TCRLA_Public/061013.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, October 13, 2006, Vol. 7, Issue 204

                          Headlines

A N T I G U A   &   B A R B U D A

NCO GROUP: Moody's Rates US$565 Mil. Credit Facility at Ba3
NCO GROUP: S&P Assigns B+ Long-Term Counterparty Credit Rating

A R G E N T I N A

ADUFARMA SA: Deadline for Verification of Claims Is on Nov. 8
ALPARGATAS SAIC: Fitch Argentina Affirms D Ratings on Notes
ALTA COMERCIAL: Verification of Proofs of Claim Is Until Nov. 29
ASOCIACION MUTUAL: Claims Verification Deadline Is on Dec. 1
C.P.M. SA: L. Gabriele Replaces C. Moreno as Bankruptcy Trustee

EL CONDE: Seeks for Court Approval to Reorganize Business
HEBOS SA: Last Day for Verification of Proofs of Claim Is Dec. 7
J.A.R. S.A.: Trustee Verifies Proofs of Claim Until Oct. 20
LUZ Y FUERZA: Trabajadores de Luz Moves for Firm's Liquidation
MASTELLONE HNOS: S&P Says Controlled Milk Prices Affect Profits

SANCOR COOPERATIVAS: Moody's Lowers Ratings to Ca from Caa3
SANCOR: S&P Says Gov't Price Controls Affect Cash Generation
TELEFONICA MOVILES: Moody's Raises Global Ratings to B2 from B3

B A H A M A S

COMPLETE RETREATS: Selects Donlin Recano as Claims Agent
COMPLETE RETREATS: Wants Removal Period Extended to Jan. 19
KERZNER INT: CEO Butch Kerzner Died in Helicopter Accident
WINN-DIXIE: Wants Court to Approve Del Monte Stipulation
WINN-DIXIE: Wants Prepetition Supply Pact with Rexall Rejected

B E R M U D A

REFCO INC: FXCM Says Disclosure Statement Is Silent on Interest
SEA CONTAINERS: Bankruptcy Threat Lowers Bond Price

B R A Z I L

AES CORP: Says Debt Payments Are Up to Date
BANCO DO BRASIL: Workers Refuse Pay Hike Offer from Fenaban
BANCO ITAU: Gets Favorable Ruling from World IP Organization
BANCO NACIONAL: Implements New Bank Card Regulations
BERTIN: S&P Says High Debt Leverage Constrains Ratings

BUCKEYE TECH: Expects 10 Cents Per Share Profit for July to Sep.
CAIXA ECONOMICA: Workers Refuse Pay Hike Offer from Fenaban
COMPANHIA PARANAENSE: Unit Inks Supply Contract with Hughes
COMPANHIA SIDERURGICA: Analyst Says Firm Won't Bid for Corus
COSAN SA: S&P Expects Gradual Growth in Operating Cash Flows

JBS SA: S&P Comments on Successful Bond Issuance for US$300 Mil.
NOSSA CAIXA: Workers Accept New Pay Offer to End Strike
NOVELIS INC: Fitch Assigns B Issuer Default Rating
PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Extends Gas Price Negotiation with Bolivia
SADIA SA: Has Maintained Moderate Net Debt Levels, S&P Says

SANEAMENTO BASICO: JPMorgan Downgrades Firm to Neutral
SANTANDER BANESPA: Moody's Assigns D+ Financial Strength Rating
UNIAO DE BANCOS: Paying Interest on Own Capital Stock on Oct. 31
USINAS SIDERURGICAS: Will Provide Heavy Plates to TenarisConfab

* BRAZIL: IDB Approves US$800MM Financing to Procidades Program

C A Y M A N   I S L A N D S

AERCAP 320 A: Creditors Must File Proofs of Claim by Oct. 24
AERCAP 320 B: Last Day to File Proofs of Claim Is on Oct. 24
AIR TARA CAYMANS I: Proofs of Claim Must be Filed by Oct. 24
AIR TARA CAYMANS II: Proofs of Claim Filing Is Until Oct. 24
EQUITY ASM: Creditors Must Submit Proofs of Claim by Oct. 23

EQUITY CU: Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline Is Set for Oct. 23
MEZZANINE CAPITAL: Filing of Proofs of Claim Is Until Oct. 23
LIONTRUST INTERNATIONAL: Claims Filing Is Until Oct. 24
STEIN ROE: Creditors Have Until Oct. 19 to File Proofs of Claim
TRISUN OFFSHORE: Holding Final Shareholders Meeting Today

C H I L E

EMPRESAS IANSA: S&P Says Prospects Are Favorable in Short Term

C O L O M B I A

BANCOLOMBIA: Reports COP35.4B Unconsolidated Net Income in Sept.

C U B A

* CUBA: Imports from Czech Republic Increases by 57%
* CUBA: Iran Exporting 100 Freight Train Wagons to Nation

D O M I N I C A N   R E P U B L I C

* DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Gets Fuel Deposits Construction Proposals

E C U A D O R

PETROECUADOR: Starting Joint Venture Talks with Venezuela

* ECUADOR: Gets US$50MM Loan from IDB to Boost Fin'l Sector

E L   S A L V A D O R

BANCO SALVADORENO: Inversiones Financieras Buys 102,716 Shares

J A M A I C A

AFFILIATED COMPUTER: Launching Office in Montego Bay Next Year
AIR JAMAICA: Trial Against Alleged Office Thief Starts in Nov.

M E X I C O

ASARCO: Committee Wants Asarco Inc.'s Lift Stay Motion Denied
FORD MOTOR: Considers Potential Sale of Automobile Protection
FORD MOTOR: Starting Buyout Offers Next Week
GRUPO IUSACELL: Expects Operating Unit's Restructuring Finalized
MERIDIAN AUTOMOTIVE: Committee Objects to Disclosure Statement

MERIDIAN AUTOMOTIVE: Committee Balks at Solicitation Procedures
METROFINANCIERA: Acquires Credito y Casa for US$150 Million
NORTEL NETWORKS: Introduces Mobile WiMax Portfolio
NORTEL NETWORKS: Partners with Runcom to Deliver WiMAX Services
ST. JOHN KNITS: Moody's Affirms Low B Ratings

N I C A R A G U A

PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Ships Diesel to Nicaraguan Joint Venture

* NICARAGUA: Mayors Try to Sell 84,000 Gal. of Venezuelan Diesel

P A N A M A

CHIQUITA BRANDS: Unit Selects TR3 to Track Product Freshness
GRUPO BANISTMO: Unit Being Probed on Unfair Trading Practices
GRUPO BANISTMO: Unit's First Half 2006 Profits Drop to US$8.01MM

P A R A G U A Y

PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Prospecting for Gas & Oil in Paraguay

P U E R T O   R I C O

ADELPHIA COMMS: Files Further Changes to Plan of Reorganization
MUSICLAND HOLDING: U.S. Trustee Opposes Disclosure Statement
MUSICLAND HOLDING: ACE Group & ESIS Balk at Disclosure Statement

T R I N I D A D   &   T O B A G O

BRITISH WEST: Says Launching Date of Caribbean Star Is Jan. 1

V E N E Z U E L A

PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: El Palito Refinery Is Back in Operation
PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Nicaraguans Snubs Gallons of Diesel
PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Starting Cooperation Talks with Ecuador

* S&P Says LatAm Food & Beverage Cos. Continue Good Performance


                          - - - - -


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


NCO GROUP: Moody's Rates US$565 Mil. Credit Facility at Ba3
-----------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service assigned a Ba3 first time, rating to NCO Group,
Inc.'s US$565 million senior secured credit facility (US$465 million term
loan and US$100 million revolver), Caa1 ratings to US$365 million of senior
subordinated notes, and a B2 corporate family rating. The ratings for these
debt instruments reflect both the overall probability of default of the
company, to which Moody's assigns a PDR of B2, and a loss given default of
LGD 2 for the secured credit facility and LGD 5 to the subordinated notes.
The rating outlook is stable.

On July 21, 2006, NCO entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by
an entity controlled by One Equity Partners, with participation by certain
members of senior management.  The transaction is expected to close in the
fourth quarter of 2006 and is subject to customary closing conditions
including the approval of NCO's shareholders.  Upon closing of this
transaction, NCO's stock will no longer be publicly traded.

The transaction is expected to be funded with the US$465 million term loan,
US$365 million of senior subordinated notes, US$355 million of cash equity
contributed by OEP, US$23 million of rollover equity and US$10 million of
revolver borrowings.

The ratings benefit from solid pro forma credit metrics for the rating
category, high levels of EBIT, leading market positions in receivables
management and portfolio management business lines and a good track record
of profitability and cash flow generation.  The ratings are constrained by
the potential for profitability erosion due to increasing competition in
portfolio management business, sensitivity of receivable collection trends
to a weakening economy and moderate revenue concentration.

The Ba3 rating on the senior secured credit facility reflects an LGD 2 loss
given default assessment as this facility is secured by a pledge of the
assets of the guarantor subsidiaries (which comprise about 60% of
consolidated EBITDA for the June 30, 2006, LTM period) and 65% of the stock
of foreign subsidiaries.  The LGD 2 assessment benefits from a significant
amount of junior debt in the capital structure (40% of debt capitalization
assuming 75% of the committed revolver is drawn). The Caa1 rating on the
senior subordinated notes reflects an LGD 5 loss given default assessment
given that it is effectively subordinated to the secured credit facility.

The SGL-2 rating reflects a good liquidity position pro forma for the
recapitalization transaction.

Moody's assigned these ratings:

   -- Corporate family rating at B2;

   -- Probability-of-default rating at B2;

   -- US$465 million 7-year senior secured term loan at Ba3
      (LGD 2, 26%);

   -- US$100 million 5-year senior secured revolver at Ba3
      (LGD 2, 26%);

   -- US$365 million senior subordinated notes at Caa1
      (LGD 5, 82%); and

   -- Speculative grade liquidity rating at SGL-2.

The stable outlook anticipates moderate revenue and EBIT growth over the
next 12-18 months.  Cash flow from operations is expected to be used to fund
capital expenditures of about US$30-US$40 million per year, niche
acquisitions which complement existing business segments, and required term
loan amortization.

The ratings could be upgraded if financial performance improves such that
EBIT coverage of interest and free cash flow to total debt can be sustained
at over 1.7 times and 7%, respectively

Given the company's solid position in the rating category, a moderate
increase in pricing trends in the portfolio management segment or decline in
accounts receivable collection rates will be unlikely to pressure the
ratings.  However, a sharp downturn in the business which results in EBIT
coverage of interest and free cash flow to debt that are expected to
sustained at under 1 time and 0%, respectively, could lead to a downgrade.
A significant debt financed acquisition that substantially weakens credit
metrics and liquidity could also pressure the rating.

Based in Horsham, Pennsylvania, NCO is a global provider of business process
outsourcing services, primarily focused on accounts receivable management
and customer relationship management.  The company also purchases and
manages past due consumer accounts receivable (PM or portfolio management
business) from consumer creditors such as banks, finance companies, retail
merchants, utilities, healthcare companies, and other consumer-oriented
companies.  NCO operates a global network of close to 100 operations centers
running on a centralized data platform with the flexibility to respond to a
rapidly changing marketplace, and to scale operations to meet client
specifications.  Its Latin American operations are in Antigua & Barbuda,
Barbados, Panama and Puerto Rico.  The company reported revenues of about
US$1.1 billion for the twelve-month period ending June 30, 2006.


NCO GROUP: S&P Assigns B+ Long-Term Counterparty Credit Rating
--------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned its 'B+' long-term counterparty
credit rating to NCO Group Inc.  The outlook is stable.  At the same time,
Standard & Poor's assigned a bank loan rating of 'B+' and a recovery rating
of '3' to the company's US$465 million senior secured bank loan and US$100
million revolver, indicating a meaningful (50%-80%) recovery of principal in
the event of a payment default.  NCO's US$365 million senior subordinated
notes were rated 'B-'.

"The ratings on NCO are based in part on its high leverage and poor
capitalization (negative tangible equity), marginal cash flow coverage, and
high level of operational risk," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Rian
M. Pressman, CFA.

The company's modest profitability, driven in part by its sensitivity to
changing market dynamics, is also a primary factor in the rating.  Other
considerations include NCO's strong niche market position in accounts
receivable and collection services, well-established client relationships,
and multiple sourcing channels for the purchase of distressed receivables.

NCO's high leverage and poor capitalization (negative tangible equity) limit
the rating.  Following its acquisition by an entity controlled by One Equity
Partners (a private equity firm, with participation by certain members of
NCO's current senior management), the company's debt is projected to total
approximately US$840 million (excluding the nonrecourse debt associated with
receivables purchases financed by Cargill).  t year-end 2006, debt-to-EBITDA
and EBITDA interest coverage ratios (both adjusted for operating leases) are
forecasted to be a modest 5.6x and 1.8x, respectively.  Although Standard &
Poor's recognizes that NCO's service-intensive businesses require little
capital support, the company's investment in distressed receivables requires
an appropriate level of capitalization, especially given the
assumption-driven analytics backing those purchases.  Further growth in the
distressed receivables portfolio without a commensurate increase in
capitalization will increase the importance of capitalization in our overall
assessment.

Operational risk is high due to NCO's significant information system
infrastructure, high volume of acquisition activity (28 companies in the
past 10 years), large number of employees (more than 22,000), and
significant international operations (including call centers in Canada,
Philippines, India, and the Caribbean).  The operational integrity of the
company's systems and processes is crucial, as service disruptions could
result in lost clients.  The company is exposed to moderate customer
concentrations.  NCO has made significant investments to mitigate this risk,
including disaster recovery planning and data security.

Positive rating factors include NCO's strong niche market position in
accounts receivable and collection services, well-established client
relationships, and multiple sourcing channels for the purchase of distressed
receivables.  Almost two-thirds of total revenue is generated by the
accounts receivable management business and NCO has a strong market position
in this niche business.  The company's competitive advantages include size
in a business where scale matters and a successful track record.  NCO has
well-established client relationships with a number of blue chip companies
and has served its top 10 clients for an average of 10 years each.

Lastly, the company has multiple sourcing channels through which to purchase
distressed receivables, including existing ARM clients, forward flow
agreements, and a relationship with the agricultural/food company, Cargill.
NCO's multiple sourcing channels enable it to selectively play in the
auction markets, thereby avoiding some of the irrational pricing that has
recently characterized that market.

Horsham, Pa.-based NCO is a provider of business process outsourcing. The
company's three business lines are ARM, CRM, and Portfolio Management.  At
June 30, 2006, total assets were US$1.3 billion.

The stable outlook is based on NCO's strong niche market position in
accounts receivable and collection services, well-established client
relationships, and multiple sourcing channels for the purchase of distressed
receivables.  Positive ratings action may occur if the company reduces
leverage and improves profitability, while maintaining or improving its
business risk profile.  Negative ratings implications could result from
increased leverage, reduced profitability, or adverse operational issues.

NCO is a provider of business process outsourcing solutions.  Its
outsourcing portfolio includes accounts receivable management, customer
management services, and back office services for a diversified customer
base.  NCO operates a global network of close to 100 operations centers
running on a centralized data platform with the flexibility to respond to a
rapidly changing marketplace, and to scale operations to meet client
specifications.  Its Latin American operations are in Antigua & Barbuda,
Barbados, Panama and Puerto Rico.




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


ADUFARMA SA: Deadline for Verification of Claims Is on Nov. 8
-------------------------------------------------------------
Ana Maria Pazos, the court-appointed trustee for Adufarma S.A.'s bankruptcy
proceeding, will verify creditors' proofs of claim until Nov. 8, 2006.

Under the Argentine bankruptcy law, Ms. Pazos is required to present the
validated claims in court as individual reports.  Court No. 19 in Buenos
Aires will determine if the verified claims are admissible, taking into
account the trustee's opinion and the objections and challenges raised by
Adufarma and its creditors.

Inadmissible claims may be subject for appeal in a separate proceeding known
as an appeal for reversal.

Ms. Pazos will also submit a general report that contains an audit of
Adufarma's accounting and banking records.  The report submission dates have
not been disclosed.

Adufarma was forced into bankruptcy at the request of Banca Nazionale del
Lavoro S.A., which it owes US$16,456.50.

Clerk No. 38 assists the court in the proceeding.

The debtor can be reached at:

          Adufarma S.A.
          Sarmiento 2333
          Buenos Aires, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

          Ana Maria Pazos
          Montiel 1147
          Buenos Aires, Argentina


ALPARGATAS SAIC: Fitch Argentina Affirms D Ratings on Notes
-----------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Argentina Calificadora de Riesgo SA affirmed the D ratings it assigned
to Alpargatas SAIC's debts:

   -- Obligaciones Negociables Convertible for US$70 million
      (US$6.2 million in circulation),

   -- Obligaciones Negociables Convertibles for US$5.1 million
      (US$40,898 in circulation),

   -- Obligaciones Negociables Subordinate Convertibles for
      US$80 million (US$5.9 million in circulation),

   -- Obligaciones Negociables for US$40 million (US$13.4
      million  in circulation), and

   -- Obligaciones Negociables Simples Class A for US$1.1
      million and Class B for US$80 million.

Also, the rate of the ordinary shares has been increased up to category 2.

The rate of the shares were increased up to category 2 after Sept. 18, 2006
when the approval of the agreement known as acuerdo preventivo extrajudicial
was reached.  As a result, en execution period will start until the
definitive exchange of the Obligaciones Negociables and other debts for
shares and titles of debt is done according to the options presented.  Once
the restructuring proceeding is closed, the net patrimony of the company
will be recovered.  The rate of the Obligaciones Negociables will remain in
D until the exchange of the titles takes place.

During the first semester of the 2006 exercise, Alpargatas continued with
its positive trend observed during the last two years, which is enhanced by
the increasing participation of the company's product on the sells.  The
income of Alpargatas were 23% more than the previous period, reaching
US$225.6 million.  Improvements have been resgistered in the shoes sector
(18%); textile (16%) and in the minor sector.  In order to guarantee the
sustainable growth of the company, Alpargatas should be able to get access
to funds that will allow the company to carry on with new projects.

Created in 1883, Alpargatas S.A.I.C. is a group of companies
textile sector of Argentina.  The shares of the company are
located between creditors who capitalized their credits in 2000
and minor shareholders in the Buenos Aires stock market, with
participations of no more than 20%.

Alpargatas filed for the local equivalent of the United States'
Chapter 11 bankruptcy in December 2001 and presented its debt
restructuring offer in court in March 2004.


ALTA COMERCIAL: Verification of Proofs of Claim Is Until Nov. 29
----------------------------------------------------------------
Marta Polistina, the court-appointed trustee for Alta Comercial y de
Transportes S.A.'s reorganization proceeding, will verify creditors' proofs
of claim until Nov. 29, 2006.

Under the Argentine bankruptcy law, Ms. Polistina is required to present the
validated claims in court as individual reports.  Court No. 5 in Buenos
Aires will determine if the verified claims are admissible, taking into
account the trustee's opinion and the objections and challenges raised by
Alta Comercial and its creditors.

Inadmissible claims may be subject for appeal in a separate proceeding known
as an appeal for reversal.

Ms. Polistina will also submit a general report that contains an audit of
Alta Comercial's accounting and banking records.  The report submission
dates have not been disclosed.

On Sept. 21, 2007, Alta Comercial's creditors will vote on a settlement plan
that the company will lay on the table.

Clerk No. 9 assists the court in the proceeding.

The debtor can be reached at:

          Alta Comercial y de Transportes S.A.
          Florida 142
          Buenos Aires, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

          Marta Polistina
          Cramer 2175
          Buenos Aires, Argentina


ASOCIACION MUTUAL: Claims Verification Deadline Is on Dec. 1
------------------------------------------------------------
Mario Leizerow, the court-appointed trustee for Asociacion Mutual de las
Fuerzas de Seguridad's bankruptcy case, will verify creditors' proofs of
claim until Dec. 1, 2006.

Under the Argentine bankruptcy law, Mr. Leizerow is required to present the
validated claims in court as individual reports.  Court No. 21 in Buenos
Aires will determine if the verified claims are admissible, taking into
account the trustee's opinion and the objections and challenges raised by
Asociacion Mutual and its creditors.

Inadmissible claims may be subject for appeal in a separate proceeding known
as an appeal for reversal.

Mr. Leizerow will also submit a general report that contains an audit of
Asociacion Mutual's accounting and banking records.  The report submission
dates have not been disclosed.

Asociacion Mutual was forced into bankruptcy at the behest of Sergio
Miranda, whom it owes US$101,884.53.

Clerk No. 42 assists the court in the proceeding.

The debtor can be reached at:

          Asociacion Mutual de las Fuerzas de Seguridad
          Pichincha 1641
          Buenos Aires, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

          Mario Leizerow
          Lavalle 1290
          Buenos Aires, Argentina


C.P.M. SA: L. Gabriele Replaces C. Moreno as Bankruptcy Trustee
---------------------------------------------------------------
A court in Buenos Aires appointed Luis A. Gabriele as replacement of Carlos
Moreno as trustee who will supervise C.P.M. S.A.'s bankruptcy proceeding.
Under bankruptcy protection, control of the company's assets is transferred
to Mr. Gabriele.

Mr. Gabriele will take over the submission of individual reports in court on
Nov. 27, 2006 and the general report on
Feb. 12, 2007.

The trustee can be reached at:

          Luis A. Gabriele
          Zuviria 5262
          Buenos Aires, Argentina


EL CONDE: Seeks for Court Approval to Reorganize Business
---------------------------------------------------------
A court in Buenos Aires is studying the merits of El Conde de Montecristo
S.R.L.'s petition to reorganize its business after defaulting on its
obligations.

The petition, once approved by the court, will allow El Conde to negotiate a
settlement plan with its creditors in order to avoid a straight liquidation.

The debtor can be reached at:

          El Conde de Montecristo S.R.L.
          Avenida de Mayo 676
          Buenos Aires, Argentina


HEBOS SA: Last Day for Verification of Proofs of Claim Is Dec. 7
----------------------------------------------------------------
Estudio Rego-Saavedra, the court-appointed trustee for Hebos S.A.'s
insolvency case, will verify creditors' proofs of claim until Dec. 7, 2006.

Estudio Rego-Saavedra will present the validated claims in court as
individual reports on Feb. 22, 2007.  Court No. 15 in Buenos Aires will then
determine if the verified claims are admissible, taking into account the
trustee's opinion and the objections and challenges raised by Hebos and its
creditors.

Inadmissible claims may be subject for appeal in a separate proceeding known
as an appeal for reversal.

A general report that contains an audit of Hebos' accounting and banking
records will follow on April 5, 2007.

On Sept. 18, 2007, Hebos' creditors will vote on a settlement plan that the
company will lay on the table.

Clerk No. 29 assists the court in the case.

The debtor can be reached at:

          Hebos S.A.
          Callao 420
          Buenos Aires, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

          Estudio Rego-Saavedra
          Uruguay 660
          Buenos Aires, Argentina


J.A.R. S.A.: Trustee Verifies Proofs of Claim Until Oct. 20
-----------------------------------------------------------
Rosa Guillermina Frias, the court-appointed trustee for J.A.R. S.A.'s
bankruptcy case, verifies creditors' proofs of claim until Oct. 20, 2006.

Ms. Frias will present the validated claims in court as individual reports
on Dec. 5, 2006.  A court in Salta will determine if the verified claims are
admissible, taking into account the trustee's opinion and the objections and
challenges raised by J.A.R. and its creditors.

Inadmissible claims may be subject for appeal in a separate proceeding known
as an appeal for reversal.

A general report that contains an audit of J.A.R's accounting and banking
records will follow on Feb. 8, 2007.

The debtor can be reached at:

          J.A.R. S.A.
          Corina Lona 637, Ciudad de Salta
          Salta, Argentina


LUZ Y FUERZA: Trabajadores de Luz Moves for Firm's Liquidation
--------------------------------------------------------------
Federacion Argentina de Trabajadores de Luz y Fuerza, a power sector union
in Argentina, has sought for the liquidation of Luz y Fuerza ART, its
workers' compensation insurance business, before Superintendencia de Seguros
de la Nacion, the local insurance regulator, Business News Americas reports.

According to BNamericas, Luz y Fuerza is the first workers' compensation
insurance business to go into liquidation since the industry was created 10
years ago.

BNamericas relates that Luz y Fuerza held a 0.73% market share in March,
with ARS12.8 million in premiums.

Local press says that Luz y Fuerza's proposed liquidation was due to the
increasing number of lawsuits in the workers' compensation insurance market.

UART, an association on the workers' compensation insurance business, told
BNamericas that civil liability work accident lawsuits against the sector
will increase 80% to 12,500 in 2006.

Meanwhile, Estrategas -- a the local financial magazine -- states that about
13 of 25 businesses in the sector reported negative technical results in
March, offset by good investment gains.

BNamericas underscores that the Argentine government has implied that it
will pass a bill to congress this year for a reform on the workers'
compensation insurance market.  The new law would maintain workers' right to
apply for compensation from both their compensation insurance and the
country's justice department when laid off.

However, the submission of the bill has been delayed due to more demands
from CGT, the general workers' union, BNamericas relates.


MASTELLONE HNOS: S&P Says Controlled Milk Prices Affect Profits
---------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's says that Mastellone Hermanos S.A. (raBB/Negative/--) case
is not different with the rest of the Argentine dairy industry.  The
company's profitability was affected by the measures adopted by the
Argentine government's measure to control milk prices, a situation that is
only partially compensated by the increased volume and product mix sales.
As a result, Mastellone's coverage ratios remain weak.  The somewhat
manageable debt amortization schedule provides Mastellone with some
financial flexibility in the short to medium term.  Nevertheless, the
ratings will remain conditioned by the negative business environment and its
current indebtedness level.


SANCOR COOPERATIVAS: Moody's Lowers Ratings to Ca from Caa3
-----------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service downgraded the ratings of Sancor to Ca from Caa3.
The National Scale ratings were downgraded to D.ar from Ca.ar.  The outlook
is stable.

The rating downgrade to Ca is based on the default status of Sancor's debts,
as interest and principal payments due on September 29 were not made and
have been rescheduled, as informally agreed with creditors.  The Ca rating
reflects Moody's expectation of significant losses on the defaulted debt.

Since March of this year, Sancor has been in negotiation with creditors and
bondholders to obtain relief under the terms of its debt. Although creditors
informally agreed to Sancor's proposal to reschedule payments due on Sept.
29, no formal agreement has yet been reached.  Moody's is concerned about
Sancor's ability to service its debt in the coming months.  The next
interest payment comes due in December 2006.  In Moody's opinion, payment is
highly unlikely unless the company reaches a new agreement with creditors,
an outcome which Moody's does not expect to be achieved before year-end.

At their last meeting on September 29th members approved the potential
transformation of Sancor's cooperative status into a corporate structure
that would allow the company to be better capitalized and also to establish
joint ventures with partners in some specific business lines.  Moody's
believes that such measures would likely have a positive impact on Sancor's
operations and capital structure.

Although the company has designated a financial advisor to help it to find a
strategic partner, that process could take long time, in Moody's view.
During this process, Sancor's already very weak operating performance could
deteriorate further, resulting in a further decline in its enterprise value.

The stable outlook reflects Moody's view that, despite financial stress and
lack of liquidity, Sancor will be able to continue operating in the diary
business in Argentina and that bondholders' losses are unlikely to exceed
50%.  Downward pressure on the ratings could occur if the risk of debt
acceleration or bankruptcy increased or if Moody's perceived a significant
diminution of estimated recovery values. At this time, a rating upgrade is
highly unlikely.  No upward rating pressure is e expected until the company
definitely solves its debt situation in a sustainable manner, or unless
estimates of debt recovery values rise significantly above 50%.

Headquarter in Santa Fe, Argentina, Sancor is a diary milk cooperative and
one of the largest milk processors and marketers in Argentina. Annual
revenues for the fiscal year ended June 2006, are ARS1.4 billion.


SANCOR: S&P Says Gov't Price Controls Affect Cash Generation
------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's says that the impossibility of transferring cost increases
into final prices as a result of Argentina's price controls and export
restrictions have resulted in a strong deterioration of SanCor Cooperativas
Unidas Ltda.'s (raCCC/Negative/--) cash generation.

During the first half of 2006, Sancor Cooperativas announced that it has
started negotiations with creditors to restructure its financial debt.  In
this context, the company announced that it will defer its next principal
payments that mature by the end of September and will pay interest
maturities in three installments between September and November 2006,
actions that will be considered as default under Standard & Poor's criteria.


TELEFONICA MOVILES: Moody's Raises Global Ratings to B2 from B3
---------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service has upgraded Telefonica Moviles Argentina's global
ratings to B2 from B3 and to A1.ar from Baa3.ar for the national scale
rating.  The rating outlook is stable.

The US$150 million bonds were originally issued by Compania de
Radiocomunicaciones Moviles, the Bellsouth wireless operator in Argentina
acquired by Telefonica Moviles in January 2005.  Telefonica Moviles had
already been operating in the cellular business in Argentina through its
subsidiary, Telefonica Comunicaciones Personales.

As a consequence of the acquisition, Telefonica Moviles announced that the
two operating companies would be merged into one.  The first step in that
process began early in 2005 when both companies began commercial operations
under the "Movistar" brand.

In March 2006, the Telefonica Moviles Argentina board announced its decision
to continue with legal steps in order to absorb Compania de
Radiocomunicaciones.  The merger was effective as of Jan. 1, and was
recently approved by authorities.  At the same time, the consolidated entity
adopted its current denomination, Telefonica Moviles Argentina, S.A.  As a
consequence of the merge, Telefonica Moviles Argentina S.A. is the new
obligor under the notes as Compania de Radiocomunicaciones will be
extinguished.

The B2 rating is supported by the successful operating integration achieved
by the two wireless operators of Telefonica in Argentina as evidenced by an
improvement in EBIT margin to 13% as of June 2006 from 1.5% pro-forma 2005.
Improved margins have strengthened credit protection metrics.
Debt-to-EBITDA fell from 6.9x pro-forma for 2005 to close to three times as
of June 2006.  The rating also benefits from strong growth prospects for the
cellular business in Argentina and the fact that, out of Telefonica Moviles
Argentina's ARS2.5 billion total debt, approximately 70% is owed to the
parent company.  Moody's expect FCF to further increase as capital
expenditures on Telefonica Moviles Argentina's GSM network are almost
complete.  Moody's also expects Telefonica Moviles Argentina to use excess
cash to reduce debt.

Also supporting the rating is Telefonica Moviles Argentina's solid position
with approximately 38% share of the mobile market, which Moody's believes
will remain mostly unchanged.

The B2 rating also reflects above-average uncertainty from the regulatory
and economic environment in Argentina and also considers the company's high
exposure to dollar-denominated debt.

The stable outlook reflects Moody's expectations that the company will
manage to sustain its strong market share and improved efficiency, resulting
in increased cash generation and lowered leverage.

Moody's estimates that the ratings could be upgraded if EBITDA margin
improves to higher than 20%, and excess cash is used to reduce debt
resulting in a debt-to-Ebitda ratio below 3 times.

On the contrary, the ratings would experience downward pressure if the
expected improvement in margins and overall profitability were not reached
due to stronger-than-anticipated competitive pressures or if cash is not
used to reduce debt.

Headquartered in Buenos Aires, Telefonica Moviles Argentina S.A. is the
mobile arm in Argentina of Spanish Telefonica, with estimated annual
revenues of more than ARS4.5 billion, and an estimated market share of 38%.




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


COMPLETE RETREATS: Selects Donlin Recano as Claims Agent
--------------------------------------------------------
In August 2006, Complete Retreats LLC and its debtor-affiliates
sought the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Connecticut's
permission to employ XRoads Case Management Services, LLC, as their claims,
notice, and balloting agent until Sept. 30, 2006.

The Debtors then voluntarily withdrew the XCM Retention
Application after discussions with their counsel and the U.S.
Trustee, and asked the Court pursuant to Section 363 of the
Bankruptcy Code for authority to employ XCM as their claims and
noticing agent until Sept. 30, 2006.

Accordingly, the Debtors ask the Court's permission pursuant
to Section 156(c) of the Judiciary and Judicial Procedure Code to employ
Donlin, Recano & Company, Inc., as their claims, notice, and balloting
agent, nunc pro tunc to Sept. 27, 2006.

XCM has informed the Debtors that it will assist Donlin Recano
during the transition of the claims, noticing, and balloting
services, Holly Felder Etlin, the Debtors' chief restructuring
officer, relates.

The Debtors have more than 5,000 creditors and other potential
parties-in-interest.  The Debtors believe that the Bankruptcy
Clerk's Office is not equipped to (i) distribute notices, (ii)
process all of the proofs of claim filed in the Chapter 11 cases, and (iii)
assist in the balloting process.

According to Ms. Etlin, the Debtors chose Donlin Recano based on
its experience and the competitiveness of its fees.  Ms. Etlin
notes that Donlin Recano has provided identical or substantially
similar services that the Debtors seek from it in other large
Chapter 11 cases.

As the Debtors' claims, notice, and balloting agent, Donlin
Recano will:

   (a) design, maintain, and administer a claims database;

   (b) provide copy and notice service consistent with the
       applicable local bankruptcy rules;

   (c) file with the Bankruptcy Clerk an affidavit or
       certificate of service that includes a copy of the
       notice, a list of persons to whom it was mailed, and the
       date the notice was mailed;

   (d) docket all claims received, maintain the official claims
       registers for each of the Debtors, and provide the Clerk
       with certified duplicate unofficial Claims Registers on a
       monthly basis, unless otherwise directed;

   (e) specify for each claim docketed in the applicable Claims
       Register:

         * the claim number assigned,

         * the date received,

         * the claimant's name and address or that of the agent
           who filed the claim,

         * the filed claim amount, if liquidated, and

         * the classification of the claim;

   (f) record and provide notices of all claims transfers as
       required by Rule 3001 of the Federal Rules of Bankruptcy
       Procedure;

   (g) make changes in the Claims Register pursuant to an order
       of the Court;

   (h) turn over to the Clerk copies of the Claims Registers for
       the Clerk's review upon completion of the docketing
       process for all claims received to date by the Clerk's
       office;

   (i) maintain the Claims Register for public examination
       without charge during regular business hours;

   (j) maintain the official mailing list for each Debtor of all
       entities that have filed a proof of claim and make the
       list available to parties-in-interest or the Clerk upon
       their request;

   (k) assist with, among other things, solicitation,
       calculation, and tabulation of votes and distribution;
       and

   (l) provide and maintain a web site where parties can view
       the claims filed, status of claims, and pleadings or
       other documents filed with the Court by the Debtors;

   (m) box and transport all original documents in proper
       format, as provided by the Clerk's office, to the Federal
       Records Center at the close of the Debtors' bankruptcy
       cases.

The Debtors will pay for Donlin Recano's consulting services at
these hourly rates:

   Professional                          Hourly Rate
   ------------                          -----------
   Principals                            US$250
   Sr. Bankruptcy Consultant/Attorneys   US$170 to US$230
   Bankruptcy Analysts                   US$130 to US$155
   Programming Consultants               US$135
   Case Administrators                   US$65
   Data Encoders                         US$35

The Debtors ask the Court to treat Donlin Recano's fees and
expenses as an administrative expense of their estates.  The
Debtors further ask the Court for permission to pay Donlin
Recano's fees and expenses in the ordinary course of business
without the need for Donlin Recano to seek the Court's approval
of its fees and expenses.

Donlin Recano will maintain records of all services provided to
the Debtors, showing dates, categories of services, fees charged, and
expenses incurred and that it will serve monthly invoices on the counsel of
the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors and any other official
committees that may be appointed in the Debtors' Chapter 11 cases.

In the event the Debtors' cases are converted to cases under
Chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy Code, the Debtors seek the Court's
permission to continue to pay Donlin Recano for its services
until the claims filed in the cases have been completely
processed.  Moreover, if claims agent representation is necessary in the
converted Chapter 7 cases, the Debtors ask to continue paying Donlin
Recano's fees and expenses in accordance with Section 156(c).

Louis A. Recano, a principal of Donlin, Recano & Company, Inc.,
assures the Court that his firm neither holds nor represents any
interest adverse to the Debtors' respective estates on matters
for which it is to be employed and that it has no prior
connection with the Debtors.  Donlin Recano is a "disinterested
person" within the meaning of Section 101(14) of the Bankruptcy
Code, Mr. Recano asserts.

                  About Complete Retreats

Complete Retreats, LLC, Preferred Retreats, LLC, and their
subsidiaries were founded in 1998.  Owned by Robert McGrath and
four minority owners, the companies operate a five-star
hospitality and real estate management business and are a
pioneer and market leader of the "destination club" industry.
Under the trade name "Tanner & Haley Resorts," Complete
Retreats, et al.'s destination clubs have numerous individual
and company members.

Destination club members pay up-front membership deposits,
annual dues, and daily usage fees.  In return, members and their
guests enjoy the use of first-class private residences, and
receive an array of luxurious services and amenities in certain
exotic vacation destinations in the United States and locations
around the world, including: Abaco, Bahamas; Cabo San Lucas,
Mexico; Nevis, West Indies; Telluride, Colorado; and Jackson
Hole, Wyoming.

Complete Retreats and its debtor-affiliates filed for chapter 11
protection on July 23, 2006 (Bankr. D. Conn. Case No. 06-50245
through 06-50306).  Nicholas H. Mancuso, Esq., Jeffrey K. Daman,
Esq., Joel H. Levitin, Esq., David C. McGrail, Esq., Richard A.
Stieglitz Jr., Esq., at Dechert LLP, are representing the
Debtors in their restructuring efforts.  Xroads Solutions Group,
LLC, is the Debtors financial and restructuring advisor.  When
the Debtors filed for chapter 11 protection, they listed total
debts of US$308,000,000.  (Complete Retreats Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 10;
Bankruptcy Creditors' Service Inc., http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or
215/945-7000).


COMPLETE RETREATS: Wants Removal Period Extended to Jan. 19
-----------------------------------------------------------
As of their bankruptcy filing, Complete Retreats LLC and its
debtor-affiliates were involved in approximately 21 state
proceedings pending in courts throughout the country.

Pursuant to Section 1452 of the Judicial Procedures Code, "a
party may remove any claim or cause of action in a civil action
other than a proceeding before the United States Tax Court or a
civil action by a governmental unit to enforce police or
regulatory power, to the district court for the district where
such civil action is pending, if such district court has
jurisdiction of such claim or cause of section 1334 of this
title."

Under Rule 9027 of the Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure, if
a claim or cause of action is pending when a bankruptcy case is
commenced, a notice of removal "may be filed in the bankruptcy
court only within . . .  90 days after the order for relief."
The Debtors' removal period is scheduled to expire on
Oct. 21, 2006, Mr. Daman notes.

Accordingly, the Debtors ask the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the
District of Connecticut to extend the deadline by which they may
seek to remove the Proceedings through and including
Jan. 19, 2007, without prejudice to their right to seek further extensions
of the removal period.

Jeffrey K. Daman, Esq., at Dechert LLP, in Hartford, Connecticut, relates
that due to the complexity and rapidity of their Chapter 11 cases, the
Debtors have not completed a thorough review of the Proceedings to determine
whether any individual actions should be removed under Bankruptcy Rule
9027(a).

Mr. Daman expounds that the Debtors have focused primarily on:

   (1) stabilizing their business;

   (2) responding to a multitude of creditor inquiries;

   (3) addressing a variety of creditor concerns; and

   (4) working towards negotiating a potential consensual plan
       of reorganization.

The extension will afford the Debtors sufficient opportunity to
assess whether the actions can and should be removed, thereby
protecting the Debtors' right to adjudicate lawsuits pursuant to
Section 1452, Mr. Daman asserts.

The Debtors' adversaries will not be prejudiced by the extension, as they
may not prosecute the actions absent relief from the automatic stay, Mr.
Daman explains.  Furthermore, the extension will not prejudice any party to
a proceeding that the Debtors seek to remove from pursuing a remand pursuant
to Section 1452(b).

                  About Complete Retreats

Complete Retreats, LLC, Preferred Retreats, LLC, and their
subsidiaries were founded in 1998.  Owned by Robert McGrath and
four minority owners, the companies operate a five-star
hospitality and real estate management business and are a
pioneer and market leader of the "destination club" industry.
Under the trade name "Tanner & Haley Resorts," Complete
Retreats, et al.'s destination clubs have numerous individual
and company members.

Destination club members pay up-front membership deposits,
annual dues, and daily usage fees.  In return, members and their
guests enjoy the use of first-class private residences, and
receive an array of luxurious services and amenities in certain
exotic vacation destinations in the United States and locations
around the world, including: Abaco, Bahamas; Cabo San Lucas,
Mexico; Nevis, West Indies; Telluride, Colorado; and Jackson
Hole, Wyoming.

Complete Retreats and its debtor-affiliates filed for chapter 11
protection on July 23, 2006 (Bankr. D. Conn. Case No. 06-50245
through 06-50306).  Nicholas H. Mancuso, Esq., Jeffrey K. Daman,
Esq., Joel H. Levitin, Esq., David C. McGrail, Esq., Richard A.
Stieglitz Jr., Esq., at Dechert LLP, are representing the
Debtors in their restructuring efforts.  Xroads Solutions Group,
LLC, is the Debtors financial and restructuring advisor.  When
the Debtors filed for chapter 11 protection, they listed total
debts of US$308,000,000.  (Complete Retreats Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 10;
Bankruptcy Creditors' Service Inc., http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or
215/945-7000).


KERZNER INT: CEO Butch Kerzner Died in Helicopter Accident
----------------------------------------------------------
Butch Kerzner, CEO of Kerzner International Holdings Ltd., was in a
helicopter accident on Oct. 11, 2006, while surveying potential development
sites for the company in the Dominican Republic.  He was onboard with one
additional passenger and two pilots.  There were no survivors of the crash.

It is with great sadness that the company reports the tragic loss of Butch
Kerzner.  Sol Kerzner, Chairman and founder of the Company and father of
Butch Kerzner, is en route to the Dominican Republic, after which he will
immediately return to the Company's headquarters in The Bahamas.

Paul O'Neil, former CEO of the company's Paradise Island business, its
largest operations, and a current member of the company's Board of
Directors, has been appointed acting CEO of the company, effective
immediately.  The company will provide further information as it becomes
available.

Butch Kerzner, 42, was appointed CEO in January 2004 and is survived by his
wife and two young children.

Kerzner International Limited -- http://www.kerzner.com--  
through its subsidiaries, is a leading international developer
and operator of destination resorts, casinos and luxury hotels.
The company's flagship brand is Atlantis, which includes
Atlantis, Paradise Island, a 2,317-room, ocean-themed
destination resort located on Paradise Island, The Bahamas -- a
unique property featuring three interconnected hotel towers
built around a seven-acre lagoon and a 34-acre marine
environment that includes the world's largest open-air marine
habitat.  The resort is also home to the largest casino in the
Caribbean.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Sept. 8, 2006, Moody's
withdrew these ratings of Kerzner International Limited:

   -- Corporate family rating;

   -- US$400 million 6.75% Senior Subordinated Notes due 2015;
      and

   -- Senior Subordinated debt shelf.


WINN-DIXIE: Wants Court to Approve Del Monte Stipulation
--------------------------------------------------------
Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc., and its debtor-affiliates ask the U.S.
Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Florida to approve
their stipulation with Del Monte Corp.

Del Monte Corp., doing business as Del Monte Foods, provides
various products for the Debtors' retail grocery stores.

Following the Debtors' bankruptcy filing, Del Monte entered into
an agreement with the Debtors, under which Del Monte is bound to a
Court-approved stipulation between the Debtors and their trade
vendors regarding reconciliation and treatment of trade vendors'
reclamation claims.  Pursuant to their Agreement:

   -- Del Monte was granted a net allowed reclamation claim for
      US$435,855;

   -- The Debtors waived all preference claims against Del
      Monte; and

   -- Del Monte agreed that reconciled non-reclamation,
      prepetition vendor receivables and allowances will be set
      off against its unsecured claim and it will remit to the
      Debtors any excess amounts.

Del Monte filed Claim Nos. 4251 to 4258, 6434, and 6435, each in
an amount not less than US$616,168 against different Debtors.

In their 21st Omnibus Objection, the Debtors sought to disallow
Claim Nos. 4251 to 4255, 4257, 4258, 6434, and 6435 on grounds
that they duplicate the liability of Claim No. 4256.

D.J. Baker, Esq., at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, in New York,
relates that the parties have agreed to resolve the
claims dispute and all issues relating to the application of
credits and set-offs against Del Monte invoices for various
products delivered to the Debtors through the period ending on
Oct. 3, 2005.  The parties agree:

   (1) Del Monte acknowledges that it has received reclamation
       payments totaling US$435,855 with respect to its
       reclamation claim against the Debtors;

   (2) After application of reclamation payments totaling
       US$435,855, the remaining amount of Claim No. 4256 will
       be set off against the Debtors' accrued prepetition
       credits and the claim will be reduced to zero;

   (3) Upon the Court's approval of the stipulation, Claim No.
       4251 to 4258, 6434, and 6435 are disallowed in their
       entirety, to the extend not already disallowed by
       previous Court orders; and

   (4) Del Monte will pay the Debtors US$1,066,570 for
       overpayments and other adjustments via wire transfer
       within three days after its receipt of the final,
       non-appealable order approving the stipulation and the
       Debtors' wire transfer instructions.

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 527 stores in Florida,
Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, and Mississippi.  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. 55; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc.,
http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000).


WINN-DIXIE: Wants Prepetition Supply Pact with Rexall Rejected
--------------------------------------------------------------
Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc., and its debtor-affiliates ask the U.S.
Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Florida to approve

   (x) the rejection of the Prepetition Supply Agreement
       effective as of Oct. 12, 2006, and

   (y) the agreed resolution of Rexall Sundown, Inc., and its
       affiliates' claims.

Before the Debtors filed for bankruptcy, they purchased
nutritional supplements and vitamins from Rexall Sundown, Inc.
The parties' prepetition supply agreement was to remain in effect until the
Debtors achieved US$20,000,000 in net sales from Rexall.

As part of the Prepetition Supply Agreement, the Debtors were
required to carry 115 SKUs of Rexall products.  If the SKU count
was not maintained or the contract terminated before the Debtors
achieve US$20,000,000 in net sales of all Rexall products, the
Debtors were obligated to repay the US$2,000,000 in credit memos
and free goods provided by Rexall, on a prorated basis, in
accordance with the ratio between the amount of net sales and
US$20,000,000.

Cynthia C. Jackson, Esq., at Smith Hulsey & Busey, in
Jacksonville, Florida, says that the Debtors have not satisfied
the volume requirement in four plus years.

The Debtors say they wish to continue their relationship with
Rexall and its affiliates but the terms of their contract are no
longer economically feasible.  Thus, the Debtors have decided to
reject the Prepetition Supply Agreement.

The Debtors have negotiated with Rexall for the rejection of the
Prepetition Supply Agreement on these terms:

    -- The Prepetition Supply Agreement will be rejected in
       favor of a new contract with U.S. Nutrition, Inc.,
       Rexall's parent company;

    -- U.S. Nutrition, on behalf of Rexall, has agreed to waive
       all claims for rejection damages, including repayment for
       amounts due as a result of failure to meet sales
       requirements;

    -- Claim No. 10201 filed by Rexall will be allowed as a non-
       priority unsecured claim for US$652,000;

    -- Claim No. 10201 filed by NBTY, Inc., will be allowed as a
       non-priority unsecured claim for US$16,752;

    -- Claim No. 10207 filed by Nature's Bounty, Inc., will be
       allowed as a non-priority unsecured claim for US$21,633;
       and

    -- Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc., Scheduled Claim No. 35415 for
       US$599,679, in favor of behalf of Rexall, and Winn-Dixie
       Procurement, Inc., Scheduled Claim No. 35159 for
       US$25,017, in favor of Nature's Bounty, will be
       disallowed and expunged in their entirety.

According to Ms. Jackson, the new three-year supply agreement is
favorable to the Debtors because it does not obligate them to
purchase a minimum value of products.  The New Agreement also (i) expands
the product line to include Knox Products and Nature's Bounty, (ii)
decreases the required number of SKUs from 115 to 105, and (iii) waives the
US$2,000,000 in repayments.

The New Agreement, which will take effect upon the rejection of
the Prepetition Supply Agreement, may be terminated by the
Debtors without liability if their Joint Plan of Reorganization
is not confirmed or does not become effective before
Dec. 31, 2006.

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 527 stores in Florida,
Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, and Mississippi.  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. 55; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc.,
http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000).




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


REFCO INC: FXCM Says Disclosure Statement Is Silent on Interest
---------------------------------------------------------------
Forex Capital Markets, LLC, complains that the Disclosure
Statement explaining the Refco, Inc., and its debtor-affiliates'
Plan of Reorganization is silent on the Debtors' efforts to sell
their 35% membership interest in FXCM and certain of its
affiliates.

FXCM contends that information concerning the Debtors' plans with regard to
the FXCM Interests is part of the information that would enable a
hypothetical investor typical of the holders of claims against the Debtors
to make an informed judgment about the Plan.

FXCM acts as a dealer in over-the-counter spot foreign currency
contracts and foreign currency options contracts.  FXCM develops
and operates Internet-based, proprietary trading systems and
platforms for the purpose of engaging in Forex Transactions as a
dealer opposite counter parties or customers.

FXCM asserts an US$8,500,000 prepetition claim against certain
Debtors for certain services rendered pursuant to a 2003
Facilities Management Agreement.  FXCM also asserts prepetition
unliquidated claims for fraud and breach of warranty against
certain Debtors and a US$473,000 administrative expense claim.

FXCM asserts that approval of the Disclosure Statement should be
conditioned on the inclusion of a reasonably detailed discussion
of the disposition of the FXCM Interests under the Plan as well
as who will exercise all corporate governance rights, if any,
under applicable documents following the Plan effective date in
the event the FXCM Interests are not sold to a third party prior
to the Effective Date.

FXCM also wants the Debtors to discuss their views regarding the
prospects of a sale of the FXCM Interests to a third party and
describe actions, if any, that they have taken to market the
Interests over the past three months.

The Debtors delivered their Amended Plan of Reorganization and
accompanying Disclosure Statement to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the
Southern District of New York on October 6, 2006.  The Amended Disclosure
Statement remains silent on FXCM's concerns.

FXCM tried to purchase those Interests back from the Debtors for
US$110,000,000.  The transaction, however, was successfully blocked by the
Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors and Bank of America, N.A., the
agent for the Debtors' prepetition senior secured lenders.  They argued that
the purchase price was too low.  FXCM tried to negotiate a bargain with the
Objecting
Parties to no avail.

In July 2006, FXCM commenced an adversary action to recover
US$1,000,000 that the Debtors failed to return.

                      About Refco Inc.

Based in New York, Refco Inc. -- http://www.refco.com/-- is a
diversified financial services organization with operations in 14 countries
and an extensive global institutional and retail client base.  Refco's
worldwide subsidiaries are members of principal U.S. and international
exchanges, and are among the most active members of futures exchanges in
Chicago, New York, London and Singapore.  In addition to its futures
brokerage activities, Refco is a major broker of cash market products,
including foreign exchange, foreign exchange options, government securities,
domestic and international equities, emerging market debt, and OTC financial
and commodity products.  Refco is one of the largest global clearing firms
for derivatives.

The Company and 23 of its affiliates filed for chapter 11
protection on Oct. 17, 2005 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Case No. 05-60006).
J. Gregory Milmoe, Esq., at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom
LLP, represent the Debtors in their restructuring efforts.  Luc A. Despins,
Esq., at Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP, represents the Official
Committee of Unsecured Creditors.  Refco reported US$16.5 billion in assets
and US$16.8 billion in debts to the Bankruptcy Court on the first day of its
chapter 11 cases.

Refco LLC, an affiliate, filed for chapter 7 protection on
Nov. 25, 2005 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Case No. 05-60134).  Refco, LLC, is a
regulated commodity futures company that has businesses in the United
States, London, Asia and Canada.  Refco, LLC, filed for bankruptcy
protection in order to consummate the sale of
substantially all of its assets to Man Financial Inc., a wholly
owned subsidiary of Man Group plc.  Albert Togut, the chapter 7
trustee, is represented by Togut, Segal & Segal LLP.

On April 13, 2006, the Court appointed Marc S. Kirschner as Refco Capital
Markets Ltd.'s chapter 11 trustee.  Mr. Kirschner is represented by Bingham
McCutchen LLP.  RCM is Refco's operating subsidiary based in Bermuda.

Three more affiliates of Refco, Westminster-Refco Management LLC, Refco
Managed Futures LLC, and Lind-Waldock Securities LLC, filed for chapter 11
protection on June 6, 2006 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Case Nos. 06-11260 through
06-11262).  (Refco Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 44; Bankruptcy Creditors'
Service, Inc.,
http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000)


SEA CONTAINERS: Bankruptcy Threat Lowers Bond Price
---------------------------------------------------
Bloomberg News reports a decline in the price of bonds issued by Sea
Containers Ltd.  On Oct. 11, the company's 10-3/4 US$115 million bonds
traded at 70.5 cents on the dollar.

Sea Containers told Bloomberg it may not be able to repay the securities.

"Most holders are now assuming a bankruptcy," John Parker, a debt analyst at
Jefferies & Co. said in an interview with Bloomberg.  "Sea Containers' bonds
are falling as investors reduce their recovery expectations."

Also, Sea Containers' US$150 million of 7.875% notes due 2008 fell 7.5 cents
to 76 cents on the dollar to yield 31 percent, Bloomberg says, citing data
from Trace, the bond-price reporting system of the NASD.

The debt is rated Caa3 by Moody's Investors Service and CC by Standard &
Poor's.

Shares of the company fell 26 cents to 72 cents. They traded as high as
US$21.44 as recently as March 2005.

London-based Sea Containers -- http://www.seacontainers.com/--  
engages in passenger and freight transport and marine container
leasing.  The Bermuda registered company is primarily owned by
U.S. shareholders and its common shares have been listed on the
New York Stock Exchange (SCRA and SCRB) since 1974.

Through its GNER subsidiary, Sea Containers Passenger Transport
operates Britain's fastest railway, the Great North Eastern
Railway, linking England and Scotland.  It also conducts ferry
operations, serving Finland and Estonia as well as a commuter
service between New York and New Jersey in the U.S.




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


AES CORP: Says Debt Payments Are Up to Date
-------------------------------------------
"(AES Corp.) is right up to date with (debt) payments," a bank spokesperson
told Business News Americas.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on Oct. 9, 2006,
Brazilian power group Brasiliana said in a filing with Bovespa -- the Sao
Paulo stock exchange -- that parent firm AES Corp. paid down the BRL1.3
billion owed to Banco Nacional Desenvolvimento Economico e Social SA.  The
payment was made by cashing in 11-year convertible debentures that were
issued to Banco Nacional in December 2003, as part of a US$1.2-billion
debt-for-equity settlement.  The cash used to pay Banco Nacional was raised
from a September 2006 offering of Eletropaulo stock in Brazil and abroad.

BNamericas relates that under an agreement Banco Nacional acquired stakes in
AES Corp.'s local units through a 49.99% stake in Brasiliana.  The units
are:

          -- Eletropaulo,
          -- AES Tiete, and
          -- Infoenergy.

AES Corp. controls the units through a 50.01% stake in Brasiliana.

AES Corp. -- http://www.aes.com/-- is a global power company.
The Company operates in South America, Europe, Africa, Asia and
the Caribbean countries.  Generating 44,000 megawatts of
electricity through 124 power facilities, the company delivers
electricity through 15 distribution companies.

AES's Latin America business group is comprised of generation
plants and electric utilities in Argentina, Brazil, Chile,
Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Panama and Venezuela.
Fuels include biomass, diesel, coal, gas and hydro.  The group
also pursues business development activities in the region.  AES
has been in the region since May 1993, when it acquired the CTSN
power plant in Argentina.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on May 25, Fitch
affirmed The AES Corporation's Issuer Default Rating at 'B+'.
Fitch also affirmed and withdrew the ratings for the company's
junior convertible debt.  Fitch said the rating outlook for all
remaining instruments is stable.

In March, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services raised its
corporate credit rating on diversified energy company The AES
Corp. to 'BB-' from 'B+'.  S&P said the outlook is stable.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Jan. 11, Moody's
affirmed the ratings of The AES Corporation, including its Ba3
Corporate Family Rating and the B1 rating on its senior
unsecured debt.  Moody's said the rating outlook remains stable.


BANCO DO BRASIL: Workers Refuse Pay Hike Offer from Fenaban
-----------------------------------------------------------
Workers of Banco do Brasil refused a new pay offer from Fenaban, a
federation of banks in Brazil, and will continue protesting, Business News
Americas reports.

BNamericas relates that a nationwide strike started on Oct. 5 when
negotiations between workers and the private sector banks failed.  Reports
say that about 190,000 of the country's 400,000 bank employees attended the
sessions.

According to BNamericas, Fenaban had proposed to increase workers' salary by
3.5% instead of the initial 2.85%, plus a one-time bonus and a bigger share
of profits.

BNamericas notes that the protesting workers had wanted a 7.05% salary hike,
plus the one-time bonus and more of the profits.

Bank employees had secured in 2005 a 6% salary increase after a strike that
lasted for six days, BNamericas reports.

                        *    *    *

As reported on Mar. 3, 2006, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services
raised its foreign currency counter party credit ratings on Banco do Brasil
S.A. to 'BB' from 'BB-'.  The foreign and local
currency ratings of this bank are now equalized at 'BB'.  S&P
said the outlook is stable.


BANCO ITAU: Gets Favorable Ruling from World IP Organization
------------------------------------------------------------
The World Intellectual Property Organization ruled in favor of Banco Itau
Holding Financeira SA in an Internet domain name dispute, Business News
America reports.

BNamericas relates that a woman in Sao Paulo had registered accented domain
names bancoitau.com and itaupersonnalitie.com.  The woman, whose name was
not disclosed, had asked Banco Itau to pay US$25,000 for the rights, as the
company uses almost identical domain names for its Internet services but
without "accents."

Banco Itau then brought the case before the World Intellectual Property
Organization, BNamericas notes.

The organization ruled that the woman had registered domain names that were
confusingly similar to the Banco Itau trademark.  The organization said that
the woman had no legitimate interest in the names and had used the
registration in bad faith to acquire money, BNamericas states.

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.

                        *    *    *

Fitch affirmed on Aug. 28, 2006, the ratings of the Itau Group
of banks and the National Long- and Short-term ratings of
BankBoston Banco Multiplo S.A. and its subsidiary, BankBoston
Leasing S.A. -- Arrendamento Mercantil (BankBoston Leasing).
This followed the conclusion of the agreement between Banco Itau
Holding Financeira with Bank of America Corp. to acquire BAC's
Brazilian operations (spearheaded by BKB) and its Latin American
subsidiaries.  Central Bank of Brazil approved the BKB
transaction on Aug. 22, 2006, and the acquisition of the local
subsidiaries of BAC is contingent on approval by the Chilean and
Uruguayan regulatory authorities.

The affected ratings of Banco Itau were:

   Banco Itau Holding Financiera

      -- Foreign currency IDR affirmed at 'BB+', Stable Outlook

      -- Short-term foreign currency rating affirmed at 'B'

      -- Local currency IDR affirmed at 'BBB-' (BBB minus),
         Stable Outlook

      -- Short-term local currency rating affirmed at 'F3'

      -- Individual rating affirmed at 'B/C'

      -- National Long-term rating affirmed at 'AA+(bra)',
         Stable Outlook

      -- National Short-term rating affirmed at 'F1+(bra)'

      -- Support rating affirmed at '4'


BANCO NACIONAL: Implements New Bank Card Regulations
----------------------------------------------------
Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Economico e Social aka BNDES President
Demian Fiocca disclosed changes in the bank's card that will expand its
scope.  The new regulation, which will implement changes in the Bank's
Operating Policies, provides for the possibility of distributors selling
goods registered at BNDES' site directly to the Card's clients -- under due
approval by manufacturers.  Previously, sales through BNDES Card were only
made by manufacturers.  Now, sales may also be made by authorized
distributors.

BNDES will also accept the resale of goods purchased before their payment.
Until now, sales could only be made after the payment of all financing
installments.  The end of such restriction will:

   -- allow more agility in the operations of micro, small and
      medium enterprises or the MSMEs,

   -- target the public of the credit instrument, and

   -- allow small merchants to use BNDES Card credit to purchase
      and resell equipment.

According to Pres. Fiocca, the possibility of reselling goods purchased
using the card "was a big demand from commercial associations in Brazil".
"Previously, the merchant could not use the card as a working capital
instrument," he said.

Since the beginning of its operation, in 2003, the number of cards issued
reached 91,455, of which 80% were used by micro businessmen. Accredited
suppliers amount to 3,100.  There are already 39,100 products available for
purchase, including computers, vehicles (light pickups, motorcycles and
bodies) and commercial automation (fiscal printers, cash registers, scales).

Fiesp Pres. Paulo Skaf and Pres. Fiocca signed a letter of principles for a
performance of partnership between BNDES and Sebrae.  The deal calls for the
agency to operate as a BNDES agent, disclosing its financing lines, mainly
to micro, small and medium enterprises.  Pres. Skaf foresees that the
convention will expand BNDES advanced offices in the State of Sao Paulo,
going from 16 to over 100 the current number of Sebrae's offices in all
interior of the State.

                        *    *    *

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.


BERTIN: S&P Says High Debt Leverage Constrains Ratings
------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services says that Bertin Ltda. (B+/Stable/--) has
reported growing funds from operations (FFO) in the past few quarters,
supported by its enlarged capacity and stronger operating margins.
Nevertheless, that has been practically offset by the significant increase
in debt levels associated with its growing capital expenditure and working
capital requirements, which continue to be a major constraint on the
ratings.

Bertin reported EBITDA margin of 12.9% in the 12 months ended June 2006, up
from 10.5% reported in full-year 2005, while its FFO-to-total debt ratio
remained practically stable at about 21%.  Taking into account the company's
recently issued US$250 million senior secured bonds, Standard & Poor's
expects Bertin to report total debt-to-EBITDA and EBITDA-to-interest
coverage ratios of approximately 5.0x and 2.0x, respectively, and negative
free operating cash flow generation by year end 2006.


BUCKEYE TECH: Expects 10 Cents Per Share Profit for July to Sep.
----------------------------------------------------------------
Buckeye Technologies Inc. expects its profitability for the July to
September quarter to be about 10 cents per share.

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer John B. Crowe said, "Our first quarter
net sales were up 16% compared to the same period last year.  The
improvement is a combination of good volume, higher prices and better mix.
Demand for our specialty wood and cotton products, nonwoven materials and
fluff pulp were all strong during the quarter."

Headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee, Buckeye Technologies, Inc.
(NYSE:BKI) -- http://www.bkitech.com/-- is a leading
manufacturer and marketer of specialty fibers and nonwoven
materials.  The Company currently operates facilities in the
United States, Germany, Canada, and Brazil.  Its products are
sold worldwide to makers of consumer and industrial goods.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on March 9, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services revised its outlook on
Buckeye Technologies Inc. to negative from stable.  At the same
time, Standard & Poor's affirmed its ratings, including the
'BB-' corporate credit rating, on the Memphis, Tennessee-based
specialty pulp producer.


CAIXA ECONOMICA: Workers Refuse Pay Hike Offer from Fenaban
-----------------------------------------------------------
Workers of Caixa Economica Federal refused a new pay offer from Fenaban, a
federation of banks in Brazil, and will continue protesting, Business News
Americas reports.

BNamericas relates that a nationwide strike started on Oct. 5 when
negotiations between workers and the private sector banks failed.  Reports
say that about 190,000 of the country's 400,000 bank employees attended the
sessions.

According to BNamericas, Fenaban had proposed to increase workers' salary by
3.5% instead of the initial 2.85%, plus a one-time bonus and a bigger share
of profits.

BNamericas notes that the protesting workers had wanted a 7.05% salary hike,
plus the one-time bonus and more of the profits.

Bank employees had secured in 2005 a 6% salary increase after a strike that
lasted for six days, BNamericas reports.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Sept. 4, 2006, Moody's Investors Service upgraded these ratings
of Caixa Economica Federal:

   -- long-term foreign currency deposits to Ba3 from Ba1; and

   -- long- and short-term global local currency deposit ratings
      to A1/Prime-1 from A3/Prime-2.

Moody'said the ratings outlook is stable.


COMPANHIA PARANAENSE: Unit Inks Supply Contract with Hughes
-----------------------------------------------------------
Copel Telecom, a unit of Companhia Paranaense de Energia aka Copel, has
signed a supply contract with Hughes Network Systems, the latter said in a
statement.

Business News Americas relates that Hughes will provide Copel Telecom with
800 Very Small Aperture Terminal satellite terminals to deliver Internet in
areas where the Copel Telecom has no fiber optic infrastructure.

Hughes, says BNamericas, will help Copel Telecom link about 2,100 education
institutes in small cities and rural areas by the end of 2006, as part of
the Parana state government's digital inclusion project.

                About Hughes Network Systems

Headquartered in Germantown, Maryland, Hughes Network Systems, LLC, is a
provider of broadband satellite networks and services for large enterprises,
governments, small businesses, and consumers.  HughesNet encompasses all
broadband solutions and managed services from Hughes, bridging the best of
satellite and terrestrial technologies.  Hughes has shipped over 1,000,000
systems to clients in over 100 countries.  Its broadband satellite products
are based on the IPoS (IP over Satellite) global standard, approved by the
TIA, ETSI, and ITU standards organizations.

                         About Copel

Headquartered in Parana, Brazil, COPEL aka Companhia Paranaense
de Energia SA -- http://www.copel.com/-- transmits and
distributes electricity to more than 3 million customers in the
state of Paran and has a generating capacity of nearly 4,600 MW,
primarily from hydroelectric plants.  COPEL also offers
telecommunications, natural gas, engineering, and water and
sanitation services.  The company restructured its utility
operations in 2001 into separate generation, transmission, and
distribution subsidiaries to prepare for full privatization,
which has been indefinitly postponed.  In response, COPEL is
re-evaluating its corporate structure.  The government of Parana
controls about 59% of COPEL.

                        *    *    *

Copel's BRL100,000,000 debentures due March 1, 2007, is rated
Ba3 by Moody's.


COMPANHIA SIDERURGICA: Analyst Says Firm Won't Bid for Corus
------------------------------------------------------------
Pedro Galdi, an investment analyst with ABN Amro Real Corretora, told
Business News Americas that Companhia Siderurgica Nacional is not likely to
bid for Corus, an Anglo-Dutch steel group, but would rather focus on ongoing
investments.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on Oct. 11, 2006,
rumors say that Companhia Siderurgica might participate in an auction to
acquire Corus.  As previously reported, Companhia Siderurgica signed a sale
and purchase agreement with Corus Group Plc through its subsidiary Corus
Staal B.V., for the acquisition of total control of Lusosider Projectos
Siderurgicos S.A.  Companhia Siderurugica shared equally the Lusosider
control with Corus.  The conclusion of the acquisition was subject to
regulatory clearance by the Portuguese Competition Authority, expected
within 45 days of filing.

India's Daily News & Analysis also reported that Companhia Siderurgica could
present a bid for Corus' controlling stake.

Mr. Galdi told BNamericas, "Corus has tried to acquire CSN (Companhia
Siderurgica) in the past, and later on the two companies tried to merge."

However, the merger between Corus and Companhia Siderurgica failed,
BNamericas says, citing Mr. Galdi.

Mr. Galdi explained to BNamericas that Corus has made clear its interest in
merging or selling its assets.

"I believe Corus' assets would be welcomed by CSN but the problem would be
that CSN is, at this moment, making heavy investments in new businesses,"
Mr. Galdi told BNamericas.

According to BNamericas, Companhia Siderurgica disclosed this year its plans
to deploy a steel mill in Minas Gerais or Rio de Janeiro, in addition to
another steel project in Itaguai, Rio de Janeiro.  The company will also
invest US$113 million for the construction of a long steel project in Rio de
Janeiro.

Companhia Siderurgica is expanding its Casa de Pedra iron ore mine in Minas
Gerais.  It will be installing a cement plant in Rio de Janeiro.  Meanwhile,
Companhia Siderurgica is negotiation with Wheeling-Pittsburgh, a steel
producer in the United States, for a possible merger of the two firms' North
American assets.

"I do not think this is an appropriate moment for CSN to launch an offer for
Corus, but anything can happen," Mr. Galdi told BNamericas.

Companhia Siderurgica Nacional is one of the lowest-cost steel
producers in the world, which is a result of its access to
proprietary, high-quality iron ore (at the Casa de Pedra mine);
self-sufficiency in energy; streamlined facilities; and
logistics advantages.  This is in addition to the group's strong
market position in the fairly concentrated steel industry in
Brazil.

                        *    *    *

On Jan. 26, 2006, Standard and Poor's Rating Services assigned a
'BB' corporate credit rating on Brazilian flat carbon steelmaker
Companhia Siderurgica Nacional.

The 'BB' corporate credit rating on Companhia Siderurgica reflects the
company's exposure to volatile demand and price cycles, increasing
competition in its home and predominant market of Brazil, aggressive
dividend policy and capital investment plan, and sizable gross-debt
position.  These risks are partly offset by Companhia Siderurgica's
privileged cost position and sound operating profile, favorable market
position in Brazil, strong export capabilities to offset occasional domestic
demand sluggishness, and increasing business diversification.


COSAN SA: S&P Expects Gradual Growth in Operating Cash Flows
------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's says Cosan S.A. Industria e Comercio (BB/Stable/-- )
reported positive results during first-quarter 2007 (May-July 2006)-sales of
US$430 million, or 42% of total sales reported in fiscal 2006, and EBITDA
margin of 29%, compared to 21% in 2006-suggest some recovery in performance
during the current fiscal year.

Cosan should continue to benefit from the positive outlook for the global
sugar and ethanol industries, while it continues to seek alternatives to
grow organically and through acquisitions.  Conversely, international sugar
prices should remain under pressure due to the expectations of excess of
sugar supply, fueled by high-yield harvests in Asia and Brazil and high
levels of subsidized sugar from Europe.  All in all, Standard & Poor's
expects Cosan to report gradual growth of free operating cash flows, which
should be more than sufficient to meet debt maturities up to 2009.


JBS SA: S&P Comments on Successful Bond Issuance for US$300 Mil.
----------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's says JBS S.A. (B+/Stable/--) succesfully placed its US$300
million 10-year bonds in July 2006, which will further improve the company's
debt maturity profile and support its liquidity position to face potential
volatility and its robust capital budget.  Approximately 80% of the proceeds
from the notes will be used to refinance upcoming debt maturities, with the
balance applied to investments planned for the next two years.

Standard & Poor's continues to expect JBS to report a total debt-to-EBITDA
ratio of about 5.0x by year-end 2006, gradually decreasing to 3.5x during
2007-2008.  Operating margins remain robust at more than 10%, supported by
good international demand and higher beef prices in dollar terms, which has
compensated the negative effect of the local currency appreciation on the
company's export sales.


NOSSA CAIXA: Workers Accept New Pay Offer to End Strike
-------------------------------------------------------
Banco Nossa Caixa employees have accepted a new pay offer from Fenaban -- a
federation of banks in Brazil -- to end a nationwide protest, Business News
Americas reports.

BNamericas relates that the strike started on Oct. 5 when negotiations
between workers and the private sector banks failed.  Reports say that about
190,000 of the country's 400,000 bank employees attended the sessions.

According to BNamericas, Fenaban had proposed to increase workers' salary by
3.5% instead of the initial 2.85%, plus a one-time bonus and a bigger share
of profits.

BNamericas notes that the protesting workers had wanted a 7.05% salary hike,
plus the one-time bonus and more of the profits.

The report says that bank employees had secured in 2005 a 6% salary increase
after a strike that lasted for six days.

Meanwhile, workers at Banco do Brasil and Caixa Economica Federal refused to
accept the increase offered by Fenaban and decided to continue protesting,
BNamericas states.

                        *    *    *

On Oct. 19, 2005, Moody's Investors Service upgraded Banco Nossa
Caixa S.A.'s long-term foreign currency deposit rating to B1
from B2 with a positive outlook.

At the same time, the ratings agency upgraded Banco Nossa
Caixa's long-term foreign currency debt rating to Ba1 with a
stable outlook.


NOVELIS INC: Fitch Assigns B Issuer Default Rating
--------------------------------------------------
Fitch initiates these ratings for Novelis Inc. and its subsidiary Novelis
Corp:

   Novelis Inc.

      -- Issuer default rating 'B';

      -- Senior secured credit facility 'BB/Recovery Rating 1';
         and

      -- Senior unsecured notes 'B/RR4';

   Novelis Corp.

      -- IDR 'B'; and
      -- Senior secured credit facility 'BB/RR1';

Approximately US$2.3 billion of debt is covered by the ratings.  The Rating
Outlook is Negative.  The company's Korean bank debt is excluded from the
ratings.

The ratings consider Novelis' strong market position in its product
categories, emphasis on innovation and value-added applications, free cash
flow generation, strong and flexible manufacturing asset base, focus on
de-leveraging, ability to pass through aluminum price risk on the majority
of its contracts, global operations, potential sale of non-core assets, and
Novelis' largely non-cyclical customer base.  Also supporting the ratings is
Fitch's view that the aluminum-pricing environment is improving and the
company is taking steps to reduce its exposure to metal price risk on the
contracts that have price ceilings.

Concerns include challenges in the near to intermediate term from exposure
to price ceilings on contracts with certain customers which limit the
pass-through of increased aluminum costs on 20% of sales in 2006 (moving to
10% in 2007).  The company is projected to incur US$205 million of losses
(net of hedges) in fiscal 2006 due to the ceilings. Management has indicated
that the largest impact will materialize in the third and fourth quarters of
this year.

Additionally, high leverage and management turnover are important ratings
considerations.  Material weaknesses in the firm's internal accounting
controls have been a persistent problem and still must be resolved.  The
ratings also reflect the impact of higher fees and expenses associated with
the delayed filing of financial statements, higher interest expense on the
senior credit facility in connection with covenant waivers obtained, and
higher interest expense on the 7.25% senior notes incurred because of the
delayed public registration.

The Negative Outlook is based on the filing delays, material weaknesses, and
deteriorating financial performance expected for the remainder of 2006.  The
ratings incorporate the expectation that Novelis will file second quarter
results by the October 22 deadline and that internal control issues will be
addressed.

The Recovery Ratings and notching in the debt structure reflect Fitch's
recovery expectations under a scenario in which distressed enterprise value
is allocated to the various debt classes.  The RRs for Novelis' senior
secured credit facility, consisting of a revolving credit facility and a
Term Loan B ('RR1'; expected 90%-100% recovery) reflect outstanding expected
recovery due to ample collateral and security from substantially all assets
in the U.S. Canada, U.K., Germany, and Brazil, as well as significant
cushions of unsecured debt and equity.  With most of the estimated
distressed enterprise value being distributed to the senior secured
creditors, Fitch estimates that recoveries for senior unsecured creditors
would be somewhat less in a reorganization.

The recovery rating for the 7.25% senior unsecured notes ('RR4'; expected
31%-50% recovery) reflects the lack of security and the allocation of
concession payments to improve recovery.  The notes contain a change of
control put at 101% of par and are guaranteed by guarantor subsidiaries
including certain U.S., Canadian, U.K. and Brazilian subsidiaries.

Novelis was formed in 2005 through a spin-off from Alcan, Inc. The company
is a leading producer of aluminum rolled and sheet products serving the
packaging, construction, industrial, and transportation markets.  The
company has run into difficulty on two fronts in 2006: escalating raw
materials prices and financial reporting delays. Aluminum prices have
steadily climbed since mid-2005, rising dramatically in 1H06 before leveling
off somewhat for the remainder of the year to date.  Certain customer
contracts with price ceilings have not allowed Novelis to pass through the
full increase in aluminum costs, negatively impacting profitability and cash
flows.  Near term pressure on cash flows is forcing the company to seek
amendments to its credit facility to relax covenant requirements.  However,
Novelis has actively sought to reduce exposure to contracts with price
ceilings and has begun to implement new hedging policies.  As a result,
Fitch expects cash flows to begin to rebound in 2007.

On a separate front, Novelis' internal accounting and auditing functions
have been weak since the spin-off and the company had to restate its 2005
opening balance sheet.  The restatement was minor, but it caused the 2005
10-K to be delayed until August, the first quarter 2006 filling to be
delayed until September and the second quarter 10Q has not yet been filed.
These delays triggered default notices from both senior lenders and
bondholders.  Novelis was able to obtain waivers from senior lenders, but it
was not successful in a consent solicitation with bondholders.  The company
needs to comply with an Oct. 22, 2006 deadline for filing 2Q financial
statements to cure default on its 7.25% notes.  Failure to do so may lead
Fitch to review the ratings.

Novelis has been generating reliable operating and free cash flow, which is
helped by stability in the majority of its end markets, particularly in the
beverage can market which has shown steady demand for the past several
years.  Operating cash flow for the twelve month period ending March 31,
2006 was US$434 million with free cash flow of US$366 million.  This
translates to free cash flow to adjusted debt of 13.8% for the period, which
is solid for the rating.  Additionally, the company is looking to possibly
divest some assets in Europe and Brazil, which would bolster cash flows in
the near to intermediate term if completed.

Although Novelis has generated enough cash to pay down a good portion of
debt since spin-off (US$455 million as of
June 30, 2006), the company's de-leveraging momentum will likely be
constrained in the near to intermediate term given higher costs and lower
cash flow.  The company has already scaled back planned debt repayments by
about US$50 million in 2006, and now anticipates US$150 million to US$200
million of debt repayments for the year.  Once Novelis reduces its exposure
to metal prices, management believes annual free cash flow of US$400 million
or more is possible.  While Fitch believes healthy cash flows are achievable
once the price-ceilings roll off, the US$400 million range may not be
feasible until the 2008-2009 timeframe at best.

Fitch calculates last twelve months as of March 31, 2006, operating EBITDA
of US$483 million and leverage of 5.2x.  For covenant compliance purposes,
the company uses an EBITDA figure that allows for various add-backs
resulting in higher EBITDA.  Given the company's recent guidance on 2006 and
2007 cash flows, Fitch believes leverage metrics will deteriorate by
fiscal-year end 2006 before improving in late 2007 as weak third and fourth
quarter 2006 performance rolls out of LTM credit metric calculations.
Management indicated on a Sept. 29, 2006, conference call that Novelis will
need to seek relief from certain leverage and interest coverage covenants in
the near term as cash flows decline somewhat over the remainder of the year.
Before seeking an amendment to the credit facility the required ratios were
3.0x interest coverage and 4.75x leverage for Dec. 31, 2006.  However, Fitch
believes that performance and credit metrics will improve in the second half
of 2007 as aluminum price exposure is reduced, penalty interest costs are
eliminated, and overall corporate costs decline with the resolution of the
delayed filings.

Although cash flows and credit metrics will likely deteriorate over the near
to intermediate term, it should be noted that the fundamental operating
performance of the company seems to be on solid footing.  Fitch sees no
reason to suppose that demand is or will be materially weaker, and shipment
volumes should remain mostly stable.  Fitch sees Novelis' difficulties as
largely financial and not due to operational decline or other negative
secular changes.  Total shipment volumes were up 2.3% year over year in 2005
and improved 3.9% in the first quarter of 2006 over the first quarter of
last year.  Operationally, the company is likely to be steady and Fitch
believes the credit metrics will follow as the company improves its risk
management.

Novelis is still in transition to an independent, stand-alone entity.
Certain business and execution risks remain a concern, such as accounting,
finance and internal control weaknesses, a continued transition of
information technology, and the acquisition of other necessary
infrastructure and systems.  Additionally, the company will likely need to
spend significant resources and effort in building its new brand identity.
The placement of a permanent CEO, and the resolution of certain material
weaknesses disclosed in the company's SEC filings, will be positive
developments allowing the company to focus on execution going forward.

As of March 31, 2006, the company had about US$469 million of availability
under the revolver and cash of US$124 million for total liquidity of roughly
US$593 million.  Given the company's debt maturity schedule and a US$65 to
US$70 million reduction in capital spending plans for 2006, liquidity should
not be an issue in the intermediate term.  Debt maturities are modest in the
next few years, comprised mainly of Korean loan maturities.  The company has
not indicated whether these will be refinanced.  Additionally, the company
has reduced its equity dividend, and other scheduled cash deployment is not
substantial, relative to liquidity.


PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Extends Gas Price Negotiation with Bolivia
---------------------------------------------------------------
Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. aka Petrobras and Yacimientos Petroliferos Fiscales
Bolivianos have decided to extend the initial negotiation term regarding the
request the Bolivian company made for the review of the Gas Purchase and
Sale Agreement price clause for another 30 days.  The decision was made on
Oct. 11, 2006, within the schedule agreed with the Bolivian state-owned
corporation.

The new deadline, Nov. 10, will allow Petrobras and Yacimientos Petroliferos
to deepen their joint efforts in the search for mutually acceptable
solutions for the issue.

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 Brazil.

                        *    *    *

Petroleo Brasileiro SA's long-term corporate family rating is
rated Ba3 by Moody's.

                        *    *    *

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

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

Fitch upgraded the foreign currency rating of Petrobras to BB+
from BB, with positive outlook, in conjunction with Fitch's
upgrade of the long-term foreign and local currency IDRs of the
Federative Republic of Brazil to BB, from BB- on June 29, 2006.


SADIA SA: Has Maintained Moderate Net Debt Levels, S&P Says
-----------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's says that Sadia S.A.'s (BB/Stable/--) financial results
have been significantly hit by the spread of avian flu in European and Asian
markets during the first half of 2006, as the company was forced to deviate
sales to domestic markets (at significantly lower prices).  Some price
recovery witnessed since July 2006 indicates that the results for
fourth-quarter 2006 could be better, but a full recovery of operating
margins is not anticipated before first-quarter 2007.

Sadia has managed to maintain moderate net debt levels (US$450 million in
June 2006), despite the poorer operating performance and maintenance of a
robust capital budget this year.  Sadia's high cash holdings (of about
US$1.1 billion compared to short-term debt maturities of US$500 million) has
also served as an important liquidity cushion through this more volatile
environment.


SANEAMENTO BASICO: JPMorgan Downgrades Firm to Neutral
------------------------------------------------------
Local news service Agencia Estado reports that JPMorgan has downgraded
Companhia de Saneamento Basico do Estado de Sao Paulo, the water utility of
Sao Paulo, from overweight to neutral.

JPMorgan told Business News Americas that the downgrade was due to the
expectation that Saneamento Basico's short-term catalysts will likely
disappoint.

According to BNamericas, JPMorgan said that one of those catalysts was the
proposed basic sanitation regulatory bill, which is pending before Brazil's
lower house.  Legislators are not expected to vote on the proposal until
after the second round of national elections on Oct. 29.

BNamericas notes that JPMorgan did say that shares of Saneamento Basico had
a strong performance, compared to the benchmark stocks index on Bovespa, the
Sao Paulo stock exchange.

On Oct. 10, Saneamento Basico's shares trade at BRL263.50, down 0.19%, on
Bovespa, BNamericas states.

Companhia de Saneamento Basico do Estado de Sao Paulo is one of
the largest water and sewage service providers in the world
based on the population served in 2005.  It operates water and
sewage systems in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
June 23, 2006, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services has raised its
Brazilian national-scale corporate credit rating on Companhia de
Saneamento Basico do Estado de Sao Paulo to 'brA+' from 'brA'.
At the same time, it affirmed the company's global-scale ratings
at 'BB-'.  S&P said the outlook is stable.


SANTANDER BANESPA: Moody's Assigns D+ Financial Strength Rating
---------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service assigned a bank financial strength rating of D+ to
Banco Santander Banespa, as well as long- and short-term global local
currency deposit ratings of A3 and Prime-2, respectively, and long- and
short term foreign currency deposit ratings of Ba3 and Not-Prime.  The
agency also assigned a Aaa.br long-term national scale deposit rating and a
short term national scale rating of BR-1.  The rating outlook is stable.

Moody's also affirmed the Ba1 rating for the junior subordinated perpetual
bonds issued by Banco do Estado de Sao Paulo S.A 's Grand Cayman Branch.

These actions follow the announcement of the legal combination on Sept. 1,
2006 of the former Banco Santander Brasil S.A., Banco do Estado de Sao Paulo
S.A., Banco Santander S.A. and Banco Santander Meridional S.A.  As of the
combination date, the newly merged bank has assumed all the rights and
obligations of the predecessor banks.  Spain's Santander Central Hispano
controls Santander Banespa.

The new ratings for Santander Banespa replace those assigned previously to
the former Banco Santander Brasil S.A. and Banco do Estado de Sao Paulo S.A.
Moody's withdrew those ratings at the same time.

Since 2001, these banks have been managed as one business, with common risk
management policies and a common marketing strategy under the Santander
Banespa brand, as well as reporting its financials on a pro-forma
consolidated basis.  The Central Bank of Brazil's approval of the
combination is expected by the end of 2006.

Moody's noted that the completion of the merger under one entity reflects
the commitment of Santander Central to the Brazilian group's activities and
its strategic importance to the Spanish conglomerate. The Brazilian
operations currently represent approximately 12% of global results, while
Latin America accounts for more than one third of the group's global
profits.

As of June 30, 2006, on a pro-forma combined basis the Santander Group's
Brazilian operations totaled BRL90.2 billion (US$42 billion) in total
assets, BRL7.5 billion (US$3.5 billion) in equity, and net income of BRL473
million (US$220 million).

These ratings were assigned to Banco Santander Banespa S.A.:

   -- D+ for bank financial strength, with stable outlook;

   -- A3 and Prime-2 for long- and short-term local currency
      deposits;

   -- Ba3 and Not Prime for long-and short-term foreign currency
      deposits; and

   -- Aaa.br and BR-1for long- and short-term national scale
      deposits.

This rating was affirmed for Banco do Estado de Sao Paulo S.A. Cayman
Branch:

   -- Ba1 long-term foreign currency junior subordinated
      perpetual bonds.

These ratings were withdrawn:

   Banco Santander Brasil S.A.

      -- D+ for bank financial strength, rating, with stable
         outlook;

      -- A3 and Prime-2 for long- and short-term local currency
         deposits;

      -- Ba3 and Not Prime for long-and short-term foreign
         currency deposits; and

      -- Aaa.br and BR-1for long- and short-term national
         scale deposits.

   Banco do Estado de Sao Paulo S.A.:

      -- D+ bank financial strength rating, with stable
         outlook;

      -- A3 and Prime-2 for long- and short-term local currency
         deposits;

      -- Ba3 and Not Prime for long-and short-term foreign
         currency deposits; and

      -- Aaa.br and BR-1for long- and short-term national scale
         deposits.


UNIAO DE BANCOS: Paying Interest on Own Capital Stock on Oct. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Board of Directors of Unibanco -- Uniao De Bancos Brasileiros S.A. and
of Unibanco Holdings S.A. have decided to pay quarterly interests, for the
third quarter of 2006, in the gross total amount of BRL113.7 million and
BRL54.9 million, and net total amount of BRL96.6 million and BRL46.7
million, respectively, on Oct. 31, 2006.

Should the quarterly interest proposals described be approved, the
shareholders of Unibanco and of Unibanco Holdings will have the right to
receive the interest on capital stock in accordance with gross and net
amounts set in the table below.  Such values correspond to 1 share, 1 Share
Deposit Certificate or 1 Global Depositary Share, as the case may be.  An
income tax rate of 15% shall apply, resulting in the net values set as:

                        In BRL

Gross Amount:                       Net Amount:

UBB-ON                              UBB-ON
UBBR3          0.0388235            UBBR3          0.0330000

UBB-PN                              UBB-PN
UBBR4          0.0427059            UBBR4          0.0363000

HOL-ON                              HOL-ON
UBHD3          0.0337633            UBHD3          0.0286988

HOL-PN                              HOL-PN
UBHD6          0.0337633            UBHD6          0.0286988

UNIT                                UNIT
UBBR11         0.07674692           UBBR11         0.0649988

GDS                                 GDS
NYSE-UBB       0.7646920            NYSE-UBB       0.6499880


In Brazil, Oct. 17, 2006, will be considered as "Record Date" for the
purpose of determining the right to receive the payment of interest on
capital stock on Oct. 31, 2006.  Unibanco's and Unibanco Holdings' shares
and units will be traded ex-interest on capital stock from Oct. 18, 2006 on.

In the United States of America, Oct. 20, 2006, will be considered as
"Record Date" for the purpose of attending the obligation assumed by the GDS
program maintained by the companies.  The GDSs will be traded ex-interest on
capital stock from Oct. 18, 2006 on.

                        *    *    *

As reported on Sept. 4, 2006, Moody's Investors Service upgraded these
ratings of Uniao de  Bancos Brasileiros S.A. aka Unibanco:

   -- long-term foreign currency deposits to Ba3 from Ba1; and

   -- long- and short-term global local currency deposit ratings
      to A1/Prime-1 from A3/Prime-2.

Moody's rating action was the direct result of the upgrade of
Brazil's country ceiling for foreign currency bonds and notes to
Ba2, from Ba3, as well as Brazil's country ceiling for foreign
currency bank deposits to Ba3, from B1, and the local currency
bank deposit ceiling to A1, from A3.


USINAS SIDERURGICAS: Will Provide Heavy Plates to TenarisConfab
---------------------------------------------------------------
Usinas Siderurgicas de Minas Gerais posted in its Web site that it will
supply 425,000 tons of heavy plates for TenarisConfab's projects in South
America.

According to Business News Americas, Confab will supply about 632 kilometers
of tubes to boost the capacity of the Argentine north-south gas pipeline
network.  Confab will also be constructing the 971-kilometer stretch of the
Gasene pipeline project.

The steel to be delivered represents 20% of Usinas Siderurgica's heavy
plates production capacity, Usinas Siderurgicas told BNamericas.

Headquartered in Minas Gerais, Brazil, Usiminas is among the
world's 20 largest steel manufacturing complexes, with a
production capacity of approximately 10 million tons of steel.
Usiminas System companies produces galvanized and non-coated
flat steel products for the automotive, small and large diameter
pipe, civil construction, hydro-electronic, rerolling,
agriculture, and road machinery industries. Brazil consumes 80%
of its products and the company's largest export markets are the
U.S. and Latin America.

                        *    *    *

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services affirmed on June 7, 2006, its
'BB+' long-term corporate credit rating on Brazil-based steel
maker Usinas Siderurgicas de Minas Gerais S.A. -- Usiminas.  At
the same time, Standard & Poor's assigned its 'BB+' senior
unsecured debt rating to the forthcoming US$200 million Global
MTNs due June 2016 to be issued by Cosipa Commercial Ltd.  The
outlook on the corporate credit rating is stable.

                        *    *    *

Moody's Investors Service assigned on June 7, 2006, a Ba2
foreign currency rating to the proposed senior unsecured bonds
to be issued by Cosipa Commercial Ltd., a subsidiary of
Companhia Siderurgica Paulista -- Cosipa based on the Cayman
Islands, in the amount of approximately US$200 million with
bullet maturity in 2016, under the US$500 million Medium Term
Notes Program of Usinas Siderurgicas de Minas Gerais S.A. --
Usiminas and Cosipa.  Moody's said the rating outlook is stable.


* BRAZIL: IDB Approves US$800MM Financing to Procidades Program
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Inter-American Development Bank approved an US$800 million lending
facility to Brazil for the Procidades Program, designed to address growing
demand for integrated municipal development projects targeting specific
areas of each city.

The program will concentrate IDB support at the municipal level in Brazil
and will streamline procedures for project preparation and approval by
decentralizing operations.  The projects will be part of a municipal
development plan that takes into account general priorities and focuses on
sectors with high social and economic impact, mainly targeting low-income
populations.

Procidades will finance investments in integrated urban development aimed at
improving city services and infrastructure and boosting the efficiency,
performance and capacity of municipal governments. Individual operations
under the program will be for up to US$50 million and may be financed using
local currency.

"Brazil currently has 5,564 municipalities, of which 14 have over one
million inhabitants, which represents 21 per cent of the country's total
population," said IDB Team Leader Riccardo Rietti.  "Another 648 municipios
have between 50,000 and one million inhabitants, or 44 per cent of the total
population."

"The rapid growth of cities during the last few decades has created a
critical shortage of basic services and urban infrastructure with higher
levels of poverty," added Mr. Rietti.  "Due to the complexity of problems
faced by the cities, comprehensive and integrated solutions are more
effective than strictly sectoral approaches."

Municipal governments hold the main responsibility for public investment in
primary health care, basic education, urban infrastructure, housing and
sanitation.  They are also directly responsible for local public services of
collection and disposal of solid waste, public lighting and urban
regulation, and fulfill complementary duties in areas such as
transportation, infrastructure, environmental management and public safety.

"Over a short period of time, Brazil has undergone an abrupt shift in demand
for IDB resources from the federal and state levels to the municipios,
particularly the medium-sized ones," explained Mr. Rietti.  "The Procidades
lending facility is being created to galvanize IDB activities in Brazil at
this level."

The program will finance investments with a multisector approach,
geographically targeted and coordinated in three modalities:

   -- neighborhood improvements,
   -- urban rehabilitation and renewal, and
   -- urban consolidation.

Procidades will also finance sector interventions, such as transportation
and road systems, sanitation, urban services, environmental management and
social development, in the context of a municipal development plan.  It
includes activities to strengthen municipal performance in terms of
financial and tax administration, internal management, services, urban
planning and actions to promote local economic development.

The lending facility will have US$800 million in available funds, renewable
with prior authorization of the IDB Board of Executive Directors when 75 per
cent of the funds have been committed.

                        *    *    *

As reported on Sept. 4, 2006, Brazil's foreign currency country
ceiling was upgraded to Ba1 from Ba2 while the government's
foreign- and local-currency bond ratings were changed to Ba2
from Ba3.




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


AERCAP 320 A: Creditors Must File Proofs of Claim by Oct. 24
------------------------------------------------------------
Aercap 320 A Ltd.'s creditors are required to submit proofs of claim by Oct.
24, 2006, to the company's liquidator:

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

Creditors who are not able to comply with the Oct. 24 deadline
won't receive any distribution that the liquidator will make.
Creditors are required to present proofs of claim personally or
through their solicitors.

Aercap 320's shareholders agreed on Sept. 13, 2006, for the company's
voluntary liquidation under Section 135 of the Companies Law (2004 Revision)
of the Cayman Islands.


AERCAP 320 B: Last Day to File Proofs of Claim Is on Oct. 24
------------------------------------------------------------
Aercap 320 B Ltd.'s creditors are required to submit proofs of claim by Oct.
24, 2006, to the company's liquidator:

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

Creditors who are not able to comply with the Oct. 24 deadline
won't receive any distribution that the liquidator will make.
Creditors are required to present proofs of claim personally or
through their solicitors.

Aercap 320's shareholders agreed on Sept. 13, 2006, for the company's
voluntary liquidation under Section 135 of the Companies Law (2004 Revision)
of the Cayman Islands.


AIR TARA CAYMANS I: Proofs of Claim Must be Filed by Oct. 24
------------------------------------------------------------
Air Tara Caymans I, Ltd.'s creditors are required to submit proofs of claim
by Oct. 24, 2006, to the company's liquidator:

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

Creditors who are not able to comply with the Oct. 24 deadline
won't receive any distribution that the liquidator will make.
Creditors are required to present proofs of claim personally or
through their solicitors.

Air Tara's shareholders agreed on Sept. 13, 2006, for the company's
voluntary liquidation under Section 135 of the Companies Law (2004 Revision)
of the Cayman Islands.


AIR TARA CAYMANS II: Proofs of Claim Filing Is Until Oct. 24
------------------------------------------------------------
Air Tara Caymans II, Ltd.'s creditors are required to submit proofs of claim
by Oct. 24, 2006, to the company's liquidator:

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

Creditors who are not able to comply with the Oct. 24 deadline
won't receive any distribution that the liquidator will make.
Creditors are required to present proofs of claim personally or
through their solicitors.

Air Tara's shareholders agreed on Sept. 13, 2006, for the company's
voluntary liquidation under Section 135 of the Companies Law (2004 Revision)
of the Cayman Islands.


EQUITY ASM: Creditors Must Submit Proofs of Claim by Oct. 23
------------------------------------------------------------
Equity ASM Ltd.'s creditors are required to submit proofs of claim by Oct.
23, 2006, to the company's liquidator:

          Westport Services Ltd.
          P.O. Box 1111
          Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands

Creditors who are not able to comply with the Oct. 23 deadline
won't receive any distribution that the liquidator will make.
Creditors are required to present proofs of claim personally or
through their solicitors.

Equity ASM's shareholders agreed on Sept. 20, 2006, for the company's
voluntary liquidation under Section 135 of the Companies Law (2004 Revision)
of the Cayman Islands.

Parties-in-interest may contact:

          Ica Eden
          P.O. Box 1111
          Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
          Tel: 345 949 5122
          Fax: 345 949 7920


EQUITY CU: Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline Is Set for Oct. 23
-------------------------------------------------------------
Equity CU Ltd.'s creditors are required to submit proofs of claim by Oct.
23, 2006, to the company's liquidator:

          Westport Services Ltd.
          P.O. Box 1111
          Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands

Creditors who are not able to comply with the Oct. 23 deadline
won't receive any distribution that the liquidator will make.
Creditors are required to present proofs of claim personally or
through their solicitors.

Equity CU's shareholders agreed on Sept. 20, 2006, for the company's
voluntary liquidation under Section 135 of the Companies Law (2004 Revision)
of the Cayman Islands.

Parties-in-interest may contact:

          Ica Eden
          P.O. Box 1111
          Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
          Tel: 345 949 5122
          Fax: 345 949 7920


MEZZANINE CAPITAL: Filing of Proofs of Claim Is Until Oct. 23
-------------------------------------------------------------
Mezzanine Capital Corp. (Managers) Ltd.'s creditors are required to submit
proofs of claim by Oct. 23, 2006, to the company's liquidators:

          Kristina Haley
          P.O. Box 194 19-21 Broad Street
          St. Helier, Jersey
          Channel Islands JE4 8 RR
          Tel: +44 1534 283322
          Fax: +44 1534 283429

               -- and --

          Jodi Jones
          P.O. Box 258, George Town
          Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
          Tel: +345 914 8694
          Fax: +345 945 4237

Creditors who are not able to comply with the Oct. 23 deadline
won't receive any distribution that the liquidator will make.
Creditors are required to present proofs of claim personally or
through their solicitors.

Mezzanine Capital's shareholders agreed on Oct. 2, 2006, for the company's
voluntary liquidation under Section 135 of the Companies Law (2004 Revision)
of the Cayman Islands.


LIONTRUST INTERNATIONAL: Claims Filing Is Until Oct. 24
-------------------------------------------------------
Liontrust International (Cayman) Ltd.'s creditors are required to submit
proofs of claim by Oct. 24, 2006, to the company's liquidators:

          David A.K. Walker
          Lawrence Edwards
          PwC Corporate Finance & Recovery (Cayman) Ltd.
          P.O. Box 258, George Town
          Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands

Creditors who are not able to comply with the Oct. 24 deadline
won't receive any distribution that the liquidator will make.
Creditors are required to present proofs of claim personally or
through their solicitors.

Liontrust International's shareholders agreed on Sept. 12, 2006, for the
company's voluntary liquidation under Section 135 of the Companies Law (2004
Revision) of the Cayman Islands.

Parties-in-interest may contact:

          Miguel Brown
          P.O. Box 258, George Town
          Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
          Tel: (345) 914 8665
          Fax: (345) 949 4590


STEIN ROE: Creditors Have Until Oct. 19 to File Proofs of Claim
---------------------------------------------------------------
Stein Roe & Farnham CLO I Ltd.'s creditors are required to submit proofs of
claim by Oct. 19, 2006, to the company's liquidators:

          Phillipa White
          Joshua Grant
          Maples Finance Limited
          P.O. Box 1093, George Town
          Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands

Creditors who are not able to comply with the Oct. 19 deadline
won't receive any distribution that the liquidator will make.
Creditors are required to present proofs of claim personally or
through their solicitors.

Stein Roe's shareholders agreed on Sept. 11, 2006, for the company's
voluntary liquidation under Section 135 of the Companies Law (2004 Revision)
of the Cayman Islands.


TRISUN OFFSHORE: Holding Final Shareholders Meeting Today
---------------------------------------------------------
Trisun Offshore Fund, Ltd.'s shareholders will convene for a final meeting
today at:

          RSM Cayman Islands
          7 Dr. Roy's Drove
          2nd Floor, Commerce House
          P.O. Box 1370, George Town
          Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands

These agendas will be taken during the meeting:

   1) accounting of the liquidation process showing how the
      winding up has been conducted during the preceding year,

   2) requesting the members' approval of the liquidation fees
      incurred to date, approval of the liquidator's estimated
      costs to completion, and

   3) hearing any explanation that may be given by the
      liquidator.

A member entitled to attend and vote at the meeting may appoint
a proxy, who need not be a member, in his stead.

The liquidators can be reached at:

          Kenneth M. Krys
          Joanna Chong
          P.O. Box 1370, George Town
          Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
          Tel: (345) 949-7100
          Fax: (345) 949-7120




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


EMPRESAS IANSA: S&P Says Prospects Are Favorable in Short Term
--------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's says Empresas Iansa S.A.'s (BB/Stable/--) financial
profile during the first half of 2006, continued to consolidate as a result
of the improved fundamentals in the sugar business and lower interest and
debt levels.  In this sense, EBITDA interest coverage (including the
financial cost from the financing to sugar beet growers) and FFO to debt
improved to 4.7x and 39.6%, respectively, in the 12 months ended June 30,
2006 (from 1.3x and 4.1%, respectively, during fiscal 2003).

Prospects are favorable in the short to medium term given the increased
prices in the international sugar markets.  Future investments to be
developed by the company and margin sustainability over the long term under
a declining protection system are relevant factors for the company's future
ratings.




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


BANCOLOMBIA: Reports COP35.4B Unconsolidated Net Income in Sept.
----------------------------------------------------------------
Bancolombia reported unconsolidated net income of COP25.399 billion during
the past month of September, accumulating COP393.886 billion for the first
nine months of 2006.

During September, total net interest income, including investment securities
amounted to COP143.525 billion.  Additionally, total net fees and income
from services totaled in the month COP44.422 billion.

Total assets amounted to COP25.21 trillion in September 2006, total deposits
amount to COP16.08 trillion and Bancolombia's total shareholders' equity
amounted to COP3.20 trillion.

This month the Bank sold government securities to the National
Treasury -- Direccion General del Tesoro Nacional -- amounting to
approximately COP586 billion. In addition, as permitted by law, debt
securities amounting to COP177.000 billion were reclassified from "Available
for Sale" to "Trading".

Bancolombia's (unconsolidated) level of past due loans as a percentage of
total loans was 2.34% as of Sept. 30, 2006, and the level of allowance for
past due loans was 146.00%.

                        Market Share

According to Asobancaria (Colombia's national banking association),
Bancolombia's market share of the Colombian Financial System in September
2006 was as follows:

   -- 17.9% of total deposits,
   -- 22.4% of total net loans,
   -- 18.4% of total savings accounts,
   -- 20.4% of total checking accounts and
   -- 17.9% of total time deposits.

                        *    *    *

The Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America reported on
April 28, 2006, that Moody's Investors Service upgraded
Bancolombia's bank financial strength ratings to D+ from D with
a stable outlook.

Moody's added that the action concludes the review for possible
upgrade that was announced on Oct. 13, 2005.  Moreover,
Bancolombia's Ba3/Not Prime long- and short-term foreign
currency deposit ratings were affirmed.  Moody's said the
outlook on all ratings is stable.




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


* CUBA: Imports from Czech Republic Increases by 57%
----------------------------------------------------
Cuba's imports from companies in the Czech Republic has increased by 57% to
US$21 million this year, compared with last year, the Czech Ministry of
Industry and Trade told Pravo.

According to DPA German Press Agency, Cuba's bilateral trade with Czech
Republic is surging.

DPA relates that sales of these products have helped the Czech Republic
enjoy a modest trade surplus with Cuba:

          -- motorcycle parts,
          -- milk products,
          -- beer, and
          -- power-plant supplies.

Cuba ships cigars and rum to Czech Republic, DPA notes.

Pravo underscores that the Jawa motorcycle and Brisk Tabor spark-plug firms
export parts made in the Czech Republic to their assembly plants in Cuba.

The bilateral business between Cuba and Czech Republic could further
increase if power-plant supplier Skoda Export wins proposed contracts to
restore Cuba's coal-fired power plants, DPA states.

                        *    *    *

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: Iran Exporting 100 Freight Train Wagons to Nation
---------------------------------------------------------
Iran will be shipping about 100 freight train wagons to Cuba, Mehr News
Agency reports.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on Aug. 22, 2006,
Cuba finalized a deal with Iran on the purchase of 80 freight cars for
IRR4,353,280.  As previously reported, Yadira Garcia, the minister of
industry in Cuba, met with Ahmad Edrisian -- the Iranian ambassador to the
nation -- to discuss the latest developments in the technical and industrial
cooperation between countries.  Under the agreement, the Islamic Republic of
Iran's Railroad Co. would ship second-hand freight cars, which are designed
for cement transportation, to Cuba.  The freight cars had been used by
Iran's rail network to ship cement.

The Exports Development Bank of Iran funded 85% of the EUR7-million contract
on the export of the 100 freight train wagons, Mehr News states.

                        *    *    *

Moody's assigned these ratings to 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




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


* DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Gets Fuel Deposits Construction Proposals
---------------------------------------------------------------
Leonel Fernandez, the president of the Dominican Republic, told Dominican
Today that the government has received investment proposals for the
construction of fuel deposits in the nation.

According to Dominican Today, President Fernandez said that one of the sites
for the deposits would be in Puerto Plata.  The other site would the
National District.

If private investors get involve in the projects, the Dominican Republic
could count on a continuing reserve of combustibles, and local supply would
no longer be subject to contingencies that could leave the country short of
the necessary fuels, Dominican Today notes, citing President Fernandez.

President Fernandez told Dominican Today, "As things stand today, I
acknowledge that levels of precarious and vulnerable conditions exist, which
we must overcome as a nation."

The Dominican government should facilitate the construction of the deposits
to store fuels, Dominican Today says, citing President Fernandez.

                        *    *    *

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.




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


PETROECUADOR: Starting Joint Venture Talks with Venezuela
---------------------------------------------------------
Petroecuador, the Ecuadorean state oil firm, will start discussions with
Petroleos de Venezuela, its Venezuelan counterpart, to explore possibilities
of a joint venture in an oil field in Caracas, Prensa Latina reports, citing
Ivan Rodriguez, the Ecuadorean energy minister.

Prensa Latin relates that Minister Rodriguez disclosed the renewal of
contacts between Petroleos de Venezuela and Petroecuador.

Minister Rodriguez told Prensa Latina that Ecuador and Venezuela signed an
Energy Cooperation Agreement in May, although the accord was never
implemented.   The accord analyzes the possibility to construct a joint
refinery in the Ecuadorean province of Manabi.

Prensa Latin notes that Nicolas Maduro, Venezuela's foreign minister, will
be arriving in Ecuador for talks on strengthening political, trade and
energy relations between Venezuela and Ecuador.

Minister Maduro and Francisco Carrion, his Ecuadorean counterpart, will be
evaluating ways on intensifying economic and trade relations, according to a
statement from the foreign affairs ministry of Ecuador.

                About Petroloes de Venezuela

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

                     About Petroecuador

Petroecuador, according to published reports, is faced with
cash-problems.  The state-oil firm has no funds for maintenance
has no funds to repair pumps in diesel, gasoline and natural gas
refineries, and has no capacity to pay suppliers and vendors.
The government refused to give the much-needed cash alleging
that Petroecuador has been inefficient and non-transparent in
its accounts.


* ECUADOR: Gets US$50MM Loan from IDB to Boost Fin'l Sector
-----------------------------------------------------------
The Inter-American Development Bank approved a US$50 million loan to enhance
Ecuador's competitiveness by improving the efficiency of the real and
financial sectors.

To increase the competitiveness of the real sector, the program seeks to:

   i) strengthen the institutional framework for
      competitiveness;

  ii) reduce transaction costs for firms by simplifying customs
      and business startup procedures and enhancing the quality
      of professional training; and

iii) further the competitiveness of small and medium-sized
      enterprises by establishing policies that promote
      improvements in business management, access to
      technology and public-private cooperation at the
      sub national level.

To enhance the competitiveness of the financial sector, the program will
promote transparency in financial intermediation and access to financing.

"High credit costs and scarce access to financing can hinder firms' efforts
to enhance efficiency and reduce costs," said Luis Giorgio, IDB project team
leader.

This 20-year loan will be executed by Ecuador's Ministry of Economy and
Finance.

                        *    *    *

Fitch 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




=====================
E L   S A L V A D O R
=====================


BANCO SALVADORENO: Inversiones Financieras Buys 102,716 Shares
--------------------------------------------------------------
An official from stockbrokerage Salvadorea de Valores told Business News
Americas that Inversiones Financieras Bancosal, a financial conglomerate in
El Salvador, bought about 102,716 shares in Banco Salvadoreno.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America-Latin America on
Aug. 21, 2006, Inversiones Financieras told El Salvador's stock exchange
that on Aug. 14, it made an offer to purchase the rest of Banco Salvadoreno.
Inversiones Financieras, which held about 93.61% of Banco Salvadoreno,
sought to buy the remaining 502,000 shares of the latter for US$17.1
million, or US$34 per share.  The share offer expired on Sept. 22.

The tender offer for a 6.39% stake in Banco Salvadoreno ended with a 21%
acceptance rate, the Salvadorea de Valores official told BNamericas.

                        *    *    *

Fitch Ratings placed a BB long-term issuer default rating on Banco
Salvadoreno.  Fitch also assigned a B short-term rating on the company.
Fitch placed the ratings on watch positive.




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


AFFILIATED COMPUTER: Launching Office in Montego Bay Next Year
--------------------------------------------------------------
Affiliated Computer Services, Inc., will launch a second office in Montego
Bay in January 2007, The Jamaica Observer reports.

The Observer relates that Affiliated Computer first set up a 45,000
square-foot facility in Montego Bay August 2001.  It employs over 1,400
people.

The Observer emphasizes that the new 65,000 square-foot office building will
be built in close proximity to the existing site, facilitating easy access
and movement between the two locations.  It will be a two-tiered office and
call center with a two-storey perimeter and three-storey core.

Lyn Langford, Affiliated Computer's site operations manager for Jamaica,
told The Observer that construction of the second office will last up to 18
months.  Upon completion, the office should provide additional 600 jobs in
various positions, among them are:

          -- call center agents,
          -- accounting specialists, and
          -- data processors.

According to The Observer, Ms. Langford said that the addition of the second
facility was due to the Affiliated Computer's exceptional growth in the
multiple ranges of services it provides from Jamaica.

The Observer underscores that Affiliated Computer serves a wide range of
customers in Jamaica, covering a number of different industries like:

          -- Healthcare,
          -- Finance and Accounting,
          -- Education Services, and
          -- Human Resources.

Affiliated Computer, with its new office, hopes to attract new customers and
expand its business with current clients, opening up more job opportunities
for Montego Bay residents, The Observer notes.

Affiliated Computer is working closely with the developer on a strategic
design for its new site, which will provide maximum efficiency and comfort
for workers and customers, The Observer says, citing Ms. Langley.

Ms. Langley told The Observer, "Jamaica is a key part of ACS' (Affiliated
Computer) global delivery strategy.  If we hadn't proven ourselves here, and
hadn't proven to our clients that we can provide exceptional service
supported by superior quality, this opportunity would not have arisen.  Our
future in Jamaica is bright because of the outstanding and tremendously
dedicated and talented individuals who work here.  Our new facility is a
reflection of ACS' commitment to growing and expanding its position in
Jamaica, and we look forward to new job opportunities for area residents, as
well as continuing to contribute to ACS' worldwide growth."

Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, Affiliated Computer Services,
Inc., (NYSE: ACS) -- http://www.acs-inc.com/-- provides
business process outsourcing and information technology
solutions to commercial and government clients.  The company's
global presence include operations in Brazil, China, Dominican
Republic, India, Guatemala, Ireland, Philippines, Poland and
Singapore.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Oct. 4, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services lowered its corporate credit
rating and senior secured ratings on Dallas, Texas-based
Affiliated Computer Services, Inc. to 'B+' from 'BB'.  S&P placed the
ratings on CreditWatch with negative implications where they were placed on
Jan. 27, 2006.


AIR JAMAICA: Trial Against Alleged Office Thief Starts in Nov.
--------------------------------------------------------------
The trial against Martindale Gordon, who was accused of robbing a ticket
office of Air Jamaica, will commence on Nov. 16 in the Gun Court, The
Jamaica Observer reports.

The Observer relates that Mr. Gordon allegedly disguised himself with fake
whiskers and mustache and went into the office in New Kingston in July,
pretending that he was there to do business.  He allegedly pulled a homemade
handgun and proceeded to rob the place.  Mr. Gordon was disarmed by the
office security guard and was later arrested.

According to The Observer, Mr. Gordon is alleged to have committed several
robberies at a string of stores in and around the Half-Way-Tree area over a
period of time.  Those stores include the Anbell store at Kings Plaza on
Constant Spring Road and Fun Fone.

The Observer underscores that Mr. Gordon will face charges of robbery with
aggravation and illegal possession of firearm.

The police said that charges are pending in those matters, The Observer
states.

                        *    *    *

On July 21, 2006, Standard & Poor's Rating Services assigned B
long-term foreign issuer credit rating on Air Jamaica Ltd.,
which is equal to the long-term foreign currency sovereign
credit rating on Jamaica, is based on the government's
unconditional guarantee of both principal and interest payments.




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


ASARCO: Committee Wants Asarco Inc.'s Lift Stay Motion Denied
-------------------------------------------------------------
The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of ASARCO LLC asks
the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas in
Corpus Christi to deny Asarco Inc.'s request.

The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors for ASARCO LLC
points out that Asarco Incorporated seeks authority to examine
ASARCO on any number of financial and operational issues which
are, and remain, confidential in today's competitive business
environment.

The fact that the Lift Stay Motion was brought by a party
controlled by Americas Mining Corp. and Grupo Mexico S.A.
de. C.V. makes the relief all the more inappropriate, Derek J.
Baker, Esq., at Reed Smith, LLP, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania,
argues.

Mr. Baker points out that ASARCO LLC, together with its
Creditors' Committee, the Creditors' Committee for the Asbestos
Subsidiary Debtors and the future claims representative have been
investigating various claims and causes of action against Grupo
Mexico and AMC.  The investigation involves a review of
intercompany transactions, issues relating to the exercise of
control over operational issues at ASARCO LLC, and whether Grupo
Mexico utilized its position of influence over ASARCO LLC to
otherwise benefit its holdings in other companies, most notably
Southern Copper Corporation, formerly known as Southern Peru
Copper Corporation.

Thus, allowing Asarco Inc. access to ASARCO LLC's operations now
would undermine the investigation ASARCO LLC is currently
undertaking, Mr. Baker asserts.

The ASARCO Committee maintains that ASARCO LLC has already
provided the information necessary for Asarco Inc. to complete
the consolidated tax returns.

The ASARCO Committee supports ASARCO LLC's assertions that
providing Grupo Mexico access to the confidential financial and
operational information would result in a serious altering of the playing
field for all parties-in-interest in the Debtors' Chapter 11 cases.  Also,
allowing Grupo Mexico access to the confidential information will simply
neuter the protections sought vigorously by the ASARCO Committee in
connection the Corporate Governance Stipulation, Mr. Baker argues.

Furthermore, as Grupo Mexico owns and controls holdings in
entities that are ASARCO LLC's direct competitors in the world
market, allowing Asarco Inc. access to all of ASARCO LLC's
financial and operational information could be used to its
competitive disadvantage, Mr. Baker contends.

                    Asarco Inc. Talks Back

Charles A. Beckham, Jr., Esq., at Haynes & Boon, LLP, in Houston, Texas,
contends maintains that denial of access to the tax, financial and
operational data of ASARCO LLC works a substantial harm to Asarco, Inc.

Mr. Beckham points out that not one of the Objectors -- ASARCO
LLC, the Creditors' Committee of both ASARCO and the Asbestos
Subsidiary Debtors, the Future Claims Representative and the
United Steelworkers -- addresses the merits of Asarco Inc.'s
argument that under Delaware law and the LLC Agreement, it is
entitled access to information necessary for it to protect its
investment.

Asarco, Inc., has been irreparably harmed by the continued
imposition of the automatic stay, Mr. Beckham asserts.  "It
prevents Asarco, Inc., from exercising its state law rights."

ASARCO LLC has stated that it is laying the basis for a plan of
reorganization and is negotiating with key constituencies.
However, those key constituencies have no incentive to protect
Asarco, Inc.'s equity investment, and thus have every reason to
maximize claims and minimize equity value, Mr. Beckham avers.

"In this highly unusual solvent debtor situation, the equity is
the sole party-in-interest denied not only a seat at the
negotiation table, but any means to monitor the negotiations that may
profoundly affect its potentially very valuable interests," Mr. Beckham
says.

"Only if Asarco, Inc., is permitted access to meaningful, current financial
and operational data can it take the steps necessary to protect its
interest," Mr. Beckham emphasizes.

Asarco, Inc., informs the Court that the only tax information
that ASARCO LLC shared was the historical data necessary to
complete the consolidated tax return for 2005.  Mr. Beckham avers that it is
almost 2007, and the information necessary for Asarco, Inc., to ensure that
the correct amount of estimated and actual taxes for 2006 and 2007 are being
paid has not been provided.

The Debtors have asserted that they lack the staff to do more tax work, Mr.
Beckham notes.  That is all the more reason that
Asarco, Inc., should be permitted access to the data to enable
it, at its own expense, to determine the correct amount of taxes
accruing, Mr. Beckham asserts.

Asarco, Inc., maintains that unless the Debtors agree to start
providing the necessary information voluntarily, it has
demonstrated that cause exists for lifting the automatic stay to
permit it to commence an action in Delaware Chancery Court.

Mr. Beckham tells Judge Schmidt that ASARCO LLC is providing
complete operational and financial data to the Asbestos Committee with which
it is engaged in active litigation, and yet denies Asarco, Inc. -- the 100%
equity owner against which litigation is merely threatened -- the same
information.

The Objectors have alleged that Americas Mining Corp., owner of Asarco,
Inc., may misuse the information Asarco, Inc., is seeking to benefit
Southern Copper Corp. to the Debtors' detriment.  Mr. Beckham contends that
none of the Objectors has
even attempted to suggest a reason why AMC would prefer one of
its investments over another and try to damage its interest in
ASARCO, which the Debtors' own Monthly Operating Report
demonstrates has a book value of more than US$430,000,000.

Mr. Beckham argues that the Objectors have not presented the
Court with any single item of evidence suggesting that Southern
Copper and ASARCO LLC are competitors.  While Southern Copper has mining and
exploration activities in Chile, Mexico and Peru,
ASARCO operates mines and smelting facilities in Arizona,
Colorado, Tennessee and Texas, Mr. Beckham elaborates.

In contrast, The Doe Run Company, one of the members of ASARCO
LLC's Creditors Committee, is a direct competitor of ASARCO LLC.
Similarly, the United Steelworkers, another member of the
committee and one of the Objectors, is actively engaged in
collective bargaining negotiations with ASARCO in which the
potential to misuse the financial and operational data it
receives as a member of the committee is tremendous, Mr. Beckham
informs the Court.  "Yet these parties are given the benefit of
the doubt and are provided with the exact information Asarco,
Inc., is seeking on the assumption that any abuse of the
information they receive will be brought before the Court," Mr.
Beckham says.

The Objectors have further asserted that the December 2005
Corporate Governance Stipulation has somehow eliminated Asarco,
Inc.'s right to seek any information.  Mr. Beckham argues that
the Stipulation has made only limited changes to the owner's
rights under ASARCO's LLC Agreement to replace the independent
directors.  Nothing in the Stipulation addressed Asarco, Inc.'s
right to access necessary information to which it is entitled
under both the applicable non-bankruptcy law and the LLC
Agreement.

Accordingly, Asarco, Inc., asks the Court to overrule all
objections to its request.

                      About ASARCO LLC

Headquartered in Tucson, Arizona, ASARCO LLC --
http://www.asarco.com/-- is an integrated copper mining,
smelting and refining company.  Grupo Mexico S.A. de C.V. is
ASARCO's ultimate parent.  The Company filed for chapter 11
protection on Aug. 9, 2005 (Bankr. S.D. Tex. Case No. 05-21207).
James R. Prince, Esq., Jack L. Kinzie, Esq., and Eric A.
Soderlund, Esq., at Baker Botts L.L.P., and Nathaniel Peter
Holzer, Esq., Shelby A. Jordan, Esq., and Harlin C. Womble, Esq., at Jordan,
Hyden, Womble & Culbreth, P.C., represent the Debtor in its restructuring
efforts.  Lehman Brothers Inc. provides the ASARCO with financial advisory
services and investment banking services.  Paul M. Singer, Esq., James C.
McCarroll, Esq., and Derek J. Baker, Esq., at Reed Smith LLP give legal
advice to the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors and David J. Beckman
at FTI Consulting, Inc., gives financial advisory services to the Committee.
When the Debtor filed for protection from its creditors, it listed US$600
million in total assets and US$1 billion in total debts.

The Debtor has five affiliates that filed for chapter 11
protection on April 11, 2005 (Bankr. S.D. Tex. Case Nos.
05-20521 through 05-20525).  They are Lac d'Amiante Du Quebec Ltee, CAPCO
Pipe Company, Inc., Cement Asbestos Products Company, Lake Asbestos of
Quebec, Ltd., and LAQ Canada, Ltd.  Details about their asbestos-driven
chapter 11 filings have appeared in the Troubled Company Reporter since Apr.
18, 2005.

Encycle/Texas, Inc. (Bankr. S.D. Tex. Case No. 05-21304), Encycle, Inc., and
ASARCO Consulting, Inc. (Bankr. S.D. Tex. Case No. 05-21346) also filed for
chapter 11 protection, and ASARCO has asked that the three subsidiary cases
be jointly administered with its chapter 11 case.  On Oct. 24, 2005,
Encycle/Texas' case was converted to a Chapter 7 liquidation proceeding.
The Court appointed Michael Boudloche as Encycle/Texas, Inc.'s Chapter 7
Trustee.  Michael B. Schmidt, Esq., and John Vardeman, Esq., at Law Offices
of Michael B. Schmidt represent the Chapter 7 Trustee.  (ASARCO Bankruptcy
News, Issue No. 30; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc.,
http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000).


FORD MOTOR: Considers Potential Sale of Automobile Protection
-------------------------------------------------------------
Ford Motor Co. has begun the process of exploring strategic options for
Automobile Protection Corporation aka APCO, with particular emphasis on a
potential sale of the business.

"APCO is a strong company that has performed very well, achieving growth in
sales and revenue since its acquisition.  As a result of our ongoing
strategic review, we believe it is prudent now for us to consider a sale of
APCO," said Ford Motor Company Executive Vice President and Chief Financial
Officer Don Leclair.

Automobile Protection, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ford Motor, was
purchased by Ford Motor in July 1999.  APCO offers vehicle service contracts
and related after-market products to dealers of all makes and models.

Ford Motor said there can be no assurance that the decision to explore
strategic options for APCO will result in a transaction, the terms and
conditions of which would be subject to Board approval.

Headquartered in Dearborn, Michigan, Ford Motor Company --
http://www.ford.com/-- manufactures and distributes automobiles in 200
markets across six continents including Mexico and Brazil in Latin America.
With more than 324,000 employees worldwide, the company's core and
affiliated automotive brands include Aston Martin, Ford, Jaguar, Land Rover,
Lincoln, Mazda, Mercury and Volvo.  Its automotive-related services include
Ford Motor Credit Company and The Hertz Corp.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Aug. 22, 2006,
Dominion Bond Rating Service placed long-term debt rating of Ford Motor
Company Under Review with Negative Implications following announcement that
Ford will sharply reduce its North American vehicle production in 2006.
DBRS lowered on
July 21, 2006, Ford Motor Company's long-term debt rating to B from BB, and
lowered its short-term debt rating to R-3 middle from R-3 high.  DBRS also
lowered Ford Motor Credit Company's long-term debt rating to BB(low) from
BB, and confirmed Ford Credit's short-term debt rating at R-3(high).

Fitch Ratings also downgraded the Issuer Default Rating of Ford
Motor Company and Ford Motor Credit Company to 'B' from 'B+'.
Fitch also lowered the Ford's senior unsecured rating to 'B+/RR3' from
'BB-/RR3' and Ford Credit's senior unsecured rating to 'BB-/RR2' from
'BB/RR2'.  Fitch said the rating outlook remains negative.

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services also placed its 'B+' long-term and 'B-2'
short-term ratings on Ford Motor Co., Ford Motor Credit Co., and related
entities on CreditWatch with negative implications.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on July 24, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service lowered the Corporate Family and senior unsecured
ratings of Ford Motor Company to B2 from Ba3 and the senior unsecured rating
of Ford Motor Credit Company to Ba3 from Ba2.  The Speculative Grade
Liquidity rating of Ford has been confirmed at SGL-1, indicating very good
liquidity over the coming 12-month period.  Moody's said the outlook for the
ratings is negative.


FORD MOTOR: Starting Buyout Offers Next Week
--------------------------------------------
Ford Motor Company will start offering its early retirement
packages to all 75,000 of its U.S. hourly employees next week, the
Associated Press reports.

Ford is offering buyout packages to its entire U.S. hourly
workforce of approximately 75,000 people.  Employees have between Oct. 16,
and Nov. 27, to select among eight different retirement, education and other
separation programs.  The programs include tuition reimbursement for a two-
or four-year college degree, a US$100,000 lump sum payment or US$35,000
retirement incentive, among others.  Employees who accept packages will
leave the company between January and September 2007.

"Though we are doing what we must to fix our business in North
America, we truly have the best interests of our employees in
mind," said Marty Mulloy, Ford Motor Company vice president, Labor Affairs.
"We are providing a wide variety of buyout options for employees to
consider, and we are committed to providing them with as much information as
possible to help them through the process of transitioning into their lives
after Ford."

In an effort to help employees through their decision-making
process and to provide relevant information about their options,
Ford and the UAW are holding Opportunity Workshops and Opportunity Fairs at
nearly every manufacturing location in the United States.  The workshops are
designed to provide information about topics including how to start a
business, going through a relocation and going back to school.

                   Ford's Package Offering

Special Retirement Incentive:

For employees with 30 years of service or more and are at least 55 years
old, or are at least 65 with one or more years of service.  Financial
incentive of US$35,000 pre-tax check.

Special Early Retirement:

For employees who have reached age 55, but not normal retirement
age, and who have ten or more years of credited service under the Ford-UAW
retirement plan.  Provides unreduced life income benefits for the life of
the retiree, and temporary benefits payable until age 62 and one month.

Pre-Retirement Leave Program:

For employees with at least 28, but less than 30 years of credited service.
Ends with retirement when the employee reaches 30 years of service.
Employees will receive 85 percent of straight-time pay.  After they reach 30
years of service, they would receive their regular retirement.

Special Termination of Employment Program:

For employees with at least one year of service receive a gross
lump sum payment of US$100,000.  Retirement eligible employees must wait 23
months before retiring.

Educational Opportunity Program:

For employees with at least one year of service, includes tuition
reimbursement for up to US$15,000 a year for up to four years paid directly
to the approved college or vocational school, and an annual stipend worth 50
percent of the employee's annualized straight-time wage rate.  Health
insurance and other benefits continue during this four-year period, but
participants must enroll in school full time (at least 12 credit hours per
semester) and maintain a "c" average to remain eligible.  Benefits and the
living expense stipend end after 4 years, or when the employee receives
their degree, certification or license.

Enhanced Special Termination of Employment Program:

Under this program, UAW-Ford employees with at least 30 years of
credited service under the Ford-UAW Retirement Plan or are at
least 55 years old with at least 10 years of credited service will receive a
lump sum pre-tax payment of US$140,000.  Retirement may take place
immediately, and workers electing this option will receive any pension
benefits for which they are eligible at that time, based on length of
service.  They also will be provided with basic health care coverage for a
period of six months, but will be ineligible for post-retirement health care
and life insurance benefits.

Focused Education Opportunity Program:

A Similar program to Educational Opportunity Program, except that employees
selecting this option will receive two years of tuition payment, up to
US$15,000 per year and 70 percent of wages, instead of 50 percent.

Family Scholarship Program:

Employees electing this program agree to terminate their
employment at Ford, and will receive a Scholarship Fund totaling
US$100,000, which can be used for approved educational expenses for their
children, spouses and grandchildren.  Funds will be taxed upon withdrawal.
Funds will be available for a 10-year period from the employee's date of
termination and if the funds are not used within the time period, the
scholarship funds will be forfeited.

                          About Ford

Headquartered in Dearborn, Michigan, Ford Motor Company --
http://www.ford.com/-- manufactures and distributes automobiles
in 200 markets across six continents including Brazil and Mexico in Latin
America.  With more than 324,000 employees worldwide, the company's core and
affiliated automotive brands include Aston Martin, Ford, Jaguar, Land Rover,
Lincoln, Mazda, Mercury and Volvo.  Its automotive-related services include
Ford Motor Credit Company and The Hertz Corp.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Aug. 22, 2006,
Dominion Bond Rating Service placed long-term debt rating of Ford Motor
Company Under Review with Negative Implications following announcement that
Ford will sharply reduce its North American vehicle production in 2006.
DBRS lowered on
July 21, 2006, Ford Motor Company's long-term debt rating to B from BB, and
lowered its short-term debt rating to R-3 middle from R-3 high.  DBRS also
lowered Ford Motor Credit Company's long-term debt rating to BB(low) from
BB, and confirmed Ford Credit's short-term debt rating at R-3(high).

Fitch Ratings also downgraded the Issuer Default Rating of Ford
Motor Company and Ford Motor Credit Company to 'B' from 'B+'.
Fitch also lowered the Ford's senior unsecured rating to 'B+/RR3' from
'BB-/RR3' and Ford Credit's senior unsecured rating to 'BB-/RR2' from
'BB/RR2'.  The Rating Outlook remains Negative.

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services also placed its 'B+' long-term and 'B-2'
short-term ratings on Ford Motor Co., Ford Motor Credit Co., and related
entities on CreditWatch with negative
implications.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on July 24, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service lowered the Corporate Family and senior unsecured
ratings of Ford Motor Company to B2 from Ba3 and the senior unsecured rating
of Ford Motor Credit Company to Ba3 from Ba2.  The Speculative Grade
Liquidity rating of Ford has been confirmed at SGL-1, indicating very good
liquidity over the coming 12-month period.  Moody's said the outlook for the
ratings is negative.


GRUPO IUSACELL: Expects Operating Unit's Restructuring Finalized
----------------------------------------------------------------
Grupo Iusacell, S.A. de C.V. said that the debt restructuring of its
operating subsidiary, Grupo Iusacell Celular, S.A. de C.V.,
continues advancing within the framework established by its strategic plan,
and that it anticipates that the restructuring agreement reached in
principle with the majority of its creditors will be legally finalized soon.
The restructuring involves US$190 million of Tranche A Bank Loans, US$76
million of Tranche B Bank Loans and US$150 million of 10% Senior Notes due
in 2004.

As of Oct. 11, 2006, more than 82% of Iusacell's creditors have confirmed
their support of its Plan of Reorganization by means of its exchange offer
and consent solicitation launched on May of this year and that expired on
July 26, 2006.

The restructuring consists of an exchange of any and all of its

   (a) Tranche A Loans for new senior floating rate first lien
       notes due 2011 accruing interest at three-month LIBOR
       plus 4.00% and

   (b) Tranche B Loans and its 2004 Notes for its new 10% senior
       subordinated second lien notes due 2012, on the terms and
       conditions that were previously announced.

Another milestone was reached in the legal implementation of the
restructuring agreement reached in principle with Iusacell's creditors. As
stated in previous press releases, Iusacell Celular filed a voluntary
petition for concurso mercantil before a Mexican judge (Juez Septimo de
Distrito en Materia Civil del Primer Circuito), as a part of the
restructuring process, issued a declaration of concurso mercantil (sentencia
de concurso) for Iusacell Celular.  As a result of this declaration,
Iusacell Celular enters a new phase towards completing its restructuring and
expects to execute soon the corresponding plan of reorganization (convenio
concursal) to be submitted before the Mexican court.

The Federal Institute Specializing in Concursos Mercantiles (Instituto
Federal de Especialistas en Concursos Mercantiles) was responsible of the
review of Iusacell's books and records that were concluded satisfactorily
with the report of the examiner Mr. Pablo Octaviano Mendoza Garcia.

Headquartered in Mexico City, Mexico, Grupo Iusacell, S.A. de
C.V. (BMV: CEL) -- http://www.iusacell.com-- is a wireless
cellular and PCS service provider in Mexico with a national
footprint.  Independent of the negotiations towards the
restructuring of its debt, Grupo Iusacell reinforces its
commitment with customers, employees and suppliers and
guarantees the highest quality standards in its daily operations
offering more and better voice communication and data services
through state-of-the-art technology, including its new 3G
network, throughout all of the regions in which it operate.

As of Dec. 31, 2005, Grupo Iusacell's stockholders' deficit
widened to MXN2,076,000,000 from a deficit of MXN1,187,000,000
at Dec. 31, 2004.

Grupo Iusacell filed for bankruptcy protection on June 18 under
Mexican Law to prevent creditors from disrupting its debt
restructuring talks.  On July 14, 2006, Gramercy Emerging
Markets Fund, Pallmall LLC and Kapali LLC, owed an aggregate
amount of US$55,878,000 filed an Involuntary Chapter 11 Case
against Grupo Iusacell's operating subsidiary, Grupo Iusacell
Celular, S.A. de C.V. (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Case No. 06-11599).  Alan
M. Field, Esq., at Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP, represents
the petitioners.

Iusacell Celular then filed for bankruptcy protection under
Mexican Law on July 18.


MERIDIAN AUTOMOTIVE: Committee Objects to Disclosure Statement
--------------------------------------------------------------
Under Meridian Automotive Systems, Inc., and its debtor-
affiliates' Fourth Amended Plan of Reorganization, general
unsecured creditors receive the right to share in the recoveries
of a Litigation Trust on a pro rata basis with the deficiency
claims of the Lenders but only after payment of any Allowed
Administrative Claims held by the Lenders, Gregory A. Taylor,
Esq., at Ashby & Geddes, P.A., in Wilmington, Delaware, states.

The holders of Prepetition First Lien Claims and Prepetition
Second Lien Claims -- the First Lien and Second Lien Lenders
-- have informed the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors that they
intend to assert massive claims under Section 507(b) of the Bankruptcy Code,
Mr. Taylor relates.  The Lenders have further advised the Committee that
when their 507(b) Claims are
determined, the Claims will consume all of the assets of the
Litigation Trust.

The Committee complains that the Disclosure Statement is
deficient in its discussion of the purported 507(b) Claims, the
allowance of which would materially impact recoveries to general
unsecured creditors.

In particular, Mr. Taylor points out, the Disclosure Statement:

   -- contains no discussion or evaluation of the extent or
      validity of the 507(b) Claims; and

   -- does not explain that the right of general unsecured
      creditors to receive a distribution is contingent upon
      defeating the 507(b) Claims.

Mr. Taylor notes that if the 507(b) Claims consume all the assets of the
Litigation Trust, Class 5 General Unsecured Creditors will receive no
distribution.  Consequently, the distribution from the Litigation Trust
promised to general unsecured creditors in the Fourth Amended Plan is
illusory, Mr. Taylor contends.  Class 5 should be deemed to reject the Plan
if they will not receive a distribution.

The Disclosure Statement inappropriately suggests that the DIP
Order granted the Lenders liquidated 507(b) Claims, Mr. Taylor
asserts.  Mr. Taylor emphasizes that the DIP Order granted the
Lenders "status," and not "claims," under Section 507(b).  "The
Lenders are still required to prove that they hold any claims
under Section 507(b) for a failure of adequate protection."

Mr. Taylor points out that upon the Effective Date of the Fourth
Amended Plan, only two entities will be in a position to analyze
and oppose the Lenders' 507(b) Claims -- the Reorganized Debtors
and the Litigation Trustee who takes its direction from the
Oversight Committee.

The Reorganized Debtors will have no incentive to oppose the
507(b) Claims because as of the Effective Date, they will be
controlled by the Lenders, Mr. Taylor relates.  The Oversight
Committee will, by definition, also be controlled by the Lenders.  As a
result, the Lenders' 507(b) Claims and any of their other Administrative
Expense Claims will be allowed without examination or opposition, Mr. Taylor
says.

"Due process demands that general unsecured creditors are
adequately represented in opposing the 507(b) Claims," Mr. Taylor contends.
"The Disclosure Statement and the Plan should require the Lenders to timely
assert any 507(b) Claims so that they may be determined at the Plan
confirmation hearing after notice and opportunity to object by the Committee
prior to its dissolution."

Mr. Taylor argues that the Disclosure Statement:

   -- fails to mention that the Lenders' right to accrue or
      receive payment of postpetition interest and reasonable
      fees and expenses under the applicable prepetition lien
      and loan documents is subject to Section 506 of the
      Bankruptcy Code;

   -- does not detail the basis for the First Lien Lenders'
      "gifting" of 4.5% of the equity in the Reorganized Debtors
      to the Second Lien Lenders if they vote to accept the
      Plan, and 10% of the equity to management as an incentive;
      and

   -- does not specify reservations of claims and causes of
      action and consequently does not preserve the right to
      pursue the assets on a post-confirmation basis.

Approximately US$45,000,000 of postpetition interest, fees and
expenses has already been paid to the Lenders and their
professionals during the course of the Chapter 11 cases, Mr.
Taylor notes.  Under Section 506, however, only an oversecured
creditor is entitled to receive payment of that amount.  If
Section 506 is applied, then the US$45,000,000 paid to the Lenders should be
disgorged or reapplied to reduce the outstanding obligations owing to the
Lenders as of the Petition Date, Mr. Taylor contends.

The Plan proposed to substantively consolidate the Debtors for
Plan purposes only, except that distribution of recoveries from
the Litigation Trust are to be made on a non-consolidated basis,
Mr. Taylor notes.  If the Litigation Trustee recovers upon a
cause of action that was contributed to the Litigation Trust,
only those creditors that have direct claims against the estate
to which the recovery is attributable may share in the proceeds.
As the Lenders have principle or guaranty claims against each of
the Debtors, the exception to substantive consolidation works
only against general unsecured creditors, Mr. Taylor contends.

The Committee asserts that the Disclosure Statement should
describe how recoveries would differ for general unsecured
creditors if there is a full substantive consolidation as opposed to the
partial substantive consolidation that is proposed.

If the sole potential distribution, if any, to unsecured
creditors is to be accomplished on a non-consolidated basis, then unsecured
creditors should be able to vote in favor or against the Plan on a
non-consolidated basis, the Committee argues.

The Committee maintains that substantive consolidation is
appropriate to all creditors.

Mr. Taylor contends that the Disclosure Statement is also
deficient in numerous other aspects:

   -- It discusses financial results up to fiscal year 2005 but
      does not include any description of results for the
      current year;

   -- It defines Administrative Expense Claims to include "any
      Prepetition Second Lien Priority Claim," which is not
      defined anywhere in the Plan or Disclosure Statement;

   -- It does not quantify the possible Pension Benefit Guaranty
      Corporation liabilities or state what the PBGC asserts to
      be its claims;

   -- It does not reflect recent announcements by the Ford Motor
      Company and Chrysler Corp. regarding production cutbacks
      and operational restructurings that pose risks to the
      Debtors' ability to reorganize successfully and carry out
      the Plan; and

   -- It is devoid of any description of the mechanics that will
      govern distribution of trust interests, including the form
      of the interests to be distributed, the identity of the
      holder of the interests for each class, and the
      calculation of the number of trust interests to be
      distributed.

"In reality, the Plan represents a wholesale departure from the
consensual approach previously taken by the Debtors pursuant to
which the Committee was a co-proponent of the prior version of
the Plan submitted to the Court," according to Mr. Taylor.

"The Committee was not consulted prior to the filing of the
current Plan, is no longer a co-proponent of the Plan and will,
absent a resolution with the Lenders, oppose confirmation of the
Plan," Mr. Taylor says.  "The Plan is a step backwards for
unsecured creditors."

Headquartered in Dearborn, Mich., Meridian Automotive Systems,
Inc. -- http://www.meridianautosystems.com/-- supplies
technologically advanced front and rear end modules, lighting,
exterior composites, console modules, instrument panels and other interior
systems to automobile and truck manufacturers.  Meridian operates 22 plants
in the United States, Canada and Mexico, supplying Original Equipment
Manufacturers and major Tier One parts suppliers.  The Company and its
debtor-affiliates filed for chapter 11 protection on April 26, 2005 (Bankr.
D. Del. Case Nos. 05-11168 through 05-11176).  James F. Conlan, Esq., Larry
J. Nyhan, Esq., Paul S. Caruso, Esq., and Bojan Guzina, Esq., at Sidley
Austin Brown & Wood LLP, and Robert S. Brady, Esq., Edmon L. Morton, Esq.,
Edward J. Kosmowski, Esq., and Ian S. Fredericks, Esq., at Young Conaway
Stargatt & Taylor, LLP, represent the Debtors in their restructuring
efforts.  Eric E. Sagerman, Esq., at Winston & Strawn LLP represents the
Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors.  The Committee also hired Ian
Connor Bifferato, Esq., at Bifferato, Gentilotti, Biden & Balick, P.A., to
prosecute an adversary proceeding against Meridian's First Lien Lenders and
Second Lien Lenders to invalidate their liens.  When the Debtors filed for
protection from their creditors, they listed US$530 million in total assets
and approximately US$815 million in total liabilities.  (Meridian Bankruptcy
News, Issue No. 40; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc.,
http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000).


MERIDIAN AUTOMOTIVE: Committee Balks at Solicitation Procedures
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Meridian
Automotive Systems, Inc., and its debtor-affiliates asks the U.S. Bankruptcy
Court for the District of Delaware to deny the
Solicitation Motion or direct the Debtors to amend the
Solicitation Procedures so that it will be consistent with its
requests.

The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors believes that the
Debtors' prepetition lenders will assert massive claims under
Section 507(b) of the Bankruptcy Code.  The Lenders have advised
the Committee that their 507(b) Claims will wipe out any recovery for
general unsecured creditors under the Fourth Amended Joint Plan of
Reorganization, Gregory A. Taylor, Esq., at Ashby & Geddes, P.A., in
Wilmington, Delaware, informs the Court.

Under the Fourth Amended Plan, the Lenders will obtain a release
that will insulate their claims from application of Section
506(b) of the Bankruptcy Code.  The fundamental premise of the
Plan is that the Lenders are undersecured.  However, Mr. Taylor
notes, the Lenders have received up to US$45,000,000 in
postpetition interest, fees and expenses during the course of the bankruptcy
cases.

The Committee will be dissolved on the Effective Date of the
Fourth Amended Plan.  The duty of examining and, if appropriate,
opposing the Lenders' 506(b) Claims and the 507(b) Claims will
then rest with the Reorganized Debtors or the Liquidating Trustee under the
direction of the Oversight Committee.  Mr. Taylor points out that both the
Reorganized Debtors and the Oversight Committee will be controlled by the
Lenders on the Effective Date, thus neither of the entities can be expected
to scrutinize or oppose the 506(b) Claims or the 507(b) Claims.

If the Court approves the Disclosure Statement and establishes a
Plan Confirmation timeline, the Committee asks the Court to
simultaneously:

   (a) set a pre-confirmation bar date for the filing of the
       506(b) Claims and 507(b) Claims by the Lenders; and

   (b) establish pre-confirmation discovery and trial schedules
       on those claims and other matters that may have a
       significant impact upon recoveries for general unsecured
       creditors.

Bankruptcy Rule 3017(d) provides that a bankruptcy court may
direct a debtor to include certain information in its
solicitation package that will be delivered to creditors in
connection with voting upon a Chapter 11 plan.

The Committee has prepared a letter to be mailed to creditors
together with the Debtors' solicitation materials.  Mr. Taylor
asserts that the inclusion of the letter with the Debtors'
solicitation materials is a cost-effective method of informing
creditors of the Committee's position on the Plan.

The Debtors have asked the Court to approve certain "voting
procedures and standard assumptions" to serve as guidelines for
the tabulation of ballots.  Mr. Taylor contends that the
Procedures grant the Debtors wide discretion to pick and choose
which ballots should be counted toward Plan confirmation.

Mr. Taylor points out that the Debtors' proposed order notes:

   -- The Debtors may reject ballots in their "sole discretion"
      if the ballots are not in "proper form;"

   -- The Debtors may in their "sole discretion" reject ballots
      as invalid if the ballots are received after the Voting
      Deadline;

   -- A vote may be withdrawn with the "prior consent of the
      Debtors;" and

   -- Defects or irregularities in delivery of a ballot must be
      cured within the time as the Debtors or the Court
      determine.

"There is no safeguard that will prevent the Debtors from
exercising this discretion in an arbitrary or capricious manner
to suit their own needs," Mr. Taylor argues.  "In order to ensure consistent
and fair application of the balloting procedures, the Debtors should be
required to consult with the Committee in exercising discretion in these
matters."

Headquartered in Dearborn, Mich., Meridian Automotive Systems,
Inc. -- http://www.meridianautosystems.com/-- supplies
technologically advanced front and rear end modules, lighting,
exterior composites, console modules, instrument panels and other interior
systems to automobile and truck manufacturers.  Meridian operates 22 plants
in the United States, Canada and Mexico, supplying Original Equipment
Manufacturers and major Tier One parts suppliers.  The Company and its
debtor-affiliates filed for chapter 11 protection on April 26, 2005 (Bankr.
D. Del. Case Nos. 05-11168 through 05-11176).  James F. Conlan, Esq., Larry
J. Nyhan, Esq., Paul S. Caruso, Esq., and Bojan Guzina, Esq., at Sidley
Austin Brown & Wood LLP, and Robert S. Brady, Esq., Edmon L. Morton, Esq.,
Edward J. Kosmowski, Esq., and Ian S. Fredericks, Esq., at Young Conaway
Stargatt & Taylor, LLP, represent the Debtors in their restructuring
efforts.  Eric E. Sagerman, Esq., at Winston & Strawn LLP represents the
Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors.  The Committee also hired Ian
Connor Bifferato, Esq., at Bifferato, Gentilotti, Biden & Balick, P.A., to
prosecute an adversary proceeding against Meridian's First Lien Lenders and
Second Lien Lenders to invalidate their liens.  When the Debtors filed for
protection from their creditors, they listed US$530 million in total assets
and approximately US$815 million in total liabilities.  (Meridian Bankruptcy
News, Issue No. 40; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc.,
http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000).


METROFINANCIERA: Acquires Credito y Casa for US$150 Million
-----------------------------------------------------------
Metrofinanciera, a home finance company in Mexico, has purchased Credito y
Casa for US$150 million, according to a report by local daily Reforma.

Reforma relates that Metrofinanciera plans a merger with Credito y Casa.

BNamericas reports that the resulting entity from the merger will be the
largest special purpose finance company and the largest home finance firm in
Mexico, surpassing industry leader Hipotecaria Su Casita.

Metrofinanciera and Credito y Casa are both special purpose finance firms.
As of June 30, Metrofinanciera posted MXN17.8 billion in loans while Credito
y Casa reported MXN8.55 billion in loans, BNamericas states.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on April 11,
2006, Fitch Ratings assigned the following ratings to
Metrofinanciera, a Mexican mortgage lender:

   -- Foreign Currency Long-term Issuer Default Ratings 'BB-';
   -- Foreign Currency Short-term IDR 'B';
   -- Local Currency Long-term IDR 'BB-';
   -- Local Currency Short-term IDR 'B';
   -- Individual Rating 'D';
   -- Support Rating '5'.

Fitch said the rating outlook is stable.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on April 3, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned a 'BB-' long-term counter party
credit rating to Metrofinanciera S.A. de C.V. Sociedad de Objeto Limitado.
S&P said the outlook is stable.


NORTEL NETWORKS: Introduces Mobile WiMax Portfolio
-------------------------------------------------
Demonstrating the company's commitment to leadership in 4G, Nortel Networks
has introduced its Mobile WiMAX portfolio.

Nortel unveiled the industry's first end-to-end mobile MIMO-powered WiMAX
solution to deliver 4G Mobile Broadband content - including
Internet-Everywhere, mobile video, VoIP, streaming media, data applications
and mobile electronic commerce.

Through this Nortel innovation, operators will be able to deliver
video-grade content for as little as one-tenth the cost per bit of current
3G wireless networks.  In addition, Nortel's MIMO-based mobile WiMAX can
deliver three times the speed and twice the subscriber capacity with greater
range and building penetration in urban areas compared to non-MIMO WiMAX
solutions.  This is designed to provide the lowest total cost of ownership
model for operators, allowing them to deliver new revenue-generating
applications with minimal investment. It also creates opportunity for new
entrants to compete in the wireless content delivery business.

Nortel's end-to-end mobile WiMAX solution, based on the
IEEE 802.16e wireless standard, is built on OFDM-MIMO, which enables greater
coverage and spectral efficiency than other wireless technologies while
providing the best cost of ownership for operators.

"WiMAX is a profoundly disruptive technology. It will change the way content
is delivered; the way users access information and entertainment as well as
the economics of wireless operators. As the first 4G technology available,
WiMAX will transition the consumer experience from today's wireless
connectivity to tomorrow's true mobility -- users will be able to replicate
their PC capabilities, such as blogging, video and VoIP, anywhere," said
Peter MacKinnon, Nortel's General Manager of WiMAX and Chairman, LG-Nortel.

Nortel is able to achieve such capabilities because its mobile WiMAX
solution is built on the foundation of OFDM-MIMO, a combination of
innovative transmission and antenna technologies that maximizes spectrum to
deliver the lightning-fast speeds and high bandwidth essential to
high-quality mobile video and TV.  The power and performance of Nortel's
solution enables operators to deploy less network infrastructure, providing
substantial savings.  Nortel is the only company to provide OFDM-MIMO in its
mobile WiMAX solution when initially available.

"The power of WiMAX for high-bandwidth applications opens a whole new world
of mobility, that provides new capabilities and processes for businesses and
new revenue-generating services for operators," said Godfrey Chua, research
manager, Wireless and Mobile Infrastructure, IDC.  "WiMAX has the potential
to revolutionize entertainment, provide communication capabilities that
haven't even been considered yet, and bring the true Internet experience to
the mobile realm."

In addition to introducing the Mobile WiMAX portfolio, Nortel also announced
its collaboration with chipset maker Runcom to fuel the WiMAX business
advantages by delivering MIMO chipsets that will enable the WiMAX ecosystem
of network technologies and devices.

Nortel's WiMAX solutions are being trialed with carriers around the world,
in Asia, Europe and the Americas -- and have been deployed by Netago
Wireless with the Special Areas Board of Alberta in Canada and Craig
Wireless in Greece.

Nortel's WiMAX solution offers flexible operations and is designed to
operate in the 1.5, 2.3, 2.5 and 3.5 GHz frequencies.  The solution is based
on field-proven, next-generation platforms and leverages the Company's
leadership in supplying carrier wireless solutions, including CDMA, GSM and
WCDMA core technologies.  The solution is comprised of new MIMO base station
transceivers, access service network gateways, connectivity services
networks, mobile subscriber stations and network management systems.

Nortel is one of the industry leaders in 4G Mobile Broadband based on its
development of OFDM and MIMO and has been instrumental in driving standards
in IEEE, WiMAX Forum, 3GPP and 3GPP2.  The company developed OFDM-MIMO
expertise over the past eight years and holds key patents in the technology.
Nortel is a member of the WiMAX Forum, an industry-led organization that
promotes interoperability and certification of wireless products for
delivery of faster, more affordable data, voice and video services to
business and consumers.

                About Nortel Networks Corp.

Headquartered in Ontario, Canada, Nortel Networks Corp.
(NYSE/TSX: NT) -- http://www.nortel.com/-- delivers technology
solutions encompassing end-to-end broadband, Voice over IP,
multimedia services and applications, and wireless broadband
designed to help people solve the world's greatest challenges.
Nortel does business in more than 150 countries including Mexico.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Oct. 5, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service upgraded its B3 Corporate Family
Rating for Nortel Networks Corp. to B2.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on July 10, 2006,
Dominion Bond Rating Service confirmed the long-term ratings of
Nortel Networks Capital Corp., Nortel Networks Corp., and Nortel
Networks Limited at B (low) along with the preferred share
ratings of Nortel Networks Limited at Pfd-5 (low).  All trends
are Stable.

DBRS confirmed B (low) Stb Senior Unsecured Notes; B (low) Stb
Convertible Notes; B (low) Stb Notes & Long-Term Senior Debt;
Pfd-5 (low) Stb Class A, Redeemable Preferred Shares; and Pfd-5
(low) Stb Class A, Non-Cumulative Redeemable Preferred Shares.

Standard & Poor's also affirmed its 'B-' long-term and 'B-2'
short-term corporate credit ratings on the company, and assigned
its 'B-' senior unsecured debt rating to the company's proposed
US$2 billion notes.  S&P said the outlook is stable.


NORTEL NETWORKS: Partners with Runcom to Deliver WiMAX Services
---------------------------------------------------------------
Delivery of broadband, media-rich content to mobile users -- such as voice,
streaming music, video, internet access and multimedia -- is taking a
significant leap forward with the joint collaboration on new technologies
from Nortel Networks and Runcom that will enable the development of new,
WiMAX-enabled devices.

The new WiMAX technology is planned to support high-bandwidth mobile
applications like VoIP, videoconferencing and mobile video over large areas
at three to five times the performance and efficiency of current 3G
technologies.

Nortel's leadership in 4G Mobile Broadband technologies and Israel-based
Runcom Technologies' pioneering developments in chipset technologies for
Mobile WiMAX have yielded a collaboration focused on technologies that
overcome transmission interruptions and delays that disrupt the real-time
quality essential to new high-bandwidth applications.

This new technology called MIMO -- Multiple Input Multiple Output -- is the
focus of Nortel and Runcom's development efforts and is an advanced antenna
technology that is used both in transmission and receiver equipment.  The
Nortel/Runcom collaboration is expected to be the first to deliver
MIMO-enabled mobile WiMAX (802.16e) devices, which will be available
mid-2007.

"Whether in densely-populated urban environments or sparsely-populated rural
areas, WiMAX offers the latest and most popular solution to delivering
mobile broadband communications that power economic growth," said Peter
MacKinnon, general manager, WiMAX, Nortel and chairman, LG-Nortel.
"Nortel's relationship with Runcom lays the groundwork that enables the
integration of MIMO -- the most compelling technology currently available
for powering the future of mobile broadband."

"The strength of MIMO is that it packs 300 percent more performance across
the same area as competing WiMAX offerings, requiring fewer cell towers for
more efficient transmission of communications. Working with Nortel is giving
Runcom the opportunity to bring our high-performance, industry-leading
chipset to market and deliver the promise of mobile WiMAX to both the
carrier and consumer markets," said Dr. Zion Hadad, founder and chief
executive officer, Runcom.

Because Nortel's MIMO technology is able to accommodate several input and
output paths simultaneously, it can deliver three times the speed and
efficiency at one third the cost compared to competing WiMAX solutions that
use alternative technologies.  Using the Runcom MIMO chipset, Nortel will
deliver leading WiMAX solutions that meet future market requirements.

Nortel is the only WiMAX vendor with products in nearly all mobile
technologies currently available across both public and private wireless
networks.  Nortel also owns dozens of patents in the technologies underlying
the WiMAX standard, and the company's eight years of work in OFDM/MIMO
technology has culminated with much of its patented technology being
accepted as the basis for the global WiMAX industry standard.

                       About Runcom

Runcom is pioneering the OFDMA technology worldwide by introducing it into
international Standard such as DVB-RCT, IEEE802.16-2004 and IEEE.802.16e.
The company holds substantial IPR in OFDMA technology and is focused on
silicon solutions for mobile subscriber terminals and base stations.

                About Nortel Networks Corp.

Headquartered in Ontario, Canada, Nortel Networks Corp.
(NYSE/TSX: NT) -- http://www.nortel.com/-- delivers technology
solutions encompassing end-to-end broadband, Voice over IP,
multimedia services and applications, and wireless broadband
designed to help people solve the world's greatest challenges.
Nortel does business in more than 150 countries including Mexico.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Oct. 5, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service upgraded its B3 Corporate Family
Rating for Nortel Networks Corp. to B2.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on July 10, 2006,
Dominion Bond Rating Service confirmed the long-term ratings of
Nortel Networks Capital Corp., Nortel Networks Corp., and Nortel
Networks Limited at B (low) along with the preferred share
ratings of Nortel Networks Limited at Pfd-5 (low).  All trends
are Stable.

DBRS confirmed B (low) Stb Senior Unsecured Notes; B (low) Stb
Convertible Notes; B (low) Stb Notes & Long-Term Senior Debt;
Pfd-5 (low) Stb Class A, Redeemable Preferred Shares; and Pfd-5
(low) Stb Class A, Non-Cumulative Redeemable Preferred Shares.

Standard & Poor's also affirmed its 'B-' long-term and 'B-2'
short-term corporate credit ratings on the company, and assigned
its 'B-' senior unsecured debt rating to the company's proposed
US$2 billion notes.  S&P said the outlook is stable.


ST. JOHN KNITS: Moody's Affirms Low B Ratings
---------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service affirmed the ratings to St. John Knits
International Inc.'s corporate family rating and its secured first lien
credit facilities, following its review of recent operating performance.
The company's rating outlook remains negative.

St. John Knits' B1 rating reflects the company's strong brand identity in
the luxury women's apparel market and its high customer loyalty, which
appears to have been retained notwithstanding the negative reaction to
changes in fit and style undertaken in the company's Spring 2006 line.  At
the same time, the ratings also reflect the company's high dependence on the
St John's name and image, the relatively small scale of the company in the
apparel industry and its reliance on 3 major high end department stores for
a significant portion of revenues.

The rating outlook remains negative based on concerns the company's recovery
from its fashion miscues in 2006 may take longer than anticipated.

These ratings were affirmed:

   -- Corporate Family Rating at B1;

   -- Probability of Default rating at B2;

   -- US$45 million first lien revolving credit facility at B1
      (LGD 3, 31%); and

   -- US$185 million first lien term loan at B1 (LGD 3, 31%).

Based in Irvine, California, St. John Knits is a designer and manufacturer
of luxury womens' clothing under the 'St John Knits' brand.  The company
supplies product to leading high-end retailers, its exclusive chain of high
street retail stores and through specialty stores in foreign countries
including Brazil and Mexico.




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


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Ships Diesel to Nicaraguan Joint Venture
----------------------------------------------------------------
Petroleos de Venezuela, the state-run oil company of Venezuela, said in a
statement that it has made its first shipment of 1,800 barrels of diesel to
Albanic, its joint venture with an association of 153 municipalities in
Nicaragua.

Business News Americas states that the cargo arrived at the El Rama port,
about 300 kilometers from Managua.

Petroleos de Venezuela told BNamericas that Nicaragua will use the fuel to
run Las Brisas, a thermo plant in Managua which produces 10% of Nicaragua's
power, in an effort to relieve the nation of its energy shortages.

BNamericas relates that Alejandro Granado, the vice president of refining in
Petroleos de Venezuela, said during a ceremony, "The problem of blackouts in
Nicaragua will be history."

Petroleos de Venezuela will deliver another 5,000 barrels of diesel on Oct.
20.  It will be followed by other shipments every 10-12 days, BNamericas
reports.

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

                        *    *    *

Standard & Poor's said on July 17 that it may lower the
company's B+ foreign-currency debt rating in part because of the
absence of timely financial and operating information.


* NICARAGUA: Mayors Try to Sell 84,000 Gal. of Venezuelan Diesel
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Nicaraguan Association of Municipalities, headed by the Sandinist mayor
of Managua Dionisio Marenco, is trying sell 84,000 gallons of diesel that
Venezuela sent to show its upport to leftist opposition leader, Daniel
Ortega, El Universal reports.

According to the same report, both state and private energy companies and
local transportation firms made no moves to purchase the product that
arrived in the country on Saturday.

"If we do not sell it, then we will find a way to sell it in Panama," Mayor
Marenco was quoted by El Universal as saying.

A few months ago, AMUNIC and Petroleos de Venezuela have agreed on the
yearly supply of 10 million barrels of petrol to Nicaragua under
preferential terms -- 60% of the gasoline and diesel purchased from
Venezuela would have a 90-day term at the international market price.  The
rest would have a two-year grace period and a 23-year credit at 1% interest.

                        *    *    *

Moody's Investor Service assigned these ratings to Nicaragua:

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




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


CHIQUITA BRANDS: Unit Selects TR3 to Track Product Freshness
------------------------------------------------------------
Fresh Express, a division of Chiquita Brands International, Inc., has
selected TR3 Solution's On-Demand RPM to improve the performance of its
retail trading partner relationships.  TR3 will help Fresh Express leverage
the visibility provided by RFID tagging to track product movement and ensure
that only high quality product is on retail store shelves.

Fresh Express will be using TR3's On-Demand solution for promotions, sales
and supply chain visibility, plus TR3's Perishables Module that adds
capabilities for products sold with expiration dates.  TR3 On-Demand
processes the information read from RFID tags at several major retailers,
including Wal-Mart, and alerts Fresh Express to key issues such as supply
chain bottlenecks and, if necessary, to better execute recalls.

"Fresh Express is excited about the opportunities that RFID presents to
ensure that only the freshest product is on store shelves," said Dan Wasser,
Vice-President of Business Information and Analysis for Fresh Express.  "We
chose TR3 because of their innovative approach to make RFID an asset for
manufacturers that sell perishable products like ourselves."

"This agreement is another signal from the CPG industry that manufacturers
can get value from their RFID investments," said Tom Rauh, President of TR3
Solutions.  "Fresh Express is in a product category that is under the
national spotlight, and we're pleased to help them use RFID as a valuable
asset in their business operations."

                          About TR3

TR3 Solutions, a leading provider of RFID solutions to the CPG and retail
markets, provides solutions and consulting to help CPG manufacturers realize
tangible business value from their RFID initiatives and investments.

                     About Fresh Express

Fresh Express, a division of Chiquita Brands International, Inc., has been a
leader in fresh foods for more than 80 years and is dedicated to providing
consumers with healthy, convenient ready-to-eat salads, vegetables and
fruits.  Over 20 million consumers enjoy Fresh Express salads and greens
every week.

                       About Chiquita

Cincinnati, Ohio-based Chiquita Brands International, Inc.
(NYSE: CQB) -- http://www.chiquita.com/-- markets and
distributes fresh food products including bananas and nutritious
blends of green salads.  The company markets its products under
the Chiquita(R) and Fresh Express(R) premium brands and other
related trademarks.  Chiquita employs approximately 25,000
people operating in more than 70 countries worldwide including Panama.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Oct. 3, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service affirmed all ratings for Chiquita
Brands L.L.C. (senior secured at Ba3), as well as for its parent
Chiquita Brands International, Inc. (corporate family rating at
B2), but changed the outlook to negative from stable.  This
action followed the company's announcement that its operating
performance continues to be negatively impacted by lower pricing
in key European and trading markets, as well as excess fruit
supply.


GRUPO BANISTMO: Unit Being Probed on Unfair Trading Practices
-------------------------------------------------------------
The Panamanian antitrust authority is investigating Conase -- a unit of
Grupo Banistmo -- and other companies over alleged unfair trading practices,
Business News Americas reports.

There are nine insurance firms undergoing the probe, BNamericas relates,
citing Ricardo Salcedo, the head of the competition department.

Mr. Salcedo told BNamericas, "We are carrying out two investigations, one
analyzing possible collusion in setting prices for fire insurance policies
and the other looking into the same for auto insurance policies."

According to BNamericas, Conase is being investigated for fire insurance
policy price-setting charges as well as charges of auto insurance policy
price setting.

BNamericas underscores that antitrust authority officials visited the nine
insurance firms and the local insurance association Apadea at in September
to collect evidence.

Mr. Salcedo told BNamericas that the authority is still conducting
investigations and will be deciding later whether to file a lawsuit.  There
is yet no deadline for the release of its final reports.

Companies found guilty of unfair trading practices will be fined up to US$1
million, BNamericas states.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
July 25, 2006, Moody's Investors Service placed the Ba1/Not
Prime long- and short-term deposit ratings of Primer Banco del
Istmo, S.A. aka Banistmo on review for possible upgrade.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
July 25, 2006, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services placed its
'BB+/B' counterparty credit rating on Primer Banco del Istmo
S.A. aka Banistmo on CreditWatch with positive implications.
S&P has also placed its 'BB/B' counterparty credit rating on
Banco Salvadoreno S.A. on CreditWatch with positive implications
and affirmed its ratings on HSBC Holdings PLC (HSBC) and related
entities, including the 'AA-/A-1+' counterparty credit rating on
HSBC, with a stable outlook.


GRUPO BANISTMO: Unit's First Half 2006 Profits Drop to US$8.01MM
----------------------------------------------------------------
Conase, a unit of Grupo Banistmo, said in a filing with the Panamanian stock
exchange that its earnings decreased 30% to US$8.01 million in the first
half of 2006, from US$11.5 million in the first half of 2005.

Business News Americas relates that Conase's financial results include the
results of El Ahorro Hondureo, an insurance firm in Honduras.

Conase's return on equity dropped to 16% in the first half of 2006, from 37%
in the same period in 2005.  Meanwhile, its return on assets decreased to
10% from 18%, BNamericas states.

According to BNamericas, Conase's underwriting result fell 35% to US$6.10
million in the first half of 2006, compared with the first half of 2005.

Conase's written premiums dropped 9% to US$44.9 million while net written
premiums decreased 6% to US$28.6 million, BNamericas reports.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
July 25, 2006, Moody's Investors Service placed the Ba1/Not
Prime long- and short-term deposit ratings of Primer Banco del
Istmo, S.A. aka Banistmo on review for possible upgrade.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
July 25, 2006, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services placed its
'BB+/B' counterparty credit rating on Primer Banco del Istmo
S.A. aka Banistmo on CreditWatch with positive implications.
S&P has also placed its 'BB/B' counterparty credit rating on
Banco Salvadoreno S.A. on CreditWatch with positive implications
and affirmed its ratings on HSBC Holdings PLC (HSBC) and related
entities, including the 'AA-/A-1+' counterparty credit rating on
HSBC, with a stable outlook.




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


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Prospecting for Gas & Oil in Paraguay
-------------------------------------------------------------
Petroleos de Venezuela SA, the state-oil company of Venezuela, is to conduct
a feasibility study to exploit for natural gas and oil in Chaco, Paraguay,
according to a report from El Universal.

Jose Humberto Sanchez, geologist and Petroleos de Venezuela's quantification
manager, told the Caracas daily that the study will be made over the next
ten months.

"We have undertaken studies to focus later on some areas of Chaco basin,"
Mr. Sanchez was quoted by El Universal as saying.

Chaco is an arid, scarcely populated area to the northeast of Paraguay,
bordering Bolivia, where there are presumably large, profitable deposits of
gas and oil.

"This is an early stage. Afterwards we would search additional information,
that is, technical data or well drilling," Mr. Sanchez added.

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

                        *    *    *

Standard & Poor's said on July 17 that it may lower the
company's B+ foreign-currency debt rating in part because of the
absence of timely financial and operating information.




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


ADELPHIA COMMS: Files Further Changes to Plan of Reorganization
---------------------------------------------------------------
Adelphia Communications Corp. filed a further modified draft of its Fifth
Amended Joint Chapter 11 Plan of Reorganization and a
plan support agreement amending the global settlement reached by
Adelphia, its Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors, as well
as several ad hoc committees and significant individual bond funds with the
U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.  Adelphia
expects to file a revised draft of the related Second Disclosure Statement
Supplement to its Fourth Amended Disclosure Statement with the Bankruptcy
Court that reflects the modifications to the Fifth Amended Plan.

Adelphia and the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors are
seeking an order of the Bankruptcy Court approving the revised
draft of the Disclosure Statement Supplement as containing
"adequate information" to enable Adelphia's Chapter 11 bankruptcy creditors
and equity holders to make an informed judgment about the modified draft of
the Fifth Amended Plan.  The Bankruptcy Court commenced the hearing on the
Disclosure Statement Supplement on Sept. 12, 2006.  The hearing is currently
scheduled to continue today, Oct. 13, 2006.

The modified draft of the Fifth Amended Plan reflects an
agreement, embodied in the Plan Support Agreement, to extend the
date by which the Fifth Amended Plan must be consummated on
Dec. 22, 2006 and to make certain modifications to the Fifth
Amended Plan.

Under the terms of the modified draft of the Fifth Amended Plan,
if the ACC Senior Notes Class accepts the modified draft of the
Fifth Amended Plan (or holders of ACC Senior Notes holding
specified amounts of ACC Senior Notes vote or are deemed to vote
in favor of the Plan), an additional US$50 million of value (for a total of
up to approximately US$1.13 billion) would be transferred from the
recoveries otherwise payable to the holders of Arahova Notes to the
creditors of Adelphia Communications, the parent corporation, and the deemed
value of the Class A common stock of Time Warner Cable Inc. held by Adelphia
would be increased to US$5.4 billion.  If the ACC Senior Notes Class does
not accept the modified draft of the Fifth Amended Plan (or vote or be
deemed to vote in the manner required in the modified draft Fifth Amended
Plan), the deemed value of Class A common stock of Time Warner Cable Inc.
held by Adelphia would be US$5.1 billion.

The modified draft of the Fifth Amended Plan also provides for an increase
in the potential changes in the deemed value of the Time Warner Cable stock
as a result of the post-closing 60-day market test from 15% to 20%.

Adelphia and the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors remain
co-proponents of the modified draft of the Fifth Amended Plan.  In addition,
the two bank administrative agents with which settlements have been reached
will continue to be co-proponents of the modified draft of the Fifth Amended
Plan with respect to the treatment of bank claims under the credit
agreements for which they are agents.

Adelphia's proposal and prosecution of confirmation of the
modified draft of the Fifth Amended Plan still is subject in all
respects to entry of an order approving the Disclosure Statement
Supplement, as well as Bankruptcy Court authorization for Adelphia to
propose and seek votes in respect of the modified draft of the Fifth Amended
Plan.

Absent entry of such an order and authorization, Adelphia's filing of the
modified draft of the Fifth Amended Plan shall not be deemed to be a
proposal by Adelphia or its subsidiaries with
respect to the proposed treatment of any claims against or equity interests
in Adelphia or its subsidiaries.  If this order is entered and such
authorization is granted, Adelphia, the Official Committee of Unsecured
Creditors and the relevant bank
administrative agents will begin the process of soliciting
creditors and equity holders to vote on the modified draft of the Fifth
Amended Plan.

The parties to the Plan Support Agreement, including the holders
of approximately US$625 million principal amount of ACC Senior Notes who
previously were not parties to the initial global settlement, have agreed,
among other things, to vote in favor of the modified draft of the Fifth
Amended Plan and to not take any action detrimental to the confirmation of
the modified draft of the Fifth Amended Plan.

A full-text copy of the modified Fifth Amended Reorganization Plan is
available for free at http://ResearchArchives.com/t/s?134f

A full-text copy of the Plan Support Agreement is available for
free at http://ResearchArchives.com/t/s?1350

                About Adelphia Communications

Based in Coudersport, Pa., Adelphia Communications Corp.
(OTC: ADELQ) -- 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 Cablevision Associates of Radnor, L.P., and 20 of its
affiliates, collectively known as Rigas Manged Entities, are
entities that were previously held or controlled by members of the Rigas
family.  In March 2006, the rights and titles to these
entities were transferred to certain subsidiaries of Adelphia
Cablevision, LLC.  The RME Debtors filed for chapter 11 protection on March
31, 2006 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Case Nos. 06-10622 through 06-10642).  Their cases
are jointly administered under Adelphia Communications and its
debtor-affiliates chapter 11 cases.


MUSICLAND HOLDING: U.S. Trustee Opposes Disclosure Statement
------------------------------------------------------------
Acting U.S. Trustee Diana G. Adams believes that the Disclosure
Statement explaining the Musicland Holding Corp. and its debtor-
affiliates' First Amended Plan of Liquidation is deficient and
does not meet the standards of containing "adequate information."

The Disclosure Statement correctly provides that the Debtors are
responsible for the payment of quarterly fees owed pursuant to
Section 1930(a)(6) of the Judiciary Procedures Code, according to Brian S.
Masumoto, Esq., in New York.

However, Mr. Masumoto asserts, the fees and charges under Section 1930,
which include the quarterly fees due to the U.S. Trustee are statutory fees
and should not be included in the definition of an "Administrative Claim,"
which appears to be intended by the Debtors to identify administrative
expense claims under Section 503(b) of the Bankruptcy Code.

"In addition, the Plan and Disclosure Statement should make clear that the
Debtors [are] responsible for the filing of all financial reports, including
such reports as are necessary to determine the Debtors' liability for
quarterly fees," the U.S. Trustee contends.

The U.S. Trustee also points out the Disclosure Statement should
identify the compensation to be paid to the Responsible Person,
who will also serve as the Disbursing Agent under the Plan, and
specify the amount of cash that will be held by the Responsible
Person or Disbursing Agent during the post-confirmation period.

In addition, the U.S. Trustee asserts that the Disclosure
Statement should make clear that the Debtors are not entitled to a discharge
because:

   (i) the Plan is a liquidating plan;

  (ii) the Debtors will not be engaging in business after the
       consummation of the Plan; and

(iii) the Debtors would not be entitled to a discharge under
       Section 727(a) of the Bankruptcy Code.

The U.S. Trustee objects to the Plan and the Disclosure Statement to that
extent that it seeks to release or exculpate non-debtor parties in any
manner inconsistent with Deutsche Bank AG v. Metromedia Fiber Network, Inc.
(In re Metromedia Fiber Network, Inc.), 416 F. 3d 136, 141 (2d Cir. 2005).

The U.S. Trustee opposes the proposed injunctions, exculpations
and releases to the extent that they are overbroad, exceeding the scope of
Section 1125(e) of the Bankruptcy Code.

The U.S. Trustee does not object to the exculpation of the
Debtors and the counsel for the Debtors and the Official
Committee of Unsecured Creditors to the extent that the
exculpation is limited to the express language of Section
1125(e), and if exculpation will not apply in the event of fraud, gross
negligence, willful misconduct, malpractice, criminal conduct, unauthorized
use of confidential information that causes damages, or ultra vires acts,
and will not limit the liability of the Debtor's professionals to their
client contrary to the requirements of DR 6-102 of the Code of Professional
Responsibility.

If the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York permits
any proposed injunctions, exculpations and releases, the Disclosure
Statement and Plan should include the appropriate language carving out
Government claims from the proposed releases, the U.S. Trustee emphasizes.

Accordingly, the U.S Trustee asks the Court to sustain its
objections.

                  About Musicland Holding

Headquartered in New York, New York, Musicland Holding Corp., is a specialty
retailer of music, movies and entertainment-related
products.  The Debtor and 14 of its affiliates filed for chapter
11 protection on Jan. 12, 2006 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Lead Case No.
06-10064).  James H.M. Sprayregen, Esq., at Kirkland & Ellis,
represents the Debtors in their restructuring efforts.   Mark T.
Power, Esq., at Hahn & Hessen LLP, represents the Official
Committee of Unsecured Creditors.  When the Debtors filed for
protection from their creditors, they estimated more than US$100
million in assets and debts.  (Musicland Bankruptcy News, Issue
No. 19; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc.,
http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000)


MUSICLAND HOLDING: ACE Group & ESIS Balk at Disclosure Statement
----------------------------------------------------------------
Prior to the Musicland Holding Corp. and its debtor-affiliates'
chapter 11 filing, Pacific Employers Insurance Company, ACE
American Insurance Company, and other members of the ACE group of companies
provided insurance coverage to the Debtors under various insurance policies.
The Policies were issued in connection with program agreements, which
required the insured's obligations under the Policies to be secured by
collateral.

The Policies and Program Agreements also required the Debtors to
retain a third party claims administrator, ESIS, Inc., to
administer, investigate, settle and defend claims.  The Debtors
and ESIS entered into one or more service agreements with respect to those
services, Karel S. Karpe, Esq., at White and Williams LLP, in New York,
relates.

As of October 5, 2006, Ms. Karpe notes that the Debtors have not
filed a Plan Supplement that lists the policies that they intend
to assume.

ACE and ESIS complain that the Disclosure Statement does not
contain adequate information concerning the treatment of the
Insurance Policies and other related agreements.

ACE and ESIS object to the Disclosure Statement to the extent
that:

   (a) it does not clearly indicate whether or not their
       Insurance Policies and the related agreements will be
       assumed or rejected;

   (b) to the extent the Debtors seek to assume some or all of
       the Insurance Policies but will not make any cure
       payments, it does not explain how the insured's
       obligations will be satisfied.  As a result, the
       Disclosure Statement is proposing a Plan that cannot be
       confirmed because the Debtors cannot assume part of an
       executory agreement and reject another part;

   (c) it does not contain any provision regarding reservation
       to preserve the rights of ACE and ESIS under the
       Insurance Policies, the related agreements and applicable
       law;

   (d) the proposed dispute resolution procedures violate the
       insurers' duties and rights to defend claims against the
       Debtors and their rights to arbitrate disputes with the
       Debtors;

   (e) it suggests that the First Amended Joint Plan of
       Liquidation may allow estimated claim amounts under
       Section 502(c) to resolve claims under the Insurance
       Policies.  The Insurance Policies do not provide coverage
       for estimated claims, Ms. Karpe maintains;

   (f) it does not explain who will perform the Debtors'
       obligations going forward or how those obligations will
       be satisfied;

   (g) it does not state that nothing in the proposed Amended
       Plan should be deemed to alter or amend in any way the
       terms, conditions, limitations and exclusions of the
       Insurance Policies and related agreements, and the
       obligations of ACE, ESIS or the Debtors to perform their
       obligations under the Insurance Policies and related
       agreements; and

   (h) it fails to clearly state that under the Amended Plan,
       ACE and ESIS can perform under the Insurance Policies and
       related agreements without violating the release and
       discharge injunction provisions.

Accordingly, ACE and ESIS ask the Court to disapprove the
Disclosure Statement unless their objections are addressed.

                  About Musicland Holding

Headquartered in New York, New York, Musicland Holding Corp. is a specialty
retailer of music, movies and entertainment-related
products.  The Debtor and 14 of its affiliates filed for chapter
11 protection on Jan. 12, 2006 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Lead Case No.
06-10064).  James H.M. Sprayregen, Esq., at Kirkland & Ellis,
represents the Debtors in their restructuring efforts.   Mark T.
Power, Esq., at Hahn & Hessen LLP, represents the Official
Committee of Unsecured Creditors.  When the Debtors filed for
protection from their creditors, they estimated more than US$100
million in assets and debts.  (Musicland Bankruptcy News, Issue
No. 19; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service, Inc.,
http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000)




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


BRITISH WEST: Says Launching Date of Caribbean Star Is Jan. 1
-------------------------------------------------------------
Dionne Ligoure, the communications manager of British West Indies Airlines
aka BWIA, denied to Newsday reports on Caribbean Airlines' opening on Jan.
7, 2007, assuring that the latter will start operating in Jan. 1, 2007.

Newsday relates that several travel agencies claimed that they had
unconfirmed reports about Caribbean Airlines starting operations on Jan. 7,
2007, and were asking for clarification from BWIA about what this meant for
persons wishing to schedule flights on BWIA before Dec. 31, 2006, to any of
its destinations.

According to Newsday, Ms. Ligoure said that there has been a lot of
misinformation about the startup of Caribbean Airlines.   She said that BWIA
will keep the public informed about the transition process as it unfolds.

Ms. Ligoure told Newsday that the BWIA staff is working hard to ensure that
Caribbean Airlines takes off on Jan. 1, 2007.

Caribbean Airlines would honor any bookings made with BWIA before Dec. 31,
2005, to any destination that BWIA serves, Ms. Ligoure explained to Newsday.

British West Indies aka BWIA was founded in 1940, and for more
than 60 years has been serving the Caribbean islands from
Trinidad and Tobago, the hub of the Americas, linking the twin
island republic and many other Caribbean islands with North
America, South America, the United Kingdom and Europe.

The airline has reportedly been losing US$1 million a week due
to poor operational management.  An employee survey revealed
that lack of responsibility by the management is a major issue
in the company.  A number of key employees moved to other
companies caused by a deadlock in the airline's negotiation with
its labor union.

The Trinidad & Tobago government, which owns 97.188% of BWIA,
decided to shut down the airline on Dec. 31, 2006, and reopen a
new airline that will be called Caribbean Airlines.  The
government approved a substantial capital injection for the
creation of Caribbean Airlines.




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


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: El Palito Refinery Is Back in Operation
---------------------------------------------------------------
Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. said that operations in its El Palito Refinery
are now completely normal after the obstruction of one of the valves of the
downspouts of the catalyst located in the Fluid Catalytic Cracking Unit.

The industrial security team of the refining complex decreased the load in
this plant following the standardized security procedures in order to
guarantee the integrity of workers and facilities.  After it was under
control, the startup maneuver of the refinery commenced immediately.

El Palito Refinery guarantees fuel supply to the central and western region
of the country because it has the necessary inventory to meet all its
commitments in the domestic market.

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

                        *    *    *

Standard & Poor's said on July 17 that it may lower the
company's B+ foreign-currency debt rating in part because of the
absence of timely financial and operating information.


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Nicaraguans Snubs Gallons of Diesel
-----------------------------------------------------------
The Nicaraguan Association of Municipalities, headed by the Sandinist mayor
of Managua Dionisio Marenco, is trying sell 84,000 gallons of diesel that
Venezuela sent to show its upport to leftist opposition leader, Daniel
Ortega, El Universal reports.

According to the same report, both state and private energy companies and
local transportation firms made no moves to purchase the product that
arrived in the country on Saturday.

"If we do not sell it, then we will find a way to sell it in Panama," Mayor
Marenco was quoted by El Universal as saying.

A few months ago, AMUNIC and Petroleos de Venezuela have agreed on the
yearly supply of 10 million barrels of petrol to Nicaragua under
preferential terms -- 60% of the gasoline and diesel purchased from
Venezuela would have a 90-day term at the international market price.  The
rest would have a two-year grace period and a 23-year credit at 1% interest.

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

                        *    *    *

Standard & Poor's said on July 17 that it may lower the
company's B+ foreign-currency debt rating in part because of the
absence of timely financial and operating information.


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Starting Cooperation Talks with Ecuador
---------------------------------------------------------------
Petroecuador, the Ecuadorean state oil firm, will start discussions with
Petroleos de Venezuela, its Venezuelan counterpart, to explore possibilities
of a joint venture in an oil field in Caracas, Prensa Latina reports, citing
Ivan Rodriguez, the Ecuadorean energy minister.

Prensa Latin relates that Minister Rodriguez disclosed the renewal of
contacts between Petroleos de Venezuela and Petroecuador.

Minister Rodriguez told Prensa Latina that Ecuador and Venezuela signed an
Energy Cooperation Agreement in May, although the accord was never
implemented.   The accord analyzes the possibility to construct a joint
refinery in the Ecuadorean province of Manabi.

Prensa Latin notes that Nicolas Maduro, Venezuela's foreign minister, will
be arriving in Ecuador for talks on strengthening political, trade and
energy relations between Venezuela and Ecuador.

Minister Maduro and Francisco Carrion, his Ecuadorean counterpart, will be
evaluating ways on intensifying economic and trade relations, according to a
statement from the foreign affairs ministry of Ecuador.

                     About Petroecuador

Petroecuador, according to published reports, is faced with
cash-problems.  The state-oil firm has no funds for maintenance
has no funds to repair pumps in diesel, gasoline and natural gas
refineries, and has no capacity to pay suppliers and vendors.
The government refused to give the much-needed cash alleging
that Petroecuador has been inefficient and non-transparent in
its accounts.

                About Petroleos de Venezuela

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

                        *    *    *

Standard & Poor's said on July 17 that it may lower the
company's B+ foreign-currency debt rating in part because of the
absence of timely financial and operating information.


* S&P Says LatAm Food & Beverage Cos. Continue Good Performance
---------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said that the performance of Latin
American food & beverage companies remains satisfactory, propelled by modest
or strong economic growth rates (varying by country), growing export
capabilities, and good consumption fundamentals globally.

In Argentina, while the sustained recovery of the economy has supported a
gradual recuperation of credit quality, price controls and export
restrictions continue to negatively affect the market environment for
certain food companies.

In Brazil, many issuers have benefited from a positive credit environment
since the beginning of the year, and managed to issue bonds both in the
local and international capital markets, significantly reducing their
exposure to short-term debt maturities.

The Chilean market continues to present positive growth prospects and
relative stability, which has supported the generally good performance of
large beverage companies.  Nevertheless, the wine industry is facing
challenges regarding increasing substitution for beer products in the
domestic market and less favorable conditions for exports (given the
appreciation of the Chilean currency).

In Mexico, despite the challenging competitive environment and the impact of
the depreciation of the Mexican peso relative to the U.S. dollar on the cost
of raw materials, food and beverage companies have managed to sustain their
operating margins in recent quarters.  Growth opportunities in the U.S.
Hispanic market continue in vogue for Mexican players, but challenges
associated with differences in market dynamics remain.

           Continuous recovery of consumption levels
          compensating for cost increases in Argentina

Positive consumption fundamentals in Argentina have continued, fueled by
economic growth (GDP grew by about 8% in the first five months of 2006) and
some recovery in purchasing power of lower- and medium-population segments.
This has helped consumer companies to compensate to some extent cost
increases (mainly labor and energy) under a context of certain inflexibility
to increase prices.

Basic consumer product producers (such as diary and meat) were the most
affected given the implementation of price agreements with the government
and export restrictions to contain inflation in the country.  In this sense,
and in light of the deterioration of the business conditions in the dairy
industry and high debt levels, during the second half of 2006, SanCor
Cooperativas Ltda. (one of the two largest diary producers in the country)
started negotiations with creditors to restructure its financial debt.

Despite the implementation of more flexible export conditions, inflation
levels and operators' price flexibility will continue to be relevant rating
factors to monitor in the short to medium term, as Standard & Poor's Ratings
Services expects volume performance to remain positive.

        Favorable liquidity conditions and robust capital
           budgets for Brazilian food and beverage
          companies despite some market volatility

Food and beverage consumption in Brazil has presented significant growth
during the first half of 2006, fueled by the continuous economic stability,
coupled with some improvement in the average income of population and the
gradual increase of formal employment.  According to data from IBGE, food,
beverage, and tobacco sales (including supermarkets and hypermarkets and
adjusted for seasonality) expanded by
7.2% in the first seven months of 2006, compared to the same period in 2005.

On the other hand, meat-exporting companies have witnessed mixed signals
depending on their type of product.  While beef companies, such as Bertin
Ltda. (B+/Stable/--) and JBS S.A. (B+/Stable/--), have benefited from strong
export volume growth (despite existing sanitary restrictions associated with
the footand-mouth disease cases reported in Brazil at the end of 2005),
poultry companies, such as Sadia S.A.
(BB/Stable/--), still face a sluggish global environment prompted by the
avian-flu outbreak in Asia and Europe.  Nevertheless, the appreciation of
the local currency during the past three years continues to put pressure on
meat producers' export margins.

A number of food and beverage companies Standard & Poor's rate in Brazil
have profited from the relative stability of the local economy and the
significant credit availability to tap the capital markets at favorable
conditions.  Proceeds from recent issuances should be applied to refinancing
short-term debt maturities and to robust capital budgets.  Meat producers,
for instance, have been working close to full capacity and will demand
investments to handle the volume growth expected for the next few years,
which is fueled by increasing demand globally.

     Positive growth prospects and continued stability
     supporting good performance of companies in Chile

Consumer companies in Chile continued to benefit from economic growth (GDP
is expected to exceed 5% in 2006) that translated into rather significant
increases in volume and per capita consumption levels.  In this sense, beer
volume sold by Compania Cervecerias S.A., the dominant beer player in the
market, increased by about 13% in the first half of 2006 (compared to the
equal period of 2005) that adds to the 10% growth registered in 2005.
Furthermore, average volume sales of Coca-Cola bottlers in Chile
(Embotelladora Andina S.A., Embotelladoras Coca-Cola Polar S.A., and Coca
Cola Embonor S.A.) improved by about 7% in the first half of 2006, also
fueled by the successful launching of new mineral water flavors.

The mentioned volume growth, the cost dilutions resulting from the
appreciation of the domestic currency (against the dollar), and the
improvement of operations outside Chile allowed consumer companies to offset
cost increases (energy, PET, and some raw materials such as sugar) and to
maintain healthy profitability levels.  One of the exceptions is the wine
industry, which continues struggling with the impact on exports of a strong
Chilean peso and the substitution effects from beer in the domestic market.


       Challenging competitive environment faced
        by Mexican food and beverage companies,
           but growth opportunities ahead

Mexican food and beverage companies continue to face high raw materials
costs during 2006.  In addition, dollar-denominated raw materials have
adversely affected operating margins due to the depreciation of the Mexican
peso relative to the U.S. dollar in 2006.  Nevertheless, most companies have
been able to deliver stable margins, supported by increased operating
efficiencies and productivity, along with the stronger premium products that
carry higher profitability.  Competition remains intense and is not expected
to slow down this year.  Low-priced products remain an alternative in the
Mexican market, and major food and beverage companies have taken actions to
compete with them.  Market segmentation, constant product innovation,
distribution network reconfiguration, and investment in more sophisticated
technology are the main initiatives that most companies are undertaking.
These actions are reflected in most of the companies' results in 2006.
Standard & Poor's believes this trend will continue for the next 12 months.

Several Mexican food and beverage companies continue to focus on the U.S.
Hispanic market, particularly in the southern U.S. Some of these companies
have well-established operations in their northern neighbor, and others are
starting to increase their presence.  More mature operations, as in the case
of Gruma S.A., represent large contributors to cash flow.  In the case of
Grupo Bimbo S.A. de C.V., such operations have represented a great challenge
for the company.  In the case of other companies such as FEMSA Cerveza S.A.
e C.V. and Sigma Alimentos S.A. de C.V., it remains a growth opportunity
that has not been fully tapped, and these companies have taken important
steps to increase their presence.  The U.S. market will continue to provide
growth opportunities, but will also remain an important challenge due to the
differences in market dynamics.

The carbonated soft drink industry continues to experience low single-digit
growth, and beverage companies continue to address this situation through
new product launchings, adapting their packaging portfolio to market needs,
and through line extensions.  These companies are also looking for a better
integration of their brands with local products, as well as exploring new
beverage segments to capture potential growth from new consumer trends in
the noncarbonated segment, with a particular focus on bottled water
profitability.


                         ***********


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 publication
in any form (including e-mail forwarding, electronic re-mailing and
photocopying) is strictly prohibited without prior written permission of the
publishers.

Information contained herein is obtained from sources believed to be
reliable, but is not guaranteed.

The TCR Latin America subscription rate is US$575 per half-year, delivered
via e-mail.  Additional e-mail subscriptions for members of the same firm
for the term of the initial subscription or balance thereof are US$25 each.
For subscription information, contact Christopher Beard at 240/629-3300.


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