentures due in 2009
      at Aa1.br.

Brasil Telecom S.A., headquartered in Brasilia, DF, Brazil,
provides local service, data and long distance
telecommunications services, with 9.5 million lines in service,
principally serving a nine-state region of center-south Brazil,
including the Federal District.


COMPANHIA VALE: Inks 19% Iron Ore Price Hike with Arcelor
---------------------------------------------------------
Companhia Vale do Rio Doce clinched a 19% iron ore price
increase with its biggest customer, Arcelor SA, Bloomberg News
reports.

"We are almost done in Europe and Asia, but we are still talking
to the Chinese," Bloomberg quoted chief financial officer Fabio
Barbosa during a news conference.

As widely reported, Chinese steelmakers, the world's largest
iron ore importers, are the only ones holding out against the
19% price hike.

Companhia Vale was the first iron ore producer to ink the new
price with ThyssenKrupp AG.  As customary in previous years,
that agreement would have been made as the benchmark for this
year's global prices.

The Chinese steelmakers said in reports that last year's 71.5%
price gain hurt profits.  

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Companhia Vale do Rio
Doce -- http://www.cvrd.com.br/-- engages primarily in mining
and logistics businesses. It engages in iron ore mining, pellet
production, manganese ore mining, and ferroalloy production, as
well as in the production of nonferrous minerals, such as
kaolin, potash, copper, and gold.

                        *    *    *

On Jan. 5, 2006, Fitch Ratings assigned a long-term foreign
currency rating of 'BB' to Vale Overseas Limited's proposed
US$300 million issuance due 2016.  Vale Overseas is a wholly
owned subsidiary of Companhia Vale do Rio Doce, a large
diversified mining company located in Brazil.  The notes are
unsecured obligations of Vale Overseas and are unconditionally
guaranteed by CVRD.  The obligation to guarantee the notes
rank pari passu with all of CVRD's other unsecured and
unsubordinated debt obligations.  Fitch expects the proceeds of
this issuance to be used for general corporate purposes and
primarily to pay down US$300 million of Vale Overseas' 9.0%
guaranteed notes due 2013.

Fitch also maintained these ratings for CVRD and CVRD Finance
Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of CVRD:

  -- CVRD foreign currency rating: 'BB', Outlook Positive;
  -- CVRD local currency rating: 'BBB' Outlook Stable;
  -- CVRD national scale rating: 'AAA(bra)', Outlook Stable;
  -- CVRD Finance Ltd.: series 2000-1 and series 2000-3:
     'BBB';
  -- CVRD Finance Ltd., series 2000-2 and series 2003-1: 'AAA'.


EMBRATEL PARTICIPACOES: Acquires Globo Shares in Net Servicos
-------------------------------------------------------------
Embratel Participacoes aka Embrapar, a long distance telecoms
operator in Brazil, said in a statement that it has acquired
Brazilian television network Globo Comunicacoes e Participacoes
fka Globopar SA's shares in Net Servicos de Comunicacao.

Business News Americas relates Embrapar acquired 200 million
shares -- 8.54% of the preferred shares and 5.06% of Net's total
capital stock.  

This, however, does not alter Net's shareholding control, as it
is only a minor interest acquisition, according to the Embrapar
statement.

Embrapar will hold 1.73 billion common and preference shares --
about 43.1% of the total capital stock, BNamericas reports.

                        About Embratel

Embratel Participacoes is Brazil's leading long-distance
carrier.

Embratel Participacoes is rated by Moody's:

       * local currency issuer rating -- B1; and
       * senior unsecured debt -- B2.

                      About Net Servicos

Headquartered in Sao Paulo, Brazil, NET Servicos de Comunicacao
-- http://Nettv.globo.com/NETServ/br/home/indexNet.jsp?id=1--
is the largest subscriber TV multi-operator in Brazil, as it
operates the NET brand in major cities, including operations in
the 4 largest cities: Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte
and Porto Alegre.

NET also offers Broadband InterNet services through its NET
VIRTUA brand name.

                          *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on March 15, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Rating Services raised on its foreign and
local currency corporate credit ratings on Brazilian cable pay-
TV and broadband operator Net Servicos de Comunicacao S.A to
'BB-' from 'B+'.  The Brazil National Scale rating assigned to
NET and its BRL650 million debentures due 2011 was also revised
to 'brA' from 'brBBB+'.  S&P said the outlook on the ratings was
revised to stable from positive.

"The upgrade reflects NET's improved operational and financial
performance over the past several quarters and our expectation
that NET should be able to maintain its current performance over
the next few years," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Jean-
Pierre Cote Gil.


ESPIRITO SANTO: Moody's Upgrades Rating of US$114M Notes to Ba3
---------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service upgraded to Ba3 from B2 the rating of
Espirito Santo Centrais Eletricas' US$114 million senior
unsecured notes due in July 2007.  This rating action concludes
the review for possible upgrade that was initiated on May 17,
2006.

Concurrently, Moody's America Latina assigned a Ba3 global local
currency rating and an A3.br national scale rating to Escelsa's
proposed BRL200 million senior unsecured debentures due 2011.  
Proceeds from the debentures issuance will be used to refinance
existing debt, thereby lengthening the company's maturity
profile.  The rating outlook for Escelsa is stable.

The upgrade to Ba3 from B2 reflects a substantial decrease in
balance sheet leverage and improvement in margins that follows
regulatory adjustments in rates.  As part of the organizational
restructuring for the de-verticalization of Escelsa operations,
in 2005 approximately US$326 million, around BRL825 million, in
2007 notes were spun-off to EDP Energias do Brasil, the group's
ultimate holding company in Brazil. Also, the use of internal
cash generation to retire over BRL 100 million in debt
contributed to the improvement of key leverage ratios. The level
of improvement is illustrated by the ratio of Adjusted Gross
Debt to Total Capitalization, which fell from 78% at Dec. 31,
2004 to 52% at Dec. 31, 2005, and Adjusted Gross Debt to EBITDA,
which dropped from 9.3x to 2.7x in the same period.

The upgrade also reflects one notch of uplift from the indirect
ownership of Escelsa by EDP - Energias de Portugal S.A. (rated
A2, stable outlook) in line with Moody's methodology with
respect to ratings of non-guaranteed subsidiaries.  EDP is
Portugal's dominant electric utility, accounting for around 82%
of installed capacity and 99% of distribution and supply.  While
EDP does not guarantee Escelsa's debt and expects that its
subsidiaries will remain self-sustainable, as stated in its
policies, Moody's believes that the Brazilian operations of EDP
occupy an important role in the group's growth strategy.

In accordance with Moody's global rating methodology for
electric utilities, Escelsa is viewed as being in the lowest
third of the high industry risk category due to a significant
regulatory risk in terms of predictability and stability of
regulated cash flows.  Moody's classifies the supportiveness of
the Brazilian regulatory environment as 4.  Escelsa's risk
category and financial metrics that include FFO/Debt expected to
be in the 30-35% range over the foreseeable future, would be
consistent with other Brazilian electric utilities rated
similarly, and subject to the same regulatory environment, such
as:

   -- Empresa Energetica de Mato Grosso do Sul or ENERSUL,
   -- Bandeirante Energia S.A. and
   -- Companhia Energetica do Ceara - COELCE.

The Ba3 global local currency rating incorporates Escelsa's
essentially monopolistic position in energy distribution in its
concession territory, its more manageable indebtedness following
the spin-off of a substantial portion of its debt as part of a
deverticalization process, and the anticipated improvement of
its debt maturity profile following the debentures issuance,
although we note that refinancing risk for 2007 maturing debt
remains.  Also, the rating is supported by the fact that its
operations are exclusively related to power distribution and
fully regulated, the existence of long-term supply agreements
with power generators, its improved corporate governance, and
the indirect ownership by EDP.  At the same time, the ratings
are constrained by the still existing uncertainties related to
the Brazilian regulatory framework for the electric energy
sector, moderate level of interest rate risk, and refinancing
needs in 2007.

While the Ba3 global scale rating reflects the global default
and loss expectation of Escelsa, its A3.br national scale rating
reflects the standing of the company's credit quality relative
to its domestic peers.  Moody's National Scale Ratings 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
Brazil are designated by the ".br" 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.

Moody's has reviewed preliminary draft legal documentation for
the proposed debentures.  The assigned ratings assume that there
will be no material variation from the drafts reviewed and that
all legal agreements are legally valid, binding and enforceable.

Escelsa enjoys essentially a monopoly on the distribution of
energy in its concession territory, which covers 70
municipalities of Espirito Santo state, which economy is in
great part based on the export-oriented pulp, steel, mining and
oil & gas sectors (about 40% of GDP). The company's monopolistic
position excludes some large consumers, known as "free
consumers", that are eligible to buy energy in the unregulated
market after the expiration of their existing supply agreements
with Escelsa.  At the end of 2005, all eligible free consumers
in Escelsa's concession territory had already migrated to the
unregulated market.  Those migrations to the unregulated market
have little impact on cash flow as Escelsa gets paid for the use
of its distribution lines (TUSD revenues).  Under the regulatory
framework, some additional clients are eligible to buy energy
from alternative / renewable sources after the expiration of
their existing supply agreements with Escelsa.  Moody's believes
this risk is somewhat mitigated by the limited amount of new
projects under development for the generation of energy from
renewable sources, although we recognize this risk increases
over the medium to long term.

Under the regulatory framework for electricity distribution
utilities, Escelsa operates exclusively in the regulated market,
with energy supply ensured by long-term contracts with
generators.  Accordingly, the company's exposure to the
unregulated spot market is restricted to potential unplanned
demand variations.

Escelsa, as well as the EDP group in Brazil, has taken
significant steps in the last few years to improve its corporate
governance, culminating with a restructuring that significantly
streamlined the group's organizational structure in Brazil and
improved transparency, and with the adoption by Energias do
Brasil of Bovespa's Novo Mercado corporate governance standards.

Moody's notes that the proposed issuance of the BRL200 million
in debentures, which counts on the firm offer from the arranging
banks, will contribute to the lengthening of the maturity
profile for the company's indebtedness and produce an
improvement over the relatively tight liquidity position of
Escelsa at fiscal year-end 2005, relative to debt maturities in
2006.  However, we anticipate the company's need to refinance
debt maturing in July 2007 in the amount of some BRL253 million
taking into account our expectations of higher outlays for
capital spending and dividends in 2006.  Moody's expects that
the company will refinance a sizeable portion of its 2007 debt
maturities and manage its capital spending and dividend outlays
in order to maintain more comfortable liquidity levels than it
has in the recent past.

Although Moody's recognizes that, in general, the new Brazilian
regulatory framework for the energy sector will help support a
more stable environment for the industry players, there are
still significant uncertainties regarding the new regulation.  
The lack of track record for the execution of guarantees within
the regulated market and substantial interference power of the
Federal Government remain concerns at the present time.

The stable outlook reflects Moody's expectation that the company
will continue to benefit from its monopolistic position in its
concession area and will maintain credit metrics that include
FFO/debt above 30%, consistent with the current ratings, given
its risk category.

There could be positive implications for Escelsa's ratings if
sustainable improvements in the consistency and predictability
of the Brazilian regulatory environment were to occur, together
with improved financial flexibility as measured by a minimum
cash position plus free cash flow to short-term debt of 1.3x.  
Conversely, there could be negative implications for the ratings
or outlook in the event that the EBITA margin declined to the
low teens, free cash flow become consistently negative or if the
regulatory environment were to deteriorate.

This rating was upgraded:

   -- US$114 million outstanding US$ Senior Unsecured Notes due
      in July 2007: from B2 to Ba3.

These ratings were assigned:

   -- BRL200 million Senior Unsecured Debentures due 2011:
      Ba3 global local currency; and A3.br Brazilian national
      scale.

All ratings have stable outlook.

Headquartered in Vitoria, Brazil, Escelsa has a 30-year
concession (2025) to distribute electricity in the state of
Espirito Santo in southeastern Brazil, having reported net
revenues of BRL 1,238 million (around US$508 million) and net
profit of BRL 130 million (US$53 million) in the last twelve
months through March 31, 2006.


ESPIRITO SANTO: S&P Ups Corporate Credit Rating to BB- from B+
--------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services it raised its corporate
credit ratings on Espirito Santo Centrais Eletricas S.A. or
Escelsa to 'BB-' from 'B+'.  The issue rating on Escelsa's
US$113.8 million senior notes was also raised to 'BB-' from
'B+'.  The outlook is stable.
     
Escelsa is a Brazilian electric utility that holds the exclusive
concession rights for distributing energy in the state of
Espirito Santo to about 1 million consumers.
      
"The upgrade reflects the company's cash generation improvement
in 2006 onward, which is already reflected in the first-quarter
results of 2006, which primarily stems from its significant debt
reduction achieved in 2005, and which converges with our
previous expectation," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst
Marcelo Costa.
      
"The upgrade also incorporates the debt-profile enhancement
through the company's first debentures issue, which will pay off
its short-term and more expensive debt and extend its debt-
amortization profile, resulting in better financial flexibility
that will allow ESCELSA to seek appropriate alternatives to
refinance its US$113.8 million senior notes maturing in 2007,"
said Mr. Costa.


GLOBO COMUNICACAO: Sells Minority Shares in Net to Embratel
-----------------------------------------------------------
Globo Comunicacao e Participacoes' shares in Net Servicos de
Comunicacao have been acquired by Embratel Participacoes aka
Embrapar, a long distance telecoms operator in Brazil, according
to a statement from Embratel.

As reported in Troubled Company Reporter on May 25, 2006, Globo
Comunicacao agreed, together with its controlled subsidiary
Globosat Programadora Ltda., to sell its Net Servicos shares to
Embratel.

Business News Americas relates Embrapar acquired 200 million
shares -- 8.54% of the preferred shares and 5.06% of Net's total
capital stock.  

This, however, does not alter Net's shareholding control, as it
is only a minor interest acquisition, according to the Embrapar
statement.

Embrapar will hold 1.73 billion common and preference shares --
about 43.1% of the total capital stock, BNamericas reports.

                        About Embratel

Embratel Participacoes is Brazil's leading long-distance
carrier.

Embratel Participacoes is rated by Moody's:

       * local currency issuer rating -- B1; and
       * senior unsecured debt -- B2.

                      About Net Servicos

Headquartered in Sao Paulo, Brazil, NET Servicos de Comunicacao
-- http://Nettv.globo.com/NETServ/br/home/indexNet.jsp?id=1--
is the largest subscriber TV multi-operator in Brazil, as it
operates the NET brand in major cities, including operations in
the 4 largest cities: Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte
and Porto Alegre.

NET also offers Broadband InterNet services through its NET
VIRTUA brand name.

                         About Globo

Globo Comunicacao e Participacoes S.A. was established from the
merger of TV Globo Ltda. and Globo Comunicacoes e Participacoes
S.A. -- Globopar.

                        *    *    *

As reported by Troubled Company Reporter on Feb. 9, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service withdrew the B1 foreign currency
corporate family rating of Globo Comunicacao e Participacoes
S.A.  The ratings have been withdrawn as Moody's no longer
maintains foreign currency corporate family ratings and for
business reasons.

                        *    *    *

As reported by Troubled Company Reporter on March 28, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Rating Services raised its foreign and local
currency corporate credit ratings on Brazilian media group Globo
Comunicacoes e Participacoes fka Globopar SA to 'BB-' from
'B+'.  S&P said the outlook on the ratings is stable.

On Oct. 19, 2005, Standard & Poor's Rating Services raised its
corporate credit ratings on Brazilian media company TV Globo
Ltda. to 'B+' from 'CCC-'.  The rating was removed from
CreditWatch Positive, where it was placed on July 21, 2005.  S&P
said the outlook is stable.

Globopar and TV Globo are part of Globo Organizations, Brazil's
largest media group.

                          *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on March 15, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Rating Services raised on its foreign and
local currency corporate credit ratings on Brazilian cable pay-
TV and broadband operator Net Servicos de Comunicacao S.A to
'BB-' from 'B+'.  The Brazil National Scale rating assigned to
NET and its BRL650 million debentures due 2011 was also revised
to 'brA' from 'brBBB+'.  S&P said the outlook on the ratings was
revised to stable from positive.

"The upgrade reflects NET's improved operational and financial
performance over the past several quarters and our expectation
that NET should be able to maintain its current performance over
the next few years," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Jean-
Pierre Cote Gil.


NET SERVICOS: Globo's Shares in Company Acquired by Embratel
------------------------------------------------------------
Globo Comunicacao e Participacoes' shares in Net Servicos de
Comunicacao have been acquired by Embratel Participacoes aka
Embrapar, a long distance telecoms operator in Brazil, according
to a press release by Embratel.

As reported in Troubled Company Reporter on May 25, 2006, Globo
Comunicacao agreed, together with its controlled subsidiary
Globosat Programadora Ltda., to sell its Net Servicos shares to
Embratel.

Business News Americas relates Embrapar acquired 200 million
shares -- 8.54% of the preferred shares and 5.06% of Net's total
capital stock.  

This, however, does not alter Net's shareholding control, as it
is only a minor interest acquisition, according to the Embrapar
statement.

Embrapar will hold 1.73 billion common and preference shares --
about 43.1% of the total capital stock, BNamericas reports.

                        About Embratel

Embratel Participacoes is Brazil's leading long-distance
carrier.

Embratel Participacoes is rated by Moody's:

       * local currency issuer rating -- B1; and
       * senior unsecured debt -- B2.

                      About Net Servicos

Headquartered in Sao Paulo, Brazil, NET Servicos de Comunicacao
-- http://Nettv.globo.com/NETServ/br/home/indexNet.jsp?id=1--
is the largest subscriber TV multi-operator in Brazil, as it
operates the NET brand in major cities, including operations in
the 4 largest cities: Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte
and Porto Alegre.

NET also offers Broadband InterNet services through its NET
VIRTUA brand name.

                          About Globo

Globo Comunicacao e Participacoes S.A. was established from the
merger of TV Globo Ltda. and Globo Comunicacoes e Participacoes
S.A. -- Globopar.

                        *    *    *

As reported by Troubled Company Reporter on Feb. 9, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service withdrew the B1 foreign currency
corporate family rating of Globo Comunicacao e Participacoes
S.A.  The ratings have been withdrawn as Moody's no longer
maintains foreign currency corporate family ratings and for
business reasons.

                        *    *    *

As reported by Troubled Company Reporter on March 28, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Rating Services raised its foreign and local
currency corporate credit ratings on Brazilian media group Globo
Comunicacoes e Participacoes fka Globopar SA to 'BB-' from
'B+'.  S&P said the outlook on the ratings is stable.

On Oct. 19, 2005, Standard & Poor's Rating Services raised its
corporate credit ratings on Brazilian media company TV Globo
Ltda. to 'B+' from 'CCC-'.  The rating was removed from
CreditWatch Positive, where it was placed on July 21, 2005.  S&P
said the outlook is stable.

Globopar and TV Globo are part of Globo Organizations, Brazil's
largest media group.

                          *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on March 15, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Rating Services raised on its foreign and
local currency corporate credit ratings on Brazilian cable pay-
TV and broadband operator Net Servicos de Comunicacao S.A to
'BB-' from 'B+'.  The Brazil National Scale rating assigned to
NET and its BRL650 million debentures due 2011 was also revised
to 'brA' from 'brBBB+'.  S&P said the outlook on the ratings was
revised to stable from positive.

"The upgrade reflects NET's improved operational and financial
performance over the past several quarters and our expectation
that NET should be able to maintain its current performance over
the next few years," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Jean-
Pierre Cote Gil.


PARANA BANCO: S&P Puts B Rating on US$5-Mil. Sr. Unsecured Notes
----------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned its 'B' foreign-
currency short-term senior unsecured debt rating to Parana Banco
S.A.'s (B/Stable/B) US$5.0 million notes issued in a private
placement, and maturing in 18 months.
      
"The ratings on Parana Banco S.A. incorporate the intrinsic
risks to a very small bank with high product concentration
operating in an environment marked by fierce competition; the
bank's challenge to further diversify its funding base and
become less dependent on the group's resources; and the
potential margin pressures in the medium-to-long term that could
affect profitability," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst
Beatriz Degani.  In addition, the bank faces the challenge of
increasing the scale of its operations while maintaining
adequate asset quality.  These risks are tempered by the bank's

   -- good profitability levels,
   -- adequate operating efficiency, and
   -- improved asset quality ratios.
     
Parana Banco is a small niche bank, positioned 67th in Brazil,
with assets of BRL535 million or US$246 million as of December
2005-less than 1% of total bank assets in the Brazilian banking
industry.
    
Parana Banco's niche is payroll discount lending, representing
about 98% of its credit operations, primarily to public-sector
employees.  The bank is a relevant part of a broader
conglomerate under J. Malucelli and represented around 30% of
the group's consolidated net income of BRL94 million in 2004.  
Standard & Poor's does not assign ratings to any company in the
J. Malucelli group, and the ratings assigned to the bank do not
incorporate potential support from shareholders.
     
The stable outlook reflects Standard & Poor's expectations that
Parana Banco will maintain its core competencies in the medium
term, with profitability and asset-quality indicators at
adequate levels.  The outlook may be revised to positive or
ratings may be raised if the bank:

   -- shows superior growth in its niche operations in
      payroll-discount loans with consistent returns,
   
   -- improving liquidity,

   -- a stable and more diversified funding base, and

   -- less dependence on the Group's resources.

On the other hand, the ratings may be lowered or the outlook may
be revised to negative:

   -- if there is a significant worsening in asset quality
      (with nonperforming loans to total loans higher than 5%);

   -- if profitability (ROAA) levels drop drastically; and

   -- if funding and liquidity become problematic to support the
      bank's operations.


PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Effects Dividend & Interest on Own Capital
---------------------------------------------------------------
Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. or Petrobras disclosed to shareholders
that it effected the dividends and interest on own capital
payment, on May 23, 2006, based on the adjusted result for the
fiscal year ending December 31 2005, to holders of the total
common and preferred shares outstanding on April 3, 2006, in
accordance with the Ordinary General Meeting of the company,
held on April 3, 2006, as:
  
           Dividends And Interest On Own Capital

                  Value in Reals (R$)
                    
                 Adjusted by        Total on
Principal rate   SELIC rate         May 23 06

  0.3500           0.0215             0.3715  Paid in the form
                                              of dividends

  0.2500           0.0154             0.2654  Paid in the form
                                              of interest on
                                              equity

  0.6000           0.0369             0.6369

Interest on equity of BRL0.25 will be subject to 15% withholding
tax while the value of BRL0.0369, corresponding to the variation
in the SELIC rate between December 31 2005 and May 23 2006 will
be subject to 22.5% withholding tax.  The above-mentioned
Withholding Tax is not applicable to tax immune or exempt
shareholders.

                Instructions For Crediting

   -- Banco do Brasil S.A., as the depository institution for
      the book entry shares, will effect payment.

   -- The shareholders with current accounts held with Banco do
      Brasil, or with other banks duly advised by shareholders,
      will automatically be credited amounts due on the payment
      date.

   -- In the case of those shareholders where registration
      information does not contain details of
      "Bank/Branch/Current Account", the payment will only be
      credited upon updating information in Banco do Brasil's
      electronic files through those branches authorized to
      provide shareholder services.

   -- The interest on own capital payment corresponding to the
      shares held in deposit by the Stock Exchanges' Fungible
      Custody Service will be credited to the respective Stock
      Exchanges through member brokerage houses responsible for
      paying the respective shareholders.

   -- Shareholders with bearer shares should personally contact
      one of Banco Brasil's branches presenting Brazilian tax
      register number, identity documents, residence voucher,
      together with share certificates and respective coupons
      allowing the latter to be converted into book entry form
      for subsequent payment.  Also, in this opportunity, bank
      account information could be updated for credit of due
      remuneration.

   -- Payment in connection with the American Depositary
      Receipts traded on the New York Stock Exchange will be
      made through Citigroup, depositary bank for the ADRs.  
      Information concerning date of payment and any other
      additional information may be obtained by telepone:
      1 - 877 - CITIADR (248-4237).

                  Shareholder Services

More detailed information may be obtained by calling BB call
center service at 0800 78 5678 (in Brazil) or any Banco do
Brasil branches.

Rights to interest on own capital payments unclaimed within 3
years as from payment date (May 17, 2005), will lapse and revert
in favor of the Company (Law 6404/76, Article 287, Subsection
II, Item a).  The company reminds all shareholders as to the
importance of maintaining personal details current, since
payments can only be effected to shareholders with either fully
up-dated registration details or holding a current account at
any bank and duly registered with Banco do Brasil S.A.

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

                        *    *    *

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

                        *    *    *

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

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


PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Forms Consortium for Block 18 Exploration
--------------------------------------------------------------
Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. aka Petrobras formed a consortium with
four companies to explore for oil on Block 18 in Angola.  

The companies and their stakes in the project:

     -- Sinopec (40%),
     -- Sonangol (20%),
     -- Falcon Oil (5%)
     -- Gema Group (5%) and
     -- Petrobras (30%).

Block 18 is located in deep waters and already presents several
strikes, totaling oil reserves on the order of 750 million
barrels, developed by another consortium.  Its remaining area,
not yet explored, is part of the most prolific oil field
alignment and presents excellent potential for new discoveries.  
The consortium, that now holds the right to explore the
remaining area of Block 18, will disburse US$1.1 billion in
signature bonus for the concession rights, to be paid
proportionally to each partners' interest.

With the participation in this consortium, Petrobras will have
interests in six blocks, being one of production (Block 2) and
the others, exploratory blocks.  Concerning these blocks,
Petrobras willbe the operator in three of them:

   -- Block 6,
   -- Block 26 and
   -- the current remaining area of Block 18.

Aligning with its Strategic Plan, Petrobras aims at increasing
its exploratory projects portfolio in Angola, which is one of
the most competitive countries in the world in the oil industry.

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

                        *    *    *

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

                        *    *    *

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

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


PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Obtains US$900M Financing for REVAP Project
----------------------------------------------------------------
Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. aka Petrobras, signed on May 23, 2006,
contracts to implement the construction of new units in the
Henrique Lage Refinery or REVAP and to obtain a finance
amounting up to US$ 900 million to this project.  REVAP is
Petrobras' fourth largest refinery and is located in the region
of Vale do Paraiba, in the city of Sao Jose dos Campos, which is
90 kilometers from Sao Paulo.

The REVAP Modernization Project is in line with the Strategic
Plan of the Company, which indicates that Petrobras will adjust
its refineries to increase the capacity of processing national
oil.  Moreover, the purpose of the REVAP Modernization Project
is to increase the quantity of conversion of fuel oil in lighter
petroleum derivates, to adjust the diesel oil output to the new
domestic specifications, to initiate the refinery's coke trading
business and to reduce emissions.

The funding will be used for the construction of a delayed
coking unit, of a coke naphtha hydrotreater unit and of other
auxiliary units.  The works will begin in the second quarter of
2006 and the start-up is being scheduled to the first quarter of
2009.  The company in charge of the Engineering, Procurement and
Construction activities for those units will be Toyo Engineering
Corporation.

The main lender of the project will be the Japan Bank for
International Cooperation - JBIC, being responsible for 54% of
the credit facility that granted US$486 million.  The project
will also be funded with US$378 million granted by a syndicate
of commercial banks established by:

   -- Santander Banespa,
   -- Caylon Corporate and Investment Bank,
   -- Societe Generale,
   -- BNP Paribas,
   -- Standard Chartered Bank,
   -- Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ and
   -- Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation -SMBC,

and with US$36 million provided by the Japanese Trading
Companies Mitsui & Co, Ltd. and Itochu Corporation.

It is estimated that the implementation of the project will
create around 11,500 direct jobs and 14,500 indirect jobs in
Brazil, emphasizing Petrobras' social commitment to sponsor the
local workmanship qualification during the project's
implementation in addition to the hiring of medium size
companies to carry out the infrastructure works.  In relation to
the goods and services supplying, Petrobras and Toyo agreed in
achieving around 80% of Brazilian content.

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

                        *    *    *

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

                        *    *    *

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

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


TELEMAR NORTE: S&P Keeps BB Long-Term Credit Ratings on Watch
-------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services disclosed that its 'BB' l
long-term corporate credit ratings on Brazil-based integrated
telecommunications carrier Telemar Norte Leste S.A. and its
holding company Tele Norte Leste Participacoes S.A. remain on
CreditWatch with positive implications, where they were placed
on Feb. 28, 2006.  The national scale rating assigned to three
local debentures issued by Telemar Participacoes S.A. (Tele
Norte's holding company) also remain on CreditWatch with
positive implications.
      
"The decision to maintain the ratings on CreditWatch follows the
company's announcement of a proposed corporate restructuring
plan that aims at the consolidation of all the Telemar group's
companies into a single entity, and a more aggressive dividend
distribution policy, to be implemented in case the transaction
is approved by shareholders," said Standard & Poor's credit
analyst Jean-Pierre Cote Gil.  As of March 31, 2006, Tele Norte
had about US$5.1 billion of debt and about US$2.4 billion of
cash.
     
Despite the potential increase in debt levels to fund
distributions, should the corporate restructuring plan be
approved as proposed, Standard & Poor's believes that Telemar's
solid business position, coupled with the perception of lower
country risk associated with the economic and working
environment in which the company operates, may uphold a slightly
more aggressive financial risk profile and still justify an
upgrade.
     
The rating agency expects to resolve the CreditWatch listing
within the next three months, following a detailed analysis of
how the improved macroeconomic and financial environment affects
the companies' credit quality, and what will be the financial
risk profile of the resultant entity.  The transaction still
depends on approval from simple majority of TNL's noncontrolling
shareholders up to May 31, 2006, and the successful stock swap
offering up to July 31, 2006.


* BRAZIL: Moody's Ups Long-Term Foreign Currency Rating to Ba2
--------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of Brazil under the revised foreign
currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: B2 from B3 with
      positive outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.


* CEARA: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to Ba2 from Ba3
------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service upgraded the foreign currency issuer
ratings of the subnational government of Ceara, Brazil to Ba2
from Ba3.  The action was prompted by Moody's revision of its
rating methodology for assigning foreign currency country bond
ceilings.

In November 2005, Moody's published a Request for Comment,
entitled "Revised Policy with Respect to Country Ceilings".  
Based on supportive market responses, Moody's decided to revise
its methodology for assigning foreign currency country bond
ceilings.

The revised methodology resulted in upgrades to the foreign
currency bond ceilings of a number of countries, including
Brazil whose ceiling was raised to Ba2 from Ba3.  The higher
ceilings reflect Moody's view that in many countries, even if
the national government were to default on its own foreign
currency debt, the probability of a foreign currency moratorium
is less than 100%.  

Moody's upgrades this rating of the State of Ceara:

   -- Foreign Currency issuer rating: to Ba2 from Ba3,
      with stable outlook.


* CURITIBA: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to Ba2 from Ba3
---------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service upgraded the foreign currency issuer
rating of the subnational government of Curitiba, Brazil to Ba2
from Ba3.  The action was prompted by Moody's revision of its
rating methodology for assigning foreign currency country bond
ceilings.

In November 2005, Moody's published a Request for Comment,
entitled "Revised Policy with Respect to Country Ceilings".
Based on supportive market responses, Moody's decided to revise
its methodology for assigning foreign currency country bond
ceilings.

The revised methodology resulted in upgrades to the foreign
currency bond ceilings of a number of countries, including
Brazil whose ceiling was raised to Ba2 from Ba3. The higher
ceilings reflect Moody's view that in many countries, even if
the national government were to default on its own foreign
currency debt, the probability of a foreign currency moratorium
is less than 100%.

Moody's upgrades this rating of the City of Curitiba:

   -- Foreign currency issuer rating: to Ba2 from Ba3,
      with positve outlook.

These ratings are retained:

   -- local currency issuer rating: Ba1 with stable outlook, and
   -- national scale rating: Aa1.br.


* SAO PAULO: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to Ba2 from Ba3
----------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service upgraded the foreign currency issuer
rating of the subnational government of Sao Paulo, Brazil, to
Ba2 from Ba3.  The action was prompted by Moody's revision of
its rating methodology for assigning foreign currency country
bond ceilings.

In November 2005, Moody's published a Request for Comment,
entitled "Revised Policy with Respect to Country Ceilings".
Based on supportive market responses, Moody's decided to revise
its methodology for assigning foreign currency country bond
ceilings.

The revised methodology resulted in upgrades to the foreign
currency bond ceilings of a number of countries, including
Brazil whose ceiling was raised to Ba2 from Ba3. The higher
ceilings reflect Moody's view that in many countries, even if
the national government were to default on its own foreign
currency debt, the probability of a foreign currency moratorium
is less than 100%.

Moody's upgrades this rating of the State of Sao Paulo:

   -- Foreign currency issuer rating: to Ba2 from Ba3,
      with stable outlook.




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


CALABASH RE: S&P Rates US$100 Million Class A-1 Notes at BB
-----------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned its 'BB' senior
secured debt rating to the US$100 million Class A-1 Series
2006-1 principal at-risk variable-rate notes issued by Calabash
Re Ltd.
     
This is the first issuance under Calabash's newly establish US$1
billion principal at-risk variable-rate note program.  The
proceeds from the issuance of the notes will provide Swiss
Reinsurance America Corp. (AA/Watch Neg/--) with a source of
index-based coverage for hurricanes in the U.S. on a per-
occurrence basis over a three-year period.
     
Calabash is a special-purpose Cayman Islands Class B insurer
whose ordinary shares are held in a charitable trust.  After
Calabash issued the notes, it invested the proceeds in high-
quality assets within a collateral account.  Calabash will swap
the total return of the asset portfolio with Swiss Re Financial
Products Corp. (AA/Watch Neg/A-1+) in exchange for quarterly
LIBOR-based payments.
     
The notes will provide Swiss Reinsurance America Corp. with a
source of multi-year retrocessional capacity linked to
reinsurance of U.S. hurricane exposure provided by Swiss
Reinsurance America Corp. to ACE American Insurance Co. and
certain affiliates.  If a hurricane passes through the covered
area and triggers a loss to ACE's hurricane notional portfolio
in excess of a predetermined index value, then the noteholders
will be at risk for a loss of principal.  The premium received
by Calabash pursuant to the reinsurance agreement, combined with
the payments received under the swap, will be used to make the
scheduled interest payments to the noteholders.
     
EQECAT's proprietary model was used to determine the probability
of attachment of the notes.  The model will be used along with
information supplied by the National Hurricane Center to
calculate modeled losses to ACE's hurricane notional portfolio
and the industry hurricane notional portfolio following a
hurricane.  These modeled losses will be used in combination
with the most recent catastrophe bulletin from Property Claims
Services to determine whether or not a covered loss to the
noteholders has occurred as well as the amount of the loss.  If
a loss has occurred, assets in the collateral account will be
sold to fund the reinsurance payment, and the principal amount
of the notes will be reduced.
     
Swiss Reinsurance America Corp. will pay the up-front and
ongoing expenses of Calabash in connection with this security
issuance.
      
"The ratings on the notes are based on the probability of
attachment as determined by EQECAT," said Standard & Poor's
credit analyst Gary Martucci.

EQECAT provided two measures of the probability of attachment: a
near-term analysis and a long-term analysis.  Standard & Poor's
gave greater weight to the near-term analysis when assigning the
rating on the notes, given their immediate and limited exposure
period.  The near-term analysis focuses on the period beginning
in 1995, which indicates the potential for a greater frequency
of hurricanes.  "The rating is also based upon the
creditworthiness of Swiss Reinsurance America Corp. as payer
under the reinsurance agreement and Swiss Reinsurance Co.
(AA/Watch Neg/A-1+) as guarantor of Swiss Re Financial Products
Corp., the total return swap counterparty," Mr. Martucci added.


DUPLEX FOURTH: Filing of Proofs of Claim Ends by June 1
-------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of Duplex Fourth are required to prove their claims
against the company to Guy Major and Richard Gordon, the
company's liquidators, by June 1, 2006, or be excluded from
receiving any distribution or payment that the company will
make.

Creditors are required to send by June 1 their full names,  
addresses, descriptions, the full particulars of their debts or  
claims, and the names and addresses of their lawyers, if any, to  
the liquidators.

Duplex Fourth began liquidating assets on April 20, 2006.

The liquidator can be reached at:

        Guy Major
        Richard Gordon
        Maples Finance Limited
        P.O. Box 1093, George Town
        Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands


ELC LTD. 1999-III: Liquidator Stops Accepting Claims by June 1
--------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of ELC (Cayman) Ltd. 1999-III are required to submit
particulars of their debts or claims by June 1, 2006, to the
company's appointed liquidators -- Steven O'Connor and Emile
Small.  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 April 19, 2006.

The liquidator can be reached at:

            Steven O'Connor
            Emile Small
            Maples Finance Limited
            P.O. Box 1093, George Town
            Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands


ELC LTD. 1999-III (C): Claims Verification Ends on June 1
---------------------------------------------------------
Steven O'Connor and Emile Small, liquidators of ELC (Cayman)
Ltd. 1999-III (C), will stop verifying creditors' proofs of
claim by June 1, 2006.  

The company started liquidating assets on April 19, 2006.

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

The liquidator can be reached at:

        Steven O'Connor
        Emile Small
        Maples Finance Limited
        P.O. Box 1093, George Town
        Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands


ELC LTD. 2000-I: Creditors Must File Proofs of Claim by June 1
--------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of ELC (Cayman) Ltd. 2000-I, which is being
voluntarily wound up, are required to present proofs of claim by
June 1, 2006, Steven O'Connor and Emile Small, the company's
liquidators.

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

The company began liquidating assets on April 19, 2006.

The liquidators can be reached at:

           Steven O'Connor
           Emile Small
           Maples Finance Limited
           P.O. Box 1093, George Town
           Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands


HH CAYMAN: Sets June 1 Deadline for Filing Proofs of Claim
----------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of HH Cayman Co. Ltd. are required to submit
particulars of their debts or claims by June 1, 2006, to Mark
Wanless and Liam Jones, the company's appointed liquidators.  
Failure to do so will exclude them from receiving the benefit of
any distribution that the company will make.

HH Cayman started liquidating assets on April 19, 2006.

The liquidators can be reached at:

      Mark Wanless
      Liam Jones
      Maples Finance Jersey Limited
      2nd Floor, Le Masurier House,
      La Rue Le Masurier
      St. Helier, Jersey JE2 4YE


MJT FUNDING: Schedules Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline on June 1
----------------------------------------------------------------
Creditors of MJT Funding Corporation, which is being voluntarily
wound up, are required to present proofs of claim by
June 1, 2006, to Ryutaro Uchiyama, the company's liquidator.

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

The company began liquidating assets on April 12, 2006.

The liquidators can be reached at:

           Ryutaro Uchiyama
           Maples Finance Limited
           P.O. Box 1093, George Town
           Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands


PRECEPT FOREIGN: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Set for June 2
-------------------------------------------------------------
Shareholders of The Precept Foreign Fund, Ltd., will gather on
June 2, 2006, for a final general meeting at:

        DMS AM Inc., 401 Springfield Ave.
        Summit, New Jersey, 07901

Accounts on the company's liquidation process will be presented
during the meeting.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on May 24, 2006,
the company started liquidating assets on April 10, 2006.  
Verification of creditors' claims against the company will end
on June 2, 2006.  

The company's liquidator can be reached at:

        David Sukoff
        c/o Maples and Calder, Attorneys-at-law
        P.O. Box 309GT, Ugland House
        South Church Street, George Town
        Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands


PRECEPT FOREIGN (II): Holds Last Shareholders Meeting on June 2
---------------------------------------------------------------
Shareholders of The Precept Foreign Fund II, Ltd. will gather on
June 2, 2006, for a final general meeting at:

         DMS AM Inc., 401 Springfield Ave.
         Summit, New Jersey, 07901

Accounts on the company's liquidation process will be presented
during the meeting.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on May 23, 2006,
The company started liquidating assets on April 10, 2006.  David
Sukoff, the liquidator will stop verifying creditors' proofs of
claim by June 2, 2006.  

The company's liquidator can be reached at:

         David Sukoff
         c/o Maples and Calder, Attorneys-at-law
         P.O. Box 309GT, Ugland House
         South Church Street, George Town
         Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands


PRECEPT MASTER: Schedules Final Shareholders Meeting on June 2
--------------------------------------------------------------
Shareholders of The Precept Master Fund II, Ltd. will gather for
a final meeting on June 2, 2006, at:

         DMS AM Inc., 401 Springfield Ave.
         Summit, New Jersey, 07901
            
Accounts on the company's liquidation process will be presented
during the meeting.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on May 23, 2006,
the company started liquidating assets on April 10, 2006.  
Creditors of the company were required to submit particulars of
their debts or claims on or before June 2, 2006 to David Sukoff,
the company's appointed liquidator

Parties-in-interest may contact the liquidator at:

        David Sukoff
        c/o Maples and Calder, Attorneys-at-law
        P.O. Box 309GT, Ugland House
        South Church Street, George Town
        Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands




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


AES GENER: Moody's Upgrades Senior Unsecured Debt Rating to Ba1
---------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service upgraded the senior unsecured debt of
AES Gener to Ba1 from Ba3, concluding a review for possible
upgrade.  The rating outlook is stable.

The rating action reflects improvements in leverage and cash
flow coverage ratios, and a significant increase in financial
flexibility. These changes result from improved market
fundamentals for power generation companies in Chile, favorable
changes in Chile's regulatory framework, and successful
execution of the company's deleveraging plans.

Gener has substantially reduced debt, significantly extended its
debt maturity profile, and negotiated meaningful reductions in
interest rates, particularly at its Colombian subsidiary.  
Almost 90% of the company's debt is now long-term and
approximately 80% is fixed-rate.  Liquidity and financial
flexibility have been enhanced by the establishment of new
credit facilities.  Moody's expectation is that Gener will be
able to maintain ratios of FFO to Interest and FFO to debt of at
least 3.5x and 20%, respectively, over the next year, with
further improvement likely over the next several years.

Overall electricity demand in Chile is expected to continue to
grow by approximately 5% per year over the next several years,
reflecting steady growth in GDP.  While the SING region retains
significant excess generation capacity, the reserve margin for
the SIC region has been tightening.  As a result, prices for
electricity have increased significantly in the SIC and to a
lesser degree in the SING.  As a diversified generation company
operating in the SIC and the SING, Moody's anticipates that
Gener will continue to benefit from demand growth and higher
prices in both regions.

Gener is benefiting from regulatory changes passed in May 2005
to mitigate the effect of Argentine gas curtailments and to
encourage long-term investment in new generation capacity.  Key
elements of the amendment to the regulatory framework (known as
the Short Law II) include:

   -- the introduction of standard bid processes for supply
      contracts with regulated distribution companies;

   -- authorization for distribution companies to enter into
      long-term, fixed price supply contracts with generators
      in order to support the construction of new power
      plants; and

   -- modifications to the calculation of interim node price
      adjustments for contracts with regulated customers to
      allow quicker resets to market prices.

These changes are expected to support Gener's US$600 million
capital expansion program and to allow a more timely pass
through of higher fuel costs to regulated customers.

An important challenge for Gener to continue to manage is the
problem of Argentine gas curtailments.  So far, Gener has been
able to mitigate its exposure to gas curtailments through a
number of means, including:

   -- reducing its contractual commitments to a level where
      its non-gas fired generation can completely cover its
      firm delivery requirements,

   -- engaging in fuel swap agreements with affiliates, and

   -- utilizing the dual fuel capability of its natural gas-
      fired facilities to switch to diesel.

Moody's notes that notwithstanding the curtailment problem,
which began in 2004, Gener has been able to make meaningful
improvements in its cash flow coverage metrics in 2005 and so
far in 2006.  Curtailments in the first quarter of 2006 were
also lower than in 2005.

Headquartered in Santiago de Chile, Gener is Chile's second-
largest electricity generation company with a total installed
capacity of approximately 2,427 MW.  The company is an indirect
subsidiary of the AES Corporation.




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


AES CHIVOR: Moody's Ups Corp. Family & Sr. Debt Ratings to Ba3
--------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service upgraded the Corporate Family Rating
and the senior secured debt of AES Chivor & Cia. S.C.A. E.S.P.
to Ba3 from B1, concluding a review for possible upgrade.  The
rating outlook is stable.

The rating action reflects a substantial reduction in balance
sheet leverage and expectations of stronger cash flow coverage
ratios over the next several years, due to improving market
fundamentals for hydro generators in the Colombian power market
and increased spot sales.

Chivor has reduced its leverage more rapidly than expected.  The
company's total debt to book capitalization has been reduced to
about 34% from about 45% at year end 2003.  Cash flow has been
boosted by higher electricity prices and changes in the
company's strategy to take advantage of improved market
conditions.  Chivor's operating cash flow is also expected to
increase as a result of reduced interest costs on its peso term
loan facility.  In conjunction with a change in the reference
rate from DTF to CPI, the interest rate decreased by over 300
basis points.

Moody's anticipates that Chivor will be able to maintain ratios
of FFO to Interest and FFO to debt of at least 3.0x and 20%,
respectively, over the next year, and that cash flow coverages
are likely to further improve over the next several years.

The Colombian power market has experienced five consecutive
years of growth in overall electricity demand, with increases of
3-4% in the last three years.  Peak demand has also been
increasing steadily, and the country's reserve margin is
expected to decrease to 30% as soon as 2007.  As a result of the
growth in electricity demand, thermal generation is increasingly
driving the economics of contract and spot prices in the market.  
Assuming normal weather, continuing growth in the Colombian
economy, and a continuing high price environment for diesel and
natural gas, hydro generators should continue to benefit from
high spot electricity prices over the next several years.

Chivor has adapted its commercial strategy to take advantage of
higher spot electricity prices.  The company has increased spot
sales and ancillary services offered to the market.  
Additionally, the company has increased its spot market
purchases, freeing up its own capacity to increase overall
sales.  Moody's anticipates that the company will continue to
optimize its operations and spot purchases in light of
hydrological conditions to maximize its commercial margin.

Moody's upgrades these ratings of AES Chivor & Cia. S.C.A.
E.S.P.:

   -- Corporate Family Rating:  to Ba3 from B1; and
   -- Senior Secured Regular Bond/Debenture: to Ba3 from B1.

The outlook in these ratings is changed to stable from rating
under review.

Headquartered in Bogota, Chivor is Colombia's fourth-largest
electricity generation company with a total installed hydro
capacity of 1,000 MW.  The company is an indirect subsidiary of
the AES Corporation.


* BOGOTA: Moody's Upgrades Foreign Currency Rating to Ba1
---------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service upgraded the foreign currency issuer
rating of Bogota, Colombia, to Ba1 from Ba2.  The action was
prompted by Moody's revision of its rating methodology for
assigning foreign currency country bond ceilings.

In November 2005, Moody's published a Request for Comment,
entitled "Revised Policy with Respect to Country Ceilings".
Based on supportive market responses, Moody's decided to revise
its methodology for assigning foreign currency country bond
ceilings.

The revised methodology resulted in upgrades to the foreign
currency bond ceilings of a number of countries, including
Colombia whose ceiling was raised to Ba1 from Ba2.  The higher
ceilings reflect Moody's view that in many countries, even if
the national government were to default on its own foreign
currency debt, the probability of a foreign currency moratorium
is less than 100%.


* COLOMBIA: Contractual Stability Law on Investments Passed
-----------------------------------------------------------
The Republic of Colombia's Congress passed a 20-year contractual
stability law, Business News Americas reports.

According to BNamericas, the law is aimed at protecting foreign
investments like mining in the country.

Carlos Uribe, the head of the national business association,
told BNamericas, "When an investor comes to Colombia and says,
'The reasons I am investing in this sector are...,' the
government takes on the responsibility of maintaining those
conditions."

The investor would get the benefits if the legislation improves
during the 20-year period, but the investor is protected from
negative changes under the new law, Mr. Uribe was quoted by
BNamericas as saying.

                        *    *    *

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

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

Fitch said the Rating Outlook is Stable.


* COLOMBIA: Moody's Ups Long-Term Foreign Currency Rating to Ba1
----------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of Colombia under the revised
foreign currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: Ba1 from Ba2 with
      stable outlook

This rating assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.


* COLOMBIA: Working on Reforms for Tax Reduction
------------------------------------------------
The legislature of Colombia is formulating reforms on its tax
systems to allow reduction of taxes, Carlos Uribe, the head of
the national business association, told BNamericas.

BNamericas relates that this would benefit the mining industry.

Changes in tax are part of a deeper reform of Colombia's state
organizations, which aims to promote transparency in every state
institution, Mr. Uribe said during the 9th World Congress for
Latin American Mining held in Santiago, Chile.

                        *    *    *

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

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

Fitch said the Rating Outlook is Stable.




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


* COSTA RICA: Launches Fair on Trade Promotion in Germany
---------------------------------------------------------
The Foreign Trade Promotion Office of Costa Rica said in a
statement that it launched a trade promotion fair in
Munich, Germany.

Xinhua News Agency relates that the fair was part of the Image
Plan aimed at increasing exports during the FIFA World Cup aka
Football World Cup.  Costa Rica wants the fair to increase its
current exports to Europe by US$1.2 billion, which accounts for
some 20% of the country's total exports.

According to the press release, products from 70 firms where
displayed during the fair in the Forum Am Deutschen Museum,
close to the Museo Aleman, one of Munich's most visited cultural
sites.

The statement reveals that Costa Rica created the trade show to
act as a shop window for Costa Rica to offer the world its best
features.

The trade fair will close on June 11 and Costa Rica's President
Oscar Arias is expected to attend, 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


* COSTA RICA: Moody's Ups LT Foreign Currency Rating to Baa3
------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of Costa Rica under the revised
foreign currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: Baa3 from Ba1 with
      negative outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Prime-3.




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


* CUBA: Authorizes Deepwater Block Acquisition by Indian Firm
-------------------------------------------------------------
The government of Cuba authorized the acquisition of a 30% stake
in six deepwater blocks by ONGC Videsh Ltd., a subsidiary of
India's state-owned petroleum exploration firm Oil & Natural Gas
Corp. aka ONGC, Dow Jones Newswires reports.

Parent firm ONGC said in a statement that Videsh had entered in
2005 an accord with Spain's Repsol YPF -- the operator of the
blocks with a 40% stake -- to acquire the stakes in the blocks.  

Dow Jones relates that Norsk Hydro ASA aka NHY, a Norwegian
exploration firm, owns the remaining 30%.

According to the statement, that Videsh will have stakes in
blocks 25 through 30 in the deepwaters of Cuba Exclusive
Economic Zone.

ONGC said, "The blocks spreading to an area of approximately
12,000 square kilometers are located in a very favorable
geological set-up and is estimated to hold considerable reserve
potential.  These blocks are in the third exploration period and
presently, 3-D seismic data of these blocks is being acquired,
which is likely to be completed by June 2006.  Drilling of
exploratory wells will be taken up after detailed geo-
scientific evaluation."

                        *    *    *

Moody's assigned these ratings on Cuba:

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


* CUBA: Moody's Affirms Caa1 Long-Term Foreign Currency Rating
--------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's affirms this rating of Cuba under the revised foreign
currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: Caa1 with stable
      outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.




===================================
D O M I N I C A N   R E P U B L I C
===================================


BANCO BHD: Launches Impact of the Free Trade Agreement Program
--------------------------------------------------------------
Banco BHD launched a program that pursues identifying potentials
within the business sector with regards to the Free Trade
Agreement aka FTA with the United States, Dominican Today
reports.

Dominican Today relates that Luis Molina Acheca, the president
of BHD bank, would head the launching of the program, called
Impact of the Free Trade Agreement with the United States and
Central America on Dominican Enterprises, during an event at
local hotel in Santo Domingo.

The program could be considered as a unique initiative,
according to Dominican Today.  Under the program, the financial
entity will offer advisory and assistance services to the
business sector on the challenges that would be brought by the
FTA.

FTA is estimated to begin on July 1, 2006, according to
Dominican Today.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on May 22, 2006,
Fitch upgraded the foreign currency long-term Issuer Default
Rating of Banco BHD to 'B' from 'B-'.  Fitch has also affirmed
Banco BHD and Republic Bank 's other international and national
ratings.  These actions follow Fitch's recently announced
upgrade of the Dominican Republic's long-term foreign currency
IDR to 'B'.


* DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: British Firms Mull Call Center Business
-------------------------------------------------------------
British Investors have shown interest in investing in the
tourism industry as well as in putting up call centers in the
Dominican Republic, David Jessop, the executive director of the
Caribbean Council in London, told Dominican Today.

The British firm Call Center will visit the country at the start
of June to establish business in the Naco sector of the capital
city, Mr. Jessop informed Dominican Today.

According to Dominican Today, the executive director said that
President Leonel Fernandez's visit to the United Kingdom helped
strengthen relations between British commercial and investment
sectors and the Dominican Republic.

However, the Dominican Republic should also be more relevant for
the European Union as it will have an important participation in
the relationship of the region, Mr. Jessop was quoted by
Dominican Today as saying.

                        *    *    *

The Troubled Company Reporter - Latin America reported on May 9,
2006, that Fitch Ratings upgraded these debt and issuer Default
Ratings of the Dominican Republic:

   -- Long-term foreign currency Issuer Default Rating
      to B from B-;

   -- Country ceiling upgraded to B+ from B-;

   -- Foreign currency bonds due 2006 to B-/RR4 from CCC+/RR4;

   -- Foreign currency Brady bonds due 2009 to B/RR4
      from B-/RR4;

   -- Foreign currency bonds due 2011 to B/RR4 from B-/RR4;

   -- Foreign currency bonds due 2013 to B-/RR4 from CCC+/RR4;

   -- Foreign currency bonds due 2018 to B/RR4 from B-/RR4; and

   -- Foreign currency collateralized Brady bonds due 2024
      to B+/RR3 from B/RR3.

Fitch also affirmed these ratings:

   -- Long-term local currency Issuer Default Rating: B; and

   -- Short-term Issuer Default Rating: B.

Additionally, Fitch assigned a debt and Recovery Rating to this
issue:

   -- Foreign currency bonds due 2027: B/RR4.

Fitch said the rating outlook for the long-term foreign and
local currency IDRs is Stable.


* DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Central Bank Auctions DOP2.5B Certificates
----------------------------------------------------------------
Dominican Republic's Central Bank auctioned DOP2,500 million
worth of investment certificates yesterday, May 24, Dominican
Today reports.

Dominican Today relates that maturities for the certificates
range from:

   -- 35 days,
   -- 91 days,
   -- 182 days, and
   -- 364 days.  

Dominican Today states that among those invited to participate
include:

   -- banks,
   -- savings and loans associations,
   -- credit corporations,
   -- financial homes,
   -- savings and loans cooperatives,
   -- investment entities,
   -- insurance companies,
   -- public and private investment funds,  
   -- other non-financial groups, and
   -- the general public.

                        *    *    *

The Troubled Company Reporter - Latin America reported on May 9,
2006, that Fitch Ratings upgraded these debt and issuer Default
Ratings of the Dominican Republic:

   -- Long-term foreign currency Issuer Default Rating
      to B from B-;

   -- Country ceiling upgraded to B+ from B-;

   -- Foreign currency bonds due 2006 to B-/RR4 from CCC+/RR4;

   -- Foreign currency Brady bonds due 2009 to B/RR4
      from B-/RR4;

   -- Foreign currency bonds due 2011 to B/RR4 from B-/RR4;

   -- Foreign currency bonds due 2013 to B-/RR4 from CCC+/RR4;

   -- Foreign currency bonds due 2018 to B/RR4 from B-/RR4; and

   -- Foreign currency collateralized Brady bonds due 2024
      to B+/RR3 from B/RR3.

Fitch also affirmed these ratings:

   -- Long-term local currency Issuer Default Rating: B; and

   -- Short-term Issuer Default Rating: B.

Additionally, Fitch assigned a debt and Recovery Rating to this
issue:

   -- Foreign currency bonds due 2027: B/RR4.

Fitch said the rating outlook for the long-term foreign and
local currency IDRs is Stable.



* DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B1
---------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of the Dominican Republic under the
revised foreign currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: B1 from B3 with
      stable outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.




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


PETROECUADOR: Selling Barrels of Crude from Occidental's Fields
---------------------------------------------------------------
Petroecuador, the state-run oil firm of Ecuador, will export the
first barrels of crude oil from the fields stripped from
Occidental Petroleum Corp., Dow Jones Newswires reports.

Jorge Luis Zapater, the foreign trade director of Petroecuador,
told Dow Jones that the 360,000 barrels to be exported belong to
the state firm.

Dow Jones recalls that Occidental made its last shipment of
378,000 barrels last week to Shell.  Of the 100,000 barrels a
day that the US firm produced, about 28,000 barrels were handed
out to the government.  Occidental had exported the rest.

However, Petroecuador has not yet to decide whether the crude
will be sold to Occidental's client, the Shell subsidiary in
Ecuador, or to another trader, Dow Jones relates.

Mr. Zapater was quoted by Dow Jones as saying, "As a rule I
believe that the same clients should be kept, because they are
clients for today and for the future, but Petroecuador's
administrative board will make the final decision shortly."

Dow Jones reveals that negotiations on new terms and prices are
likely to happen.  Mr. Zapater, however, refused to give more
details regarding the matter.

Large refiners have expressed interest in buying the crude if
production and transportation run smoothly, Mr. Zapater informed
Dow Jones.

                        *    *    *

The Troubled Company Reporter - Latin America reported on
May 8, 2006, that Petroecuador's employees are threatening to
launch a strike if the government won't provide funding
necessary for the company's operations.  Reports said that
Petroecuador has no funds for maintenance and no funds to repair
pumps in diesel, gasoline and natural gas refineries.

Ecuador's Economy Minister Diego Borja demanded more efficiency
from the state oil company as well as transparency in its
accounts.

Petroecuador has asked the government for US$279 million to pay
debts to suppliers, outsourcing firms and other creditors
threatening to halt services.


* ECUADOR: Moody's Affirms LT Foreign Currency Rating at Caa1
-------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's affirms these ratings of Ecuador under the revised
foreign currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: Caa1 with
      stable outlook; and
   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.


* ECUADOR: Will Hand Over Occidental Field to Foreign Hands
-----------------------------------------------------------
The government of Ecuador will hand over the operation of block
15, a field stripped from Occidental Petroleum, to a foreign
state oil firm within 45 days, Enrique Proano, the presidential
press secretary, told Dow Jones Newswires.

Ivan Rodriguez, the minister of energy, informed Dow Jones that
among those considered to hold the field are:

   -- Mexico's Petroleos Mexicanos aka Pemex,
   -- Venezuela's Petroleos de Venezuela aka PDVSA,
   -- Spanish-Argentine Repsol YPF SA, and
   -- Brazil's Petroleo Brasileiro SA aka Petrobras.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Ecuador:

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




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


* GUATEMALA: Moody's Ups LT Foreign Currency Rating to Ba1
----------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of Guatemala under the revised
foreign currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: Ba1 from Ba2 with
      stable outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.




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


* HAITI: Full Membership in Caribbean Development Bank Expected
---------------------------------------------------------------
Financial giant Caribbean Development Bank is open to the
possibility of Haiti's becoming a full-fledged member in the
bank, The Nassau Guardian reports.

CDB is a financial institution that aids Caribbean nations in
financing social and economic programs in its member countries.

Nassau Guardian recalls that the 36th annual conference of CDB
Board of Governors, which opened at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in
Montego Bay on May 15, ended last week.  Dr. Compton Bourne, the
president of CDB, had said during his closing address, "We
welcome the announcement by the government of Trinidad and
Tobago of its decision to enter a joint constituency arrangement
with Haiti, which would pave the way for that country's full-
fledged membership in the bank."

Dr. Bourne was quoted by Nassau Guardian as saying that, now
that elections have been held and the security situation has
improved, the organization expects a way has been paved to start
some operational work in Haiti.

It was determined that CDB and the region must make common cause
in improving the flow of investment resources required for the
economic transformation of the countries, Dr. Bourne told
reporters after the meeting.  According to him, sustained
efforts are necessary toward increasing the members of the bank,
improving relationship with other international agencies and
countries that may contribute to the financial resources.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on April 12, 2006,
president-elect Preval appealed for urgent international help to
spur development in the Western Hemisphere's poorest country and
called on all Haitians to join in a national dialogue to promote
peace, democracy and stability.

"Poverty, widespread unemployment, the state of dilapidation of
basic infrastructures that are necessary for development,
chronic insecurity - these are all the major challenges to be
faced by the next government," President Preval was quoted by
the Associated Press as saying.

President Preval explained that increased international
assistance is "indispensable" to Haiti's economic recovery, to
create conditions for investment and job creation, to improve
social services, and to reform democratic institutions including
parliament, municipalities, the judicial system, and the
national police, the AP relates.




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


* HONDURAS: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to Ba3 from B2
--------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of Honduras under the revised
foreign currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: Ba3 from B2 with
      stable outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.




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


* JAMAICA: Moody's Ups LT Foreign Currency Rating to Ba3 from B1
----------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of Jamaica under the revised
foreign currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: Ba3 from B1 with
      stable outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.




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


GRUPO MEXICO: Southern Copper Eyes Toromocho Copper Deposit
-----------------------------------------------------------
Grupo Mexico's miner of red metal, Southern Copper Corp.,
informed Reuters that it will offer to buy or jointly develop
the Toromocho copper deposit of Peru by June 7.

Southern Peru revealed in a statement to Peru's stock market
regulator that it is considering a joint venture with Canada's
Peru Copper Inc., the deposits' owner.

Buying Toromocho was a key objective for the company, Oscar
Gonzalez, the chief executive of Southern Copper, informed
Reuters.  He said that the company was carrying out due
diligence on the project in Peru's central Andes.

Reuters relates that Toromocho could be one of Peru's top copper
mines from 2010 with a production of around 300,000 tonnes of
copper a year and a lifespan of 33 years.

Peru Copper said it is open to selling a stake in the project
that could be one of Peru's top copper mines from 2010,
according to Southern Peru's statement.

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

                        *    *    *

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

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


OCA INC: Taps Spencer Stuart as Executive Search Consultants
------------------------------------------------------------
OCA, Inc., and its debtor-affiliates ask the U.S. Bankruptcy
Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana for permission to
employ Spencer Stuart as their executive search consultants.  
Spencer Stuart will assist the Debtors, on an exclusive basis,
in recruiting a new senior executive officer.

The Firm will be paid a professional fee equal to one-third of
its recruit's projected first year's total cash compensation,
including any potential first year bonus.  In addition, the Firm
will receive a $200,000 retainer to be applied towards the
professional fee in four monthly installments.  Each installment
will include a $5,000 overhead fee to cover the average cost, on
a typical assignment, of office telephone, postage, computer
communication, reprographics and contracted research.

The Debtors assure the Court that Spencer Stuart does not hold
any interest adverse to the Debtors' estates.

                    About Spencer Stuart

Spencer Stuart is a global executive search firm that
identifies, interviews and evaluates potential executive and
board candidates for corporations seeking to hire such
candidates.  Spencer Stuart has nearly 50 years of industry
experience and employs nearly 300 consultants and operates a
cohesive network of more than 50 offices in 25 countries.
Spencer Stuart has developed an international network of
professionals experienced in both local and multi-national
businesses, conducting more than 4,000 executive searches
annually.

                         About OCA

Based in Metairie, Louisiana, OCA, Inc. -- http://www.ocai.com/
-- provides a full range of operational, purchasing, financial,
marketing, administrative and other business services, as well
as capital and proprietary information systems to approximately
200 orthodontic and dental practices representing approximately
almost 400 offices.  The Company's client practices provide
treatment to patients throughout the United States and in Japan,
Mexico, Spain, Brazil and Puerto Rico.

The Company and its debtor-affiliates filed for Chapter 11
protection on March 14, 2006 (Bankr. E.D. La. Case No. 06-
10179).  William H. Patrick, III, Esq., at Heller Draper Hayden
Patrick & Horn, LLC, represents the Debtors.  Patrick S.
Garrity, Esq., and William E. Steffes, Esq., at Steffes
Vingiello & McKenzie LLC represent the Official Committee of
Unsecured Creditors.  When the Debtors filed for protection from
their creditors, they listed US$545,220,000 in total assets and
US$196,337,000 in total debts.




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


* NICARAGUA: Moody's Ups Long-Term Foreign Currency Rating to B3
----------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of Nicaragua under the revised
foreign currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: B3 from Caa1 with
      stable outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.




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


SOLO CUP: Posts US$22.1 Million Net Loss in First Fiscal Quarter
----------------------------------------------------------------
Solo Cup Company disclosed first quarter 2006 financial results.

For the thirteen weeks ended April 2, 2006, Solo Cup reported
net sales of US$564 million, an increase of US$17.9 million, or
3.3%, compared to US$546.1 million for the three months ended
March 31, 2005.  The increase in net sales reflected a 2.6%
increase in average realized sales price and a 0.7% increase in
sales volume compared to the three months ended March 31, 2005.  
The increase in average realized sales price reflects the impact
of pricing increases implemented during the second half of 2005
in response to higher raw material costs.

Gross profit was US$51.3 million for the thirteen weeks ended
April 2, 2006.  Selling, general, and administrative expenses
were US$66.6 million.

The Company reported a net loss of US$22.1 million for the
thirteen weeks ended April 2, 2006, compared to a net loss of
US$18.6 million for the three months ended March 31, 2005.  
Adjusted EBITDA for the thirteen weeks ended April 2, 2006, was
US$11.9 million versus US$20.3 million for three months ended
March 31, 2005.

Commenting on the first quarter 2006 results, Robert M.
Korzenski, President and Chief Operating Officer said, "While we
experienced positive growth in both sales and margins during the
quarter, we continue to face the challenges of increasing energy
costs and competitive pricing pressures.  In addition, this
quarter we experienced higher SG&A and we are currently taking
measures to control expenses.  We believe our recently announced
restructuring has better aligned our organizational structure
with the needs of our business."

Headquartered in Highland Park, Illinois, Solo Cup Company --
http://www.solocup.com/-- manufactures disposable foodservice   
products for the consumer and retail, foodservice, packaging,
and international markets.  Solo Cup has broad expertise in
plastic, paper, and foam disposables and creates brand name
products under the Solo, Sweetheart, Fonda, and Hoffmaster
names.  The Company was established in 1936 and has a global
presence with facilities in Asia, Canada, Europe, Mexico, Panama
and the United States.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Apr. 4, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service assigned ratings on Solo Cup Company's
debts:

       -- US$80 million senior secured second lien term loan due
          2012 at B3;

       -- US$150 million senior secured revolving credit
          facility maturing Feb. 27, 2010, at B2;

       -- US$638 million senior secured term loan B due Feb. 27,
          2011, at B2;

       -- US$325 million 8.5% senior subordinated notes due Feb.        
          15, 2014, at Caa1; and

       -- Corporate Family Rating at B2.




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


* PARAGUAY: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B3 from Caa1
---------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of Paraguay under the revised
foreign currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: B3 from Caa1 with
      stable outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.




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


* PERU: Moody's Ups LT Foreign Currency Rating to Ba2 from Ba3
--------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of Peru under the revised foreign
currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: Ba2 from Ba3 with
      stable outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.




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


ADELPHIA: Asks Court to Approve Century/ML Settlement Accord
------------------------------------------------------------
Adelphia Communications Corporation and its debtor-affiliates
ask the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New
York to approve a Settlement Agreement and Mutual General
Release with Century/ML Cable Venture.

Adelphia Communications and its wholly owned, indirect
subsidiary, Century Communications Corp., entered into a
Settlement Agreement and Mutual General Release on May 11, 2006,
with the:

    -- post-confirmation bankruptcy estate of Century/ML Cable
       Venture; and

    -- ML Media Partners, LP, former co-owner of Century/ML.

Century/ML is a joint venture that was owned 50% by Century and
50% by ML Media; and sold, pursuant to an Interest Acquisition
Agreement dated June 3, 2005, to San Juan Cable, LLC, an entity
formed by MidOcean Partners, and its partner, Crestview
Partners.

The sale was consummated on OctoberOct. 31, 2005, with one-half
of the net proceeds placed in an escrow account for the benefit
of ML Media and the other half placed in an escrow account for
the benefit of Century.

Pursuant to the Settlement Agreement, ML Media will receive:

    a. approximately US$264,000,000 in the ML Media Escrow
       Account;

    b. US$87,000,000 settlement payment from Century out of the
       Century Escrow Account funds; and

    c. general releases and indemnities related to the
       continuing relationship with San Juan Cable, which the
       Debtors will provide.

The Debtors, on the other hand, will receive:

    a. approximately US$264,000,000 in the Century Escrow
       Account, less the US$87,000,000 Settlement Payment and a
       US$3,600,000 payment to San Juan Cable;

    b. US$24,400,000 from ML Media's transfer of right to
       receive half of the Delayed Consideration.  As provided
       by the Interest Acquisition Agreement and Century/ML's
       Plan of Reorganization, the Delayed Consideration
       consists of:

       -- the funds remaining in the Plan Funding Reserve, at
          least US$6,000,000 of which will become immediately
          available to Century on the Settlement Agreement's
          consummation;

       -- the US$25,000,000 in the Indemnity Escrow Account.
          Pursuant to the Settlement Agreement, Century will now
          be entitled to all recoveries from the Indemnity
          Escrow Account, half of which is scheduled to be
          released on June 31, 2006, and the other half on
          December 31, 2006; and

       -- the US$31,500,000 Deferred Purchase Price that secures
          the obligations of Century/ML to pay certain tax
          liabilities.  The deferred purchase price will be paid
          out in installments over several years.  Pursuant to
          the Settlement Agreement, the Debtors will be entitled
          to receive ML Media's share of the Deferred Purchase
          Price.  The Debtors presently estimate a maximum
          recovery of approximately US$11,800,000 of the
          Deferred Purchase Price; and

    c. general releases, including those relating to claims of
       Century/ML, and dismissal of all litigation.

A full-text copy of the Settlement Agreement is available for
free at http://ResearchArchives.com/t/s?9b4

Based in Coudersport, Pa., Adelphia Communications Corporation
-- http://www.adelphia.com/-- is the fifth-largest cable  
television company in the country.  Adelphia serves customers in
30 states and Puerto Rico, and offers analog and digital video
services, high-speed Internet access and other advanced services
over its broadband networks.  The Company and its more than 200
affiliates filed for Chapter 11 protection in the Southern
District of New York on June 25, 2002.  Those cases are jointly
administered under case number 02-41729.  Willkie Farr &
Gallagher represents the ACOM Debtors.  PricewaterhouseCoopers
serves as the Debtors' financial advisor.  Kasowitz, Benson,
Torres & Friedman, LLP, and Klee, Tuchin, Bogdanoff & Stern LLP
represent the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors.  
(Adelphia Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 132; Bankruptcy Creditors'
Service, Inc., 215/945-7000)


ADELPHIA COMMS: Sets Discovery Schedule Over Boies Schiller Fees
----------------------------------------------------------------
Adelphia Communications Corporation and its debtor-affiliates,
the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors, the United States
Trustee, the Official Fee Committee, and Boies Schiller &
Flexner, LLP, stipulate and agree to this discovery schedule
with respect to the firm's final fee application, filed
Oct. 3, 2005:

    1. The Parties will serve responses and objections to all
       requests for discovery by July 14, 2006.

    2. The Parties will complete all document production by
       July 31, 2006.

    3. The Parties will start depositions of fact witnesses no
       earlier than September 5, 2006.

    4. The Parties will complete depositions of fact witnesses
       by October 30, 2006.

    5. The Parties will exchange lists of expert witnesses and
       expert reports by November 6, 2006, and will complete
       depositions of experts by December 4, 2006.

    6. Objections to the Application are due by January 5, 2007.

    7. Boies Schiller will file its reply by February 5, 2007.

The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York
approved the parties' stipulation.

Based in Coudersport, Pa., Adelphia Communications Corporation
-- http://www.adelphia.com/-- is the fifth-largest cable  
television company in the country.  Adelphia serves customers in
30 states and Puerto Rico, and offers analog and digital video
services, high-speed Internet access and other advanced services
over its broadband networks.  The Company and its more than 200
affiliates filed for Chapter 11 protection in the Southern
District of New York on June 25, 2002.  Those cases are jointly
administered under case number 02-41729.  Willkie Farr &
Gallagher represents the ACOM Debtors.  PricewaterhouseCoopers
serves as the Debtors' financial advisor.  Kasowitz, Benson,
Torres & Friedman, LLP, and Klee, Tuchin, Bogdanoff & Stern LLP
represent the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors.  
(Adelphia Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 132; Bankruptcy Creditors'
Service, Inc., 215/945-7000)




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


* URUGUAY: Fitch Affirms Low B Local & Foreign Currency Ratings
---------------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has revised the Outlooks on the Oriental Republic
of Uruguay's Sovereign ratings to Positive from Stable.  The
long-term foreign currency Issuer Default Rating is affirmed at
'B+', and the long-term local currency IDR is affirmed at 'BB-'.  
The Short-term IDR is affirmed at 'B' and the Country Ceiling is
affirmed at 'BB-'.

According to Morgan C. Harting, Fitch Senior Director and lead
sovereign analyst for Uruguay, "favorable international
conditions and adherence to prudent economic policy settings
through what could have been a difficult political transition
have helped bring public and external debt ratios down, but they
still remain high relative to 'B'-rated peers."  Refinancing
requirements are also significant, particularly for public
external debt, but market appetite for Uruguayan assets has been
hearty, so it appears likely these needs will be met, at least
in the near term.  General government debt is equal to 82% of
GDP compared to the 'B' median of 66%, and net external debt is
equal to 170% of broad external receipts versus the peer median
of 86%. The fact that government debt is owed primarily in
foreign currencies and that external debt is owed
disproportionately by the public sector makes these comparisons
all the more unfavorable for Uruguay.

Although economic growth has been rapid in the past two years,
much of the improvement is a recovery rather than a true
expansion.  Investment has accelerated, but remains low, raising
the possibility that growth momentum will sputter out.

"Authorities need to seize the moment to improve competitiveness
and the investment environment by focusing on microeconomic
reforms, continued strengthening of the banking sector, and
consolidation of fiscal policy," said Mr. Harting.

Sustaining above-average GDP and export growth rates will be
critical in order to bring public and external debt ratios into
line with peers. Lower indebtedness will help improve the
resiliency of the economy to shocks, a perennial problem for
Uruguay.  Dependence on Brazil (LTFC IDR 'BB-') and Argentina
(LTFC IDR 'RD') have declined as trade and investment with other
countries has increased, but Fitch believes Uruguay's high
external financing needs still leave it vulnerable to potential
contagion from these neighbors.  Caution is therefore warranted
in raising the LTFC into the 'BB' range prematurely, but a
favorable forward credit trajectory is likely enough to warrant
moving the Outlook on that rating to Positive from Stable.

Continued reductions in banking system risks will also be
important for further credit improvement because Uruguay's heavy
state ownership and high degree of dollarization present
significant contingent claims on public finances and
international reserves.  State-owned BROU and BHU hold 58% of
system deposits and these are fully guaranteed by the
government.  Fully 88% of system private-sector deposits are in
foreign currency, claims that could add to pressure on
international reserves in the event of a crisis.

Over the next six months, key developments to watch will include
the sustainability of economic growth and an ambitious
legislative agenda including tax reform, changes to the central
bank law, and the reform of certain public-sector pension plans.  
Collective wage negotiations will also be important indicators
of potential pressures on inflation or public spending.  The
ratings could become constrained or face downward pressure if
refinancing prospects deteriorate significantly, if authorities
relax fiscal and monetary objectives, or if the economy suffers
a significant shock to output or financial system confidence.


* URUGUAY: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B1 from B3
------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of Uruguay under the revised
foreign currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: B1 from B3 with
      stable outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.




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


ARVINMERITOR: Debt Swap Prompts Fitch to Watch Ratings
------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings placed the ratings of ArvinMeritor on Rating Watch
Negative following the company's announcement that it will be
replacing its existing US$900 million unsecured revolving bank
facility with a senior secured facility, including a new Term
Loan-B tranche.  Fitch's current ratings on ArvinMeritor are:

  -- Issuer Default Rating 'BB+'
  -- Senior unsecured debt ratings 'BB+'
  -- Trust preferred rating 'BB-'

Since the company will be granting security in the new bank
facility, the relative position of the unsecured debt holders is
likely to become impaired.  Fitch will analyze the size,
structure, collateral and covenants contained in the new
facility before assigning ratings to the bank facilities and to
outstanding senior unsecured debt.  Under ArvinMeritor's
unsecured indentures, the company has a limitation on liens of
up to 15% of the value of consolidated net tangible assets,
which is defined to exclude certain 'principal property' assets.

Continued stresses in ARM's core automotive market and an
anticipated decline of 35%-45% in the 2007 heavy truck market
will impact ARM's cash generation in 2007, leading to a review
of the IDR.  ARM's 2006 operating performance will continue to
benefit from the strength of the heavy-duty truck market.  
Together with recent asset sales, this could provide a modest
strengthening of ARM's balance sheet through year-end,
potentially enhancing the company's resources upon entering the
pending downcycle.  The covenants contained in the new senior
secured facility will also be a factor in the review of the IDR.


* VENEZUELA: CenBank Incurs US$142M of Losses in First Quarter
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Central Bank of Venezuela reported VEB 305.09 billion
(US$142 million) of losses in the first quarter of 2006, the El
Universal reports, citing the bank's financial statement.

The bank's equity dropped to US$4.3 billion in April from US$5.6
billion in March.

According to the El Universal, the bank's unsatisfactory
performance came as a result of rate cuts to curb inflation and
the fact that it transferred US$10 billion from its foreign
reserves to Hugo Chavez's administration.

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


* VENEZUELA: Moody's Ups Foreign Currency Rating to B1 from B3
--------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

Moody's upgrades this rating of Venezuela under the revised
foreign currency ceilings:

   -- Long-term foreign currency rating: B1 from B3 with
      stable outlook.

This rating is assigned:

   -- Short-term foreign currency rating: Not Prime.


* VENEZUELA: Reports Say Full Membership to Mercosur Approved
-------------------------------------------------------------
According to reports, Venezuela's membership to the Southern
Common Market or Mercosur has been made official on May 23 in
Buenos Aires, Argentina.  

"The protocol on Venezuela's adhesion to Mercosur was approved
last night (Tuesday) in Buenos Aires," Venezuela President Hugo
Chavez was quoted by El Universal as saying.  "This is history.  
I invite the good Venezuelan journalists to record the history.  
Venezuela has joined Mercosur.  This is a fundamental step.  For
seven and a half years, we have been working on it with devotion
and passion."

Venezuela became a member of the trade bloc on Dec. 9, 2005.  
Having its membership formalized, the nation will now be able to
vote on matters concerning the trade bloc.

Mercosur's purpose is to promote free trade and the fluid
movement of goods, peoples and currency in the Latin American
region.

                        *    *    *

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


* Moody's Revises Foreign Currency Ceilings
-------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service said that a new approach to setting
its foreign-currency country ceilings for bonds has resulted in
upgraded ceilings for 70 countries.  Country ceilings already
carrying Moody's top rating of Aaa were unaffected by the new
methodology and no country ceiling was downgraded as a result of
the revised approach.

Neither government bond ratings nor foreign-currency ceilings
for bank deposits are affected by this action.

The rating agency also published a special report explaining the
way its new methodology reflects the risk that a foreign-
currency government bond default would be accompanied by a
moratorium on external foreign-currency payments.

"Under our new country ceiling methodology, we no longer
automatically assume that a foreign-currency bond default by a
government would be accompanied by a foreign-currency payment
moratorium affecting most issuers domiciled within its borders,"
said Vincent Truglia, managing director of Moody's Sovereign
Risk Unit and author of the report.

Mr. Truglia said the agency's thinking in favor of greater
flexibility in the application of country ceilings has reflected
the deepening of the international capital markets since the
1990s and the avoidance by most governments in recent years of a
generalized moratorium in the face of a government foreign-
currency bond default.

In assessing the probability of a moratorium in the event of an
external payments crisis, Mr. Truglia said that Moody's assesses
the extent to which the local economy is integrated into the
world economy, and the extent to which the government would
perceive a moratorium as more costly than other policy
alternatives.

Moody's also weighs the likelihood of a government socializing
the cost of a crisis.  "This takes place when the government
substitutes its credit for the credit of the local companies,
sparing domestic firms from the risk of having to face a court
challenge abroad," said Mr. Truglia.

The ceilings of the vast majority of countries rated by Moody's
have been upgraded by at least one notch.  In some cases, such
as the newer members of the European Union, the upgrades are of
four and five notches, bringing those countries into closer
alignment with fellow E.U. members.

Countries that have the U.S. dollar as their legal currency and
countries with foreign-currency bond ceilings already at their
local-currency guidelines were not affected by the change in
methodology because moratorium risk assessments do not change
the risk profiles embedded in those existing ceilings.

Prompted by the revised ceilings, Moody's said, the foreign-
currency issuer ratings of non-government issuers may also be
upgraded.

"While piercing the sovereign ceiling has been possible since
2001, foreign-currency issuer ratings for issuer and corporate
family ratings are effectively constrained by the new ceiling
and only specific bond ratings will be able to pierce," said Mr.
Truglia. "This is because we expect that, even if a moratorium
is put in place, certain securities are still likely to be
exempt."

As example, he cited Argentina's 2001 moratorium in which
certain issuers and types of securities were nevertheless
exempted, permitting them to make foreign--currency debt
payments.


                        ***********


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

Troubled Company Reporter - Latin America is a daily newsletter
co-published by Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc., Fairless
Hills, Pennsylvania, USA, and Beard Group, Inc., Frederick,
Maryland USA.  Marjorie C. Sabijon, Sheryl Joy P. Olano, Stella
Mae Hechanova, and Christian Toledo, Editors.

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

This material is copyrighted and any commercial use, resale or
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