TCRLA_Public/070322.mbx         T R O U B L E D   C O M P A N Y   R E P O R T E R

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

          Thursday, March 22, 2007, Vol. 8, Issue 58

                          Headlines

A R G E N T I N A

AGAROTTI SA: Proofs of Claim Verification Is Until May 14
BANCO HIPOTECARIO: May Buy Hexagon from HSBC's Argentine Unit
BANCO RIO: Moody's Puts B2 Currency Rating on US$250-Mil. Notes
MARITIMA SAN JOSE: Trustee Verifies Proofs of Claim Until May 2
PETROBRAS ENERGIA: Begins Oil Production at Estancia Agua Field

PIQUILLIN SRL: Proofs of Claim Verification Deadline Is May 30
SWAP PUBLICIDAD: Proofs of Claim Verification Is Until May 7
TELEFONICA DE ARGENTINA: Suspending Claim Against Government

B E L I Z E

* BELIZE: Government Authorizes Blue Diamond's Land Purchase

B E R M U D A

GALVEX HOLDINGS: Meeting of Creditors Continued to April 2
REFCO INC: Court Extends Removal Period Until May 11
SHIP FINANCE: Sells VLCC Front Vanadis to TMT Subsidiary

B O L I V I A

PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Completes Gualberto Plant Maintenance Works

* BOLIVIA: Steel Firm to Draw Up El Mutun Project Funding Plans

B R A Z I L

AFFILIATED COMPUTER: Darwin Deason & Cerberus Propose Merger
AFFILIATED COMP: Buy Offer Cues Fitch to Put Ratings on Watch
AFFILIATED COMPUTER: Moody's Reviews Ratings on Purchase Offer
AFFILIATED COMPUTER: S&P Watches Credit Ratings on Buy Offer
BANCO DO BRASIL: Furnas to Seek BRL104 Million Five-Year Loan

BANCO NACIONAL: Furnas Seeking Banco do Brasil Loan to Pay Debt
BLOCKBUSTER INC: Restates Employment Pact with CEO John Antioco
BRASKEM: Joins Petroleo Brasileiro & Ultrapar to Buy Ipiranga
BRASKEM SA: S&P Affirms BB Rating on Ipiranga Buy
CELPA: Fitch Holds B Currency Issuer Default Ratings

CELPA: Moody's Assigns B2 Global Scale Rating
CEMAT: Fitch Keeps B Issuer Default Ratings
CEMAT: Moody's Assigns B2 Issuer Ratings
GLOBAL CROSSING: Wins Two-Year Contract from Brazilian Firm
NOVELIS INC: Recycles 38 Billion Beverage Cans in 2006

PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: To Decide on Maranon Exploration Deal
PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Oil & Gas Production Increase in February
PETROLEO IPIRANGA: Moody's Says Ratings Unaffected by Purchase
REDE EMPRESAS: Fitch Puts B Rating on Proposed US$200-Mil. Notes
REDE EMPRESAS: Moody's Puts B3 Rating on Proposed US$200MM Notes

TELE NORTE: Sees 400,000 Oi Conta Total Subscribers This Year
ULTRAPAR: Joins Petroleo Brasileiro & Braskem to Buy Ipiranga
ULTRAPAR PARTICIPACOES: S&P Affirms BB+ Rating on Ipiranga Buy
USINAS SIDERURGICAS: New Investments To Ward Off Takeover Bids

C A Y M A N   I S L A N D S

CIRCLE K: Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline Is April 19
CREDIT SUISSE: Proofs of Claim Filing Ends on April 19
DYNAP FUND: Proofs of Claim Must be Filed by April 2
FALCON QP: Proofs of Claim Filing Ends on March 31
GOLDEN JADE: Proofs of Claim Must be Filed by April 19

INVESTCORP HILDING: Proofs of Claim Filing Ends on April 10
KS CAPITAL: Proofs of Claim Must be Filed by April 19
LIVERPOOL CORP: Proofs of Claim Filing Is Until April 19
OP FUNDING: Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline Is April 19
PARK VIEW: Proofs of Claim Must be Filed by April 19

C O L O M B I A

HEXION SPECIALTY: Posts US$109MM Net Loss in Year Ended Dec. 31
QUEBECOR WORLD: Earns US$11.6 Million in Quarter Ended Dec. 31

C O S T A   R I C A

* COSTA RICA: State Firm Launches Video Conferencing Services
* COSTA RICA: Will Launch Six Cellular Base Stations on May 1

D O M I N I C A N   R E P U B L I C

ITABO FINANCE: S&P Affirms B Long-term Rating on US$125MM Bonds
JETBLUE AIRWAYS: Appoints Alex Battaglia as VP of JFK Operations

E C U A D O R

IMAX CORP: Defers Filing of 2006 Form 10-K
PETROECUADOR: Extends Insurance Policy Tender
PETROECUADOR: Launches Crude Supply Talks with Petroperu

G U A T E M A L A

BRITISH AIRWAYS: Eyes Major Expansion at London City Airport

H O N D U R A S

LEAR CORP: Faces ERISA Violations Suit Over US$2.31-Bil. Sale

J A M A I C A

CENTURY ALUMINUM: Peter Jones Joins Board of Directors
SUGAR COMPANY: Will Extend Bids Submission Deadline

M E X I C O

ALASKA AIR: Names Wendy Jones as Managing Director of Audit
CINEMARK USA: Tender Offer Expiration Date Scheduled for April 2
GRUPO MEXICO: U.S. Court Rejects Bid to Overturn Labor Pact
GRUPO MEXICO: Five Workers to be Arrested for 2006 Mine Blast
INTERTAPE POLYMER: Incurs US$166.7M Net Loss in Fiscal Year 2006

NORTEL NETWORKS: Board Wants KPMG as Auditor Replacing Deloitte
PLASTICON INT'L: Revenues Rise to US$392,886 in 2006 Third Qtr.
VISTEON CORP: Wants to Amend US$1 Billion Secured Term Loan

P A N A M A

BANCO LATINOAMERICANO: Announces Quarterly Cash Dividend Payment

P E R U

* PERU: Mines Ministry Inks Dam Construction Pact with Egasa
* PERU: Will Ink Crude Supply Pact with Petroleos de Venezuela

P U E R T O   R I C O

ADVANCED MEDICAL: Moody's Puts Low B Ratings on US$900MM Notes
ADVANCED MEDICAL: S&P Puts B Rating on US$200-Million Notes
COOPER COMPANIES: Stockholders Elect Ten Directors to Board
MMM HEALTHCARE: Aveta's Non-Filing Cues Moody's to Pare Ratings
MMM HOLDINGS: Aveta's Non-Filing Cues Moody's to Cut Ratings

T R I N I D A D   &   T O B A G O

MIRANT CORP: Bowline Wants to Assume US$200MM Insurance Policy
MIRANT CORP: Sells Surplus Equipment to LS Power for US$22 Mil.

U R U G U A Y

INTERPUBLIC GROUP: Board Declares US$13.125 Per Share Dividend

V E N E Z U E L A

PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: To Disclose Terms of Local Bond Issuance
PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: To Ink Crude Supply Pact with Petroperu
PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: To Provide Haiti with Crude

* VENEZUELA: Inviting Gas-Exporting Members to Join NatGas Bloc
* VENEZUELA: Oil Sales & Tax Revenues Total US$61.9 Bil. in 2006
* VENEZUELA: Trinidad Wants Nation to Supply Jamaica with Gas
* IDB Plans for Equality of Opportunities Deal for Latin America


                         - - - - -


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


AGAROTTI SA: Proofs of Claim Verification Is Until May 14
---------------------------------------------------------
Eduardo Facciuto, the court-appointed trustee for Agarotti SA's
bankruptcy proceeding, verifies creditors' proofs of claim until
May 14, 2007.

Under the Argentine bankruptcy law, Mr. Facciuto is required to
present the validated claims in court as individual reports.  
Court No. 23 of Buenos Aires will determine if the verified
claims are admissible, taking into account the trustee's
opinion, and the objections and challenges that will be raised
by Agarotti and its creditors.

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

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

Agarotti was forced into bankruptcy at the behest of Fernando
Curuchet, whom it owes US$11,515.26.

Clerk No. 46 assists the court in the proceeding.

The debtor can be reached at:

          Agarotti SA
          Tucuman 1581
          Buenos Aires, Argentina  

The trustee can be reached at:

          Eduardo Facciuto
          Arevalo 3070
          Buenos Aires, Argentina


BANCO HIPOTECARIO: May Buy Hexagon from HSBC's Argentine Unit
-------------------------------------------------------------
Banco Hipotecario SA said in a filing with Argentine stock
exchange Bolsa de Comercio de Buenos Aires that HSBC's Argentine
banking unit is negotiating with the firm for the sale of its
Hexagon Argentina brokerage.

Banco Hipotecario has been saying that it wants to increase its
operations through acquisitions, Business News Americas relates.

The United Kingdom's HSBC operates many units in Argentina,
offering a wide range of banking, insurance and retirement
products, BNamericas states.

Headquartered in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Banco Hipotecario SA
-- http://www.hipotecario.com.ar-- is an Argentinean commercial
bank and specialty mortgage provider.  Banco Hipotecario'
business lines include credit lines for consumers, short-term
financing for exporting companies, factoring services, deposit
accounts, purchase and sale of foreign currency, custodial
services, safe deposit box rentals, payroll bank accounts,
securities brokerage services and sales of insurance through
authorized agents and companies.  The bank launched this new
series of products and services as an alternative to its
mortgage loans business, which as a result of the economic
crisis, came to a temporary halt in 2002.  In late 2003, and in
the light of the favorable trends shown by economic variables,
Banco Hipotecario started to offer new housing mortgage loans.
The bank's subsidiaries consist of BHN Sociedad de Inversion
Sociedad Anonima.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Jan. 22, 2007, Moody's Investors Service placed these ratings on
Banco Hipotecario SA:

   -- long-term foreign currency deposit rating of Caa1, outlook
      to positive from stable; and

   -- long-term national scale foreign currency deposit rating
      of Ba1.ar, outlook to positive from stable.


BANCO RIO: Moody's Puts B2 Currency Rating on US$250-Mil. Notes
---------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service assigned a B2 foreign currency debt
rating to Banco Rio de la Plata S.A.'s US$250 million Global
Short- and Medium-term Note Program.

Moody's placed a (P)Ba2 long-term local currency debt rating to
Banco Rio's proposed ARS450 million notes that are due in 2010
and are to be issued under the program.  Moody's also assigned a
Aa3(ar) national scale debt rating to the program and a
(P)Aaa(ar) national scale local currency debt rating to the
notes.

These ratings were assigned to Banco Rio:

  US$250 million Global Short- and Medium-Term Note Program:

     -- Long-term foreign-currency debt rating: B2,
        Positive outlook

     -- National scale foreign currency debt rating: Aa3(ar)

  ARS450 million Senior Unsecured Notes:

     -- Provisional Long-term local currency debt rating:
        (P)Ba2, stable outlook

     -- Provisional National scale local currency debt rating:
        (P)Aaa(ar)

Banco Rio is headquartered in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and it
had ARS16.2 billion in total assets and ARS12.6 billion in
deposits as of December 2006.


MARITIMA SAN JOSE: Trustee Verifies Proofs of Claim Until May 2
---------------------------------------------------------------
Estudio Kiperman y Asociados, the trustee, verifies proofs of
claim from Maritima San Jose's creditors until May 2, 2007.  
After verification period, the trustee will submit the
individual and general reports in court.  Dates for submission
of these reports are yet to be disclosed.

Court No. 26 in Buenos Aires approved a petition for
reorganization filed by Maritima San Jose SA, according to a
report from Argentine daily Infobae.

The informative assembly will be held on Dec. 3, 2007.  
Creditors will vote to ratify the completed settlement plan
during the said assembly.

Clerk No. 51 assists the court on the case.

The debtor can be reached at:
          
          Maritima San Jose SA
          Espinosa 1491
          Buenos Aires, Argentina

The trustee can be reached at:

          Estudio Kiperman y Asociados
          Cerrito 836
          Buenos Aires, Argentina


PETROBRAS ENERGIA: Begins Oil Production at Estancia Agua Field
---------------------------------------------------------------
Petrobras Energia S.A. has started oil production at its
Estancia Agua Fresca field in Santa Cruz, Argentina, the company
said in a statement.

The Estancia Agua Fresca field was the first discovery for
Petrobras, which was formed in 2003 when Brazil's state-run
Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. bought Argentine conglomerate Perez
Companc, Dow Jones Newswires says.

"In this phase of early development, the field will produce 250
million cubic meters a day," Petrobras said its statement.  
Initial investment has reached US$16 million and plans to add
another US$40 million over the next three years to increase
output to 450 cubic meters a day.

Petrobras Energia is in partnership with Argentine oil company
Compania General de Combustibles, each holding a 50% stake in
the Estancia Agua Fresca field.

Petrobras Energia Participaciones SA (Buenos Aires: PBE, NYSE:
PZE) through its subsidiary, explores, produces, and refines oil
and gas, as well as generates, transmits, and distributes
electricity.  It also offers petrochemicals, as well as markets
and transports hydrocarbons.  The company conducts oil and gas
exploration and production operations in Argentina, Venezuela,
Peru, Ecuador, and Bolivia

                        *     *     *

As reported on Jan. 4, 2007, Fitch Argentina Calificadora de
Riesgo affirmed these ratings assigned to Petrobras Energia:

   -- international currency: B+
   -- local currency: BB-
   -- unsecured senior debt: B+


PIQUILLIN SRL: Proofs of Claim Verification Deadline Is May 30
--------------------------------------------------------------
Jorge Alberto Vazquez, the court-appointed trustee for Piquillin
SRL's bankruptcy proceeding, verifies creditors' proofs of claim
until May 30, 2007.

Under the Argentine bankruptcy law, Mr. Vazquez is required to
present the validated claims in court as individual reports.  
Court No. 2 of Buenos Aires will determine if the verified
claims are admissible, taking into account the trustee's
opinion, and the objections and challenges that will be raised
by Piquillin and its creditors.

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

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

Piquillin was forced into bankruptcy at the behest of Raul
Guerrero, whom it owes US$8,859.39.

Clerk No. 3 assists the court in the proceeding.

The debtor can be reached at:

          Piquillin SRL
          Talcahuano 736
          Buenos Aires, Argentina  

The trustee can be reached at:

          Jorge Alberto Vazquez
          B. Mitre 2593
          Buenos Aires, Argentina


SWAP PUBLICIDAD: Proofs of Claim Verification Is Until May 7
------------------------------------------------------------
Amalia Beckierman, the court-appointed trustee for Swap
Publicidad SRL's bankruptcy proceeding, will verify creditors'
proofs of claim until May 7, 2007.

Under the Argentine bankruptcy law, Ms. Beckierman is required
to present the validated claims in court as individual reports.  
Court No. 14 of Buenos Aires will determine if the verified
claims are admissible, taking into account the trustee's
opinion, and the objections and challenges that will be raised
by Swap Publicidad and its creditors.

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

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

Swap Publicidad was forced into bankruptcy at the behest of
Telearte SA Empresa de Radio y Television.

Clerk No. 28 assists the court in the proceeding.

The debtor can be reached at:

          Swap Publicidad
          Thompson 472
          Buenos Aires, Argentina  

The trustee can be reached at:

          Amalia Beckierman
          Paraguay 1591
          Buenos Aires, Argentina


TELEFONICA DE ARGENTINA: Suspending Claim Against Government
------------------------------------------------------------
Telefonica de Argentina SA has opted to suspend a compensation
claim made against the government of Argentina in 2003, Business
News Americas reports, citing local press.

Telefonica has sought compensation as a result of the
restrictions imposed on it by Argentina in 2002 during the
country's financial crisis.  The company filed a US$2.83 billion
suit with the World Bank's international arbitration tribunal --  
International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes.

Telefonica's decision whether to proceed with the claim or
maintain suspension would be in six-month period, BNamericas
says.

BNamericas discloses that in February 2006, Telefonica initially
made suspension with the claim, accepting this as a necessary
measure under which the Argentine government would renegotiate
its concession contract.  The company is expected to withdraw
the action once the new contract is signed.

Reports show that telecom officials claimed modifications are
being observed to current regulations but indicated nothing as
to when they may be ready to go to parliament.

Headquartered in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Telefonica de
Argentina SA -- http://www.telefonica.com.ar/-- provides  
telecommunication services, which include telephony business
both in Spain and Latin America, mobile communications
businesses, directories and guides businesses, Internet, data
and corporate services, audiovisual production and broadcasting,
broadband and Business-to-Business e-commerce activities.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Jan. 22, 2007,
Moody's Latin America changed the rating outlook to positive
from stable for Telefonica de Argentina's foreign currency
rating of B2 and for the Aa3.ar (national scale rating).  The
rating action was taken in conjunction with Moody's outlook
change to positive from stable for Argentina's B2 foreign
currency ceiling for bonds and notes on Jan. 16, 2007.
Telefonica de Argentina's foreign currency rating continues to
be constrained by Argentina's B2 ceiling.




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


* BELIZE: Government Authorizes Blue Diamond's Land Purchase
------------------------------------------------------------
The government of Belize has ratified Blue Diamond Ventures'
purchase of 728,000 square meters of land for a biodiesel plant
project, Business News Americas reports.

According to BNamericas, Blue Diamond will immediately start
construction of a 200,000-500,000g/y pilot plant and later this
year start construction of a 2.5Mg/y commercial demonstration
facility, the statement said.

Blue Diamond said in a statement that the plant, which will have
a capacity of 189 million liters per year, will be constructed
in the Stann Creek district.

"The production of biofuels will be a key factor in our national
goal of reducing our country's dependence on imported fossil
fuels," Joseph Waight, senior advisor for the Belize Finance
Ministry, told BNamericas.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Feb. 22, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services raised its
long- and short-term foreign currency sovereign credit ratings
on Belize to 'B' from 'SD' following the completion of the
government's debt restructuring.  At the same time, Standard &
Poor's raised its long-term local currency sovereign credit
rating on Belize to 'B' from 'CCC+' and its short-term local
currency sovereign rating to 'B' from 'C'.  The outlooks on both
the long-term foreign and local currency sovereign credit
ratings are stable.  Standard & Poor's also assigned its 'B'
rating to Belize's new US$546.8 million step-up bonds due
Feb. 20, 2029, issued at the conclusion of the debt exchange.  
These bonds bear the interest of 4.25% for the first three
years, 6% for years four to five, and 8.5% thereafter, and start
amortizing in 2019.




=============
B E R M U D A
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GALVEX HOLDINGS: Meeting of Creditors Continued to April 2
----------------------------------------------------------
Diana G. Adams, the United States Trustee for Region 2, will
continue the meeting of Galvex Holdings Limited's creditors at
12:30 p.m., on April 2, 2007, at the Second Floor of the Office
of the United States Trustee, 80 Broad Street in New York.

All creditors are invited, but not required, to attend.  This
Meeting of Creditors offers the one opportunity in a bankruptcy
proceeding for creditors to question a responsible officer of
the Debtor under oath about the company's financial affairs and
operations that would be of interest to the general body of
creditors.

Headquartered in New York City, New York, Galvex Holdings
Limited -- http://www.galvex.com/-- and its affiliates operate      
the largest independent galvanizing line in Europe.  The Debtors
have offices in New York, Tallinn, Bermuda, Finland, Ukraine,
Germany and the United Kingdom.  The company and four of its
affiliates filed for chapter 11 protection on Jan. 17, 2006
(Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Lead Case No. 06-10082).  Galvex Capital, LLC,
is represented by David Neier, Esq., at Winston & Strawn LLP,
and Gerard DiConza, Esq., at DiConza Law, P.C.  Galvex Holdings
Ltd. and the other debtor-affiliates are represented by David
Neier, Esq., at Winston & Strawn LLP, and Lori R. Fife, Esq.,
Marcia L. Goldstein, Esq., and Shai Waisman, Esq., at Weil,
Gotshal & Manges, LLP.  John P. McNicholas, Esq., and Thomas R.
Califano, Esq., at DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary US LLP, represent
the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors.  When the Debtors
filed for protection from their creditors, they estimated assets
and debts of more than US$100 million.  On Aug. 30, 2006, Judge
Drain converted the chapter 11 case of Galvex Holdings to a
chapter 7 liquidation proceeding.  John S. Pereira is the
Debtor's Chapter 7 Trustee.


REFCO INC: Court Extends Removal Period Until May 11
----------------------------------------------------
The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York
extends until May 11, 2007, the period within which Refco, Inc.,
and its debtor-affiliates may file notices of removal with
respect to pending actions under Rule 9027(a)(2) of the Federal
Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure.

RJM, LLC, the duly appointed administrator of Refco, Inc.'s
Chapter 11 case, and Marc S. Kirschner, the duly appointed
administrator and Chapter 11 Trustee of Refco Capital Markets,
Ltd.'s estate, requested the motion.

The Plan Administrators assumed the rights, powers, and duties
of the Reorganized Debtors and RCM upon the Plan Effective Date.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on March 14, 2007,
the Debtors were plaintiffs in 37 actions and proceedings in a
variety of state and federal courts throughout the country.

Since the Debtors have continued to focus primarily on winding
down their businesses, administering claims and implementing the
Plan, the Debtors have not reviewed all the Actions to determine
whether any of them should be removed.

Extension of the Removal Period will afford the Debtors a
sufficient opportunity to assess whether the Actions can and
should be removed, hence, protecting the Debtors' valuable right
to adjudicate lawsuits under Section 1452 of the Judiciary and
Judicial Procedure Code.

                          About Refco Inc.

Headquartered 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.

The Court confirmed the Modified Joint Chapter 11 Plan of
Refco Inc. and certain of its Direct and Indirect Subsidiaries,
including Refco Capital Markets, Ltd., and Refco F/X Associates,
LLC, on Dec. 15, 2006.  That Plan became effective on
Dec. 26, 2007.  (Refco Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 59; Bankruptcy
Creditors' Service Inc., http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/
or 215/945-7000)


SHIP FINANCE: Sells VLCC Front Vanadis to TMT Subsidiary
--------------------------------------------------------
Ship Finance International Ltd. has agreed to sell the single-
hull VLCC Front Vanadis to a subsidiary of Taiwan Maritime
Transportation Co., Ltd., an unrelated third party.

The sale will be in the form of a hire-purchase agreement, where
the vessel will be chartered to the Buyer for a 3.5-year period,
with a purchase obligation at the end of the charter.

There will a gross upfront payment of US$12.5 million from TMT,
and the gross bareboat charter rate will be US$25,000 per day
during the charter period. The purchase obligation at the end of
the charter is US$3 million. In addition, the Buyer will have
quarterly purchase options during the charter, starting at
US$27.9 million, and reducing gradually over the term of the
charter.  Ship Finance has agreed to pay a compensation payment
of approximately US$13.2 million to Frontline Ltd. for the
termination of the current charter.  Delivery to the Buyer is
expected to take place in April or May 2007.

During the term of the new charter, Ship Finance will receive on
average approximately US$10,000 more per day compared to the
base rate in the current charter agreement with Frontline, net
of operating expenses.

Following this sale, and after the delivery of six other suezmax
single-hull tankers previously announced sold, Ship Finance will
only have 10 single hull vessels remaining in the fleet, of
which three have double sides.  This is significantly less than
the 18 single hull vessels in the fleet only four months ago. Of
the remaining crude oil tankers without double hull, Frontline
has, as charterer, secured profitable sub-charters for seven of
the vessels, and only the three vessels with double sides are
currently traded in the spot market.

The reduction of the single hull tanker exposure is in line with
the Company's strategy of focusing on modern assets in various
shipping and offshore market segments.  Including new buildings
and recently announced acquisitions and sales, the Company's
fleet will consist of 56 vessels, essentially all on medium to
long term charters.

                       About Ship Finance

Headquartered in Bermuda, Ship Finance International Ltd. --
http://www.shipfinance.org/-- through its subsidiaries engages  
in the ownership and operation of oil tankers, including
oil/bulk/ore (OBO) carriers.  The Company operates through
subsidiaries and partnerships located in Bermuda, Cyprus, Isle
of Man, Liberia, Norway and Singapore.  It is also involved in
the charter, purchase and sale of vessels.

                          *     *     *

As reported on Dec. 7, 2006, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services
raised its long-term corporate credit rating on Bermuda-based
Ship Finance International Ltd., a ship-owning company tied to
Frontline Ltd., to 'BB' from 'BB-'.  S&P said the outlook is
stable.

At the same time, S&P raised its senior unsecured debt rating on
Ship Finance's US$580-million bonds to 'B+' from 'B'.

As reported on Nov. 16, 2006, Moody's Investors Service affirmed
Ship Finance International Ltd.'s ratings, including the Ba3
Corporate Family Rating, the Ba2 Senior Secured Bank Credit
Facilities and the B1 Senior Unsecured Notes rating.  Moody's
said the ratings outlook remains stable.




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B O L I V I A
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PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Completes Gualberto Plant Maintenance Works
----------------------------------------------------------------
Brazilian state-owned oil firm Petroleo Brasileiro said in a
statement that it has completed maintenance works on its
Gualberto Villarroel refinery in Cochabamba, Bolivia, two days
ahead of schedule.

Business News Americas relates that the works, which started on
March 3, were expected to last 17 days.  The works were aimed at
repairing the primary furnace at the plant's distillation unit.

According to BNamericas, Petroleo Brasileiro complied with the
supply of fuels during maintenance in line with the monthly
program that Bolivian regulator Superintendencia de
Hidrocarburos and the hydrocarbons ministry established.

Petroleo Brasileiro, in an effort to meet its supply
requirements, had reserves in tanks of 14.1 million liters
premium gasoline, 27.9 million liters diesel, 5.8 million liters
jet fuel and 740,000 liters liquefied petroleum gas for
distribution, BNamericas states.

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Petroleo Brasileiro SA
aka Petrobras -- http://www2.petrobras.com.br/ingles/index.asp
-- 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.

Petrobras has operations in China, India, Japan, and Singapore.

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.


* BOLIVIA: Steel Firm to Draw Up El Mutun Project Funding Plans
---------------------------------------------------------------
Representatives form ESEM, a new iron and steel firm created by
the Bolivian government, and a Chinese development bank will
draft financing plans for the El Mutun infrastructure project,
Business News Americas reports.

BNamericas did not state the name of the Chinese bank.

BNamericas relates that the government formed ESEM so it, along
with state-run mining firm Comibol, could sign a joint venture
contract with Jindal Steel to develop the El Mutun iron ore
deposit in Santa Cruz.

ESEM head Walter Chavez told BNamericas, "We're interested in
getting financing to build infrastructure like railroads, a port
and a gas pipeline.  They [ESEM and Chinese bank
representatives] came to see the logistics, to get familiar with
the deposit, and they will surely use that information to make
an offer to the government later."

Mr. Chavez commented to BNamericas that he hopes to call the
first meeting of ESEM's board to ratify the firm's statutes and
regulations.  However, some directors still need to be
appointed.

Jindal Steel's definitive contract would be signed in 20 days.  
The works at El Mutun will be launched around the end of 2007,
BNamericas relates, citing Mr. Chavez.

                        *     *     *

Fitch Ratings assigned these ratings on Bolivia:

                     Rating     Rating Date

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




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


AFFILIATED COMPUTER: Darwin Deason & Cerberus Propose Merger
------------------------------------------------------------
Affiliated Computer Services Inc. disclosed in a regulatory
filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that it
received a proposal from Darwin Deason and Cerberus Capital
Management L.P. to acquire all of the outstanding shares of the
company for US$59.25 per share in cash, other than certain
shares and options held by Mr. Deason and members of the
company's management team.

                  Deason-Cerberus Buyout Proposal

In their proposal, Mr. Deason and Cerberus said their proposed
price represents a premium of 15.5% over the closing price of
the company's class A common stock on March 19, 2007, and an
18.3% premium over the 90-day average closing price.

Mr. Deason and Cerberus expect that the company's Board of
Directors will establish a special committee of independent
directors to consider and negotiate the proposal on behalf of
the company's public shareholders and ultimately to recommend to
the Board of Directors whether to approve the Acquisition.

Mr. Deason and Cerberus also expect that the Special Committee
will engage its own legal and financial advisors to assist in
its review.

Specifically, Mr. Deason and Cerberus propose, among others,
that:

   a) the acquisition would be structured as a merger in which a    
      newly formed acquisition vehicle of a holding company
      organized by the proponents for the transaction would
      merge with and into the company;

   b) Mr. Deason continue as Chairman following the acquisition;

   c) the business would continue to be run in accordance with
      the company's current practice while maintaining the
      company's valuable employee base; and

   d) in connection with the transaction, Mr. Deason would
      receive performance-based equity incentives.

                             Financing

Mr. Deason committed to roll, into equity securities of the
acquiror, company common stock and options having an aggregate
value of approximately US$300 million based on the proposed
acquisition price.

Members of the company's executive management team would also be
required to roll over company common stock and options
representing at least 70% of the aggregate value of the company
common stock and options held by them based on proposed
acquisition price, and other members of the company's management
team would be required to roll over at least half of the
aggregate value of the company common stock and options held by
them.

Members of management would also be afforded the opportunity to
roll over more company common stock and options.  Cerberus will
make a significant cash equity investment to fund a substantial
portion of the purchase price.

The balance of the purchase price will be financed through a
combination of bank loans and high yield securities issued
pursuant to commitment letters from financial institutions.

                    Citigroup Commitment Letter

Mr. Deason and Cerberus received a letter from Citigroup Global
Markets Inc. stating that it is highly confident of its ability
to raise the debt necessary to complete the transaction.

In that letter, Citigroup stated, "It is our understanding that
acquiror intends to finance the acquisition with:

   (i) up to US$4,050 million of funded Senior Secured Credit
       Facilities;

  (ii) the underwriting or private placement of up to
       US$2,515 million High Yield Notes; and

(iii) the contribution by the acquiror of cash equity and
       rollover equity, all of which will allow [the acquiror]
       to complete the acquisition and to pay fees and expenses
       associated therewith."

In evaluating the acquisition, Citigroup said it "is highly
confident of its ability to (i) underwrite fully or privately
place through a 144A offering with subsequent registration
rights the Notes and (ii) underwrite fully and syndicate the
Senior Credit Facilities."

                             Timetable

Cerberus has already begun its due diligence review, but will
need to conduct additional confirmatory business, accounting and
legal due diligence.  The proposal is subject to completion of
the confirmatory due diligence by Cerberus, as well as
negotiation and execution of a mutually satisfactory merger
agreement.

Cerberus believes it can complete its due diligence within 45
days from the date it is granted full access to the company's
management and the requisite due diligence materials.  The
proponents anticipate negotiation of the merger agreement
concurrently with the due diligence process, with a view to the
execution of the merger agreement in early-May 2007.

Cerberus said it is prepared to commence its confirmatory due
diligence review immediately following negotiation and execution
of a mutually satisfactory confidentiality agreement.

                    Second Quarter 2007 Results

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Mar. 9, 2007,
Affiliated Computer Services Inc. reported net income of
US$72.1 million on revenues of US$1.426 billion for the second
quarter of fiscal 2007 ended Dec. 31, 2006, compared with net
income of US$102.4 million on revenues of US$1.347 billion for
the second quarter of the prior year.  

At Dec. 31, 2006, the company's balance sheet showed
US$5.928 billion in total assets, US$4.038 billion in total
liabilities, and US$1.89 billion in total stockholders' equity.

                     About Affiliated Computer


A FORTUNE 500 company, Affiliated Computer Services Inc.,
(NYSE: ACS) -- http://www.acs-inc.com/-- provides business   
process outsourcing and information technology solutions to
world-class commercial and government clients.  The company has
more than 58,000 employees supporting client operations in
nearly 100 countries.  The Dallas-based company has global
operations in Brazil, China, Dominican Republic, India,
Guatemala, Ireland, Philippines, Poland and Singapore.

                            *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
March 9, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services raised its
corporate credit and senior secured ratings on Affiliated
Computer Services Inc. to 'BB' from 'B+' and removed the ratings
from CreditWatch positive (the initial CreditWatch placement
with negative implications was on Jan. 27, 2006).  The outlook
is stable.


AFFILIATED COMP: Buy Offer Cues Fitch to Put Ratings on Watch
-------------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has placed Affiliated Computer Services, Inc.'s
ratings, including the BB Issuer Default Rating, on Rating Watch
Negative following the proposed offer from Darwin Deason,
founder and chairperson of the company, and Cerberus Capital
Management L.P. to acquire the company in a leveraged buyout
transaction valued at US$8.2 billion, including existing debt.

These ratings are affected:

   -- Issuer Default Rating (IDR) 'BB';
   -- Senior secured revolving credit facility at 'BB';
   -- Senior secured term loan at 'BB'; and
   -- Senior notes at 'BB-'.

Approximately US$3.3 billion of debt, including the US$1 billion
revolving facility, is affected by Fitch's action.

Resolution of the Negative Rating Watch is contingent on these
factors:

   -- The decision reached by Affiliated Computer's Board of
      Directors to accept or reject the offer following a
      review of the transaction;

   -- The degree of leverage utilized in financing the
      acquisition should the Board approve the transaction; and

   -- The acquirer's ability to arrange what Fitch believes
      will be approximately US$6 billion of debt financing,
      assuming a 30% equity contribution.

Fitch believes Affiliated Computer's credit metrics proforma for
the transaction support an IDR in the 'B' category.  Based on
the proposed offer price and a 30% equity contribution, Fitch
estimates pro forma leverage (total debt/operating EBITDA) may
increase to 6.3x from 2.8x as of Dec. 31, 2006 (bank-defined =
2.4x) due to a projected US$3.3 billion increase in outstanding
debt to US$6 billion in order to finance the transaction.  Fitch
believes proforma interest coverage (operating EBITDA/ gross
interest expense) may decline to 1.7x from 7.1x for the latest
12 months or LTM ended Dec. 31, 2006 (bank-defined = 7.4x).

Fitch believes the majority of outstanding debt will be
refinanced in an LBO transaction.  Total debt as of
Dec. 31, 2006, was approximately US$2.6 billion, consisting
primarily of US$1.8 billion of secured term loans due 2013,
US$275 million of borrowings under the revolving credit
facility, US$250 million of senior notes due June 2010 and
US$250 million of senior notes due June 2015.  Under the terms
of the credit facility agreement, consummation of the proposed
transaction would be an event of default, requiring immediate
repayment of all outstanding borrowings under the facility due
to a change of control provision and likely violation of
financial covenants in the agreement, including maximum
consolidated total leverage ratio of 4x and interest coverage
covenant of 4.5x.

The indenture governing Affiliated Computer's US$500 million of
senior notes offers no protection in the event of a leveraged
buyout.  Affiliated Computer previously granted equal and
ratable liens in favor of the holders of the senior notes in all
assets other than accounts receivable when it obtained the
current secured credit facility.  The 'BB-' rating for the
senior notes incorporates the fact that the secured credit
facilities have the sole rights to Affiliated Computer's
accounts receivable, which represented approximately 21% of
total assets and 43% of tangible assets as of Dec. 31, 2006.  
Acceleration of principal on the senior notes as a result of
Affiliated Computer's failure to timely file its 10-K for the
year ended June 30, 2006, remains uncertain due to the company's
pending lawsuit against its Trustee, in which Affiliated
Computer seeks a declaratory judgment affirming its position
that no default has occurred under the indenture.  However,
Fitch believes there is a possibility the senior notes will be
refinanced in the proposed transaction to avoid the uncertainty
associated with a sizeable contingent payment relative to
current liquidity and minimal pro forma free cash flow in a
highly leveraged capital structure.

A FORTUNE 500 company, Affiliated Computer Services Inc.,
(NYSE: ACS) -- http://www.acs-inc.com/ -- provides business
process outsourcing and information technology solutions to
world-class commercial and government clients.  The company has
more than 58,000 employees supporting client operations in
nearly 100 countries.

Dallas-based Affiliated Computer Services Inc. has global
operations in Brazil, China, Dominican Republic, India,
Guatemala, Ireland, Philippines, Poland and Singapore.


AFFILIATED COMPUTER: Moody's Reviews Ratings on Purchase Offer
--------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service has placed the ratings, including the
Ba2 Corporate Family Rating, for Affiliated Computer Services
Inc. on review for possible downgrade following the company's
announcement that founder Darwin Deason and private equity fund
Cerberus Capital Management have proposed to buy the company.  
Mr. Deason and Cerberus are offering US$59.25 for each
Affiliated Computer share, about 16% higher than Affiliated
Computer's closing price as of March 19, 2007.

"With a proposed consideration exceeding US$8 billion, the
transaction, once approved, would likely result in a significant
increase in financial leverage and a multiple notch downgrade of
the company's ratings", according to John Moore, Moody's Senior
Analyst.

Ratings Placed on Review for Possible Downgrade:

   -- Ba2 Senior Secured Term Loan Rating
   -- Ba2 Senior Secured Revolving Credit Facility Rating
   -- Ba2 Senior Notes Rating (US$500 Million due 2010 and 2015)
   -- Ba2 Corporate Family Rating

A FORTUNE 500 company, Affiliated Computer Services Inc.,
(NYSE: ACS) -- http://www.acs-inc.com/ -- provides business
process outsourcing and information technology solutions to
world-class commercial and government clients.  The company has
more than 58,000 employees supporting client operations in
nearly 100 countries.

Dallas-based Affiliated Computer Services Inc. has global
operations in Brazil, China, Dominican Republic, India,
Guatemala, Ireland, Philippines, Poland and Singapore.


AFFILIATED COMPUTER: S&P Watches Credit Ratings on Buy Offer
------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services placed its 'BB' corporate
credit and senior secured ratings on Affiliated Computer
Services Inc. on CreditWatch with negative implications.
      
"The CreditWatch placement follows the announcement that an
investment group led by Affiliated Computer's founder has
offered to buy the company for about US$8.2 billion (including
the assumption of debt)," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst
Philip Schrank.  If the leveraged buyout is successful,
operating lease-adjusted leverage likely will increase from the
5x threshold incorporated into the current rating.
     
Standard & Poor's will monitor any negotiations and respond to
any change in the company's business or financial profile.

A FORTUNE 500 company, Affiliated Computer Services Inc.,
(NYSE: ACS) -- http://www.acs-inc.com/ -- provides business
process outsourcing and information technology solutions to
world-class commercial and government clients.  The company has
more than 58,000 employees supporting client operations in
nearly 100 countries.

Dallas-based Affiliated Computer Services Inc. has global
operations in Brazil, China, Dominican Republic, India,
Guatemala, Ireland, Philippines, Poland and Singapore.


BANCO DO BRASIL: Furnas to Seek BRL104 Million Five-Year Loan
-------------------------------------------------------------
A spokesperson of Brazil's federal power firm Furnas told
Business News Americas that the company will borrow BRL104
million through a five-year loan from Banco do Brasil.

Furnas said in a statement that the BRL104 million loan will be
spent on impending commitments with the Real Grandeza workers'
pension fund.  

Furnas told BNamericas that it will pay Real Grandeza a BRL50-
million and an BRL11.7-million parcel.

The loan will also be used to pay down a parcel of debt with
Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Economico e Social SA.

Some BRL42.3 million will be paid to the Banco Nacion debt,
BNamericas states, citing Furnas.

Banco do Brasil is Brazil's federal bank and is the largest in
Latin America with some 20 million clients and over 7,000 points
of sale (3,200 branches) in Brazil, and 34 offices and
partnerships in 26 other countries.  In addition to its
traditional retail banking services, Banco do Brasil underwrites
and sells bonds, conducts asset trading, offers investors
portfolio management services, conducts financial securities
advising, and provides market analysis and research.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Feb. 20, 2007, Fitch Ratings upgraded Banco do Brasil S.A.'s
Support rating to '3' from '4', and affirmed its other ratings:

   -- Foreign currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at 'BB+';
   -- Short-term foreign currency at 'B';
   -- Local currency IDR at 'BB+';
   -- Short-term local currency at 'B';
   -- Individual rating at 'C/D';
   -- National Long-term rating at 'AA(bra)'; and
   -- Short-term rating at 'F1+(bra)'.


BANCO NACIONAL: Furnas Seeking Banco do Brasil Loan to Pay Debt
---------------------------------------------------------------
Business News Americas reports that Brazilian federal power firm
Furnas will seek a loan from Banco do Brasil, partly to pay down
a parcel of its debt to Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento
Economico e Social SA.

A Furnas spokesperson told BNamericas that the company will
borrow BRL104 million through a five-year loan from Banco do
Brasil.

Some BRL42.3 million will be paid to the Banco Nacion debt,
BNamericas relates, citing Furnas.

Furnas said in a statement that the loan will also be spent on
impending commitments with the Real Grandeza workers' pension
fund.  

Furnas told BNamericas that it will pay Real Grandeza a BRL50-
million and an BRL11.7-million parcel.

                    About Banco do Brasil

Banco do Brasil is Brazil's federal bank and is the largest in
Latin America with some 20 million clients and over 7,000 points
of sale (3,200 branches) in Brazil, and 34 offices and
partnerships in 26 other countries.  In addition to its
traditional retail banking services, Banco do Brasil underwrites
and sells bonds, conducts asset trading, offers investors
portfolio management services, conducts financial securities
advising, and provides market analysis and research.

                    About Banco Nacional

Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Economico e Social is Brazil's
national development bank.  It provides financing for projects
within Brazil and plays a major role in the privatization
programs undertaken by the federal government.

                        *     *     *

As reported on Nov. 27, 2006, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services
changed the ratings outlook to Positive from Stable on Banco
Nacional de Desenvolvimento Economico e Social SA's BB Foreign
currency counterparty credit rating and BB+ Local currency
counterparty credit rating.


BLOCKBUSTER INC: Restates Employment Pact with CEO John Antioco
---------------------------------------------------------------
Blockbuster Inc., in an 8-K filed with the U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission, disclosed that the company has entered into
an amended and restated employment agreement that sets forth
terms under which Chairman and Chief Executive Officer John
Antioco will leave the company by the end of 2007.

"I am pleased that we were able to reach this agreement," said
John Antioco, Blockbuster Chairman and CEO.  "This revised
employment agreement allows for management continuity and ample
opportunity for an orderly succession by the end of the year.  
In the meantime, the board of directors, our management team and
I remain focused on continuing to improve the business, most
notably through BLOCKBUSTER Total Access(TM)."

"John and the company have reached terms that are clearly in the
best interests of the stockholders," said Carl C. Icahn, a
member of the Blockbuster Board of Directors.  "I and the rest
of the board remain committed to working with our dedicated
management team to deliver on the company's financial goals for
the year and to continue positioning Blockbuster for improved
success now and into the future."

Under the amended and restated employment agreement, Antioco
will receive a 2006 bonus of US$3.0525 million, which reflects a
compromise between the US$2.28 million bonus previously
conditionally offered by the board and US$7.65 million, which is
the amount Antioco was entitled to receive under his previous
employment agreement and Blockbuster's 2006 Senior Bonus Plan if
negative discretion was not invoked.  Additionally, at the
conclusion of his employment, Antioco will receive a lump sum
payment of US$4.9875 million as compared to a lump sum payment
of US$13.5 million that he would have been entitled to receive
if he had been terminated without cause or had resigned for good
reason on Dec. 31, 2007, under his previous employment
agreement.

Details of the amended and restated employment agreement are
included in the 8-K filing.

In addition, at a meeting of the Blockbuster board of directors
on March 19, 2007, the board voted to recommend that
Blockbuster's stockholders approve at its annual meeting an
amendment to Blockbuster's certificate of incorporation to
eliminate the classification of the board of directors and to
provide for the annual election of all directors.  The board
believes that the de-classification of the board is consistent
with best corporate governance practices.

Blockbuster Inc. (NYSE: BBI) -- http://www.blockbuster.com/--   
is a leading global provider of in-home movie and game
entertainment, with over 8,000 stores throughout the Americas,
Europe, Asia and Australia.  The company maintains operations in
Brazil, Mexico, Denmark, Italy, Taiwan, Australia, among others.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Dec. 19, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services revised its outlook on video
rental retailer Blockbuster Inc. to stable from negative.  The
ratings on the Dallas-based company, including the 'B-'
corporate credit rating, were affirmed.


BRASKEM: Joins Petroleo Brasileiro & Ultrapar to Buy Ipiranga
-------------------------------------------------------------
Petroleo Brasileiro SA aka Petrobras, the Ultrapar Participacoes
and Braskem have reached an understanding to purchase Ipiranga
Group businesses, consolidating and increasing petrochemical and
fuel distribution sector businesses.

The transaction is worth approximately US$4 billion.

By acquiring the Ipiranga Group businesses, the three companies
reinforce their commitment to growth in Brazil, Rio Grande do
Sul and the same stakeholders targeted by Ipiranga: the
shareholders, employees, partners, community and consumers.

The Ipiranga Group, one of the largest and most traditional in
Brazil, operates in the oil refinery, petrochemical and fuel
distribution sectors.  

Petrobras' president, Jose Sergio Gabrielli de Azevedo, said the
deal is in line with the company's strategic plan, reinforcing
its active presence in the Brazilian petrochemical industry, in
which it already has important holdings.  To Mr. Gabrielli,
"Petrobras intends to have a more relevant role in
petrochemicals than it has had in the past few years.  The
Ipiranga negotiation is yet another step in the strategy of
consolidating important economic groups in Brazil, with a
relevant Petrobras presence in them.  From the downstream
viewpoint, the executive also highlights the operation is
important as it increases the company's North, Northeast, and
Midwest network synergy.

Pedro Wongtschowski, the Ultra Group president, emphasized the
growth that is expected with the transaction. "With this
incorporation, we take-on important assets, committed
professionals and, moreover, the Ipiranga flag, which is among
Brazil's ten most valuable brands and one of the country's most
respected companies.  With the acquisition, we significantly
boosted our operations in the fuel distribution area, now
holding two of the sector's main brands: Ultragaz and Ipiranga.
It is an investment in the fuel, biofuel, and in the Brazilian
markets."

Braskem's president, Jose Carlos Grubisich, said the Rio Grande
do Sul group's incorporation is a water divider in the strategy
at the company he leads: "we are among the world's top ten
petrochemical companies.  We are committed to Brazil, to
Corporate Governance, to and sustainable development."

"This new petrochemical sector consolidation brings an important
growth potential to Braskem, with a new competitiveness and
profitability benchmark for our business," concluded Mr.
Grubisich.

                   Transaction Procedure

The first stage involves Ultra Group acquisition of the shares
held by the families controlling the Ipiranga Group.  The Ultra
Group will then make a public offering to purchase common shares
held by Ipiranga Group minority shareholders.

In the third step, Braskem and Petrobras will submit offers to
shareholders to delist Copesul.

In the fourth step, the Ultra Group will incorporate preferred
shares held by Companhia Brasileira de Petr>leo Ipiranga (CBPI),
Distribuidora de Produtos de Petr>leo Ipiranga -- DPPI -- and
Refinaria de Petr>leo Ipiranga -- RPI -- minority shareholders,
who will receive preferred shares in Ultrapar.

In the fifth and final step, petrochemical assets will be sold
and handed over to Braskem and Petrobras.  Fuel distribution
businesses absorbed by Petrobras will reinforce the company's
distribution activities in the North East, North and Midwest.

The assets will be distributed as:

                  Fuel Distribution Sector

The Ultra Group will absorb the Ipiranga Group fuel distribution
network in the South and Southeast regions and will continue
trading under the Ipiranga brand.

Petrobras will take over the Ipiranga distribution network in
the North, North East and Midwest and will be entitled to use
the Ipiranga brand for a period of five years, during which time
it will be gradually substituted by the Petrobras Distribuidora
brand.

                  Petrochemical Sector

Braskem will acquire 60% of Ipiranga Group assets in the
petrochemical sector and will strengthen its controlling stake
in Copesul.   Petrobras will acquire 40% of the Ipiranga Group
assets in the petrochemical sector.

                        Refining

Petrobras, the Ultra Group and Braskem will have equal
controlling shareholdings in the Ipiranga Refinery, in Rio
Grande do Sul, and they have made a commitment to continuing
operations.

The transaction is subject to regulatory approval in Brazil from
the Economic Defense Board, Economic Law Secretariat, and the
Economic Oversight Secretariat.

In the fuel distribution sector, the Ultra Group already owns
the leading GLP brand, Ultragaz, and will incorporate a highly
significant brand into its business, Ipiranga.  This will result
in a significant increase in its sector presence based on best
corporate governance and management practices.

The petrochemical sector, Braskem will strengthen its Latin
American market leadership in thermoplastic resins, increasing
its stake in Copesul and advancing its strategy of building
growth by creating value.

Ipiranga's historical commitments to Rio Grande do Sul and to
Brazil will be upheld by Petrobras, the Ultra group and Braskem.
The company's social, cultural and environmental activities and
programs will also remain in place.

                  About Petroleo Brasileiro

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Petroleo Brasileiro SA
aka Petrobras -- http://www2.petrobras.com.br/ingles/index.asp
-- 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.

                 About Ultrapar Participacoes  

Ultrapar Participacoes S.A. (NYSE: UGP) (BOVESPA: UGPA4) is a
company with two main operations: LPG distribution (through its
fully-owned subsidiary Ultragaz Participacoes Ltda.) and
chemical production (through its also fully-owned subsidiary
Oxiteno S.A.). A third smaller but growing business is the
transportation and storage of chemicals and fuels, Ultracargo
Operacoes Logisticas e Participacoes Ltda., which completes
Ultrapar's business portfolio and reinforces the trend for
further business diversity in the long run.

                        About Braskem

Braskem (BOVESPA: BRKM5; NYSE: BAK; LATIBEX: XBRK) --
http://www.braskem.com.br/-- is a thermoplastic resins producer
in Latin American, and is among the three largest Brazilian-
owned private industrial companies.  The company operates 13
manufacturing plants located throughout Brazil, and has an
annual production capacity of 5.8 million tons of resins and
other petrochemical products.

                        *    *    *

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned on Sept. 22, 2006,
its 'BB' senior unsecured debt rating to the proposed up to
US$275 million bonds due Jan. 2017 to be issued by Brazil-based
petrochemical company Braskem S.A. (BB/Stable/--).  The bonds
will rank pari passu with the company's other senior unsecured
notes.

Fitch assigned on Sept. 20, 2006, a rating of 'BB+' to Braskem
S.A.'s proposed issuance of US$275 million senior unsecured
notes due to 2017.  The notes are being offered under Rule 144A
Regulation S.  The proceeds of the offering are expected to be
used to prepay existing debts and extend debt maturities. Fitch
also maintains foreign currency and local currency Issuer
Default Ratings of 'BB+' and a national scale rating of
'AA(bra)' for Braskem.  Fitch said the Rating Outlook is Stable.


BRASKEM SA: S&P Affirms BB Rating on Ipiranga Buy
-------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services affirmed the rating on
Braskem S.A. (Braskem; BB/Stable/--) following the announcement
that the company, together with two other companies, has jointly
acquired the control of Grupo Ipiranga (unrated) in Brazil.  

Standard & Poor's also affirmed the ratings on Petroleo
Brasileiro S.A. (Petrobras; BBB-/Stable/--), and Ultrapar
Participacoes S.A. (Ultrapar; BB+/Stable/--), the other members
of the three-party consortium that acquired Grupo Ipiranga. The
outlook is stable for all these ratings.
      
The total enterprise value associated with the transaction is
estimated at US$4 billion, out of which approximately US$1.3
billion will be assumed by Petrobras and US$1.1 billion by
Braskem.  According to the terms of the agreement, Braskem and
Petrobras will jointly take control of Ipiranga's petrochemical
assets, with 60% for Braskem and 40% for Petrobras.  This
includes a 550,000 ton-per-year polyethylene plant (Ipiranga
Petroquimica or IPQ) and a 29.5% strategic stake in naphtha
cracker Companhia Petroquimica do Sul (Copesul, unrated).  
Ipiranga's fuel distribution assets in the Southern and
Southeastern parts of Brazil will be acquired by Ultrapar, with
the remaining assets in fuel distribution to be acquired by
Petrobras.  It is estimated that Ultrapar will hold about 15%
market share of the Brazilian fuel distribution market, while
Petrobras will expand its market share in fuel distribution by
about 5% to some 39%.
      
"The rating affirmation reflects our expectations that the
ultimate capital structure of each of the participants in the
transaction will not be negatively affected by the effects of
the acquisition," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Jean-
Pierre Cote Gil.  

The affirmation assumes that all parties are successful in
completing all the steps to reorganize Grupo Ipiranga to
effectively split and deliver assets to each of the involved
parties.  In the case of Ultrapar, Standard & Poor's expects the
company will be successful in completing the issuance of new
nonvoting shares to reduce interim leverage, therefore removing
any negative leverage impact resulting from the deal.  The
transaction is expected to be completed by the end of 2007.
     
Standard & Poor's believes that the transaction improves
Braskem's market and operating position by expanding its market
position in the competitive polyethylene market, and by creating
further synergies between its main feedstock supplier, Copesul,
and its downstream petrochemical assets in the Southern part of
Brazil.  The successful conclusion of the deal will grant
Braskem and Petrobras full control on Copesul, which will
initially contribute significant and healthy cash flows and
little debt.  The consolidation of IPQ will add approximately
US$500 million in debt to Braskem's figures, but strategically,
it strengthens the company's position in the polyethylene and
polypropylene markets.  Debt associated with the acquisition
cost, estimated at approximately US$1.1 billion, will not
further deteriorate financial ratios because of incremental
cashflows from Copesul and IPQ.  However, despite the improving
trend, Standard & Poor's still expects credit ratios to remain
relatively aggressive for the rating category through the coming
quarters because of the additional indebtedness to finance the
acquisition cost.  Braskem is also exposed to some execution
risk associated with completing the several steps to delist
Copesul and fully integrate the new assets to the company's
operations.  Standard & Poor's views this risk as moderate to
low because of the group's positive background with previous
similar transactions.
     
Standard & Poor's expects the transaction to further improve
Ultrapar's distribution business by adding a competitive fuel
distribution activity, causing a limited increase in total gross
leverage.  Since the company expects to finance the transaction
mostly with the issuance of new nonvoting shares, Standard &
Poor's expects Ultrapar's gross debt levels to increase only by
its proportionate assumption of the existing debt at the fuel
distribution business.  Ultrapar is comparatively more exposed
to execution risks, as it is accountable for the bulk of the
legal movements that will be required to complete the transfer
of assets.  Any potential debt raised to finance cash outlays
associated with the acquisition of the control of Grupo Ipiranga
(to be redeemed with the future issuance of new nonvoting shares
at the end of the process) further exposes the company to the
transaction completion risk.

Standard & Poor's understands that the proposed transaction will
have a marginal effect both on Petrobras' credit metrics and
business profile because of the relatively small magnitude of
the deal compared with the size of Petrobras' operations, and in
light of the company's already significant capital budget
committed for the next five years (of about US$87 billion).  
Nevertheless, Petrobras will further strengthen its market
leadership in fuel distribution in the Northern, Northeastern,
and Midwestern regions of Brazil.  In addition, the company is
also expected to adopt a more active role in the petrochemical
industry, partly supported by the improvements expected in the
decision-making process at the petrochemical operations shared
with Braskem despite its minority stake in those operations.  
Standard & Poor's expects the transaction to generate negligible
gains for Petrobras' refining operations.  Petrobras has already
announced its intention to fund the total acquisition price of
US$1.3 billion with its own liquidity, slightly reducing its
strong cash position of about US$13 billion (at Dec. 31, 2006).  
The transaction is expected to fully close by the end of 2007.

                   About Grupo Ipiranga

Grupo Ipiranga, a Brazilian company, is composed of refinery
assets under Refinaria de Petroleo Ipiranga or RIPI;
petrochemical assets under Ipiranga Quimica or IQ, Ipiranga
Petroquimica or IPQ and a participation in Companhia
Petroquimica do Sul aka Copesul; and distribution assets under
Distribuidora de Produtos de Petroleo Ipiranga or DPPI and
Companhia Brasileira de Petroleo Ipiranga or CBPI.

               About Ultrapar Participacoes S.A.

Ultrapar Participacoes S.A. (NYSE: UGP) (BOVESPA: UGPA4) is a
company with two main operations: LPG distribution (through its
fully-owned subsidiary Ultragaz Participacoes Ltda.) and
chemical production (through its also fully-owned subsidiary
Oxiteno S.A.). A third smaller but growing business is the
transportation and storage of chemicals and fuels, Ultracargo
Operacoes Logisticas e Participacoes Ltda., which completes
Ultrapar's business portfolio and reinforces the trend for
further business diversity in the long run.

                About Petroleo Brasileiro SA

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Petroleo Brasileiro
SA aka Petrobras --http://www2.petrobras.com.br/ingles/index.asp
-- 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.

Petrobras has operations in China, India, Japan, and Singapore.

                   About Braskem S.A.

Braskem S.A. (BOVESPA: BRKM5; NYSE: BAK; LATIBEX: XBRK) --
http://www.braskem.com.br/-- is a thermoplastic resins producer
in Latin American, and is among the three largest Brazilian-
owned private industrial companies.  The company operates 13
manufacturing plants located throughout Brazil, and has an
annual production capacity of 5.8 million tons of resins and
other petrochemical products.


CELPA: Fitch Holds B Currency Issuer Default Ratings
----------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings maintains its 'B' Local and Foreign Currency
Issuer Default Ratings and 'BBB(bra)' Brazilian national scale
ratings on Centrais Eletricas do Para S.A. aka Celpa.  Fitch
also affirms the Local and Foreign Currency Issuer Default
Ratings of 'B' and Brazilian national scale ratings of
'BBB(bra)' to Rede Empresas de Energia Eletrica SA (Cemat's
parent company) and another subsidiary Centrais Eletricas
Matogrossenses S.A. aka Cemat.

Fitch has assigned a 'B' rating to the proposed issuance of up
to US$200 million perpetual notes by Rede Empresas.  The
issuance has been assigned an 'RR4' Recovery Rating, indicating
an expected average recovery (31%-50%) given a default and an
assumed jurisdictional 'RR4' cap on instrument ratings in
Brazil.  All ratings have a Stable Rating Outlook.

The notes will rank pari passu with other Rede Empresas' senior
unsecured debt obligations and will be subordinated to the debt
of Rede Empresas' operating companies.  The perpetual bonds have
no fixed final maturity but will become callable by Rede
Empresas in whole after the five-year initial term ending March
2012.  The proceeds of the issuance will be used to refinance
existing working capital obligations at the holding level.

The rating is supported by the company's market position as an
important player in the electric distribution segment in Brazil
and the expected strengthening of credit protection measures of
the group over the next few years supported by continued growth
in operational results and cash flow and a reduction of annual
debt service via lower --financing-cost debt.  The rating also
reflects the relatively high leverage of the group when compared
to other electricity companies in the Brazilian market, as well
as the regulatory risks inherent in the Brazilian power sector.

Rede Empresas' credit profile is underpinned by its portfolio of
eight distribution companies, and, within this, by Centrais
Eletricas Matogrossenses S.A. and Centrais Eletricas do Para
S.A., which roughly accounted for 59.3% (or BRL536.6 million) of
Rede Empresas' 2006 consolidated EBITDA.  Rede Empresas'
business fundamentals are supported by the natural monopoly
nature of the distribution and by the market regulation.  The
distributor's operation are required to contract 100% of their
expected energy demand and the sector's new model allows for the
pass-through of all non-controllable costs for distribution
companies.  Although regulatory risks remain an ongoing credit
concern, the current electric energy industry model is generally
positive and should support growth and stability in the sector.

Rede Empresas benefits from broad, diversified and stable
customer bases.  Many of the company's service areas show an
average consumption growth that has exceeded the national
average over the past five years.  Rede Empresas' distribution
revenues grew 12.6% in 2006.  Future improvement in operating
cash flow should also benefit from adequate tariff adjustments,
improving operating efficiencies and a more favorable economic
environment.

The company also participates in the electricity generation
segment through two hydroelectric generation companies of an
aggregate installed capacity of 529.3 megawatts, as well as
several small thermoelectric generation units with an additional
installed capacity of 127.6 megawatts.  This segment represented
about 14.8% (or BRL133.8 million) of 2006 consolidated EBITDA.  
As required by the New Electricity Sector Law of 2004, the
company engaged into a corporate structure reorganization
process, which ultimately resulted in the incorporation of
operating assets (previously directly owned by Rede Empresas'
parent company) into Rede Empresas in November 2006 and the
divestment of twenty unleveraged small hydroelectric companies
or SHCs in the last quarter of 2006.  During the first nine
months of 2006 these SHCs reported an EBITDA of BRL56.1 million.  
Sale proceeds of about BRL103 million (net of taxes and social
contributions) were applied to corporate general purposes.  
Existing remaining generation assets should continue to provide
the company with positive cash flows reflecting highly
contracted positions and regulated off-take market.  Rede
Empresas' strategy does not contemplate further investments in
utility generation assets in the short term.

Despite a leverage increase in 2006, Rede Empresas' debt and
cash flow levels remain consistent with the rating category.  
Rede Empresas' consolidated leverage, as measured by adjusted
total debt-to-EBITDA, raised to 5.2x at December 2006, from 3.9x
at the end of the fiscal year of 2005.  Nonetheless, the long-
term nature of new debt obligations in 2006 helped improved Rede
Empresas' maturities profile through amortization terms more
commensurate with operating cash flows.

Adjusted consolidated debt reduction effort by Rede Empresas was
mainly limited by the company's capital expenditure plans, a
recent tax renegotiation, and the corporate structure
reorganization, basically reflecting Inter-American Development
Bank or IDB loans to Celpa (US$100 million) and Cemat (US$79.5
million) to finance expansion and updating the distribution
grid, a tax renegotiation program PAEX (BRL1,134.9 million at
December), and debt assumptions and transfers of operating
assets as part of the aforementioned corporate structure
reorganization (BRL740 million outstanding at 2006 year-end).  
Other proceeds from refinancing transactions, namely, a fund for
the securitizations of receivables (FIDC, BRL110.1 million of
original amount) and Celpa and Cemat's US$100 million notes
units also prolonged debt maturities and reduced refinancing
risks.  Finally, the perpetual notes issuance will extend
improve the holding company's debt service profile to more
appropriate levels for its cash flows/dividends.

Further efforts of improving debt maturity profile along 2007
are expected as the company still shows concentration of debt
amortizations in 2008.  The company has stated its intention to
launch an initial public offering next year, which could further
improve the credit quality of Rede Empresas and its
subsidiaries, as a large part of these resources may be used for
debt reduction.

Centrais Eletricas do Para S.A. aka Celpa, a subsidiary of Rede
Empresas de Energia Eletrica SA, distributes electricity to the
entire state of Para and 50% of its 1,287,000 residential
customers are low-income consumers. Its new program will target
additional rural low-income populations. The population of the
state is 6.7 million.


CELPA: Moody's Assigns B2 Global Scale Rating
---------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service assigned issuer ratings of B2 on its
global scale and Ba1.br on its national scale to Centrais
Eletricas do Para S.A. aka Celpa.  Simultaneously, Moody's
assigned issuer ratings of B2 on its global scale and Ba1.br on
its national scale to other Rede Empresas de Energia Eletrica SA
operating subsidiaries: Centrais Eletricas Matogrossenses S.A.
aka Cemat and Companhia de Energia Eletrica do Estado do
Tocantins aka Celtins.  

Moody's also assigned corporate family ratings of B2 on its
global scale and Ba1.br on its Brazilian national scale to Rede
Empresas.  Finally, Moody's assigned a B3 foreign currency
rating to Rede Empresas' proposed issuance of approximately
US$200 million senior unsecured perpetual bonds, which proceeds
will be used primarily to refinance existing debt.  The outlook
for all ratings is stable.

Ratings assigned are:

    Rede Empresas de Energia Eletrica S.A.:

     -- Senior unsecured corporate family rating: B2 (global
        local currency); Ba1.br Brazilian national scale

     -- US$100 million senior unsecured foreign currency
        perpetual notes: B3

   Centrais Eletricas Matogrossenses S.A.

     -- Senior unsecured issuer rating: B2 (global local
        currency); Ba1.br Brazilian national scale

   Centrais Eletricas do Para S.A.

     -- Senior unsecured issuer rating: B2 (global local
        currency); Ba1.br Brazilian national scale

   Companhia de Energia Eletrica do Estado do Tocantins

     -- Senior unsecured issuer rating: B2 (global local
        currency); Ba1.br Brazilian national scale

Outlook: stable

The B2 global local currency corporate family rating for Rede
Empresas reflects its significant financial leverage as measured
by Total Adjusted Debt to EBITDA of 5.2x at Dec. 31, 2006, and
Moody's view of substantial refinancing risk in the coming years
in spite of the group's recent efforts to reduce indebtedness
and improve its debt maturity profile.  According to Moody's
standard adjustments, Total Adjusted Debt includes debt-alike
obligations related to refinanced taxes, labor litigation,
pension fund, intercompany debt, leasing transactions and
refinanced obligations with power suppliers.  During 2006, Rede
Empresas disposed of part of its power generation assets for an
aggregate amount of about BRL480 million and raised long-term
debt to replace maturing debt, including a US$250 million loan
granted by the Inter-American Development Bank to fund planned
capex.  In Moody's view, significant additional efforts will be
required to refinance a considerable portion of maturing debt
over the next couple of years.  Although Moody's expects EBITA
margins will remain healthy in the high teens range over the
near term, it is anticipated that Rede Empresas will remain free
cash flow negative in 2007 and 2008 due to relatively high
interest expenses and an elevated level of mandatory capex.  
Accordingly, in Moody's view a significant deleveraging of the
company from internal cash generation in the near term is
unlikely to occur, thus leaving debt protection metrics fairly
weak, such as single-digit FFO to Total Adjusted Debt (net of
regulatory assets).  Rede Empresas, as the vast majority of
Brazilian corporates, has no committed credit facilities to
support potential liquidity needs.

The B3 foreign currency rating assigned to the company's US$100
million senior unsecured perpetual bonds reflects the B2 global
local currency corporate family rating of Rede Empresas and the
structural subordination of the notes to substantial existing
debt at the operating subsidiaries.  As an investment holding
company, Rede Empresas depends entirely upon upstreamed
dividends from its operating subsidiaries to meet its
obligations.  The B3 rating of the perpetual notes is not
constrained by Brazil's current Ba1 sovereign ceiling and
assumes that there will be no material variation from the draft
documents reviewed and that all legal agreements are legally
valid, binding and enforceable.

Notwithstanding Moody's recognition that the regulated activity
and overall credit metrics of Cemat, Celpa and Celtins could be
supportive of higher ratings, the B2 issuer rating assigned to
the group's three operating subsidiaries is constrained by the
B2 corporate family rating of Rede Empresas due to existing
cross default provisions among these companies within the group,
as well as the significant pressure on those companies to
upstream dividends to service the group's excessively indebted
holding company.  Combined, Cemat, Celpa and Celtins represent
about 80% of consolidated revenues, 70% of consolidated EBITDA,
and some 60% of Rede's consolidated adjusted debt as of
Dec. 31, 2006.

The ratings of Rede Empresas and its subsidiaries are also
constrained by the uncertainties related to the evolving
regulatory environment for Brazil's electricity sector.  
Although Moody's recognizes that, in general, the new Brazilian
regulatory framework for the energy sector appears to provide a
more stable environment for the industry players, there are
still uncertainties regarding the regulation that is essentially
related to the substantial interference powers of the Federal
Government.

The stable outlook reflects Moody's belief that operating cash
flows will continue to grow although potential liquidity
constraints remain a concern for Rede Empresas over the near
term.

Rede's ratings or outlook could come under upward pressure if
Total Adjusted Debt to EBITDA drops to below 3.0x on a
sustainable basis combined with an overall improved liquidity
position.  Further evidence of an improved supportive
environment by the Brazilian regulatory framework for electric
utilities could also positively impact the rating or outlook.  
Conversely, the ratings or outlook would come under downward
pressure should FFO to Total Adjusted Debt ratio fall below 5%
for an extended period or if Rede Empresas is unable to
refinance its maturing debt in a timely manner.  Additionally, a
deterioration of the regulatory environment could have a
negative impact on the ratings or outlook.

Centrais Eletricas do Para S.A. aka Celpa, a subsidiary of Rede
Empresas de Energia Eletrica SA, distributes electricity to the
entire state of Para and 50% of its 1,287,000 residential
customers are low-income consumers. Its new program will target
additional rural low-income populations. The population of the
state is 6.7 million.


CEMAT: Fitch Keeps B Issuer Default Ratings
-------------------------------------------
Fitch currently maintains Local and Foreign Currency Issuer
Default Ratings of 'B' and Brazilian national scale ratings of
'BBB(bra)' to Centrais Eletricas Matogrossenses S.A. aka Cemat.  
Fitch also affirms the Local and Foreign Currency Issuer Default
Ratings of 'B' and Brazilian national scale ratings of
'BBB(bra)' to Rede Empresas de Energia Eletrica SA (Cemat's
parent company) and another subsidiary Centrais Eletricas do
Para S.A. aka Celpa.

Fitch also has assigned a 'B' rating to the proposed issuance of
up to US$200 million perpetual notes by Rede Empresas.  The
issuance has been assigned an 'RR4' Recovery Rating, indicating
an expected average recovery (31%-50%) given a default and an
assumed jurisdictional 'RR4' cap on instrument ratings in
Brazil.  All ratings have a Stable Rating Outlook.

The notes will rank pari passu with other Rede Empresas' senior
unsecured debt obligations and will be subordinated to the debt
of Rede Empresas' operating companies.  The perpetual bonds have
no fixed final maturity but will become callable by Rede
Empresas in whole after the five-year initial term ending March
2012.  The proceeds of the issuance will be used to refinance
existing working capital obligations at the holding level.

The rating is supported by the company's market position as an
important player in the electric distribution segment in Brazil
and the expected strengthening of credit protection measures of
the group over the next few years supported by continued growth
in operational results and cash flow and a reduction of annual
debt service via lower --financing-cost debt.  The rating also
reflects the relatively high leverage of the group when compared
to other electricity companies in the Brazilian market, as well
as the regulatory risks inherent in the Brazilian power sector.

Rede Empresas' credit profile is underpinned by its portfolio of
eight distribution companies, and, within this, by Centrais
Eletricas Matogrossenses S.A. and Centrais Eletricas do Para
S.A., which roughly accounted for 59.3% (or BRL536.6 million) of
Rede Empresas' 2006 consolidated EBITDA.  Rede Empresas'
business fundamentals are supported by the natural monopoly
nature of the distribution and by the market regulation.  The
distributor's operation are required to contract 100% of their
expected energy demand and the sector's new model allows for the
pass-through of all noncontrollable costs for distribution
companies.  Although regulatory risks remain an ongoing credit
concern, the current electric energy industry model is generally
positive and should support growth and stability in the sector.

Rede Empresas benefits from broad, diversified and stable
customer bases.  Many of the company's service areas show an
average consumption growth that has exceeded the national
average over the past five years.  Rede Empresas' distribution
revenues grew 12.6% in 2006.  Future improvement in operating
cash flow should also benefit from adequate tariff adjustments,
improving operating efficiencies and a more favorable economic
environment.

The company also participates in the electricity generation
segment through two hydroelectric generation companies of an
aggregate installed capacity of 529.3 megawatts, as well as
several small thermoelectric generation units with an additional
installed capacity of 127.6 megawatts.  This segment represented
about 14.8% (or BRL133.8 million) of 2006 consolidated EBITDA.  
As required by the New Electricity Sector Law of 2004, the
company engaged into a corporate structure reorganization
process, which ultimately resulted in the incorporation of
operating assets (previously directly owned by Rede Empresas'
parent company) into Rede Empresas in November 2006 and the
divestment of twenty unleveraged small hydroelectric companies
or SHCs in the last quarter of 2006.  During the first nine
months of 2006 these SHCs reported an EBITDA of BRL56.1 million.  
Sale proceeds of about BRL103 million (net of taxes and social
contributions) were applied to corporate general purposes.  
Existing remaining generation assets should continue to provide
the company with positive cash flows reflecting highly
contracted positions and regulated off-take market.  Rede
Empresas' strategy does not contemplate further investments in
utility generation assets in the short term.

Despite a leverage increase in 2006, Rede Empresas' debt and
cash flow levels remain consistent with the rating category.  
Rede Empresas' consolidated leverage, as measured by adjusted
total debt-to-EBITDA, raised to 5.2x at December 2006, from 3.9x
at the end of the fiscal year of 2005.  Nonetheless, the long-
term nature of new debt obligations in 2006 helped improved Rede
Empresas' maturities profile through amortization terms more
commensurate with operating cash flows.

Adjusted consolidated debt reduction effort by Rede Empresas was
mainly limited by the company's capital expenditure plans, a
recent tax renegotiation, and the corporate structure
reorganization, basically reflecting Inter-American Development
Bank or IDB loans to Celpa (US$100 million) and Cemat (US$79.5
million) to finance expansion and updating the distribution
grid, a tax renegotiation program PAEX (BRL1,134.9 million at
December), and debt assumptions and transfers of operating
assets as part of the aforementioned corporate structure
reorganization (BRL740 million outstanding at 2006 year-end).  
Other proceeds from refinancing transactions, namely, a fund for
the securitizations of receivables (FIDC, BRL110.1 million of
original amount) and Celpa and Cemat's US$100 million notes
units also prolonged debt maturities and reduced refinancing
risks.  Finally, the perpetual notes issuance will extend
improve the holding company's debt service profile to more
appropriate levels for its cash flows/dividends.

Further efforts of improving debt maturity profile along 2007
are expected as the company still shows concentration of debt
amortizations in 2008.  The company has stated its intention to
launch an initial public offering next year, which could further
improve the credit quality of Rede Empresas and its
subsidiaries, as a large part of these resources may be used for
debt reduction.

Centrais Eletricas Matogrossenses S.A., a subsidiary of Rede
Empresas de Energia Eletrica SA, is an electricity generation
and distribution company that serves the state of Mato Grosso
that has a population of 2.7 million inhabitants.  It currently
serves 772.890 clients.


CEMAT: Moody's Assigns B2 Issuer Ratings  
----------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service assigned issuer ratings of B2 on its
global scale and Ba1.br on its national scale to Centrais
Eletricas Matogrossenses S.A. aka Cemat.  Simultaneously,
Moody's assigned issuer ratings of B2 on its global scale and
Ba1.br on its national scale to other Rede Empresas de Energia
Eletrica S.A.' operating subsidiaries: Centrais Eletricas do
Para S.A. aka Celpa and Companhia de Energia Eletrica do Estado
do Tocantins aka Celtins.  

Moody's also assigned corporate family ratings of B2 on its
global scale and Ba1.br on its Brazilian national scale to Rede
Empresas de Energia Eletrica S.A.  Finally, Moody's assigned a
B3 foreign currency rating to Rede Empresas' proposed issuance
of approximately US$200 million senior unsecured perpetual
bonds, which proceeds will be used primarily to refinance
existing debt.  The outlook for all ratings is stable.

Ratings assigned are:

    Rede Empresas de Energia Eletrica S.A.:

     -- Senior unsecured corporate family rating: B2 (global
        local currency); Ba1.br Brazilian national scale

     -- US$100 million senior unsecured foreign currency
        perpetual notes: B3

   Centrais Eletricas Matogrossenses S.A.

     -- Senior unsecured issuer rating: B2 (global local
        currency); Ba1.br Brazilian national scale

   Centrais Eletricas do Para S.A.

     -- Senior unsecured issuer rating: B2 (global local
        currency); Ba1.br Brazilian national scale

   Companhia de Energia Eletrica do Estado do Tocantins

     -- Senior unsecured issuer rating: B2 (global local
        currency); Ba1.br Brazilian national scale

Outlook: stable

The B2 global local currency corporate family rating for Rede
Empresas reflects its significant financial leverage as measured
by Total Adjusted Debt to EBITDA of 5.2x at Dec. 31, 2006, and
Moody's view of substantial refinancing risk in the coming years
in spite of the group's recent efforts to reduce indebtedness
and improve its debt maturity profile.  According to Moody's
standard adjustments, Total Adjusted Debt includes debt-alike
obligations related to refinanced taxes, labor litigation,
pension fund, intercompany debt, leasing transactions and
refinanced obligations with power suppliers.  During 2006, Rede
Empresas disposed of part of its power generation assets for an
aggregate amount of about BRL480 million and raised long-term
debt to replace maturing debt, including a US$250 million loan
granted by the Inter-American Development Bank to fund planned
capex.  In Moody's view, significant additional efforts will be
required to refinance a considerable portion of maturing debt
over the next couple of years.  Although Moody's expects EBITA
margins will remain healthy in the high teens range over the
near term, it is anticipated that Rede Empresas will remain free
cash flow negative in 2007 and 2008 due to relatively high
interest expenses and an elevated level of mandatory capex.  
Accordingly, in Moody's view a significant deleveraging of the
company from internal cash generation in the near term is
unlikely to occur, thus leaving debt protection metrics fairly
weak, such as single-digit FFO to Total Adjusted Debt (net of
regulatory assets).  Rede Empresas, as the vast majority of
Brazilian corporates, has no committed credit facilities to
support potential liquidity needs.

The B3 foreign currency rating assigned to the company's US$100
million senior unsecured perpetual bonds reflects the B2 global
local currency corporate family rating of Rede Empresas and the
structural subordination of the notes to substantial existing
debt at the operating subsidiaries.  As an investment holding
company, Rede Empresas depends entirely upon upstreamed
dividends from its operating subsidiaries to meet its
obligations.  The B3 rating of the perpetual notes is not
constrained by Brazil's current Ba1 sovereign ceiling and
assumes that there will be no material variation from the draft
documents reviewed and that all legal agreements are legally
valid, binding and enforceable.

Notwithstanding Moody's recognition that the regulated activity
and overall credit metrics of Cemat, Celpa and Celtins could be
supportive of higher ratings, the B2 issuer rating assigned to
the group's three operating subsidiaries is constrained by the
B2 corporate family rating of Rede Empresas due to existing
cross default provisions among these companies within the group,
as well as the significant pressure on those companies to
upstream dividends to service the group's excessively indebted
holding company.  Combined, Cemat, Celpa and Celtins represent
about 80% of consolidated revenues, 70% of consolidated EBITDA,
and some 60% of Rede's consolidated adjusted debt as of
Dec. 31, 2006.

The ratings of Rede Empresas and its subsidiaries are also
constrained by the uncertainties related to the evolving
regulatory environment for Brazil's electricity sector.  
Although Moody's recognizes that, in general, the new Brazilian
regulatory framework for the energy sector appears to provide a
more stable environment for the industry players, there are
still uncertainties regarding the regulation that is essentially
related to the substantial interference powers of the Federal
Government.

The stable outlook reflects Moody's belief that operating cash
flows will continue to grow although potential liquidity
constraints remain a concern for Rede Empresas over the near
term.

Rede's ratings or outlook could come under upward pressure if
Total Adjusted Debt to EBITDA drops to below 3.0x on a
sustainable basis combined with an overall improved liquidity
position.  Further evidence of an improved supportive
environment by the Brazilian regulatory framework for electric
utilities could also positively impact the rating or outlook.  
Conversely, the ratings or outlook would come under downward
pressure should FFO to Total Adjusted Debt ratio fall below 5%
for an extended period or if Rede Empresas is unable to
refinance its maturing debt in a timely manner.  Additionally, a
deterioration of the regulatory environment could have a
negative impact on the ratings or outlook.

Centrais Eletricas Matogrossenses S.A., a subsidiary of Rede
Empresas de Energia Eletrica SA, is an electricity generation
and distribution company that serves the state of Mato Grosso
that has a population of 2.7 million inhabitants.  It currently
serves 772.890 clients.


GLOBAL CROSSING: Wins Two-Year Contract from Brazilian Firm
-----------------------------------------------------------
Global Crossing Ltd. said in a statement that it has won a two-
year contract to provide GVT, a Brazilian telephone carrier and
Internet services provider, with gigabit Ethernet Internet
protocol transit services.

Business News Americas relates that GVT wants to deliver
advanced Internet protocol services -- Voice-over-Internet-
Protocol, Internet Protocol Television and streaming -- by using
Global Crossing's global MPLS-based (multi-protocol label
switching) fiber optic network.

Global Crossing did not tell BNamericas how much the contract is
worth.

Gilberto Silva, Global Crossing's manager in Brazil, commented
to BNamericas, "This is the beginning of our relationship with
GVT and we hope to secure more work with them such as voice
determination [services].  We expect to become their number one
carrier, although they have a couple of others as well."

According to BNamericas, GVT raised BRL1.08 billion through an
initial public offering, which closed on March 1.  

The proceeds from the offering will be used to help expand next
the generation network, BNamericas notes, citing GVT.

GVT became the first Brazilian telecom to list on Bovespa's Novo
Mercado index due to the initial public offering, BNamericas
states.  

                           About GVT

GVT operates in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Belo Horizonte,
where it serves the corporate market and provides Internet
services.  The firm operates in 62 cities in Brazil's central-
southern region and in part of the northern region.

                     About Global Crossing

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

At Dec. 31, 2006, Global Crossing Ltd.'s balance sheet showed a
US$195 million stockholders' deficit, compared to a US$173
million stockholders' deficit at Dec. 31, 2005.


NOVELIS INC: Recycles 38 Billion Beverage Cans in 2006
------------------------------------------------------
Novelis Inc. said in a statement that it has recycled a record
38 billion beverage cans last year, equivalent to over 500,000
tons of aluminum.

Novelis Chief Operating Officer Marth Brooks said in a
statement, "Approximately 30% of our metal input comes from
recycled material, supplementing our purchases of primary metal
and giving us added sourcing flexibility."

Business News Americas relates that Novelis recycled over 35
billion beverage cans in 2005.

Novelis' bauxite, primary aluminum and rolled products complexes
in Brazil will be acquired by Indian metals firm Hindalco
Industries for US$6 billion, including roughly US$2.4 billion of
debt, BNamericas states.

Based in Atlanta, Georgia, Novelis, Inc., (NYSE: NVL) (TSX: NVL)
-- http://www.novelis.com/-- provides customers with a regional   
supply of technologically sophisticated rolled aluminum products
throughout Asia, Europe, North America, and South America.  The
company operates in 11 countries and has approximately 13,000
employees.  Through its advanced production capabilities, the
company supplies aluminum sheet and foil to the automotive and
transportation, beverage and food packaging, construction and
industrial, and printing markets.

Novelis South America operates two rolling plants and primary
production facilities in Brazil.  The company's Pindamonhangaba
rolling and recycling facility in Brazil is the largest aluminum
rolling and recycling facility in South America and the only one
capable of producing can body and end stock. The plant recycles
primarily used beverage cans, and is engaged in tolling recycled
metal for its customers.

Novelis also has operations in Germany, Switzerland and Korea.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Feb. 16, 2007, Fitch Ratings placed the Issuer Default Ratings
of 'B' for Novelis Inc. and its subsidiary Novelis Corp. on
Rating Watch Negative.  The company's senior secured bank debt
ratings and senior unsecured debt ratings were affirmed as:

Novelis Inc.

   -- Senior secured revolver and term loan at 'BB/Recovery
      Rating 1'; and

   -- Senior unsecured notes at 'B/RR4'.

Novelis, Corp.

   -- Senior secured revolver and term loan B at 'BB/RR1'.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 15, 2006, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services affirmed all
of its ratings on Novelis Inc., including the 'BB-' long-term
corporate credit rating, and removed the ratings from
CreditWatch with negative implications, where they were placed
April 7, 2006.  S&P said the outlook was negative.


PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: To Decide on Maranon Exploration Deal
----------------------------------------------------------
Petroleo Brasileiro SA and Petroperu must decide, until November
2008, whether to convert the technical evaluation agreements,
which were signed in November 2005, on six blocks in Peru's
Maranon basin into exploration contracts, Business News Americas
reports, citing a Petrobras spokesperson as saying.

The spokesperson told BNamericas that the pre-exploration stage
includes magnetometry and magnetogravimetry works.  The pre-
exploration stage is defining the positions of basins and
sedimentary deposits but not structural traps.

BNamericas reports that Colombia's state oil company Ecopetrol,
was already very advanced likely would be involved in the
companies' exploration efforts.  Ecopetrol initially didn't join
because the agreement with Petrobras was already advanced.

After the evaluations, the companies would identify what
participation each would have in the blocks, BNamericas adds.

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Petroleo Brasileiro SA
aka Petrobras -- http://www2.petrobras.com.br/ingles/index.asp
-- 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.

Petrobras has operations in China, India, Japan, and Singapore.

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.


PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Oil & Gas Production Increase in February
--------------------------------------------------------------
Petroleo Brasileiro SA aka Petrobras' oil and natural gas
production in Brazil and abroad was 2,317,443 barrels of oil
equivalent (oil + gas) per day in February, 1.46% more than the
previous months', and 1.26% above a year ago.  Total production
abroad (oil & gas) averaged 236,453 barrels of oil equivalent
per day.  This volume was 3.7% over January's, mainly as a
result of the Cottonwood field going online in the American part
of the Gulf of Mexico, and because of the higher production in
Bolivia to attend to the greater demand for gas.

Only taking Brazilian fields into account, oil and gas
production averaged 2,080,990 barrels of oil equivalent per day,
a 2.5% increase over a year ago and 1.2% more than in January
2007.

Petrobras' exclusive oil production in Brazil topped-out at
1,804,783 barrels per day, on average.  This volume is 2.6% more
than that produced in February 2006, and 1.1% above the January
2007 average.  The increase resulted from P-37 platform's
operation normalization, in the Marlim field, Campos Basin,
after the scheduled shutdown made during the second half of
January.

Petrobras' total gas production in February was 61.8 million
cubic meters per day, 43.9 million of which coming from
Brazilian fields and 17.9 million derived from fields overseas.

                  About Petroleo Brasileiro

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Petroleo Brasileiro SA
aka Petrobras -- http://www2.petrobras.com.br/ingles/index.asp
-- 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.

Petrobras has operations in China, India, Japan, and Singapore.

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.


PETROLEO IPIRANGA: Moody's Says Ratings Unaffected by Purchase
--------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service took no action in relation to the
ratings of Companhia Brasileira de Petroleo Ipiranga's or CBPI
amidst the acquisition by a three-party consortium of Grupo
Ipiranga (CBPI's parent company) for US$4 billion (including
approximately US$700 million of assumed debt).  Moody's
maintains CBPI's Ba3 foreign currency senior unsecured bonds and
its A3(br) senior unsecured local debentures due to a number of
uncertainties related to the transaction at this stage.

Concurrently, Moody's commented that Petroleo Brasileiro S.A.'s
aka Petrobras announced participation in the three-party
consortium will not have an impact on the company's A2 global
local currency rating and Baa2 foreign currency bond ratings, or
on its baseline credit assessment or BCA of 8.  The two other
consortium partners are Ultrapar Participacoes S.A. and Braskem
S.A.  The transaction is subject to Brazilian regulatory
approval and is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2007.

Moody's notes that the future capital structure of Grupo
Ipiranga, including CBPI, is not known at this time, nor is it
clear whether the consortium or its members will legally assume
the debt.  Moody's will continue to monitor developments on the
transaction and could review CBPI's debt ratings once there is
more clarity about the closing and terms of the transaction, as
well as CBPI's future capital structure, including plans for the
entity's rated debt.

Petrobras' acquisition costs for its share in Grupo Ipiranga is
in the area of US$1.3 billion, including assumed debt.  
Petrobras will acquire 40% of the petrochemical assets of
Ipiranga, which will allow Petrobras to consolidate its market
position in the Brazilian petrochemical sector.  Grupo Ipiranga
estimates that it has a 33% market share in the Brazilian high-
density polyethylene market.  Additionally, the transaction will
expand Petrobras' fuel distribution operations in Brazil's
North, Northeast and Midwest regions.  Petrobras will also hold
a one-third interest in Grupo Ipiranga's refinery; however, the
refinery is a very small low-complexity refinery.

Moody's expects that the transaction will not have any negative
credit implications for Petrobras, given the nature of the
assets and Petrobras's strong liquidity and financial position.  
At Dec. 30, 2006, Petrobras's cash on the balance sheet totaled
over US$9 billion (per Brazilian GAAP), mitigating the impact of
increased leverage tied to this transaction and to the company's
ongoing share repurchase program.  In addition, Petrobras has
the ability to adjust capital investment in the future under
changing commodity price conditions, which will be key to
management of future capital spending, given the large increase
in its five-year capital plan that was unveiled in 2006.

                About Petroleo Brasileiro SA

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Petroleo Brasileiro
SA aka Petrobras -- http://www2.petrobras.com.br/-- 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.

Petrobras has operations in China, India, Japan, and Singapore.

                   About Grupo Ipiranga

Grupo Ipiranga, a Brazilian company, is composed of refinery
assets under Refinaria de Petroleo Ipiranga or RIPI;
petrochemical assets under Ipiranga Quimica or IQ, Ipiranga
Petroquimica or IPQ and a participation in Companhia
Petroquimica do Sul aka Copesul; and distribution assets under
Distribuidora de Produtos de Petroleo Ipiranga or DPPI and
Companhia Brasileira de Petroleo Ipiranga or CBPI.

       About Companhia Brasileira de Petroleo Ipiranga

Companhia Brasileira de Petroleo Ipiranga, based in Rio de
Janeiro, is the second largest fuel distribution company in
Brazil, and a part of Grupo Ipiranga.  


REDE EMPRESAS: Fitch Puts B Rating on Proposed US$200-Mil. Notes
----------------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings maintains its 'B' Local and Foreign Currency
Issuer Default Ratings and 'BBB(bra)' Brazilian national scale
ratings on Centrais Eletricas do Para S.A. aka Celpa.  Fitch
also affirms the Local and Foreign Currency Issuer Default
Ratings of 'B' and Brazilian national scale ratings of
'BBB(bra)' to Rede Empresas de Energia Eletrica SA (Cemat's
parent company) and another subsidiary Centrais Eletricas
Matogrossenses S.A. aka Cemat.

Fitch has assigned a 'B' rating to the proposed issuance of up
to US$200 million perpetual notes by Rede Empresas.  The
issuance has been assigned an 'RR4' Recovery Rating, indicating
an expected average recovery (31%-50%) given a default and an
assumed jurisdictional 'RR4' cap on instrument ratings in
Brazil.  All ratings have a Stable Rating Outlook.

The notes will rank pari passu with other Rede Empresas' senior
unsecured debt obligations and will be subordinated to the debt
of Rede Empresas' operating companies.  The perpetual bonds have
no fixed final maturity but will become callable by Rede
Empresas in whole after the five-year initial term ending March
2012.  The proceeds of the issuance will be used to refinance
existing working capital obligations at the holding level.

The rating is supported by the company's market position as an
important player in the electric distribution segment in Brazil
and the expected strengthening of credit protection measures of
the group over the next few years supported by continued growth
in operational results and cash flow and a reduction of annual
debt service via lower --financing-cost debt.  The rating also
reflects the relatively high leverage of the group when compared
to other electricity companies in the Brazilian market, as well
as the regulatory risks inherent in the Brazilian power sector.

Rede Empresas' credit profile is underpinned by its portfolio of
eight distribution companies, and, within this, by Centrais
Eletricas Matogrossenses S.A. and Centrais Eletricas do Para
S.A., which roughly accounted for 59.3% (or BRL536.6 million) of
Rede Empresas' 2006 consolidated EBITDA.  Rede Empresas'
business fundamentals are supported by the natural monopoly
nature of the distribution and by the market regulation.  The
distributor's operation are required to contract 100% of their
expected energy demand and the sector's new model allows for the
pass-through of all non-controllable costs for distribution
companies.  Although regulatory risks remain an ongoing credit
concern, the current electric energy industry model is generally
positive and should support growth and stability in the sector.

Rede Empresas benefits from broad, diversified and stable
customer bases.  Many of the company's service areas show an
average consumption growth that has exceeded the national
average over the past five years.  Rede Empresas' distribution
revenues grew 12.6% in 2006.  Future improvement in operating
cash flow should also benefit from adequate tariff adjustments,
improving operating efficiencies and a more favorable economic
environment.

The company also participates in the electricity generation
segment through two hydroelectric generation companies of an
aggregate installed capacity of 529.3 megawatts, as well as
several small thermoelectric generation units with an additional
installed capacity of 127.6 megawatts.  This segment represented
about 14.8% (or BRL133.8 million) of 2006 consolidated EBITDA.  
As required by the New Electricity Sector Law of 2004, the
company engaged into a corporate structure reorganization
process, which ultimately resulted in the incorporation of
operating assets (previously directly owned by Rede Empresas'
parent company) into Rede Empresas in November 2006 and the
divestment of twenty unleveraged small hydroelectric companies
or SHCs in the last quarter of 2006.  During the first nine
months of 2006 these SHCs reported an EBITDA of BRL56.1 million.  
Sale proceeds of about BRL103 million (net of taxes and social
contributions) were applied to corporate general purposes.  
Existing remaining generation assets should continue to provide
the company with positive cash flows reflecting highly
contracted positions and regulated off-take market.  Rede
Empresas' strategy does not contemplate further investments in
utility generation assets in the short term.

Despite a leverage increase in 2006, Rede Empresas' debt and
cash flow levels remain consistent with the rating category.  
Rede Empresas' consolidated leverage, as measured by adjusted
total debt-to-EBITDA, raised to 5.2x at December 2006, from 3.9x
at the end of the fiscal year of 2005.  Nonetheless, the long-
term nature of new debt obligations in 2006 helped improved Rede
Empresas' maturities profile through amortization terms more
commensurate with operating cash flows.

Adjusted consolidated debt reduction effort by Rede Empresas was
mainly limited by the company's capital expenditure plans, a
recent tax renegotiation, and the corporate structure
reorganization, basically reflecting Inter-American Development
Bank or IDB loans to Celpa (US$100 million) and Cemat (US$79.5
million) to finance expansion and updating the distribution
grid, a tax renegotiation program PAEX (BRL1,134.9 million at
December), and debt assumptions and transfers of operating
assets as part of the aforementioned corporate structure
reorganization (BRL740 million outstanding at 2006 year-end).  
Other proceeds from refinancing transactions, namely, a fund for
the securitizations of receivables (FIDC, BRL110.1 million of
original amount) and Celpa and Cemat's US$100 million notes
units also prolonged debt maturities and reduced refinancing
risks.  Finally, the perpetual notes issuance will extend
improve the holding company's debt service profile to more
appropriate levels for its cash flows/dividends.

Further efforts of improving debt maturity profile along 2007
are expected as the company still shows concentration of debt
amortizations in 2008.  The company has stated its intention to
launch an initial public offering next year, which could further
improve the credit quality of Rede Empresas and its
subsidiaries, as a large part of these resources may be used for
debt reduction.

Centrais Eletricas do Para S.A. aka Celpa, a subsidiary of Rede
Empresas de Energia Eletrica SA, distributes electricity to the
entire state of Para and 50% of its 1,287,000 residential
customers are low-income consumers. Its new program will target
additional rural low-income populations. The population of the
state is 6.7 million.


REDE EMPRESAS: Moody's Puts B3 Rating on Proposed US$200MM Notes
----------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service assigned issuer ratings of B2 on its
global scale and Ba1.br on its national scale to Centrais
Eletricas Matogrossenses S.A. aka Cemat.  Simultaneously,
Moody's assigned issuer ratings of B2 on its global scale and
Ba1.br on its national scale to other Rede Empresas de Energia
Eletrica S.A.' operating subsidiaries: Centrais Eletricas do
Para S.A. aka Celpa and Companhia de Energia Eletrica do Estado
do Tocantins aka Celtins.  

Moody's also assigned corporate family ratings of B2 on its
global scale and Ba1.br on its Brazilian national scale to Rede
Empresas de Energia Eletrica S.A.  Finally, Moody's assigned a
B3 foreign currency rating to Rede Empresas' proposed issuance
of approximately US$200 million senior unsecured perpetual
bonds, which proceeds will be used primarily to refinance
existing debt.  The outlook for all ratings is stable.

Ratings assigned are:

    Rede Empresas de Energia Eletrica S.A.:

     -- Senior unsecured corporate family rating: B2 (global
        local currency); Ba1.br Brazilian national scale

     -- US$100 million senior unsecured foreign currency
        perpetual notes: B3

   Centrais Eletricas Matogrossenses S.A.

     -- Senior unsecured issuer rating: B2 (global local
        currency); Ba1.br Brazilian national scale

   Centrais Eletricas do Para S.A.

     -- Senior unsecured issuer rating: B2 (global local
        currency); Ba1.br Brazilian national scale

   Companhia de Energia Eletrica do Estado do Tocantins

     -- Senior unsecured issuer rating: B2 (global local
        currency); Ba1.br Brazilian national scale

Outlook: stable

The B2 global local currency corporate family rating for Rede
Empresas reflects its significant financial leverage as measured
by Total Adjusted Debt to EBITDA of 5.2x at Dec. 31, 2006, and
Moody's view of substantial refinancing risk in the coming years
in spite of the group's recent efforts to reduce indebtedness
and improve its debt maturity profile.  According to Moody's
standard adjustments, Total Adjusted Debt includes debt-alike
obligations related to refinanced taxes, labor litigation,
pension fund, intercompany debt, leasing transactions and
refinanced obligations with power suppliers.  During 2006, Rede
Empresas disposed of part of its power generation assets for an
aggregate amount of about BRL480 million and raised long-term
debt to replace maturing debt, including a US$250 million loan
granted by the Inter-American Development Bank to fund planned
capex.  In Moody's view, significant additional efforts will be
required to refinance a considerable portion of maturing debt
over the next couple of years.  Although Moody's expects EBITA
margins will remain healthy in the high teens range over the
near term, it is anticipated that Rede Empresas will remain free
cash flow negative in 2007 and 2008 due to relatively high
interest expenses and an elevated level of mandatory capex.  
Accordingly, in Moody's view a significant deleveraging of the
company from internal cash generation in the near term is
unlikely to occur, thus leaving debt protection metrics fairly
weak, such as single-digit FFO to Total Adjusted Debt (net of
regulatory assets).  Rede Empresas, as the vast majority of
Brazilian corporates, has no committed credit facilities to
support potential liquidity needs.

The B3 foreign currency rating assigned to the company's US$100
million senior unsecured perpetual bonds reflects the B2 global
local currency corporate family rating of Rede Empresas and the
structural subordination of the notes to substantial existing
debt at the operating subsidiaries.  As an investment holding
company, Rede Empresas depends entirely upon upstreamed
dividends from its operating subsidiaries to meet its
obligations.  The B3 rating of the perpetual notes is not
constrained by Brazil's current Ba1 sovereign ceiling and
assumes that there will be no material variation from the draft
documents reviewed and that all legal agreements are legally
valid, binding and enforceable.

Notwithstanding Moody's recognition that the regulated activity
and overall credit metrics of Cemat, Celpa and Celtins could be
supportive of higher ratings, the B2 issuer rating assigned to
the group's three operating subsidiaries is constrained by the
B2 corporate family rating of Rede Empresas due to existing
cross default provisions among these companies within the group,
as well as the significant pressure on those companies to
upstream dividends to service the group's excessively indebted
holding company.  Combined, Cemat, Celpa and Celtins represent
about 80% of consolidated revenues, 70% of consolidated EBITDA,
and some 60% of Rede's consolidated adjusted debt as of
Dec. 31, 2006.

The ratings of Rede Empresas and its subsidiaries are also
constrained by the uncertainties related to the evolving
regulatory environment for Brazil's electricity sector.  
Although Moody's recognizes that, in general, the new Brazilian
regulatory framework for the energy sector appears to provide a
more stable environment for the industry players, there are
still uncertainties regarding the regulation that is essentially
related to the substantial interference powers of the Federal
Government.

The stable outlook reflects Moody's belief that operating cash
flows will continue to grow although potential liquidity
constraints remain a concern for Rede Empresas over the near
term.

Rede's ratings or outlook could come under upward pressure if
Total Adjusted Debt to EBITDA drops to below 3.0x on a
sustainable basis combined with an overall improved liquidity
position.  Further evidence of an improved supportive
environment by the Brazilian regulatory framework for electric
utilities could also positively impact the rating or outlook.  
Conversely, the ratings or outlook would come under downward
pressure should FFO to Total Adjusted Debt ratio fall below 5%
for an extended period or if Rede Empresas is unable to
refinance its maturing debt in a timely manner.  Additionally, a
deterioration of the regulatory environment could have a
negative impact on the ratings or outlook.

Centrais Eletricas Matogrossenses S.A., a subsidiary of Rede
Empresas de Energia Eletrica SA, is an electricity generation
and distribution company that serves the state of Mato Grosso
that has a population of 2.7 million inhabitants.  It currently
serves 772.890 clients.


TELE NORTE: Sees 400,000 Oi Conta Total Subscribers This Year
-------------------------------------------------------------
Tele Norte Leste Participacoes projects doubling to 400,000 the
number of postpaid mobile phone subscribers for its triple play
Oi Conta Total service, Chief Financial Officer Jose Luis
Salazar was quoted by Cellular-News as saying during a
conference call.

The Oil Conta Total feature bundles fixed line, mobile and long
distance telephony and Internet services.  It was launched in
June 2006 and is expected to help Tele Norte capture high-end
postpaid clients, the same report says.

"The Brazilian postpaid mobile phone market is fiercely
competitive and not growing much in terms of subscribers," Mr.
Salazar said.  "It is a churn market and we need to win clients
from our competitors."

The company would also add pay TV services in this month to Oi
Conta Total in partnership with satellite TV company
Sky+DirecTV, Cellular-News relates, citing Mr. Salazar.

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tele Norte Leste
Participacoes SA -- http://www.telemar.com.br-- is a provider
of fixed-line telecommunications services in South America.  The
company markets its services under its Telemar brand name.  Tele
Norte's subsidiaries include Telemar Norte Leste SA; TNL PCS SA;
Telemar Internet Ltda.; and Companhia AIX Participacoes SA.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Feb. 5, 2007,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services raised its long-term
corporate credit rating on Brazil-based telecom service
providers Tele Norte Leste Participacoes SA and Telemar Norte
Leste SA, jointly referred to as Telemar, to 'BB+' from 'BB'.
At the same time, Standard and Poor's revised its ratings on the
combined BRL300 million outstanding local debentures of Telemar
Participacoes SA in Brazil National Scale to 'brAA-' from
'brA+', and assigned o 'brAA-' rating to TmarPart's proposed
five-year BRL$250 million debentures.


ULTRAPAR: Joins Petroleo Brasileiro & Braskem to Buy Ipiranga
-------------------------------------------------------------
Petroleo Brasileiro SA aka Petrobras, the Ultrapar Participacoes
and Braskem have reached an understanding to purchase Ipiranga
Group businesses, consolidating and increasing petrochemical and
fuel distribution sector businesses.

The transaction is worth approximately US$4 billion.

By acquiring the Ipiranga Group businesses, the three companies
reinforce their commitment to growth in Brazil, Rio Grande do
Sul and the same stakeholders targeted by Ipiranga: the
shareholders, employees, partners, community and consumers.

The Ipiranga Group, one of the largest and most traditional in
Brazil, operates in the oil refinery, petrochemical and fuel
distribution sectors.

Petrobras' president, Jose Sergio Gabrielli de Azevedo, said the
deal is in line with the company's strategic plan, reinforcing
its active presence in the Brazilian petrochemical industry, in
which it already has important holdings.  To Mr. Gabrielli,
"Petrobras intends to have a more relevant role in
petrochemicals than it has had in the past few years.  The
Ipiranga negotiation is yet another step in the strategy of
consolidating important economic groups in Brazil, with a
relevant Petrobras presence in them.  From the downstream
viewpoint, the executive also highlights the operation is
important as it increases the company's North, Northeast, and
Midwest network synergy.

Pedro Wongtschowski, the Ultra Group president, emphasized the
growth that is expected with the transaction. "With this
incorporation, we take-on important assets, committed
professionals and, moreover, the Ipiranga flag, which is among
Brazil's ten most valuable brands and one of the country's most
respected companies.  With the acquisition, we significantly
boosted our operations in the fuel distribution area, now
holding two of the sector's main brands: Ultragaz and Ipiranga.
It is an investment in the fuel, biofuel, and in the Brazilian
markets."

Braskem's president, Jose Carlos Grubisich, said the Rio Grande
do Sul group's incorporation is a water divider in the strategy
at the company he leads: "we are among the world's top ten
petrochemical companies.  We are committed to Brazil, to
Corporate Governance, to and sustainable development."

"This new petrochemical sector consolidation brings an important
growth potential to Braskem, with a new competitiveness and
profitability benchmark for our business," concluded Mr.
Grubisich.

                   Transaction Procedure

The first stage involves Ultra Group acquisition of the shares
held by the families controlling the Ipiranga Group.  The Ultra
Group will then make a public offering to purchase common shares
held by Ipiranga Group minority shareholders.

In the third step, Braskem and Petrobras will submit offers to
shareholders to delist Copesul.

In the fourth step, the Ultra Group will incorporate preferred
shares held by Companhia Brasileira de Petr>leo Ipiranga (CBPI),
Distribuidora de Produtos de Petr>leo Ipiranga -- DPPI -- and
Refinaria de Petr>leo Ipiranga -- RPI -- minority shareholders,
who will receive preferred shares in Ultrapar.

In the fifth and final step, petrochemical assets will be sold
and handed over to Braskem and Petrobras.  Fuel distribution
businesses absorbed by Petrobras will reinforce the company's
distribution activities in the North East, North and Midwest.

The assets will be distributed as:

                  Fuel Distribution Sector

The Ultra Group will absorb the Ipiranga Group fuel distribution
network in the South and Southeast regions and will continue
trading under the Ipiranga brand.
Petrobras will take over the Ipiranga distribution network in
the North, North East and Midwest and will be entitled to use
the Ipiranga brand for a period of five years, during which time
it will be gradually substituted by the Petrobras Distribuidora
brand.

                  Petrochemical Sector

Braskem will acquire 60% of Ipiranga Group assets in the
petrochemical sector and will strengthen its controlling stake
in Copesul.   Petrobras will acquire 40% of the Ipiranga Group
assets in the petrochemical sector.

                        Refining

Petrobras, the Ultra Group and Braskem will have equal
controlling shareholdings in the Ipiranga Refinery, in Rio
Grande do Sul, and they have made a commitment to continuing
operations.

The transaction is subject to regulatory approval in Brazil from
the Economic Defense Board, Economic Law Secretariat, and the
Economic Oversight Secretariat.

In the fuel distribution sector, the Ultra Group already owns
the leading GLP brand, Ultragaz, and will incorporate a highly
significant brand into its business, Ipiranga.  This will result
in a significant increase in its sector presence based on best
corporate governance and management practices.

The petrochemical sector, Braskem will strengthen its Latin
American market leadership in thermoplastic resins, increasing
its stake in Copesul and advancing its strategy of building
growth by creating value.

Ipiranga's historical commitments to Rio Grande do Sul and to
Brazil will be upheld by Petrobras, the Ultra group and Braskem.
The company's social, cultural and environmental activities and
programs will also remain in place.

                  About Petroleo Brasileiro

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Petroleo Brasileiro SA
aka Petrobras -- http://www2.petrobras.com.br/ingles/index.asp
-- 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.

                        About Braskem

Braskem (BOVESPA: BRKM5; NYSE: BAK; LATIBEX: XBRK) --
http://www.braskem.com.br/-- is a thermoplastic resins producer
in Latin American, and is among the three largest Brazilian-
owned private industrial companies.  The company operates 13
manufacturing plants located throughout Brazil, and has an
annual production capacity of 5.8 million tons of resins and
other petrochemical products.

                 About Ultrapar Participacoes  

Ultrapar Participacoes S.A. (NYSE: UGP) (BOVESPA: UGPA4) is a
company with two main operations: LPG distribution (through its
fully-owned subsidiary Ultragaz Participacoes Ltda.) and
chemical production (through its also fully-owned subsidiary
Oxiteno S.A.). A third smaller but growing business is the
transportation and storage of chemicals and fuels, Ultracargo
Operacoes Logisticas e Participacoes Ltda., which completes
Ultrapar's business portfolio and reinforces the trend for
further business diversity in the long run.

                        *     *     *

In November 2005, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned
its 'BB+' senior unsecured debt rating to the 10-year notes
issuance by LPG International Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of
Ultrapar Participacoes S.A., in the amount of US$250 million.  
At the same time, the 'BB+' long-term corporate credit ratings
on Ultrapar, a Brazilian company with operations in liquefied
petroleum gas (LPG) distribution, chemical production, and
integrated logistics, were affirmed.  S&P said the outlook is
stable.


ULTRAPAR PARTICIPACOES: S&P Affirms BB+ Rating on Ipiranga Buy
--------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services affirmed the rating on
Ultrapar Participacoes S.A. (Ultrapar; BB+/Stable/--) following
the announcement that the company, together with two other
companies, has jointly acquired the control of Grupo Ipiranga
(unrated) in Brazil.  

Standard & Poor's also affirmed the ratings on Petroleo
Brasileiro S.A. (Petrobras; BBB-/Stable/--), and Braskem S.A.
(Braskem; BB/Stable/--), the other members of the three-party
consortium that acquired Grupo Ipiranga. The outlook is stable
for all these ratings.
      
The total enterprise value associated with the transaction is
estimated at US$4 billion, out of which approximately US$1.3
billion will be assumed by Petrobras and US$1.1 billion by
Braskem.  According to the terms of the agreement, Braskem and
Petrobras will jointly take control of Ipiranga's petrochemical
assets, with 60% for Braskem and 40% for Petrobras.  This
includes a 550,000 ton-per-year polyethylene plant (Ipiranga
Petroquimica or IPQ) and a 29.5% strategic stake in naphtha
cracker Companhia Petroquimica do Sul (Copesul, unrated).  
Ipiranga's fuel distribution assets in the Southern and
Southeastern parts of Brazil will be acquired by Ultrapar, with
the remaining assets in fuel distribution to be acquired by
Petrobras.  It is estimated that Ultrapar will hold about 15%
market share of the Brazilian fuel distribution market, while
Petrobras will expand its market share in fuel distribution by
about 5% to some 39%.
      
"The rating affirmation reflects our expectations that the
ultimate capital structure of each of the participants in the
transaction will not be negatively affected by the effects of
the acquisition," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Jean-
Pierre Cote Gil.  

The affirmation assumes that all parties are successful in
completing all the steps to reorganize Grupo Ipiranga to
effectively split and deliver assets to each of the involved
parties.  In the case of Ultrapar, Standard & Poor's expects the
company will be successful in completing the issuance of new
nonvoting shares to reduce interim leverage, therefore removing
any negative leverage impact resulting from the deal.  The
transaction is expected to be completed by the end of 2007.
     
Standard & Poor's expects the transaction to further improves
Ultrapar's distribution business by adding a competitive fuel
distribution activity, causing a limited increase in total gross
leverage.  Since the company expects to finance the transaction
mostly with the issuance of new nonvoting shares, Standard &
Poor's expects Ultrapar's gross debt levels to increase only by
its proportionate assumption of the existing debt at the fuel
distribution business.  Ultrapar is comparatively more exposed
to execution risks, as it is accountable for the bulk of the
legal movements that will be required to complete the transfer
of assets.  Any potential debt raised to finance cash outlays
associated with the acquisition of the control of Grupo Ipiranga
(to be redeemed with the future issuance of new nonvoting shares
at the end of the process) further exposes the company to the
transaction completion risk.

Standard & Poor's believes that the transaction improves
Braskem's market and operating position by expanding its market
position in the competitive polyethylene market, and by creating
further synergies between its main feedstock supplier, Copesul,
and its downstream petrochemical assets in the Southern part of
Brazil.  The successful conclusion of the deal will grant
Braskem and Petrobras full control on Copesul, which will
initially contribute significant and healthy cash flows and
little debt.  The consolidation of IPQ will add approximately
US$500 million in debt to Braskem's figures, but strategically,
it strengthens the company's position in the polyethylene and
polypropylene markets.  Debt associated with the acquisition
cost, estimated at approximately US$1.1 billion, will not
further deteriorate financial ratios because of incremental cash
flows from Copesul and IPQ.  However, despite the improving
trend, Standard & Poor's still expects credit ratios to remain
relatively aggressive for the rating category through the coming
quarters because of the additional indebtedness to finance the
acquisition cost.  Braskem is also exposed to some execution
risk associated with completing the several steps to delist
Copesul and fully integrate the new assets to the company's
operations.  Standard & Poor's views this risk as moderate to
low because of the group's positive background with previous
similar transactions.
      
Standard & Poor's understands that the proposed transaction will
have a marginal effect both on Petrobras' credit metrics and
business profile because of the relatively small magnitude of
the deal compared with the size of Petrobras' operations, and in
light of the company's already significant capital budget
committed for the next five years (of about US$87 billion).  
Nevertheless, Petrobras will further strengthen its market
leadership in fuel distribution in the Northern, Northeastern,
and Midwestern regions of Brazil.  In addition, the company is
also expected to adopt a more active role in the petrochemical
industry, partly supported by the improvements expected in the
decision-making process at the petrochemical operations shared
with Braskem despite its minority stake in those operations.  
Standard & Poor's expects the transaction to generate negligible
gains for Petrobras' refining operations.  Petrobras has already
announced its intention to fund the total acquisition price of
US$1.3 billion with its own liquidity, slightly reducing its
strong cash position of about US$13 billion (at Dec. 31, 2006).  
The transaction is expected to fully close by the end of 2007.

                   About Grupo Ipiranga

Grupo Ipiranga, a Brazilian company, is composed of refinery
assets under Refinaria de Petroleo Ipiranga or RIPI;
petrochemical assets under Ipiranga Quimica or IQ, Ipiranga
Petroquimica or IPQ and a participation in Companhia
Petroquimica do Sul aka Copesul; and distribution assets under
Distribuidora de Produtos de Petroleo Ipiranga or DPPI and
Companhia Brasileira de Petroleo Ipiranga or CBPI.

                    About Braskem S.A.

Braskem S.A. (BOVESPA: BRKM5; NYSE: BAK; LATIBEX: XBRK) --
http://www.braskem.com.br/-- is a thermoplastic resins producer
in Latin American, and is among the three largest Brazilian-
owned private industrial companies.  The company operates 13
manufacturing plants located throughout Brazil, and has an
annual production capacity of 5.8 million tons of resins and
other petrochemical products.

           About Petroleo Brasileiro SA

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Petroleo Brasileiro
SA aka Petrobras -- http://www2.petrobras.com.br/-- 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.

Petrobras has operations in China, India, Japan, and Singapore.

          About Ultrapar Participacoes S.A.

Ultrapar Participacoes S.A. (NYSE: UGP) (BOVESPA: UGPA4) is a
company with two main operations: LPG distribution (through its
fully-owned subsidiary Ultragaz Participacoes Ltda.) and
chemical production (through its also fully-owned subsidiary
Oxiteno S.A.). A third smaller but growing business is the
transportation and storage of chemicals and fuels, Ultracargo
Operacoes Logisticas e Participacoes Ltda., which completes
Ultrapar's business portfolio and reinforces the trend for
further business diversity in the long run.


USINAS SIDERURGICAS: New Investments To Ward Off Takeover Bids
--------------------------------------------------------------
An analyst at brokerage Planner Corretora told Business News
Americas that Usinas Siderurgicas de Minas Gerais SA's plan to
pump US$8.4 billion into new capacity is necessary to ensure the
firm's growth and to discourage takeovers.

The analyst commented to BNamericas, "I wrote a report last
month saying Usiminas was too conservative and that it was time
to expose itself."  

Usinas Siderurgicas was waiting for investment announcements
from other steelmakers in Brazil before disclosing its own plan,
BNamericas says, citing the analyst.

"Markets are growing in Brazil and abroad.  If Usiminas stands
still, the steelmaker will lose market share and it wouldn't be
hard to see the company become a takeover target, despite the
entry of Brazilian mining and metals group CVRD in its
controlling group," the analyst told BNamericas.

Usiminas Siderurgicas' investments will be aimed at the Ipatinga
city mill in Minas Gerais and subsidiary Cosipa, based in
Cubatao city in Sao Paulo.  Meanwhile, a three million ton per
year mill could be installed near Cosipa, BNamericas states.

Headquartered in Minas Gerais, Brazil, Usinas Siderurgicas de
Minas Gerais SA 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 US and Latin
America.  The company also sells in China and Japan.

The Troubled Company Reporter - Asia Pacific reported on
Jan. 3, 2007, that Standard & Poor's Ratings Services revised
its outlook on Brazil-based steelmaker Usinas Siderurgicas de
Minas Gerais S.A., aka Usiminas, to positive from stable.  
Standard & Poor's also said that it affirmed its 'BB+' local and
foreign currency corporate credit ratings on Usiminas.




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


CIRCLE K: Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline Is April 19
-----------------------------------------------------
Circle K Holdings Ltd.'s creditors are given until
April 19, 2007, to prove their claims to Royhaven Secretaries
Limited, the company's liquidator, or be excluded from receiving
any distribution or payment.

In their proofs of claim, creditors must indicate their full
names, addresses, the full particulars of their debts or claims,
and the names and addresses of their lawyers, if any.

Circle K's shareholders agreed on Jan. 31, 2007, to place the
company into voluntary liquidation under The Companies Law (2004
Revision) of the Cayman Islands.

The liquidator can be reached at:

       Royhaven Secretaries Limited
       Attention: Sharon Meghoo
       P.O. Box 707
       George Town, Grand Cayman
       Telephone: 945-4777
       Fax: 945-4799


CREDIT SUISSE: Proofs of Claim Filing Ends on April 19
------------------------------------------------------
Credit Suisse First Boston Investco UK No 1 Ltd.'s creditors are
given until April 19, 2007, to prove their claims to Jan Neveril
and Richard Gordon, the company's liquidators, or be excluded
from receiving any distribution or payment.

In their proofs of claim, creditors must indicate their full
names, addresses, the full particulars of their debts or claims,
and the names and addresses of their lawyers, if any.

Credit Suisse's shareholders agreed on Feb. 28, 2007, to
place the company into voluntary liquidation under The Companies
Law (2004 Revision) of the Cayman Islands.

The liquidators can be reached at:

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


DYNAP FUND: Proofs of Claim Must be Filed by April 2
----------------------------------------------------
Dynap Fund, SPC's creditors are given until April 2, 2007, to
prove their claims to Reid Services Limited, the company's
liquidator, or be excluded from receiving any distribution or
payment.

In their proofs of claim, creditors must indicate their full
names, addresses, the full particulars of their debts or claims,
and the names and addresses of their lawyers, if any.

Dynap Fund's shareholder decided on Feb. 23, 2007, to place the
company into voluntary liquidation under The Companies Law (2004
Revision) of the Cayman Islands.

The liquidator can be reached at:

       Reid Services Limited
       Clifton House, 75 Fort Street
       P.O. Box 1350
       George Town, Grand Cayman
       Cayman Islands


FALCON QP: Proofs of Claim Filing Ends on March 31
--------------------------------------------------
Falcon QP, LP's creditors are given until March 31, 2007, to
prove their claims to Solomon Harris, the company's liquidator,
or be excluded from receiving any distribution or payment.

In their proofs of claim, creditors must indicate their full
names, addresses, the full particulars of their debts or claims,
and the names and addresses of their lawyers, if any.

Falcon QP and General Partner agreed on Jan. 31, 2007, to
dissolve the partnership and place the company into voluntary
liquidation under The Companies Law (2004 Revision) of the
Cayman Islands.

The liquidator can be reached at:

       Solomon Harris       
       Attention: Wanda O'Connor
       2nd Floor, First Caribbean House Ltd.
       P.O. Box 1990
       Grand Cayman KY1-1104
       Cayman Islands
       Telephone: (345) 949-0488
       Fax: (345) 949-0364


GOLDEN JADE: Proofs of Claim Must be Filed by April 19
------------------------------------------------------
Golden Jade CDO Ltd.'s creditors are given until April 19, 2007,
to prove their claims to Cereita Lawrence and Janet Crawshaw,
the company's liquidators, or be excluded from receiving any
distribution or payment.

In their proofs of claim, creditors must indicate their full
names, addresses, the full particulars of their debts or claims,
and the names and addresses of their lawyers, if any.

Golden Jade's shareholders decided on Feb. 28, 2007, to
place the company into voluntary liquidation under The Companies
Law (2004 Revision) of the Cayman Islands.

The liquidators can be reached at:

       Cereita Lawrence
       Janet Crawshaw
       Attention: Cereita Lawrence
       P.O. Box 1109
       Grand Cayman KY1-1102
       Cayman Islands
       Telephone: 345-914-7510
       Fax: 345-949-7634


INVESTCORP HILDING: Proofs of Claim Filing Ends on April 10
-----------------------------------------------------------
Investcorp Hilding (Sedco) Investing, Ltd.'s creditors are given
until April 2, 2007, to prove their claims to Westport Services
Limited, the company's liquidator, or be excluded from receiving
any distribution or payment.

In their proofs of claim, creditors must indicate their full
names, addresses, the full particulars of their debts or claims,
and the names and addresses of their lawyers, if any.

Dynap Fund's shareholders decided on Jan. 23, 2007, to place the
company into voluntary liquidation under The Companies Law (2004
Revision) of the Cayman Islands.

The liquidator can be reached at:

       Westport Services Ltd.
       Attention: Evania Ebanks
       P.O. Box 1111
       Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
       Telephone: (345)-949-5122
       Fax: (345)-949-7920


KS CAPITAL: Proofs of Claim Must be Filed by April 19
-----------------------------------------------------
KS Capital Ltd.'s creditors are given until April 19, 2007, to
prove their claims to Geoffrey Varga, the company's liquidator,
or be excluded from receiving any distribution or payment.

In their proofs of claim, creditors must indicate their full
names, addresses, the full particulars of their debts or claims,
and the names and addresses of their lawyers, if any.

KS Capital's shareholders decided on March 8, 2007, to place the
company into voluntary liquidation under The Companies
Law (2004 Revision) of the Cayman Islands.

The liquidator can be reached at:

       Geoffrey Varga
       Attention: Bernadette Bailey-Lewis
       Kinetic Partners Cayman LLP
       Strathvale House
       P.O. Box 10387
       Grand Cayman KY1-1004
       Cayman Islands
       Telephone: (345) 623 9903
       Fax: (345) 623 0007


LIVERPOOL CORP: Proofs of Claim Filing Is Until April 19
--------------------------------------------------------
The Liverpool Corp's creditors are given until April 19, 2007,
to prove their claims to Trident Directors (Cayman) Ltd., the
company's liquidator, or be excluded from receiving any
distribution or payment.

In their proofs of claim, creditors must indicate their full
names, addresses, the full particulars of their debts or claims,
and the names and addresses of their lawyers, if any.

Liverpool Corp's shareholder decided on Feb. 28, 2007, to place
the company into voluntary liquidation under The Companies Law
(2004 Revision) of the Cayman Islands.

The liquidator can be reached at:

       Trident Directors (Cayman) Ltd.
       Attention: Kimbert Solomon
       P.O. Box 847
       George Town, Grand Cayman KY1-1103
       Cayman Islands
       Telephone: (345) 949 0880


OP FUNDING: Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline Is April 19
-------------------------------------------------------
OP Funding Corp.'s creditors are given until April 19, 2007, to
prove their claims to Piccadilly Cayman Limited, the company's
liquidator, or be excluded from receiving any distribution or
payment.

In their proofs of claim, creditors must indicate their full
names, addresses, the full particulars of their debts or claims,
and the names and addresses of their lawyers, if any.

OP Funding's shareholders agreed on Feb. 22, 2007, to place the
company into voluntary liquidation under The Companies Law (2004
Revision) of the Cayman Islands.

The liquidator can be reached at:

       Piccadilly Cayman Limited
       Attention: Ellen J. Christian
       c/o BNP Paribas Bank & Trust Cayman Limited
       3rd Floor Royal Bank House, Shedden Road,
       George Town, Grand Cayman
       Cayman Islands
       Telephone: 345 945 9208
       Fax: 345 945 9210


PARK VIEW: Proofs of Claim Must be Filed by April 19
----------------------------------------------------
Park View 9 Holdings Ltd.'s creditors are given until
April 19, 2007, to prove their claims to Jean-Louis Cambieri,
the company's liquidator, or be excluded from receiving any
distribution or payment.

In their proofs of claim, creditors must indicate their full
names, addresses, the full particulars of their debts or claims,
and the names and addresses of their lawyers, if any.

Park View's shareholders agreed to place the company into
voluntary liquidation under The Companies Law (2004 Revision) of
the Cayman Islands.

The liquidator can be reached at:

       Jean-Louis Cambieri
       Joannah Bodden, Maples and Calder
       P.O. Box 309
       George Town, Grand Cayman
       Cayman Islands




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


HEXION SPECIALTY: Posts US$109MM Net Loss in Year Ended Dec. 31
---------------------------------------------------------------
Hexion Specialty Chemicals Inc. reported a net loss of
US$109 million on net sales of US$5.205 billion for the year
ended Dec. 31, 2006, compared with a net loss of US$87 million
on net sales of US$4.442 billion for the year ended
Dec. 31, 2005.

The net loss in 2006 included increased interest expense of
US$242 million, compared to interest expense of US$203 million
in 2005, and an increased charge to extinguish debt of US$121
million, compared to a loss on extinguishment of debt of US$17
million in 2005.

Of the 17 percent increase in net sales in 2006, acquisitions
accounted for 12 percentage points when compared to 2005.  Full
year operating income increased by 38 percent to US$286 million
compared to US$208 million in 2005, supported by lower selling,
general and administrative expenses, continued realization of
synergies and lower transaction costs compared to the similar
year ago period.  2006 operating income was negatively impacted
by increased integration costs when compared to 2005, as well as
the continued rise in raw material costs and the delayed timing
in contractual pass through of certain raw material cost
increases to customers that resulted in a negative full-year
lead lag.

                 Fourth Quarter Highlights

For the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, 2006, net loss was
US$55 million versus a net loss of US$14 million in the prior
year period.  The net loss in the fourth quarter 2006 included a
US$69 million loss on extinguishment of debt.

Revenues increased to US$1.309 billion compared to revenues of
US$1.141 billion during the prior year period, an increase of
approximately 15 percent.

Operating income improved 34 percent to US$59 million versus
US$44 million in the prior year period.  Income for the fourth
quarter 2006 was negatively impacted by the delayed timing of
contractual pass through of certain raw material price increases
and integration costs of US$12 million compared to integration
costs of US$5 million in fourth quarter 2005.

"Hexion posted improved revenues and Segment EBITDA in the
fourth quarter 2006 compared to the fourth quarter 2005, despite
key raw materials at historically high levels," said Craig O.
Morrison, chairman and chief executive officer.  "Rapidly
escalating raw material costs continued to create a negative
lead-lag effect in the fourth quarter 2006.  Despite this
volatility and some softening volumes for our products,
primarily for the North American residential construction and
automotive markets, we improved our fourth quarter 2006 Segment
EBITDA and operating income by US$12 million and US$15 million,
respectively, when compared to the fourth quarter 2005."

Segment EBITDA is defined as EBITDA adjusted to exclude certain
noncash and non-recurring expenses.

                Acquisition of Orica Limited

During the fourth quarter, Hexion announced that it received
Australian regulatory approval to purchase the adhesives and
resins business of Orica Limited and subsequently completed the
transaction in February 2007.  The Orica adhesives and resins
business manufactures formaldehyde and formaldehyde-based
binding resins used primarily in the forest products industry.  
The business had 2006 sales of US$85 million and employs 100
people.  The acquisition included three manufacturing
facilities, with one site in Australia and two in New Zealand.

               Senior Secured Credit Facility

As previously announced, Hexion amended its senior secured
credit facility in November 2006.  The amended and restated
credit agreement increased the company's current seven-year
US$1.625 billion term loan facility to US$2 billion.  The
amended and restated credit agreement also provides that the
company's current seven-year US$50 million synthetic letter of
credit facility remained outstanding.  The company continues to
have access to the US$225 million revolving credit facility.  In
addition, during the fourth quarter 2006, the company retired
US$625 million of outstanding senior second secured notes.  The
company also sold through its wholly owned finance subsidiaries,
Hexion U.S. Finance Corp. and Hexion Nova Scotia Finance ULC,
US$200 million of Second-Priority Senior Secured Floating Rate
Notes due 2014 and US$625 million of 9-3/4% Second-Priority
Senior Secured Notes due 2014.

                  About Hexion Specialty Chemicals

Based in Columbus, Ohio, Hexion Specialty Chemicals Inc.
-- http://hexionchem.com/-- manufactures and markets resins,  
inks, coating and adhesive resins, formaldehyde, oil field
products and other specialty and industrial chemicals worldwide.
At Sept. 30, 2006, the company has 103 production and
manufacturing facilities, of which 38 are located in the U.S.  
In Latin America, the company has operations in Argentina,
Brazil and Colombia.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Oct. 23, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services lowered its corporate credit
rating on Hexion Specialty Chemicals Inc. to 'B' from 'B+'.  The
outlook is stable.  S&P also lowered the rating on the existing
US$225 million first-lien senior secured revolving credit
facility to 'B' from 'B+'.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Oct. 19, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service assigned B3 ratings to the new
guaranteed senior secured second lien notes due 2014 of Hexion
Specialty Chemicals Inc.


QUEBECOR WORLD: Earns US$11.6 Million in Quarter Ended Dec. 31
--------------------------------------------------------------
Quebecor World Inc. recorded for the fourth quarter 2006 net
income from continuing operations of US$11.6 million compared to
a net loss from continuing operations of US$205 million in the
fourth quarter of last year.  Fourth quarter 2006 results
incorporate impairment of assets, restructuring and other
charges of US$46.2 million compared with US$11.9 million in
2005.  Excluding impairment of assets, restructuring and other
charges and goodwill impairment charges, diluted earnings per
share were US$0.28 compared to US$0.21 in the fourth quarter of
2005.  On the same basis, operating income in the fourth quarter
was US$74.2 million compared to US$87.3 million during the
fourth quarter last year reflecting the higher depreciation
expense.  Consolidated revenues for the quarter were US$1.62
billion compared to US$1.66 billion in the fourth quarter of
2005.

"In the fourth quarter we began to show improvements on several
levels.  Our year-over-year quarterly adjusted EBITDA improved
US$2.3 million, and our adjusted EBITDA margins improved to
10.5%.  We have a long way to go and many challenges ahead,
specifically in the first half of 2007," said Wes Lucas,
President and CEO, Quebecor World.  "We believe our focus on the
fundamentals of our business through our five-point
transformation plan will, over time, lead to sustainable
improved performance.  We have renewed and extended agreements
with important customers, firmly launched the first wave of our
continuous improvement program at facilities across our
platform, made important leadership changes, accelerated the
completion of our three-year retooling program and concluded
important financing initiatives. We will however continue to
face significant challenges and our results in the first half of
2007 will be negatively affected as we accelerate and focus on
the completion of our retooling program."

          Actions on Five-Point Transformation Plan

Customer Value

Quebecor World continues to find new ways to deliver greater
customer value by offering complete high value solutions, by
combining new services before and after printing, with a top-
quality product.  As an example, in February 2007, the company
renewed a significant multi-year contract with Williams-Sonoma
to continue to provide an integrated print solution for a
majority of its catalogs.  In March, the company renewed a long-
term agreement to be the exclusive supplier for Harlequin
paperback books. Quebecor World's full-service solution for
Harlequin ensures they receive a consistent, top-quality product
on-time to meet their precise on sale and subscriber
distribution schedule.

Best People

To improve the company's execution capability and to increase
value for customers and shareholders the company recently made
several leadership moves to improve its performance.  These
initiatives included the addition of proven operation, sales,
and marketing executives as well as the reassignment of other
key managers to focus on specific projects to enhance customer
and shareholder value.  In addition, the company continues to
make progress in implementing its comprehensive people
development program through training, improved processes, and
building new capabilities.

Great Execution

In the fourth quarter, the company launched a Continuous
Improvement Program across its North American platform.  The
first wave of more than 40 projects is focusing on high impact
improvement areas with low capital requirements and high
returns.  The second wave of training is taking place in the
first and second quarters of 2007 and will result in a new set
of projects to maximize cash flow and shareholder value.  With
the current and planned continuous improvement projects the
company is making progress towards its target of US$100 million
in annualized cost savings, run rate by the end of 2008.

Retooling Program

The Company's three-year retooling program is being accelerated
in order to be completed before its customers' busy season
starts in the third quarter of 2007.  In order to finalize the
retooling program before the 2007 busy season, Quebecor World is
starting up 6 new presses in the first half of 2007 compared to
4 new presses during the same period last year.  This includes
two new 4.3 meter gravure presses in Charleroi, Belgium that are
starting up in the first quarter. During the first half of 2007,
the company will also re-locate/install 14 web presses as
compared to 7 in 2006, or double the number of presses compared
to the same period last year.  In North America, the new and
relocated equipment will mainly impact the catalog, book and
directory platforms. For example, the company recently announced
a reorganization of its U.S. catalog platform to create greater
customer value and to improve efficiency. The Catalog
transformation plan includes important investments in new press
and bindery technology as well as the relocation of existing
assets to Quebecor World's facilities in Jonesboro, AR, Merced,
CA and Corinth, MS. Central to the plan is the transformation of
the Corinth plant into a dual-process, premier rotogravure and
offset catalog facility.  These and other retooling initiatives
should be completed on time for the busy third and fourth
quarters of 2007.

Balance Sheet

Quebecor World is committed to strengthening its balance sheet
in a responsible manner.  In 2006, the company initiated a
number of financing activities with the view to improving its
financial flexibility.  In particular, the company issued US$850
million of Senior unsecured notes of which US$400 million were
issued in December, which helped to significantly increase
liquidity.  At year-end the company had more than US$900 million
undrawn capacity on its US$1 billion unsecured revolving credit
facility.  Quebecor World continues to explore strategic and
tactical actions to further improve its balance sheet.

"We made the strategic decision to accelerate and concentrate
the final steps of our retooling plan into the first half of
this year, so that we are finished before our customers' busy
season in the second half of 2007," said Mr. Lucas.  "We
anticipate that these actions which include the accelerated
installation of new presses and accompanying technology and the
relocation of assets from discontinued facilities will create
inefficiencies that will have a negative impact on our EBITDA in
the first and second quarters.  It should ensure that we are
well positioned for the second half of 2007 and 2008."

             Fourth Quarter Restructuring Initiatives

In the fourth quarter, the company recorded impairment of assets
restructuring and other charges of US$46.2 million, which are
composed of cash items related to workforce reductions at
facilities in Europe and North America and the impairment of
long-lived assets.  This included the approval of the closure of
one facility in the United States and one facility in Canada as
well as employee severances in Lille, France.  The cash costs of
these initiatives were estimated at US$26.8 million of which
US$19.3 were recorded in the fourth quarter.  The company also
recorded US$1.8 million related to previous workforce reduction
initiatives.  The balance of the restructuring charge is related
to the impairment of long-lived assets in North America.

                           North America

Retail revenues for the fourth quarter of 2006 were US$247.1
million, up 4.5% from US$236.4 million in 2005.  On a full year
basis, revenues were US$873.2 million in 2006, up 2.7% compared
to US$850.3 million in 2005.  The increase in revenues for the
quarter and the year is attributable to new customer contracts,
more value added to retailers' marketing solutions, and higher
volumes.  The volume growth was from new customers such as
Brooks-Eckerd and existing customers including Wal-Mart, CVS and
Kohl's.

In our Catalog group revenues for the fourth quarter of 2006
increased by 1.7% to US$189.0 million, compared with US$185.9
million in 2005. On a full year basis, revenues were US$680.0
million in 2006, up 2.1% from US$666.2 million in 2005.  The
increase in revenues for the full year was mainly attributable
to volume growth due to the addition of new customers, such as
Bass Pro Shops and Brookstone.  Sales with several current key
customers also increased in 2006 partially reflecting the
company's enhanced offering of a complete marketing solution to
enhance the impact of branded goods companies' products and to
increase in-store traffic for retail customers.

Direct revenues for the fourth quarter of 2006 increased by 8.9%
to US$98.9 million compared to US$90.9 million in the same
quarter in 2005.  On a year-to-date basis, revenues were
US$367.9 million in 2006, up 4.8% from US$351.0 million in 2005.  
Revenue increased in the fourth quarter due to attractive growth
in this important market and as the result of new volumes and
customer relationships especially in the financial sector.

Book & Directory revenues for the fourth quarter of 2006 were
US$159.2 million, down 12.0% from US$180.9 million in 2005.  For
the year, revenues were US$675.2 million in 2006, down 6.2% from
US$719.6 million in 2005.  The decrease in fourth quarter
revenues was due primarily to reduced book manufacturing
capacity related to temporary inefficiencies resulting from the
retooling plan, a plant closure, and the transfer of certain
book production to Latin America.  While the company did not yet
receive the benefits in 2006 from its restructuring efforts in
the Book Group, permanent staffing levels were reduced
significantly across the Book Group from the restructuring.

In Canada revenues for the fourth quarter of 2006 were US$243.7
million compared to US$261.1 million in 2005.  On a year-to-date
basis, revenues were US$893.3 million in 2006, compared to
US$912.2 million in 2005.  The decrease in revenues for the
quarter and the year are largely attributed to the impact of
foreign exchange on the Canadian print market.  Volume was lower
in the fourth quarter, mostly due to decreased volume in Catalog
and the sale of a facility in Quebec earlier in the year.

Logistics revenues for the fourth quarter of 2006 were US$90.0
million compared to US$92.8 million in 2005.  On a year-to-date
basis, revenues were US$335.0 million in 2006, up 4.3% from
US$321.2 million in 2005.  On a year-to-date basis, the revenue
increase is due to increased value based on the company's
integrated end-to-end solution in providing value-added
services, such as the services offered at the new Co-Mailing
facility in Bolingbrook, Illinois.  This new facility continued
to produce increased revenues, volume and margin over prior
year, supporting the strong growth.  With postal rates
accounting for a significant portion of our customer's total
cost of catalogs and magazines, the co-mailing services offered
by the company provides a significant value to Quebecor World's
customers by reducing their overall delivery costs.

Premedia revenues for the fourth quarter of 2006 were US$14.0
million compared to US$15.2 million in 2005.  On a year-to-date
basis, revenues were US$55.6 million in 2006, down 4.6% from
US$58.3 million in 2005.  The decrease in revenues for the
fourth quarter was mostly attributable to a significant work mix
change for a key customer that was partly offset by an increase
in Book-page volume.  For all of North America, revenues for the
fourth quarter 2006 were US$1.28 billion compared to US$1.32
billion in 2005.  On a year-to-date basis, revenues were US$4.82
billion in 2006 compared to US$4.88 billion in 2005.

                              Europe

European revenues for the fourth quarter of 2006 were US$267.3
million, down 3.4% from US$276.7 million in 2005.  For the full
year, revenues were US$1,025.4 million down 11.8% from
US$1,162.9 million in 2005.  Excluding the impact of currency
translation and paper sales, revenues were down 9.6% for the
fourth quarter and 11.1% for 2006 compared to the same periods
last year.

The revenue decrease in the fourth quarter and year-to-date was
due to reduced volumes mainly in France and in the United
Kingdom.  The implementation of the European retooling plan that
began early in 2006 has continued to impact volume as a result
of plant closures, press shutdowns, movement of customers within
the company's network and temporary press start-up
inefficiencies.  Furthermore results in France were negatively
impacted in the fourth quarter by work disruptions at the
company's Lille facility. In the first quarter of 2007, the
company completed the sale of this facility to a group led by
local management.  The facility will operate in areas that are
non-core to Quebecor World. France's magazine volume was also
impacted by the implementation of a new tax on magazine
distribution.

                           Latin America

In Latin America revenues for the fourth quarter were US$68.8
million, up 6.5% from US$64.5 million in 2005.  On a year-to-
date basis, revenues were US$239.3 million in 2006, down 1.0%
from US$241.7 million in 2005. Excluding the impact of foreign
currency and paper sales, revenues for the fourth quarter of
2006 were up 2.4% compared to last year.  For the full-year
2006, on the same basis, revenues remained essentially flat.
Prices increased in the fourth quarter and year-to-date compared
to 2005 as a result of a favorable impact of export sales.  
Overall volume decreased for the quarter on account of a change
in product mix.

                          Full year 2006

For the full year 2006, revenues were US$6.09 billion, down 3.1%
from US$6.28 billion in 2005. Operating income before impairment
of assets, restructuring and other charges and before goodwill
impairment charge was US$241.5 million in 2006 compared to
US$357.5 million in 2005.  Impairment of assets, restructuring
and other charges for 2006 were US$111.3 million compared to
US$94.2 million last year.  For the full year 2006, loss per
share from continuing operations was US$0.03 compared to loss
per share of US$1.43 in 2005.  Excluding impairment of assets,
restructuring and other charges and impairment of goodwill,
diluted earnings per share from continuing operations were
US$0.64 compared to US$0.98 for the same period last year.

Quebecor World Inc. (TSX: IQW) (NYSE: IQW) --
http://www.quebecorworld.com/-- provides print solutions to  
publishers, retailers, catalogers and other businesses with
marketing and advertising activities.  Quebecor World has
approximately 29,000 employees working in more than 120 printing
and related facilities in the United States, Canada, Argentina,
Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Finland, France,
India, Mexico, Peru, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United
Kingdom.

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Oct. 20, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service downgraded the Corporate Family Rating
of Quebecor World (USA) Inc. to B1 from Ba3, and moved this
benchmark rating to the parent company, Quebecor World Inc.
Related ratings were impacted.  Moody's said the outlook for all
ratings is negative.




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


* COSTA RICA: State Firm Launches Video Conferencing Services
-------------------------------------------------------------
Costa Rican state-owned telecommunications and energy monopoly
Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad said in a statement that
it has launched video conferencing services.

Business News Americas relates that Instituto Costarricense
thinks that the sectors most interested in the services it
launched will be:

          -- medicine,
          -- distance learning services providers,
          -- corporate clients, and
          -- and firms interested in video telemarketing.

BNamericas underscores that Instituto Costarricense will charge
for:

          -- rental of equipment,
          -- traffic per minute, and
          -- use of facilities.

"This service is an excellent means of communication for
companies. It allows them to improve management, as well as
optimize their resources and time management," Instituto
Costarricense Videoconferencing Director Alvin Aguilar said in a
statement.

                        *     *     *

As reported on Aug. 21, 2006, Fitch Ratings upgraded Costa
Rica's country ceiling to BB+ from BB.


* COSTA RICA: Will Launch Six Cellular Base Stations on May 1
-------------------------------------------------------------
Costa Rican state-owned telecommunications and energy monopoly
Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad's telecommunications
services division told Inside Costa Rica that it will start up
six new cellular base stations in various Costa Rican
communities on May 1.

Inside Costa Rica relates that the stations will increase GSM
cellular coverage in the country, in an effort to improve
cellular reception problems experienced by over one million
clients.   The stations will be in La Ribera de Belen and other
communities.  They will cover sections of highways.

According to Inside Costa Rica, seven cellular base stations
were set up between December 2006 and February 2007.

Ericsson was awarded the contract to conduct the construction
work after Instituto Costarricense annulled the contract it had
with ALCATEL, Inside Costa Rica states.

                        *     *     *

As reported on Aug. 21, 2006, Fitch Ratings upgraded Costa
Rica's country ceiling to BB+ from BB.




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


ITABO FINANCE: S&P Affirms B Long-term Rating on US$125MM Bonds
---------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services affirmed the 'B' long-term
rating on Itabo Finance S.A.'s and on Empresa Generadora de
Electricidad Itabo S.A.'s US$125 million bonds.  

Standard & Poor's also revised its outlook on Itabo's long-term
'B' corporate credit rating to stable from positive.  
     
The outlook revision reflects the uncertainties that the
operational strengthening of the country's distribution electric
system and the sector's medium-term development plan will be
achieved on time.  In Standard & Poor's opinion, the Government
of the Dominican Republic's recent proposal to renegotiate the
existing long-term energy sales contracts with the power
generators anticipates that the distribution companies will
continue to generate inadequate cash flows to meet their
contractual obligations, and that the government's sizable
subsidy for the sector is unsustainable in the long run.
      
"The stable outlook reflects our expectations that even under
the electric sector's expected reforms in the Dominican
Republic, including the government's renegotiation of the long-
term energy sales contracts, Itabo will continue to post
satisfactory financial indicators and generate adequate cash
flows to continue fulfilling its debt service obligations,"
Standard & Poor's credit analyst Luis Martinez stated.  
"However, an unfavorable renegotiation of the energy sales
contracts that significantly deteriorates the company's
operating margins and reduces cash flow generation, or increased
offtaker risk coupled with the failure by the government to
continue to support the sector's development, could result in a
negative rating action."

Itabo is a thermo-electric generator in the Dominican Republic
and the second largest generation plant in the country.  The
company has a total installed capacity of 472 megawatts of
thermo-electric generation.  The company is currently owned 50%
by AES Corp.'s subsidiaries and 49.97% by the Dominican Republic
government.  The balance is owned by former employees of CDE
(Corporacion Dominicana de Electricidad).  As previously noted,
AES Dominicana manages the company under a management contract,
for a fee of 2.95% of Itabo's sales, while AES Corp. indirectly
controls Itabo's management board.


JETBLUE AIRWAYS: Appoints Alex Battaglia as VP of JFK Operations
----------------------------------------------------------------
JetBlue Airways has named Alex Battaglia to Vice President,
JetBlue JFK Airport, the low-fare airline's hometown airport,
effective April 2, 2007.  Mr. Battaglia comes to JetBlue
following a 24-year career with Delta Air Lines in roles of
increasing responsibility, culminating in the position of
Director-JFK Operations.

"Alex is the perfect fit for JetBlue as we continue to grow our
airline within North America," said Rob Maruster, JetBlue's
senior vice president, Airports and Operational Planning.  
"Alex's experience in the airport environment, which ranges from
customer service to leadership positions, will greatly serve
JetBlue, our crewmembers, and our customers as we continue to
focus on delivering great service, industry-leading comfort and
low fares."

"JetBlue is a great airline and I'm honored to join the team,"
Mr. Battaglia said. "JetBlue's plans for the future at JFK,
including the Terminal 5 project, which will be our new home in
late 2008, point to an airline dedicated to growth, customer
comfort and most importantly, personal service.  I look forward
to meeting our customers and crewmembers."

JetBlue is constructing a new terminal facility at John F.
Kennedy International Airport that will support up to 250 daily
flights from 26 gates.  The new terminal will be linked to TWA's
historic Eero Saarinen building at Terminal 5, and the project
is expected to be complete by the end of 2008.

Based in Forest Hills, New York, JetBlue Airways Corp.
(Nasdaq:JBLU) -- http://www.jetblue.com/-- provides passenger  
air transportation services primarily in the United States.  As
of Feb. 14, 2006, the Company operated approximately 369 daily
flights serving 34 destinations in 15 states, Puerto Rico, the
Dominican Republic, and the Bahamas.  The Company also provides
in-flight entertainment systems for commercial aircraft,
including live in-seat satellite television, digital satellite
radio, wireless aircraft data link service, and cabin
surveillance systems and Internet services, through its wholly
owned subsidiary, LiveTV, LLC.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Nov. 23, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service assigned ratings of Caa1 (LGD5, 88%)
to the approximately US$40 million of Special Facility Revenue
Bonds, Series 2006 (JetBlue Airways Corporation Project or the
JFK Facility Bonds) to be issued by the New York City Industrial
Development Agency.  Moody's affirmed the B2 corporate family
rating for JetBlue Airways Corp.  Moody's said the outlook
remains negative.

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned its 'B' rating to
US$40 million of New York City Industrial Development Agency
special facility revenue bonds, series 2006 maturing on
May 15, 2021, and May 15, 2030; the amount for each maturity
have yet to be determined.  The bonds, which will be used to
finance a hangar and other facilities, will be serviced by
payments made by JetBlue Airways Corp. (B/Stable/B-3) under a
lease between the airline and the agency.




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


IMAX CORP: Defers Filing of 2006 Form 10-K
------------------------------------------
IMAX Corp. said it will delay the filing of its Form 10-K for
fiscal 2006 beyond the filing deadline of March 16, 2007, due to
its evaluation about US$2.5 million of identified accounting
errors that occurred between the years 2001 through 2006,
inclusive.

The company intends to file its 2006 Form 10-K on or before
March 30, 2007, and will file with the Securities and Exchange
Commission a Form 12b-25 Notification of Late Filing, and
indicate that its 10-K filing is expected to be made within the
15-day grace period.  Until then, the company's prior-filed
financial statements for the years and periods involved should
not be relied upon.

Separately, the company said it had installed seven theater
systems in the fourth quarter of 2006, signed deals for nine
theater systems in the period and finished 2006 with about
US$27 million in cash and short-term investments.

"The timing of these accounting issues is particularly
unfortunate because it masks significant business developments
which have affected our business in a very positive way," said
Richard L. Gelfond and Bradley J. Wechsler, IMAX's co-chief
executive offices and co-chairmen.

"Specifically, the record-breaking performance of the recent
film 300, along with our recent joint venture agreement with
Regal Cinemas, the world's largest exhibitor, and five-system
deal with Dickinson Theaters, our largest theatre sale or lease
deal since 2004, have increased our confidence in the business,"
Messrs. Gelfond and Wechsler, further said.

The company and its auditors, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, remain
in the process of analyzing the errors and the company will make
a subsequent announcement when it concludes this analysis.  

The estimated US$2.5 million in errors that occurred during 2001
until 2006 relate to the accounting treatment of certain costs
previously capitalized that should have been expensed as
incurred and unrecorded branch-level interest taxes, as well as
certain adjustments for errors determined to have been
immaterial and previously identified in the related periods.  
The company is also evaluating the effect of these matters on
its internal control over financial reporting and expects to
report material weaknesses with respect to certain of these
matters.

"We recognize that the delay in filing the 10-K and the
underlying causes are unacceptable, and we are committed to
rebuilding our financial staff," Messrs. Gelfond and Wechsler,
said.  

"All of the identified errors relating to the current situation
arise from prior quarters and prior years.  In August 2006, our
chief financial officer resigned and, since then, we have been
ably led by our acting chief financial officer, Edward MacNeil.  
We have been engaged in the process of hiring a permanent CFO,
have interviewed several strong candidates to date, and can
assure our constituencies that we have no higher priority than
the smooth functioning of our finance area," Messrs. Gelfond and
Wechsler, added.  

                         About IMAX Corp.

IMAX Corp. -- http://www.imax.com/-- founded in 1967 and  
headquartered jointly in New York City and Toronto, Canada, is
an entertainment technology company, with particular emphasis on
film and digital imaging technologies including 3D, post-
production, and digital projection.  IMAX also designs and
manufactures cameras, projectors and consistently commits
significant funding to ongoing research and development.
The IMAX Theatre Network currently consists of more than 270
IMAX affiliated theatres in 38 countries including Argentina,
Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico and Colombia.

                            *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
March 21, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services affirms the
ratings of IMAX Corp. (B-/Negative/--) despite the company's
delayed filing of its SEC Form 10-K beyond the filing deadline
of March 16, 2007.


PETROECUADOR: Extends Insurance Policy Tender
---------------------------------------------
Ecuadorian state-owned oil firm Petroecuador has extended the
tender for its insurance policy, Business News Americas reports.

Petroecuador said in a statement that it has authorized a 90-day
extension for the insurance policy that covers its assets
starting April 11.

According to BNamericas, Petroecuador launched in December 2006
a tender for the provision of insurance coverage for its assets
and installations.  However, the company declared the first
tender void to give insurers more time to present offers.

Petroecuador said in a statement that the extension aims to
bring more transparency to the process and to promote
participation from more insurers.

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
inefficiency and non-transparency in Petroecuador's dealings.


PETROECUADOR: Launches Crude Supply Talks with Petroperu
--------------------------------------------------------
Ecuadorian state-run oil company Petroecuador has launched crude
oil supply negotiations with Peruvian counterpart Petroperu,
Prensa Latina reports, citing the latter's head, Cesar
Gutierrez.

Mr. Gutierrez told Prensa Latina that a contract between the two
firms will be signed in two weeks.

Meanwhile, Petroperu's negotiations with Venezuelan state oil
company Petroleos de Venezuela SA for the supply of crude oil
are moving along positively.  An accord will be signed in a
month and a half, Prensa Latina relates, citing Mr. Gutierrez.

Petroperu bought crude oil from Petroleos de Venezuela in
December 2006 to strengthen an agreement of "far-reaching"
supply, Mr. Gutierrez told Peruvian news agency Agencia Peruana
de Noticias.

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
inefficiency and non-transparency in Petroecuador's dealings.




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


BRITISH AIRWAYS: Eyes Major Expansion at London City Airport
------------------------------------------------------------
British Airways Plc is expanding its operations at London City
Airport by more than 70% with the launch of its new subsidiary,
BA CityFlyer.

The new carrier will operate 250 flights a week from the
Docklands airport to six U.K. and European destinations from the
end of this month.

British Airways currently operates 144 flights a week at London
City.  The increase represents the airline's greatest commitment
by far to the airport since it began services there in 2003.

From March 26, BA CityFlyer will start new direct routes to
Glasgow and Zurich, each served four times a day, and add extra
frequency on the busy Edinburgh service.  Destinations also
include Frankfurt, Madrid and Milan.

Fares are available from GBP39 one way, including taxes.

Underlining its business focus at London City, the airline is
offering passengers a schedule that enables them to do a full
business day in Glasgow and Zurich with a same-day return
option.

"London City Airport will be a major focus for us over the next
few years," Peter Simpson, BA CityFlyer managing director
designate, said.  "It is an increasingly popular base for
customers, easy to use and conveniently located for the growing
business districts of Docklands and the City."

"Our existing services have been well received by the business
community, and our new routes are very much at the top of the
"wish list" for our customers.

"This growth demonstrates our commitment to London City.  We
believe BA CityFlyer has a great future here, and we will
evaluate further growth opportunities as we plan our schedules
for 2008 and beyond," Mr. Simpson added.

"It's good to see British Airways increasing their network at
London City Airport," Richard Gooding, chief executive for
London City Airport, said.  "What we offer is very unique
compared to other airports.  Our location and support
infrastructure enables airlines to serve the business community
by delivering a service that exceeds their business travel
expectations.  We wish British Airways every success for the
future and look forward to hearing about further network
expansion."

                       About the Company

Headquartered in West Drayton, United Kingdom, British Airways
Plc -- http://www.ba.com/-- operates of international and   
domestic scheduled and charter air services for the carriage of
passengers, freight and mail, and provides of ancillary
services.  The British Airways group consists of British Airways
Plc and a number of subsidiary companies including in particular
British Airways Holidays Limited and British Airways Travel
Shops Limited.  BA has offices in India and Guatemala.

                        *     *     *

British Airways' 7-1/4% senior unsubordinated notes due 2016 and
10-7/8% notes due 2008 carry Moody's Investors Service's Ba2
ratings and Standard & Poor's BB- ratings.




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


LEAR CORP: Faces ERISA Violations Suit Over US$2.31-Bil. Sale
-------------------------------------------------------------
Lear Corp. employees filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court
for the Eastern District of Michigan seeking to block the
automotive parts supplier's acquisition by billionaire investor
Carl Icahn, The Detroit News reports.

Named defendants in the suit:

     -- Roger A. Jackson  
     -- Robert E. Rossiter  
     -- James H. Vandenberghe  
     -- David E. Fry  
     -- Vincent J. Intrieri  
     -- Conrad L. Mallet, Jr.  
     -- Larry W. McCurdy  
     -- Roy E. Parrott  
     -- David P. Spalding  
     -- James A. Stern  
     -- Henry D.G. Wallace  
     -- Richard F. Wallman  
     -- Lear Corp.  
     -- American Real Estate Partners, L. P.  
     -- Carl C. Icahn  
     -- Lear Corp. Employee Benefits Committee  

In February, the company agreed to a US$2.31 billion buyout
offer from Icahn-controlled American Real Estate Partners LP.
The transaction involves Mr. Icahn paying US$36 per share for
the shares he does not already own, according to reports.

Under the terms of the agreement, Lear was allowed to solicit
alternate proposals for 45 days.

According to the lawsuit, the employees have company stock in
two retirement plans, accounting for 1.5 million shares at the
end of 2005, roughly amounting to US$45 million.

The lawsuit seeks class-action status and argues the deal would
violate the Employee Retirement Income Security Act.

Besides undervaluing Lear, the lawsuit argues that the deal is
prohibited by ERISA since it would have Lear's salaried and
hourly retirement savings plans sell shares of company stock to
Mr. Icahn's affiliate.

The lawsuit states that ERISA prohibits "any transaction
involving the sale or exchange of plan assets between a plan and
a party in interest."

The lawsuit argues that Mr. Icahn's affiliate is a "party in
interest" in this case.

The suit is "Qualey v. Jackson et al., Case No. 2:07-cv-10910-
GER-RSW," filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern
District of Michigan, under Judge Gerald E. Rosen, with referral
to Judge R. Steven Whalen.

Representing plaintiffs are:

     (1) Barry D. Adler of Adler and Assoc. (Farmington Hills),
         30300 Northwestern Highway, Suite 304, Farmington
         Hills, MI 48334, Phone: 248-855-5090, E-mail:
         badler@adlerfirm.com;

     (2) Ellen M. Doyle of Malakoff, Doyle, 437 Grant St., Suite
         200, Pittsburgh, PA 15219, Phone: 412-281-8400, E-mail:
         edoyle@mdfpc.com; and

     (3) Ronen Sarraf of Sarraf Gentile, 487 Seventh Avenue,
         Suite 1005, New York, NY 10018, Phone: 212-868-3610,
         Fax: 212-918-7967, E-mail: ronen@sarrafgentile.com.

                      About the Company

Southfield, Mich.-based Lear Corp. (NYSE: LEA) --
http://www.lear.com/-- is a global supplier of automotive  
interior systems and components.  Lear provides complete seat
systems, electronic products, electrical distribution systems,
and other interior products.

Lear also operates in Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Brazil,
Canada, China, Czech Republic, United Kingdom, France, Germany,
Honduras, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Morocco,
Netherlands, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia,
Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden,
Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, and Venezuela.

                        *     *     *

As reported on Feb. 13, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services
lowered its corporate credit rating on Southfield, Mich.-based
Lear Corp. to 'B' from 'B+ and placed its ratings on CreditWatch
with negative implications following Lear's announcement that it
had agreed to be acquired by Carl Icahn-controlled American Real
Estate Partners, L.P.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Europe on Feb. 8,
Moody's Investors Service placed the long-term ratings of Lear
Corporation, corporate family rating at B2, under review for
possible downgrade.  The company's speculative grade liquidity
rating of SGL-2 was affirmed.




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


CENTURY ALUMINUM: Peter Jones Joins Board of Directors
------------------------------------------------------
Century Aluminum Company reported that Peter Jones has joined
its board of directors.

Mr. Jones has over 38 years of experience in the metals and
mining sector. He spent nearly ten years with Inco Limited,
serving as president and chief operating officer from April 2001
through November 2006.  Prior to joining Inco, Mr. Jones served
as president and chief executive officer of Hudson Bay Mining
and Smelting Company and held senior executive positions with
Princeton Mining Corporation and Newmont Mines Limited.

"We are delighted to welcome Peter to the board," said Century
chairman Craig Davis. "He brings extensive metals and mining
leadership experience and we welcome his counsel as we continue
the process of making Century a larger and more competitive
multinational company."

Headquartered in Monterey, California, Century Aluminum Company
(NASDAQ:CENX) -- http://www.centuryca.com/-- owns and operates  
a 244,000 mtpy plant at Hawesville, Kentucky; a 170,000 mtpy
plant at Ravenswood, West Virginia; and a 90,000 mtpy plant at
Grundartangi, Iceland.  The company also owns a 49.67% interest
in a 222,000 mtpy reduction plant at Mt. Holly, South Carolina.
ALCOA Inc. owns the remainder of the plant and is the operating
partner.  Century also holds a 50% share of the 1.25 million
mtpy Gramercy Alumina refinery in Gramercy, Louisiana and
related bauxite assets in Jamaica.

                        *     *     

Standard & Poor's placed the Company's long-term local and
foreign issuer credit ratings at BB- with a stable outlook on
March 13, 2001.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Oct. 19, 2006,
In connection with Moody's Investors Service's implementation of
its new Probability-of-Default and Loss-Given-Default rating
methodology for the North American Metals & Mining sectors, the
rating agency confirmed its Ba3 Corporate Family Rating for
Century Aluminum Company.

Additionally, Moody's revised its probability-of-default ratings
and assigned loss-given-default ratings on these debentures:

                                                   Projected
                        Old POD  New POD  LGD      Loss-Given
   Debt Issue           Rating   Rating   Rating   Default
   ----------           -------  -------  ------   ----------
   US$250 Million
   7.5% Guaranteed
   Senior Unsecured
   Notes due 2014         Ba3      B1      LGD5       77%

   US$175 Million
   1.75% Convertible
   Guaranteed
   Senior Unsecured
   Notes due 2024         Ba3      B1      LGD5       77%


SUGAR COMPANY: Will Extend Bids Submission Deadline
---------------------------------------------------
Jamaica's Finance Minister Dr. Omar Davies and Agriculture
Minster Roger Clarke decided in a meeting held last week that to
extend the deadline for the submission of bids for the five
factories of the Sugar Company of Jamaica, Radio Jamaica
reports.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
March 20, 2007, Jamaica's agriculture and finance ministries
decided to hold discussions to come up with a decision on
whether the late bids for the assets of the Sugar Company should
be accepted by the divestment committee.  Minister Clarke said
that the government was considering how to facilitate the new
interests, as the pre-qualification period already ended.  

Radio Jamaica relates that the late bids reportedly come from US
and Brazilian investors.

Minister Clarke told RJR News that he will be making a
recommendation to cabinet for the bidding period to remain open
until the middle of this year.

Sugar Company of Jamaica registered a net loss of almost US$1.1
billion for the financial year ended Sept. 30, 2005, 80% higher
than the US$600 million reported in the previous financial year.
Sugar Company blamed its financial deterioration to the
reduction in sugar cane production.  According to published
reports, the Jamaican government has taken responsibility for
the payment of the firm's debts.




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


ALASKA AIR: Names Wendy Jones as Managing Director of Audit
-----------------------------------------------------------
Alaska Air Group has named Wendy Jones managing director of
internal audit.  Ms. Jones has more than 17 years of audit and
accounting experience and has served as AAG's internal audit
manager since 2005.

In her new role, Jones will lead the internal audit function of
AAG, the parent company of Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air.

"We are thrilled to fill this position with someone of Wendy's
caliber," said Patricia Bedient, chair of Alaska Air Group's
audit committee.  "She has a very strong audit background and
has taken great pride in helping the company improve through the
audit process."

Prior to joining AAG, Ms. Jones held a variety of accounting and
audit positions, including engagement manager at Jefferson Wells
and senior internal auditor at McKesson Corp.

Ms. Jones holds a bachelor's degree in accounting from Gonzaga
University.  She is a Certified Public Accountant, Certified
Internal Auditor and Certified Management Accountant.

Seattle, Wash.-based Alaska Air Group, Inc. (NYSE: ALK) --
http://alaskaair.com/-- is a holding company with two principal  
subsidiaries, Alaska Airlines, Inc. and Horizon Air Industries,
Inc.  Alaska operates an all-jet fleet with an average passenger
trip length of 1,009 miles.  Alaska principally serves
destinations in the state of Alaska and North/South service
between cities in the Western United States, Canada, and Mexico.
Horizon operates jet and turboprop aircraft with average
passenger trip of 382 miles.  Horizon serves 40 cities in seven
states and six cities in Canada.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Nov. 6, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service affirmed the corporate family rating
of Alaska Air Group, Inc. and the Equipment Trust Certificate
rating of Alaska Airlines, Inc. at B1, and changed the outlook
to stable from negative.


CINEMARK USA: Tender Offer Expiration Date Scheduled for April 2
----------------------------------------------------------------
Cinemark USA, Inc., reported that as part of its previously
announced tender offer and consent solicitation for any and all
of its outstanding US$332.25 million 9% Senior Subordinated
Notes due 2013, the company has received the requisite consents
to the proposed amendments to the indenture governing the Notes,
as detailed in the Offer to Purchase and Consent Solicitation
Statement dated March 6, 2007.  The company also has determined
the price to be paid in connection with the Offer.

The Consent Solicitation expired at 12:00 p.m. midnight, New
York City time, on March 19, 2007.  As of the Consent Date, the
company had received tenders of Notes and deliveries of related
consents from holders of 99.92% of the outstanding Notes.

The company has also executed on March 14, 2007, an amendment
and waiver to the company's Credit Agreement, dated
Oct. 5, 2006, among the company, the lenders party thereto and
Lehman Commercial Paper Inc., as administrative agent, to, among
other things, permit the company to purchase the Notes tendered
pursuant to the Offer.

The company and The Bank of New York Trust Company, N.A., the
trustee under the Indenture, plan to execute a supplemental
indenture in order to effect the proposed amendments to the
Indenture, as described in the Offer to Purchase.  However, the
amendments will not become operative until the company accepts
for purchase and payment the Notes validly tendered, and not
validly withdrawn, at or prior to the Consent Date.

The Tender Offer is scheduled to expire at 12:00 midnight, New
York City time, on April 2, 2007, unless extended.  Any Notes
not tendered and purchased pursuant to the Offer will remain
outstanding and the holders thereof will be subject to the terms
of the supplemental indenture even though they did not consent
to the amendments.

The Total Consideration is equal to US$1072.58 for each US$1,000
principal amount of the Notes, which was determined by pricing
the Notes using standard market practice to the first call date
at a fixed spread of 50 basis points over the bid-side yield on
the 4-5/8% U.S. Treasury Notes due Feb. 29, 2008, determined as
of 2:00 p.m., New York City time, on March 19, 2007.  The Total
Consideration for each Note validly tendered, and not validly
withdrawn, at or prior to the Consent Date, includes a consent
payment of US$30.00 per US$1,000 principal amount.  Holders who
tender at or prior to the Consent Date receive the Total
Consideration.  Holders whose valid tenders are received after
the Consent Date, but at or prior to the Expiration Date, will
receive the Tender Offer Consideration but will not receive the
Consent Payment.  The "Tender Offer Consideration" is the Total
Consideration less the Consent Payment or US$1042.58.  In each
case, holders of Notes who validly tender their Notes in the
Offer will also receive accrued and unpaid interest from the
last interest payment date to, but not including, the applicable
settlement date, payable on the applicable settlement date.

As of the Consent Date, holders who tender their Notes in the
Offer no longer have the right to withdraw the tendered Notes
and the related consents.

The company's obligation to accept for purchase and to pay for
the Notes validly tendered and consents validly delivered, and
not validly withdrawn, at or prior to the Consent Date, pursuant
to the Offer is subject to and conditioned upon the satisfaction
of or, where applicable, the Company's waiver of, certain
conditions including certain general conditions described in
more detail in the Offer to Purchase.

This announcement is not an offer to purchase, nor a
solicitation of an offer to purchase, or a solicitation of
tenders or consents with respect to, any Notes.  The Tender
Offer and Consent Solicitation are being made solely pursuant to
the Offer to Purchase, which sets forth the complete terms and
conditions of the Tender Offer and Consent Solicitation.

The company has retained Lehman Brothers Inc. to serve as sole
Dealer Manager and Solicitation Agent and D.F. King & Co., Inc.
to serve as Information Agent and Tender Agent for the Offer.  
Requests for documents may be directed to:

         D.F. King & Co., Inc.
         by telephone at (888) 628-8208 (toll free) or
         (212) 269-5550 (collect)

Or in writing at:

         48 Wall Street 22nd Floor
         New York, NY 10005.

Questions regarding the terms of the Offer should be directed to
Lehman Brothers Inc. at (800) 438-3242 (toll free) or
(212) 528-7581 (collect), attention: Liability Management Group.

Cinemark Inc. -- http://www.cinemark.com/-- operates 202  
theatres and 2,469 screens in 34 states in the United States and
operates 112 theatres and 932 screens internationally in 13
countries, mainly Mexico, South and Central America.  Cinemark
was founded in 1987 by its Chief Executive Officer and Chairman
of the Board, Lee Roy Mitchell.  In 2004 a controlling interest
in Cinemark was sold to Madison Dearborn Capital Partners.
Cinemark was among the first theatre exhibitors to offer
advanced real-time Internet ticketing at its own website.
Cinemark USA, Inc. Announces Expiration of Consent Date, Receipt
of Requisite Consents, and Pricing of Tender Offer for its
Outstanding 9% Senior Subordinated Notes due 2013.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
March 9, 2007, Prompted by the reported tender offer by Cinemark
USA, Inc. for its 9% Senior Subordinated Notes, Moody's
Investors Service placed Ba2 on Cinemark USA's Ba2 bank rating
on review for possible downgrade.

Moody's also affirmed the B1 corporate family rating and
positive outlook for Cinemark, Inc.  Moody's changed the outlook
for Cinemark to positive on Feb. 2.


GRUPO MEXICO: U.S. Court Rejects Bid to Overturn Labor Pact
-----------------------------------------------------------
The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas in
Corpus Christi, Texas, has authorized ASARCO LLC to enter into
an agreement that had been ratified in February with the United
Steelworkers and other unions representing some 1,600 workers in
Arizona and Texas.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Feb. 12, 2007,
the labor agreement had been challenged by Grupo Mexico, owners
of the bankrupt copper mining company, who had wanted to scuttle
the contract and possibly force a labor dispute.  A strike could
have caused global copper prices to rise, thus benefiting Grupo
Mexico's holdings elsewhere.

"The court decision reassures our members that the contract will
go forward," USW District 12 Director Terry Bonds said.  
"Workers will now get a well-deserved signing bonus, a long
over-due wage increase, and other ground-breaking protections,
while our retirees will receive an improved insurance package.  
We believe that the new labor agreement will position ASARCO to
move forward in its bankruptcy reorganization process."

Grupo Mexico filed an appeal on Friday to the District Court in
Corpus Christi.

"We will fight this frivolous appeal," Mr. Bonds said.  "And we
will fight any further attempts of Grupo Mexico to place its
self-interest above the interest of our members and retirees in
a healthy ASARCO."

ASARCO filed for bankruptcy protection in August 2005.  Since
then, copper prices have risen to historic highs, as ASARCO has
continued to work toward reorganization.  Workers represented by
the USW and other unions ended a four-month long strike in
November 2005 and agreed to extend the old contract for one
year.  That contract, which was due to expire on Dec. 31, 2006,
has been extended and now will be replaced by the new agreement.  
ASARCO has appointed new management during its bankruptcy case,
and Bonds credits the new management for seeking to build a more
cooperative relationship with the USW and the other unions.

The unions representing workers at ASARCO in addition to the USW
are the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers,
Machinists, Boilermakers, Teamsters, Operating Engineers,
Millwrights and Pipefitters.

                        About ASARCO LLC

Based 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's affiliates, AR Sacaton LLC, Southern Peru Holdings LLC,
and ASARCO Exploration Company Inc., filed for chapter 11
protection on Dec. 12, 2006 (Bankr. S.D. Tex. Case No. 06-20774
to 06-20776).

(ASARCO Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 40; Bankruptcy Creditors'
Service, Inc., http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000)  

Judge Schmidt extended the Debtors' exclusive period to file a
plan of reorganization to April 6, 2007, and their exclusive
period to solicit acceptances of that plan to June 6, 2007.

                    About Grupo Mexico

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

                        *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 29, 2006, Fitch upgraded the local and foreign currency
Issuer Default Rating assigned to Grupo Mexico, S.A. de C. V. to
'BB+' from 'BB'.  Fitch said the rating outlook is stable.


GRUPO MEXICO: Five Workers to be Arrested for 2006 Mine Blast  
-------------------------------------------------------------
Grupo Mexico SA de C.V. told Reuters that a Mexican judge
ordered the arrest of its five employees for the death of 65
miners in an explosion in February 2006.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Feb. 23, 2007, the Mexican miners' union said that several
unionized workers closed down most of Mexico's mines and metal
plants in a one-day national strike, hoping to pressure the
government to punish Grupo Mexico SA de CV.  The protesting
miners were joined by relatives and widows of the 65 men killed
during an explosion at a Grupo Mexico's Pasta de Conchos
coalmine near the Texan border last year, complaining on the
lack of legal action against the firm.  Jorge Rios, Coahuila
state's special prosecutor, blamed Grupo Mexico for allowing a
mix of methane, dust and oxygen to build up in the mine.  Mr.
Rios said that he would insist on the arrest of five Grupo
Mexico workers and six Labor Ministry officials within the next
two months on homicide charges.

A Grupo Mexico source told Reuters that Ruben Escudero, the
firm's general manager at the mine, was among those facing
arrest.  All five staff members are in Mexico.

Grupo Mexico employees could face up to five and a half years in
prison if convicted, Reuters says, citing Coahuila officials.

Grupo Mexico has denied to Reuters any offense.  It said that it
has compensated victim's families and spent US$30 million to
find the remaining 63 miners.

Two bodies have already been recovered from the destroyed mine,
Reuters states.

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

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 29, 2006, Fitch upgraded the local and foreign currency
Issuer Default Rating assigned to Grupo Mexico, S.A. de C. V. to
'BB+' from 'BB'.  Fitch said the rating outlook is stable.


INTERTAPE POLYMER: Incurs US$166.7M Net Loss in Fiscal Year 2006
----------------------------------------------------------------
Intertape Polymer Group Inc. released its results for the fourth
quarter and year ended Dec. 31, 2006.

"Intertape Polymer faced challenges at almost every level
through 2006.  Management has dealt and continues to deal with
each issue proactively, to establish a platform for improvement
in 2007," stated Chairman of the Board, Michael L. Richards.  
"The series of corporate and operational events which
characterized the past year were unprecedented in Intertape's
history.  In addition to difficult market conditions, continued
raw material cost volatility, and the need to implement
significant production realignment at our facilities, equally
complex matters included negotiations with our lenders, the
retirement of the Company's founder and CEO, as well as the
Board's decision to undertake an operational and financial
review which was later expanded into a full strategic
alternatives review."

                          Overview

"The Company made significant progress in 2006 with respect to
aligning its cost structure with the difficult operating
environment, including several initiatives designed to position
the Company for improved performance going forward.  We are
encouraged that things are now moving in a positive direction,"
stated Interim Chief Executive Officer, H. Dale McSween.  
"During 2006, the Company closed its flexible intermediate bulk
containers manufacturing facility in Piedras Negras, Mexico, as
well as its Brighton, Colorado and Cap-de-la-Madeleine, Quebec
plants, reducing costs by consolidating production into more
efficient plants and implementing synergies related to the
Flexia acquisition.  In total, the Company identified, and has
substantially implemented, approximately US$28 million in
annualized cost reductions."

"The past year was also marked by declining sales volumes and
narrower gross margins as compared to 2005 due to a variety of
factors, one of the more significant being the Company's
implementation of a customer account rationalization process.  
This process accounted for approximately 40% of the Company's
year over year sales volume decline.  We chose to exit several
unprofitable or marginally profitable accounts and streamlined
our product offering, particularly with respect to products sold
to consumer accounts.  During the year we substantially
increased our imports of materials to improve our cost position
and our team successfully improved liquidity by reducing the
amount of working capital employed in the business by
approximately US$44 million."

                      Operating results

The company posted a net loss for 2006 of US$166.7 million as
compared to net earnings of US$27.8 million in 2005.  For the
fourth quarter of 2006, the Company reported a net loss of
US$15.2 million as compared to net earnings of US$9.7million for
the same period a year earlier.

Included in these operating results are the non-cash charge
related to a goodwill impairment of US$120.0 million recorded in
the third quarter of 2006, as well as charges related to
manufacturing facility closures, restructuring and other
charges.  Consequently, the pre-tax result, after eliminating
the effects of these mostly non-cash charges, is a pre-tax loss
of US$1.4 million for the year 2006 as compared to pre-tax
earnings of US$30.7 million last year; and a pre-tax loss of
US$3.7 million for the fourth quarter of 2006 as compared to a
profit of US$7.3 million for the same period last year.

The adjusted net loss for 2006 was US$6.9 million as compared to
adjusted net earnings of US$28.7 million for 2005.  The adjusted
net loss for the fourth quarter of 2006 totaled US$8.5 million.  
The adjusted net earnings for the fourth quarter of 2005 were
US$9.2 million.  The adjusted net loss for the fourth quarter of
2006 includes income tax expense of US$4.8 million.  The tax
expense is primarily the result of lower future corporate tax
rates enacted in Canada during 2006.  These lower rates reduced
the value of the company's deferred tax assets in Canada.

Adjusted net earnings is a non-GAAP financial measure that does
not have any standardized meaning prescribed by GAAP in Canada
or the United States, and is therefore unlikely to be comparable
to similar measures presented by other issuers.

                   New Accounting Pronouncement

In 2006, the company adopted the Canadian Institute of Chartered
Accountants' (CICA) Emerging Issues Committee Abstract #156,
"Accounting by a Vendor for Consideration Given to a Customer
(Including a Reseller of the Vendor's Products)".  The adoption
of this standard resulted in a reclassification for the three
years ended Dec. 31, 2006, of certain amounts previously
recorded in selling, general and administrative expenses as
reductions to revenues.  Adopting the standard did not result in
a restatement of net earnings but did result in a decrease in
gross margins and SG&A expenses.

                           Sales

Consolidated annual sales were US$812.3 million in 2006, up 4.7%
from US$776.0 million in 2005.  The increase is a result of
sales associated with the Flexia acquisition in early October
2005.  Excluding the effect of the Flexia acquisition, 2006
sales revenues decreased by about 3.9%, from US$754.2 million in
2005 to US$724.9 million in 2006.  Sales volume (units)
decreased by approximately 8.1%, excluding the sales volume
associated with Flexia.

The sales volume decline in 2006 compared to 2005 was due to
three primary factors: the previously mentioned customer account
rationalization; declines in the company's engineered coated
products line, including the discontinuance of FIBC
manufacturing in Piedras Negras, Mexico; and, declines in North
American sales of tapes and stretch film.

Excluding the acquired Flexia accounts, ECP sales volumes
declined 19.7% in 2006 from the previous year, and FIBC sales
volumes fell by 14.3%, together accounting for approximately one
quarter of the Company's 2006 total volume decline.  The
company's largest market for ECP is North American residential
construction, which began to decline in the summer of 2006. The
Company's ECP sales in the agricultural markets also weakened in
2006.

The balance of the 2006 sales volume decrease was in the tapes
and films product lines due to a decline in demand for most of
the company's tape products, as well as stretch film.  A portion
of the decline, particularly as it relates to stretch film, was
due to continued efforts by customers to minimize inventories
during a period of decreasing polyethylene resin prices.

Sales in the fourth quarter of 2006 totaled US$187.4 million
compared to US$215.1 million for the same period a year ago.  
The fourth quarter of 2006 was similar to the third quarter in
terms of sales volumes and gross margins.  Declining resin costs
depressed demand for stretch film in the fourth quarter,
resulting in a pattern of selling price reductions and inventory
"holding" losses on this product, similar to what had occurred
in the second quarter of the year.  Tapes and films products
also experienced their highest raw material costs of 2006 in the
products sold during the fourth quarter.  Selling price
increases were achieved in some markets but competitive
conditions limited the Company's ability to recover the higher
material costs.  However, declining raw material costs are
expected to contribute to improved gross margins in the first
quarter of 2007.

                        Gross Profit

Gross profit totaled US$117.6 million in 2006, compared to
US$140.2 million in 2005.  Gross margin was 14.5% of sales, a
decline from 18.1% in 2005.  Gross profit for the fourth quarter
of 2006 totaled US$22.8 million compared to US$38.2 million in
the fourth quarter of 2005.  The gross margin for the fourth
quarter of 2006 was 12.2% compared to 17.8% for the fourth
quarter of 2005.  Gross margin declined in 2006 compared to 2005
due to a combination of higher raw materials costs and pricing
pressures arising from softening markets.  Gross margin
compression started early in the year as the sale of products
manufactured with high-cost resins carried over from the fourth
quarter of 2005 negatively impacting the cost of goods sold.  
This was further compounded by the loss of market share in tapes
and films as the company held its selling prices firm and lost
sales volumes.  These lower volumes also translated into higher
unit costs due to unabsorbed fixed manufacturing costs, which
were partially offset by reductions in overhead costs.  After
seeing downward pressure on selling prices through most of 2006,
the fourth quarter saw price increases in some markets, albeit
not enough to completely offset upward cost pressures
experienced in recent quarters.

              SG&A Expenses Reduced In Fourth Quarter

Selling, general and administrative expenses for the year ended
Dec. 31, 2006, totaled US$84.9 million, an increase of US$5.9
million from the US$79.0 million incurred the previous year.  
While SG&A expenses rose, the company was able to reduce the
quarterly run rate, so that by the fourth quarter of 2006,
annualized SG&A expenses were approximately US$10.0 million
below actual 2006 expenses.  The cost trend by quarter is more
pronounced, with fourth quarter SG&A for 2006 down US$3.8
million from the fourth quarter of 2005.  During 2006, the
company incurred incremental SG&A costs of approximately US$1.5
million to permit initial certification of internal controls
over financial reporting as required under the Sarbanes-Oxley
Act of 2002.  Furthermore, the Flexia acquisition in the fourth
quarter of 2005 resulted in approximately US$3.5 million in
incremental SG&A for 2006.

                           EBITDA

EBITDA was (US$136.4) million for 2006 compared to US$82.8
million for 2005, while adjusted EBITDA was US$59.7 million for
2006 and US$84.2 million for 2005.  In the fourth quarter,
EBITDA was US$1.1 million in 2006 compared to US$21.8 million in
2005, and adjusted EBITDA was US$11.2 million as compared to
US$21.0 million the previous year.  EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA
are non-GAAP financial measures that do not have any
standardized meaning prescribed by GAAP in Canada or the United
States, and are therefore unlikely to be comparable to similar
measures presented by other issuers.  A reconciliation of the
Company's EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA to GAAP net earnings
(loss), as well as the Company's definition of EBITDA and
Adjusted EBITDA is included below.

              Cash Flow/Working Capital Improvement

In 2006, the company's cash flow from operating activities
increased to US$53.6 million compared to US$32.4 million in
2005, primarily due to a substantial decline in non-cash working
capital items.  In the fourth quarter of 2006, the Company
generated cash flow from operating activities of US$15.6 million
compared to US$12.3 million for the same quarter of 2005.  "We
made considerable improvements in our working capital management
in 2006," said IPG's Vice President, Finance, Vic DiTommaso.  
"Overall, we decreased the working capital required to manage
the business by US$44.2 million, including US$17.5 million in
the fourth quarter alone."

At Dec. 31, 2006, the current installments on long-term debt
were US$19.7 million.  The increase in current installments over
recent levels reflects a US$15.6 million principal payment due
March 30, 2007 under the Company's Senior Secured Credit
Facility.  The payment is the result of the Company's improved
cash flows in 2006. Under the credit facility, a portion of
"excess cash flow" as defined must be used to reduce the
principal outstanding on the US$200.0 million term loan within
90 days of year-end.

Free cash flow, a non-GAAP measurement defined by the Company as
cash flows from operating activities less property, plant and
equipment expenditures and dividends, was US$26.5 million in
2006, an improvement of US$18.1 million from the 2005 level of
US$8.4 million.  The improvement was due to the substantial
decrease in non-cash working capital items for 2006.  "Free cash
flow" does not have any standardized meaning prescribed by
Canadian or U.S. GAAP and is therefore unlikely to be comparable
to similar measures presented by other issuers.

                            Other

The company is in compliance with all financial covenants
contained in the credit agreement governing its Senior Secured
Credit Facility and the indenture governing its outstanding
Senior Subordinated Notes.

                 Strategic Alternatives Update

In October 2006, the company's Board of Directors announced a
process to explore and evaluate various strategic and financial
alternatives in order to enhance shareholder value. The process
is continuing.

                           Outlook

"There were a number of positive developments during the past
quarter which point to an improving trend commencing in the
first quarter of 2007.  Raw material costs began to decline in
the fourth quarter, which should improve IPG's value added
margins during the first quarter of 2007.  The cost reductions
we started to implement in the second half of 2006 will result
in approximately US$28 million in savings on an annual basis, of
which approximately US$4.0 million was realized in 2006 and the
balance expected to be reflected in the Company's 2007 results.  
First quarter sales volume levels of our tapes and film products
are expected to be similar to those of the third and fourth
quarters of 2006.  Difficult market conditions in the
construction and agricultural sectors continue to impact revenue
levels in our ECP channel, which comprise approximately 20% of
the Company's total sales.  In the fourth quarter of 2006 we
adjusted our production to levels below sales requirements as we
executed our inventory reduction initiatives.  In the first
quarter of 2007 plant utilization will be more closely aligned
with sales demand giving us better absorption of fixed costs in
this period," stated Mr. McSween.

Intertape Polymer Group (TSX: ITP) (NYSE: ITP) --
http://www.intertapepolymer.com/-- develops and manufactures  
specialized polyolefin plastic and paper based packaging
products and complementary packaging systems for industrial and
retail use.  Headquartered in Montreal, Quebec and
Sarasota/Bradenton, Florida, the company employs approximately
2450 employees with operations in 18 locations, including 13
manufacturing facilities in North America, one in Europe and in
Mexico.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Nov. 22, 2006, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services lowered its
corporate credit and senior secured ratings on Intertape Polymer
Group Inc. to 'B-' from 'B+'.  In addition, the rating agency
lowered its senior subordinated rating on Intertape to 'CCC'
from 'B-'.


NORTEL NETWORKS: Board Wants KPMG as Auditor Replacing Deloitte
---------------------------------------------------------------
Deloitte & Touche LLP is the independent public accountant for
Nortel Networks Corporation and Nortel Networks Limited its
principal operating subsidiary, for the fiscal year 2006.

As part of Nortel Networks' evaluation in its corporate renewal
process, the company's board of directors proposed that KPMG LLP
serve as its principal independent public accountant commencing
with fiscal year 2007.

KPMG will also be appointed as Limited's auditor if shareholders
will approve its appointment at the company's annual and special
meeting, scheduled for May 2, 2007.

The company said the proposed change in auditor does not result
from any disagreement or dissatisfaction between it and
Deloitte.

Deloitte's audit reports for the company and Limited for their
financial statements for the fiscal years ended Dec. 31, 2006,
and Dec. 31, 2005, did not contain an adverse opinion or a
disclaimer of opinion and were not qualified or modified as to
uncertainty, audit scope or accounting principles.

The company's and Limited's management disclosed in Form 10-K
that it concluded that a material weakness in internal control
over financial reporting existed as of Dec. 31, 2006.

Deloitte expressed an unqualified opinion on management's
assessment of the effectiveness of internal control over
financial reporting and an adverse opinion on the effectiveness
of internal control over financial reporting as of
Dec. 31, 2006.

                    About Nortel Networks

Headquartered in Ontario, Canada, Nortel Networks Limited
(NYSE/TSX: NT) -- http://www.nortel.com/-- delivers technology  
solutions encompassing end-to-end broadband, Voice over Internet
provider, multimedia services and applications, and wireless
broadband.  Nortel Networks does business in more than 150
countries, including Mexico.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
March 7, 2007, Dominion Bond Rating Service notes that Nortel
Networks Corporation accounting restatements will not have an
immediate impact on its B (low) long-term ratings.

Nortel Network's 4-1/4% Convertible Senior Notes due
Sept. 1, 2008, carry Moody's Investors Service's and Standard &
Poor's single-B ratings.


PLASTICON INT'L: Revenues Rise to US$392,886 in 2006 Third Qtr.
---------------------------------------------------------------
Plasticon International Inc. reported gross profit of US$392,886
for the third quarter 2006, which is a 77% increase over the
second quarter 2006 gross profit of US$221,065.  Plasticon
International, through the cutback of operating expenses,
reduced its net loss by more than 70%.

The company recently announced that it intends to make an
application for listing of its common stock on the American
Stock Exchange.  Upon the successful acquisition of AV-CB
Developments, Plasticon believes that its balance sheet will
satisfy the capital requirements that will allow the Company to
submit an application for listing of its common stock on the
American Stock Exchange.  If current plans continue to hold and
subject to further negotiations, the Company anticipates that
the acquisition of AV-CB may be completed within the next 30 to
60 days.

"This financial statement represents the dedication of our team
to the continued improvement of our company, as well as reflects
our veracity and ability to follow through.  We have set a goal
for ourselves and we are working diligently to accomplish our
ambition of obtaining a listing on the American Exchange,"
stated Jim Turek, CEO and President of Plasticon International,
Inc.

The Company also reported that their wholly owned subsidiary,
SEMCO Manufacturing, Inc., has completed surfacing the concrete
embankment on the I-515 Beltway Interchange for the Nevada
Department of Transportation.  The US$241,000 contract called
for the application of SEMCO's proprietary concrete sealants and
anti-graffiti coating.

Plasticon International Inc. (PINKSHEETS: PLNI) --
http://www.plasticonintl.com/-- designs, produces, and  
distributes high-quality concrete accessories (rebar supports),
informational and directional signage, and plastic lumber, which
are all produced from recycled and recyclable plastics.  The
Company's line of plastic concrete accessories has been approved
or accepted in all 50 states and several foreign countries
including Poland, Israel, Canada, Mexico, and Egypt.

As of June 30, 2006, the company had stockholders' equity
deficit of US$214,233 compared to US$6,840,176 of deficit in
Dec. 31, 2005.


VISTEON CORP: Wants to Amend US$1 Billion Secured Term Loan
-----------------------------------------------------------
Visteon Corporation is seeking to amend its existing US$1
billion seven-year secured term loan that expires in June 2013
to add a new tranche expiring December 2013 by up to US$500
million.

Visteon previously stated it would consider further enhancing
its liquidity if market conditions were favorable.

J.P. Morgan Securities Inc. and Citigroup Global Markets Inc.
will act as lead arrangers for this transaction; JPMorgan Chase
Bank, N.A. is the administrative agent.

Visteon anticipates completing the transaction in the second
quarter of 2007.  Completion of the transaction is subject to
final documentation and other conditions, and there is no
assurance regarding timing or successful completion of the
transaction.

                     About Visteon Corp.

Headquartered in Van Buren Township, Mich., Visteon Corp.
(NYSE: VC) -- http://www.visteon.com/-- is a global automotive   
supplier that designs, engineers and manufactures innovative
climate, interior, electronic, and lighting products for vehicle
manufacturers, and also provides a range of products and
services to aftermarket customers.  With corporate offices in
the Michigan (U.S.); Shanghai, China; and Kerpen, Germany; the
company has more than 170 facilities in 24 countries, including
Mexico, and employs approximately 50,000 people.

Visteon's balance sheet at Dec. 31, 2006, showed total assets of
US$6.93 billion and total liabilities of US$7.12 billion,
resulting in a total shareholders' deficit of US$188 million.  
The company's total shareholders' deficit as of Dec. 31, 2005,
stood at US$48 million.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Dec. 5, 2006,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services affirmed its bank loan and
recovery ratings on auto supplier Visteon Corp.'s senior secured
bank facility, following the announcement that the company will
increase its term loan to US$1 billion from US$800 million.

The secured loan rating is 'B' and the recovery rating is '2',
indicating the expectation for substantial (80%-100%) recovery
of principal in the event of a payment default.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Nov. 24, 2006,
Moody's Investors Service has downgraded Visteon Corporation's
Corporate Family Rating to B3 from B2, changed the ratings
outlook to stable from under review for possible downgrade and
affirmed the company's liquidity rating of SGL-3.




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


BANCO LATINOAMERICANO: Announces Quarterly Cash Dividend Payment
----------------------------------------------------------------
Banco Latinoamericano de Exportaciones S.A. reminds its
shareholders that per the press release issued on Feb. 15, 2007,
the US$0.22 per share quarterly cash dividend corresponding to
the first quarter of 2007 is payable on April 10, 2007, to
stockholders of record as of March 30, 2007.

As of Feb. 28, 2007, Bladex had 36,329,071.29 common shares
outstanding of all classes.

Headquartered in Panama City, Panama, Banco Latinoamericano de
Exportaciones, SA aka Bladex -- http://www.bladex.com-- is a  
supranational bank originally established by the Central Banks
of Latin American and Caribbean countries to promote trade
finance in the Region.  The bank's shareholders include central
banks and state- owned entities in 23 countries in the Region,
as well as Latin American and international commercial banks,
along with institutional and retail investors.  Through
Dec. 31, 2005, Bladex had disbursed accumulated credits of over
US$135 billion.

                        *    *    *

As reported on April 7, 2006, Moody's affirmed these ratings for
Bladex:

   -- Bank Financial Strength Rating: D-minus, change to
      positive outlook from stable;

   -- Long Term Foreign Currency Deposit Rating: Baa3, with
      stable outlook;

   -- Short Term Foreign Currency Deposit Rating: Prime-3;

   -- Foreign Currency Senior Unsecured Rating: Baa3, with
      stable outlook; and

   -- Foreign Currency Issuer Rating: Baa3, with stable outlook.




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


* PERU: Mines Ministry Inks Dam Construction Pact with Egasa
------------------------------------------------------------
The Peruvian mines and energy ministry said in a statement that
its head, Juan Valdivia Romero, has signed an agreement with
generator Egasa to build the Bamputane dam to boost river
Chili's water flow.

Juan Gomez, Egasa works and hydrology division chief, told
Business News Americas that the improved water flow would
increase production of Egasa plants:

          -- Charcani IV,
          -- Charcani V, and
          -- Charcani VI.

According to BNamericas, the project will need an investment of
at least US$5 million.

BNamericas underscores that Peru's Cerro Verde copper mine will
conduct project definitive studies.

Mr. Gomez told BNamericas that construction will start in four
months.  The works will be completed by 2008 to begin collecting
water during the rainy season.

The dam's reservoir will store 40 million cubic meters of water,
BNamericas states.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
March 2, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned its
'BB+' foreign currency credit rating to the Republic of Peru's
(BB+/Stable/B foreign, BBB-/Stable/A-3 local currency sovereign
credit ratings) US$1.24 billion global bond due in 2037 issued
as part of a new liability management operation.


* PERU: Will Ink Crude Supply Pact with Petroleos de Venezuela
--------------------------------------------------------------
Peruvian state-owned hydrocarbons firm Petroperu told Prensa
Latina that it will sign a crude oil supply agreement with
Venezuelan state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA.

The negotiations with Petroleos de Venezuela are moving along
positively.  The accord will be signed in a month and a half,
Prensa Latina relates, citing Petroperu President Cesar
Gutierrez.

Mr. Gutierrez told Peruvian news agency Agencia Peruana de
Noticias that Petroperu bought crude oil from Petroleos de
Venezuela in December 2006 to strengthen an agreement of "far-
reaching" supply.

Petroperu had launched similar negotiations with Ecuadorian
state-owned oil firm Petroecuador.  The contract with the latter
is expected to be signed in two weeks, Prensa Latina states,
citing Mr. Gutierrez.

                About Petroleos de Venezuela

Petroleos de Venezuela SA -- http://www.pdv.com/--
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.  The company has a commercial office in China.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
March 2, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned its
'BB+' foreign currency credit rating to the Republic of Peru's
(BB+/Stable/B foreign, BBB-/Stable/A-3 local currency sovereign
credit ratings) US$1.24 billion global bond due in 2037 issued
as part of a new liability management operation.




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


ADVANCED MEDICAL: Moody's Puts Low B Ratings on US$900MM Notes
--------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service affirmed Advanced Medical Optics,
Inc.'s B1 Corporate Family Rating and all of its existing debt
ratings.  These ratings were confirmed:

   -- Ba1 rating on the US$300 million Senior Secured Revolver
      due 2009 (LGD 1/7%);

   -- B2 rating on the US$246 million Convertible Senior
      Subordinated Notes due 2024 (changed to LGD 5/71%
      from LGD 4/66%);

   -- B1 Probability of Default rating; and

   -- B1 Corporate Family Rating.

Moody's also assigned these new ratings:

   -- Ba1 rating to a US$300 million six-year senior secured
      revolver,

   -- Ba1 rating to a US$400 million seven-year senior secured
      term loan B, and

   -- B2 rating to US$200 million senior subordinated notes
      due 2017.

The rating outlook is stable.  These rating actions conclude the
rating review for possible downgrade that began on Jan. 9, 2007.

Proceeds from the new subordinated notes and term loan B, along
with approximately US$172 million under the new revolver and
cash balances at IntraLase Corp., will be used to fund the
acquisition of IntraLase, pay upfront integration costs such as
severance costs, and pay related fees and expenses.  The closing
of the transaction is expected in early April 2007.  Upon the
closing of the transaction, Moody's will withdraw the ratings on
the existing US$300 million senior secured revolver due 2009.

Advanced Medical's B1 ratings reflect the application of Moody's
Global Medical Device rating methodology.  Using an average of
the 12 factors specified in the methodology, Advanced Medical's
"methodology-implied" rating is approximately "Ba3" based on
financial data through Dec. 31, 2006.  Very favorable scores on
research and development as a percentage of sales ("Baa") and
adjusted EBIT margin ("Baa") are offset by reliance on
acquisitions, share buybacks and dividends ("Caa"), free cash
flow to adjusted debt ("B"), and adjusted debt to EBITDA ("B").  
Pro forma for the debt-financed IntraLase acquisition, Moody's
anticipates that the methodology-implied rating will remain at
"Ba3", which is one notch above the actual rating of B1.

The confirmation of the B1 Corporate Family Rating acknowledges
Advanced Medical's revenue size, improved profitability and
stable free cash flow.

Analyst Sidney Matti stated, "Moody's expects that AMO's revenue
size will continue to increase driven by organic growth coupled
with additional tuck-in acquisitions."  

As a result of revenue growth coupled with cost saving programs,
the company's adjusted EBIT margin improved from 9.3% for the
fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2004 to 16.9% for the fiscal year
ended Dec. 31, 2006.  Moody's anticipates that the company's
operating performance will increase over the near term, as the
IntraLase acquisition will provide Advanced Medical with cross-
selling opportunities.  Currently, IntraLase's femtosecond laser
has 30% market share, while Advanced Medical's excimer laser
product is found in a significant number of LASIK surgery
centers.

The B1 Corporate Family Rating also considers the heightened pro
forma leveraged position, highly acquisitive nature and
significant concentration with its top customer segment.

The stable ratings outlook anticipates the company will
successfully integrate IntraLase, benefit from cross-selling
opportunities in the laser vision correction market and
experience continued improved operating performance in the high
single digits within its existing businesses.  Additionally, the
rating outlook incorporates Moody's expectation that the company
will continue its acquisition strategy over the near term.

Based in Santa Ana, California, Advanced Medical Optics, Inc.
(NYSE: EYE) -- http://www.amo-inc.com/-- develops, manufactures
and markets ophthalmic surgical and contact lens care products.
AMO employs approximately 3,600 worldwide.  The company has
operations in 24 countries and markets products in 60 countries
including Puerto Rico and Brazil.


ADVANCED MEDICAL: S&P Puts B Rating on US$200-Million Notes
-----------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned its 'B' rating on
Advanced Medical Optics Inc.'s US$200 million senior
subordinated notes due 2017.  

Standard & Poor's also assigned its 'BB' bank loan rating (one
notch above the corporate credit rating on Advanced Medical) to
the company's proposed US$700 million senior secured credit
facility, consisting of a US$400 million term loan B due 2014
and a US$300 million revolving credit facility due 2013.  The
facility is rated 'BB', with a recovery rating of '1',
indicating the expectation for full (100%) recovery of principal
in the event of a payment default.  (All ratings are based on
preliminary offering statements and are subject to review upon
final documentation.)  Proceeds of the facility, in addition to
US$200 million of subordinated notes, will be used to finance
the US$808 million acquisition of IntraLase Corp., including
related fees and upfront integration costs.

Based in Santa Ana, California, Advanced Medical Optics, Inc.
(NYSE: EYE) -- http://www.amo-inc.com/-- develops, manufactures
and markets ophthalmic surgical and contact lens care products.
AMO employs approximately 3,600 worldwide.  The company has
operations in 24 countries and markets products in 60 countries
including Puerto Rico and Brazil.


COOPER COMPANIES: Stockholders Elect Ten Directors to Board
-----------------------------------------------------------
The Cooper Companies Inc.'s stockholders, at its annual meeting,
has elected ten directors, ratified the appointment of KPMG LLP
as the company's auditors for fiscal 2007 and approved the
company's Third Amended and Restated 2001 Long-Term Incentive
Plan and the 2007 Long-Term Incentive Plan for Non-Employee
Directors.

Cooper's stockholders elected the following as members of the
board of directors:

   -- A. Thomas Bender, the company's president and chief
      executive officer;

   -- John Fruth;

   -- Michael H. Kalkstein, partner of Dechert, LLP;

   -- Jody S. Lindell, President and CEO of S.G. Management,
      Inc.;

   -- Moses Marx, general partner of United Equities;

   -- Donald Press, executive vice president of Broadway
      Management Company, Inc., and principal in the firm of
      Donald Press, P.C.;

   -- Steven Rosenberg, president, chief executive officer and
      chief financial officer of Berkshire Bancorp Inc.;

   -- Allan E. Rubenstein, M.D., chief executive officer of
      NexGenix Pharmaceuticals, LLC and a member of the faculty
      of the Mt. Sinai School of Medicine and the Mt. Sinai
      Neurofibromatosis Research and Treatment Center;

   -- Robert S. Weiss, the company's executive vice president
      and chief operating officer; and

   -- Stanley Zinberg, M.D., executive vice president and vice
      president for practice activities for the American College
      of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

Following the stockholders' meeting, the board elected A. Thomas
Bender, chairman of the board and chief executive officer and
Allan E. Rubenstein, M.D., vice-chairman of the board and lead
director.  The board also elected as officers of the Company:

   -- Robert S. Weiss, executive vice president and chief
      operating officer;

   -- Carol R. Kaufman, senior vice president of legal affairs,
      secretary and chief administrative officer;

   -- Daniel G. McBride, vice president and senior corporate
      counsel;

   -- Steven M. Neil, vice president and chief financial
      officer;

   -- B. Norris Battin, vice president investor relations and
      communications;

   -- Rodney E. Folden, corporate controller;

   -- Eugene J. Midlock, vice president taxes; and

   -- Albert G. White, III, Treasurer.

The Cooper Companies, Inc. (NYSE:COO)
-- http://www.coopercos.com/-- manufactures and markets  
specialty healthcare products through  its CooperVision and
CooperSurgical units. Corporate offices are in Lake Forest and
Pleasanton, Calif.

CooperVision -- http://www.coopervision.com/-- manufactures and  
markets contact lenses and ophthalmic surgery products.
Headquartered in Lake Forest, Calif., it has manufacturing
operations in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Juana Diaz, Puerto Rico,
Norfolk, Va., Rochester, New York, Adelaide, Australia, Hamble
and Hampshire England, Ligny-en-Barrios, France, Madrid, Spain
and Toronto.

CooperSurgical -- http://www.coopersurgical.com/-- manufactures  
and markets diagnostic products, surgical instruments and
accessories to the women's healthcare market. With headquarters
and manufacturing facilities in Trumbull, Conn., it also
manufactures in Pasadena, Calif., North Normandy, Ill., Fort
Atkinson, Wis., Montreal and Berlin.

Proclear(R) and Biomedics(R) are registered trademarks and
Biomedics XC(TM) and Biofinity(TM) are trademarks of The Cooper
Companies, Inc., and its subsidiaries or affiliates.

                        *     *     *

As reported in Troubled Company Reporter on Jan. 24, 2007,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services lowered its corporate credit
rating on Lake Forest, California-based Cooper Companies Inc.
to 'BB-' from 'BB'.


MMM HEALTHCARE: Aveta's Non-Filing Cues Moody's to Pare Ratings
---------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service has downgraded the insurance financial
strength rating of MMM Healthcare, Inc. to B1 from Ba3,
following the announcement by Aveta Inc. that it will not meet
its March 31, 2007, deadline for reporting 2006 financial
results and has decided to further delay releasing its 2006
audited financial statements.  Moody's also has downgraded the
senior debt rating of MMM Holdings, Inc., NAMM Holdings, Inc.,
and Preferred Health Management Corp. or PHMC to Caa1 from B3.  
The ratings remain under review for possible downgrade.

According to Moody's, MMM Holdings (parent company of MMM
Healthcare), NAMM Holdings, and PHMC are co-borrowers under
Aveta Inc.'s bank credit facility.  The bank facility is
guaranteed by Aveta and is secured with the pledge of the stock
and assets of Aveta, as well as the pledge of the stock of each
of the borrowers and their regulated subsidiaries and all assets
of the non-regulated entities.  Aveta had previously announced
that due to unexpectedly high medical utilization and costs in
Puerto Rico during the second half of 2006, it anticipated
reporting a significant decline in earnings which Moody's
concluded would likely lead to an inability to meet one or more
of the financial covenants of its bank loan agreement for fiscal
year 2006.  As a result, the ratings were downgraded by Moody's
on Feb. 13, 2007, and placed under review for possible further
downgrade.  In taking this rating action, Moody's noted that the
company's primary product, Medicare Advantage, does not allow
the carrier to change benefits, cancel coverage, or change
premium rates during the contract year thereby limiting the
options the company has to improve results.

The current downgrade is driven by several announcements made by
the company last week and the current lack of clarity in
identifying the causes of the earnings problems.  Key among
these is a delay in the delivery of the 2006 audited financial
statements to after March 31.  Based on the limited information
provided by the company to date, Moody's stated that it cannot
be confident that the company can identify and implement
initiatives to avoid similar losses in 2007 and remains
concerned with the company's ability to file a viable product
offering with Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services or CMS
-- US federal agency which administers Medicare, Medicaid, and
the State Children's Health Insurance Program -- for 2008 (due
in a few months).  In addition, the company also announced the
departure of its CFO, John Brittain.  However, the hiring of the
consulting firm of Alvarez & Marsal to assist the company in
developing initiatives to rectify the situation in Puerto Rico
was viewed positively by Moody's.

According to Moody's, the company indicated that cash on hand as
of March 12, 2007, was US$396 million, of which US$40 million is
unrestricted, and that this cash position should be sufficient
for liquidity needs at least through the second quarter of 2007.  
The rating agency also noted that the company had previously
announced the willingness of the founders and initial
shareholders of the company to participate in a capital
infusion; however it has not yet been determined whether a
capital infusion would be made.

Moody's review for downgrade will focus on the liquidity of MMM
Holdings, the development of a comprehensive action plan to
improve earnings in 2007, and actual 2007 results as they
emerge.  Moody's will also review the terms of any renegotiation
of the credit facility.

These ratings were downgraded and remained under review for
possible downgrade:

   -- MMM Holdings, Inc: senior secured debt rating to Caa1
      from B3; corporate family rating to Caa1 from B3;

   -- NAMM Holdings, Inc: senior secured debt rating to Caa1
      from B3;

   -- Preferred Health Management Corp: senior secured debt
      rating to Caa1 from B3;

   -- MMM Healthcare, Inc: insurance financial strength rating
      to B1 from Ba3;

   -- PrimeCare Medical Network, Inc: insurance financial
      strength rating to B1 from Ba3.

                   About Aveta, Inc.

Aveta, Inc. is headquartered in Fort Lee, NJ. As of Sept. 30,
2006, Aveta (as Aveta Holdings, LLC) reported stockholders'
equity of US$73 million and approximately 230,000 Medicare
members.  For the first nine months of 2006, pro-forma total
revenues (including PHMC revenue for the full year) were US$1.4
billion.  Aveta is the parent company of MMM Holdings Inc., NAMM
Holdings Inc., and Preferred Health Management Corp.

              About MMM Healthcare, Inc.

MMM Healthcare, Inc. is a subsidiary of MMM Holdings, Inc.
Together with another subsidiary, Preferred Medical Choice,
Inc., the two companies are the largest provider of Medicare
Advantage products in Puerto Rico, with over 200,000 members as
of Sept. 30, 2006.  MMM Healthcare and Preferred Medical service
in excess of 60% of the Medicare Advantage enrolled population
in Puerto Rico and account for approximately 80% of Aveta's
operating earnings.


MMM HOLDINGS: Aveta's Non-Filing Cues Moody's to Cut Ratings
------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service has downgraded the senior debt rating
of MMM Holdings, Inc., NAMM Holdings, Inc., and Preferred Health
Management Corp. or PHMC to Caa1 from B3 following the
announcement by Aveta, Inc. (parent company) that it will not
meet its March 31, 2007 deadline for reporting 2006 financial
results and has decided to further delay releasing its 2006
audited financial statements.  The ratings remain under review
for possible downgrade.

According to Moody's, MMM Holdings, NAMM Holdings, and PHMC are
co-borrowers under Aveta Inc.'s bank credit facility.  The bank
facility is guaranteed by Aveta and is secured with the pledge
of the stock and assets of Aveta, as well as the pledge of the
stock of each of the borrowers and their regulated subsidiaries
and all assets of the non-regulated entities.  Aveta had
previously announced that due to unexpectedly high medical
utilization and costs in Puerto Rico during the second half of
2006, it anticipated reporting a significant decline in earnings
which Moody's concluded would likely lead to an inability to
meet one or more of the financial covenants of its bank loan
agreement for fiscal year 2006.  As a result, the ratings were
downgraded by Moody's on Feb. 13, 2007, and placed under review
for possible further downgrade.  In taking this rating action,
Moody's noted that the company's primary product, Medicare
Advantage, does not allow the carrier to change benefits, cancel
coverage, or change premium rates during the contract year
thereby limiting the options the company has to improve results.

The current downgrade is driven by several announcements made by
the company last week and the current lack of clarity in
identifying the causes of the earnings problems.  Key among
these is a delay in the delivery of the 2006 audited financial
statements to after March 31.  Based on the limited information
provided by the company to date, Moody's stated that it cannot
be confident that the company can identify and implement
initiatives to avoid similar losses in 2007 and remains
concerned with the company's ability to file a viable product
offering with Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services or CMS
-- US federal agency which administers Medicare, Medicaid, and
the State Children's Health Insurance Program -- for 2008 (due
in a few months).  In addition, the company also announced the
departure of its CFO, John Brittain.  However, the hiring of the
consulting firm of Alvarez & Marsal to assist the company in
developing initiatives to rectify the situation in Puerto Rico
was viewed positively by Moody's.

According to Moody's, the company indicated that cash on hand as
of March 12, 2007, was US$396 million, of which US$40 million is
unrestricted, and that this cash position should be sufficient
for liquidity needs at least through the second quarter of 2007.  
The rating agency also noted that the company had previously
announced the willingness of the founders and initial
shareholders of the company to participate in a capital
infusion; however it has not yet been determined whether a
capital infusion would be made.

Moody's review for downgrade will focus on the liquidity of MMM
Holdings, the development of a comprehensive action plan to
improve earnings in 2007, and actual 2007 results as they
emerge.  Moody's will also review the terms of any renegotiation
of the credit facility.

These ratings were downgraded and remain under review for
possible downgrade:

   -- MMM Holdings, Inc: senior secured debt rating to Caa1
      from B3; corporate family rating to Caa1 from B3;

   -- NAMM Holdings, Inc: senior secured debt rating to Caa1
      from B3;

   -- Preferred Health Management Corp: senior secured debt
      rating to Caa1 from B3;

   -- MMM Healthcare, Inc: insurance financial strength rating
      to B1 from Ba3;

   -- PrimeCare Medical Network, Inc: insurance financial
      strength rating to B1 from Ba3.

                    About Aveta, Inc.

Aveta, Inc. is headquartered in Fort Lee, NJ. As of Sept. 30,
2006, Aveta (as Aveta Holdings, LLC) reported stockholders'
equity of US$73 million and approximately 230,000 Medicare
members.  For the first nine months of 2006, pro-forma total
revenues (including PHMC revenue for the full year) were US$1.4
billion.  Aveta is the parent company of MMM Holdings Inc., NAMM
Holdings Inc., and Preferred Health Management Corp.

                About MMM Holdings Inc.

MMM Holdings Inc., through it two main operating subsidiaries
MMM Healthcare and Preferred Medical Choice, Inc., is the
largest provider of Medicare Advantage products in Puerto Rico,
with over 200,000 members as of Sept. 30, 2006.  MMM Healthcare
and Preferred Medical service in excess of 60% of the Medicare
Advantage enrolled population in Puerto Rico and account for
approximately 80% of Aveta's operating earnings.




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


MIRANT CORP: Bowline Wants to Assume US$200MM Insurance Policy
--------------------------------------------------------------
Mirant Bowline, LLC, an affiliate of Mirant Corp., seeks the
U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Texas'
authority to assume an insurance policy -- Owner's Title of
Insurance Policy No. 26-031- 92-56864 -- issued by Fidelity
National Title Insurance Company of New York for US$200,716,836.

Jeff P. Prostok, Esq., at Forshey & Prostok LLP, in Fort Worth,
Texas, informs the Court that the Insurance Policy covered
certain real property purchased by Mirant Bowline located in the
Town of Haverstraw and the Village of West Haverstraw, County of
Rockland, New York.  The Insurance Policy became effective on
July 1, 1999.

Mr. Prostok asserts that the Fidelity Insurance Policy is
economically beneficial to Mirant Bowline.  In addition,
Mirant Bowline is current on all prepetition and postpetition
obligations under the Insurance Policy, and the requirements of
Section 365(b)(1) of the Bankruptcy Code governing the treatment
of defaults in contracts and unexpired leases do not apply.

Accordingly, Mr. Prostok says, there are no cure amounts as of
the assumption of the Insurance Policy.

                        About Mirant Corp.

Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, Mirant Corporation (NYSE:
MIR) -- http://www.mirant.com/-- is an energy company that   
produces and sells electricity in North America, the Caribbean,
and the Philippines.  Mirant's investments in the Caribbean
include three integrated utilities and assets in Jamaica, Grand
Bahama, Trinidad and Tobago and Curacao.  Mirant owns or leases
more than 18,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity
globally.  Mirant Corporation filed for chapter 11 protection on
July 14, 2003 (Bankr. N.D. Tex. 03-46590), and emerged under the
terms of a confirmed Second Amended Plan on Jan. 3, 2006.  
Thomas E. Lauria, Esq., at White & Case LLP, represented the
Debtors in their successful restructuring.  When the Debtors
filed for protection from their creditors, they listed
US$20,574,000,000 in assets and US$11,401,000,000 in debts.  The
Debtors emerged from bankruptcy on Jan. 3, 2006.  Mirant NY-Gen,
LLC, Mirant Bowline, LLC, Mirant Lovett, LLC, Mirant New York,
Inc., and Hudson Valley Gas Corporation, were not included and
have yet to submit their plans of reorganization.  (Mirant
Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 117; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service
Inc., http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000)


MIRANT CORP: Sells Surplus Equipment to LS Power for US$22 Mil.
---------------------------------------------------------------
The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Texas
granted Mirant Bowline, LLC's, a subsidiary of Mirant Corp., to
sell certain surplus equipment to LS Power Co I, LLC.

The equipment sold are:
                         
       * 3 Mitsubishi-IHI Heat Recovery Steam Generators    
       * 1 350MW GE D-11 Steam Turbine

LS Power purchased the equipment in cash for US$22,000,000.

According to Jeff P. Prostok, Esq., at Forshey & Prostok LLP, in
Fort Worth, Texas, the equipment were purchased by Mirant
Bowline in anticipation of a planned expansion that is presently
suspended, and is not currently needed for operations.

Mr. Prostok states that Mirant Bowline will sell the equipment
by private sale free and clear of all liens, claims and
encumbrances on an "as is, where is" basis without any
representations or warranties.

Mirant Americas, Inc., also a subsidiary of Mirant Corp. has
recently entered into a sale agreement to transfer its ownership
interests in six Mirant-affiliated entities to LS Power.

Moreover, LS Power will bear the cost of transport of the
equipment from the Mirant Bowline Facility, and will be required
to remove the equipment within six months following the closing
date.  Accordingly, Mirant Bowline will execute a Bill of Sale.

                     About Mirant Corp.

Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, Mirant Corporation (NYSE:
MIR) -- http://www.mirant.com/-- is an energy company that   
produces and sells electricity in North America, the Caribbean,
and the Philippines.  Mirant's investments in the Caribbean
include three integrated utilities and assets in Jamaica, Grand
Bahama, Trinidad and Tobago and Curacao.  Mirant owns or leases
more than 18,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity
globally.  Mirant Corporation filed for chapter 11 protection on
July 14, 2003 (Bankr. N.D. Tex. 03-46590), and emerged under the
terms of a confirmed Second Amended Plan on Jan. 3, 2006.  
Thomas E. Lauria, Esq., at White & Case LLP, represented the
Debtors in their successful restructuring.  When the Debtors
filed for protection from their creditors, they listed
US$20,574,000,000 in assets and US$11,401,000,000 in debts.  The
Debtors emerged from bankruptcy on Jan. 3, 2006.  Mirant NY-Gen,
LLC, Mirant Bowline, LLC, Mirant Lovett, LLC, Mirant New York,
Inc., and Hudson Valley Gas Corporation, were not included and
have yet to submit their plans of reorganization.  (Mirant
Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 117; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service
Inc., http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000)




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


INTERPUBLIC GROUP: Board Declares US$13.125 Per Share Dividend
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Interpublic Group of Companies Inc.'s Board of Directors has
declared a dividend of US$13.125 per share on its 5-1/4% Series
B Cumulative Convertible Perpetual Preferred Stock.  The
dividend on the Series B Preferred Stock is payable in cash on
April 16, 2007, to holders of record at the close of business on
April 2, 2007.  There will be a maximum of 525,000 shares of the
Series B Preferred Stock outstanding on April 2, 2007, resulting
in a maximum possible aggregate dividend of US$6,890,625.

New York-based, Interpublic Group of Companies Inc. (NYSE:IPG)
-- http://www.interpublic.com/-- is one of the world's leading  
organizations of advertising agencies and marketing services
companies.  The Interpublic Group has over 43,000 employees
working in offices in more than 130 countries around the world,
including Argentina, Brazil, Barbados, Belize, Chile, Colombia,
Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala,
Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Puerto
Rico, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Mar 8, 2007,
Moody's Investors Service changed The Interpublic Group of
Companies, Inc.'s outlook to stable from negative and affirmed
its Ba3 corporate family rating, its Ba3 debt ratings, and its
SGL-1 assessment.




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


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: To Disclose Terms of Local Bond Issuance
----------------------------------------------------------------
Petroleos de Venezuela SA would release the terms surrounding
the issuance in the local market of more than US$3.5 billion in
stock, El Universal reports, citing a government official as
saying.

The official told Reuters that the stocks would assist to fund
the company's projects and contribute to drain the high levels
of liquidity in bolivars that have been pressuring prices and
inflation in the South American country.

Citing the official, El Universal relates that the issuance
would be in US dollar, and had the amount slightly increased.

                 About Petroleos de Venezuela

Petroleos de Venezuela SA -- http://www.pdv.com/--  
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.  The company has a commercial office in China.

                        *     *     *

As reported on Nov. 22, 2006, Fitch affirmed the local and
foreign currency Issuer Default Ratings of Petroleos de
Venezuela S.A. at 'BB-'.  Fitch has also affirmed the
'AAA(ven)' national scale rating of the company.  Fitch said the
rating outlook is stable.


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: To Ink Crude Supply Pact with Petroperu
---------------------------------------------------------------
Venezuelan state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA will sign
a crude oil supply agreement with Peruvian state-owned
hydrocarbons firm Petroperu, the latter told Prensa Latina.

The negotiations with Petroleos de Venezuela are moving along
positively.  The accord will be signed in a month and a half,
Prensa Latina relates, citing Petroperu President Cesar
Gutierrez.

Mr. Gutierrez told Peruvian news agency Agencia Peruana de
Noticias that Petroperu bought crude oil from Petroleos de
Venezuela in December 2006 to strengthen an agreement of "far-
reaching" supply.

Petroperu had launched similar negotiations with Ecuadorian
state-owned oil firm Petroecuador.  The contract with the latter
is expected to be signed in two weeks, Prensa Latina states,
citing Mr. Gutierrez.

Petroleos de Venezuela SA -- http://www.pdv.com/--
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.  The company has a commercial office in China.

As reported on March 12, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings
Services raised its long-term foreign currency corporate credit
rating on Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. or PDVSA to 'BB-' from
'B+'.  S&P said the rating was removed from CreditWatch.


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: To Provide Haiti with Crude
---------------------------------------------------
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and his Haitian counterpart,
Rene Preval, inked a crude supply agreement under the
Petrocaribe initiative.  

Under the agreement, Haiti will receive 14,000 barrels of oil
per day from Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. and will pay 60% of the
bill within 90 days from delivery.  The rest of the payment will
be paid over a 25-year period at an annual 1% interest rate.

The Petrocaribe initiative, launched in June 2005, allows
member-nations to purchase up to 185,00 barrels of oil at
preferential payment.  In addition, it allows for nations to pay
for oil with other products like banana, rice and sugar.

Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. -- http://www.pdv.com/--
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.  The company has a commercial office in China.

As reported on March 12, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings
Services raised its long-term foreign currency corporate credit
rating on Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. or PDVSA to 'BB-' from
'B+'.  S&P said the rating was removed from CreditWatch.


* VENEZUELA: Inviting Gas-Exporting Members to Join NatGas Bloc
---------------------------------------------------------------
Venezuela will invite gas-exporting countries' forum or GECF
member countries to join The Organization of Gas Producing and
Exporting Countries of South America or OPEGASUR, an
organization of natural gas producers that nation planned to
create with Argentina, Business News Americas reports.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
March 16, 2007, Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez agreed with
his Argentine counterpart, Nestor Kirchner, to create OPEGASUR,
which is based on the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting
Countries.  OPEGASUR will seek:

          -- gas sovereignty of the peoples of South America,
          -- better valuing of natural resources,
          -- interchange of technology and experiences, and
          -- industrialization of gas and joint investments in
             the energy sector.

OPEGASUR will be initially exclusive to Venezuela, Bolivia and
Argentina.

Jorge Luis Sanchez, Venezuelan gas regulator Enagas head, told
BNamericas, "What started as merely a South American initiative
will expand to include some of the world's largest producers in
the Middle and Far East."

BNamericas underscores that Mr. Sanchez has represented
Venezuela three times at GECF.

Venezuelan state news agency Agencia Bolivariana de Noticias
relates that other GECF-member nations like Algeria, Qatar, Iran
and Russia are ready to launch a similar natural gas
organization styled on OPEC during their meeting on April 9 in
Doha, Qatar.

"It is absolutely right these interests [of gas-producing
countries around the world] come together.  Natural gas is more
important every day, it's more expensive every day," Mr. Sanchez
commented to BNamericas.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Nov. 20, 2006,
Fitch Ratings affirmed Venezuela's long-term foreign and local
currency Issuer Default Ratings at 'BB-'.  At the same time, the
agency also affirmed the short-term foreign currency IDR at 'B'
and the Country Ceiling at 'BB-'.  Fitch said the outlook on the
ratings remains stable.


* VENEZUELA: Oil Sales & Tax Revenues Total US$61.9 Bil. in 2006
----------------------------------------------------------------
El Universal reports that the Venezuelan Treasury Office
revenues from oil sales and tax collection increased 38% to
US$61.9 billion in 2006, compared to US$44.2 billion in 2005.

Figures from the Ministry of Finance's 2006 annual report
indicated that cash revenues totaled US$60.8 billion, some
US$1.1 billion were bonds, retentions and tax refund
certificates, El Universal notes.

According to El Universal, state-run oil firm Petroleos de
Venezuela contributed US$28.9 billion in royalties, income tax
and profits last year.

El Universal emphasizes that tax revenues in 2006 totaled
US$24.3 billion.  Value-added tax made the largest contribution
to the treasury with US$12 billion.  Income tax totaled US$8.5
billion.

Public expenses were 34% of Gross Domestic Product last year, El
Universal states, citing the ministry's annual report.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Nov. 20, 2006,
Fitch Ratings affirmed Venezuela's long-term foreign and local
currency Issuer Default Ratings at 'BB-'.  At the same time, the
agency also affirmed the short-term foreign currency IDR at 'B'
and the Country Ceiling at 'BB-'.  Fitch said the outlook on the
ratings remains stable.


* VENEZUELA: Trinidad Wants Nation to Supply Jamaica with Gas
-------------------------------------------------------------
Trinidad & Tobago will try to get natural gas from Venezuela to
refine it and then send to Jamaica, The Jamaica Gleaner reports.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
March 1, 2007, Trinidad & Tobago said it wouldn't honor a
Memorandum of Understanding to supply Jamaica with liquefied
natural gas.  Trinidad & Tobago had promised supplies to produce
electricity for domestic use.  

However, Trinidad & Tobago is exploring options to carry out the
supply accord it signed with Jamaica three years ago, The
Gleaner notes.

The Gleaner relates that Trinidad & Tobago Prime Minister
Patrick Manning will discuss in a meeting with Venezuelan
President Hugo Chavez in Caracas the possibility of sourcing of
natural gas from Venezuela.  

"We are not driven by ego, but we are driven by the need to get
the work of the people done in the Caribbean.  It is a critical
issue.  And if it requires my going to Venezuela to have it
settled, I will do that," Prime Minister Manning told The
Gleaner.

Sourcing liquefied natural as supplies from Trinidad's Atlantic
liquefied natural gas was still being considered, The Gleaner
states, citing Prime Minister Manning.

                       *    *    *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Nov. 20, 2006,
Fitch Ratings affirmed Venezuela's long-term foreign and local
currency Issuer Default Ratings at 'BB-'.  At the same time, the
agency also affirmed the short-term foreign currency IDR at 'B'
and the Country Ceiling at 'BB-'.  Fitch said the outlook on the
ratings remains stable.


* IDB Plans for Equality of Opportunities Deal for Latin America
----------------------------------------------------------------
Latin America and the Caribbean need a contract of equality of
opportunities to ensure that the benefits of economic growth
reach the region's majorities, Inter-American Development Bank
President Luis Alberto Moreno said.

At the close of the 48th Annual Meeting of the IDB's Board of
Governors, Mr. Moreno proposed that the IDB would be the
instrument for spurring initiatives that give priority to the
region's poor and other groups historically sidelined from
progress.

"We need a contract of equality of opportunities for all, and we
must be the promoters and implementers of this contract," said
Mr. Moreno in his speech before representatives of the 47 member
countries of the IDB.

In a summary of two days of statements and recommendations by
many of the Bank's governors, Mr. Moreno affirmed that the IDB's
will take into account the diversity of circumstances of its
Latin American and Caribbean member countries.

"We now know that there is no one way, and every day we become
more aware of the complexity of the job of development," he
said.  "We will work with the countries of the region in this
task."  

Moreno said that the IDB will continue to promote Opportunities
for the Majority, an initiative launched last year to focus the
institution's work on innovative programs that increase access
of low-income people to products and services that enable them
to improve their incomes and standard of living.

In addition, Mr. Moreno noted the need for countries to keep
strengthening their economies in order to be prepared for an
eventual reversal of the economic cycle that spurred its
recovery, which largely resulted from favorable external factors
such as high prices for raw materials and abundant liquidity in
international financial markets.

Governments, he added, should take advantage of present
favorable conditions to "strengthen their economies through more
solid fiscal positions and greater efficiencies in spending,"
and address challenges such as "poverty, crime and weak
governmental institutions."

Mr. Moreno added that the IDB will redouble its efforts in
priority areas for its member nations such as infrastructure,
education, health, technology and financing for small and
medium-size businesses.  The Bank will also carry out a broad
initiative to sponsor the development of renewable energy
sources, the mitigation of risks related to climate change, and
natural disaster prevention.

Since taking office Moreno has sought to deepen the IDB's work
with the private sector, expanding access to financing without
sovereign guarantees to both companies and public sector
agencies.  The IDB will also step up its support for
microenterprise and SMEs through its Multilateral Investment
Fund and the Inter-American Investment Corporation.

Mr. Moreno further stated that in addition to creating more
flexible financial instruments, such as loans denominated in
local currencies, the IDB will change "from a risk-avoiding
culture to a culture that manages risks; from a reactive culture
to a proactive culture."  

Referring to the recent decision of the Board of Governors to
provide some US$4.4 billion in debt relief to Bolivia, Guyana,
Haiti, Honduras y Nicaragua, Mr. Moreno said that the IDB will
support these countries-its poorest members-so that the benefits
of the debt forgiveness can be sustained.  

Mr. Moreno also said the IDB must address the needs of the
medium-income countries, which need high-quality technical
support to find solutions to increasingly complex problems.

Mr. Moreno thanked the Board of Governors for its support for
the process of realignment initiated by the Bank to
"debureaucratize its procedures," focus on results and ensure
that the institution meets the priority needs of its borrowing
member countries.


                          ***********


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, Rizande
de los Santos, Christian Toledo, and Junald Ango, Editors.

Copyright 2076.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1529-2746.

This material is copyrighted and any commercial use, resale or
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The TCR Latin America subscription rate is US$625 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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