TCRLA_Public/080128.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

          Monday, January 28, 2008, Vol. 8, Issue 19

                          Headlines

A R G E N T I N A

ALITALIA SPA: Air France-KLM to Retain Alitalia Brand
ARVINMERITOR INC: To Supply Hyundai Unit w/ Plastic Door Modules
AVAYA INC: Works with Extreme Networks in Ethernet Transition
BALL CORP: Reports US$281.3 Million 2007 Full Year Earnings
BRANDO HERMANOS: Proofs of Claim Verification Ends on March 12

GETTY IMAGES: S&P Affirms BB Corp. Credit Rating; Outlook Neg.
SUN MICROSYSTEMS: Earns US$260 Mil. in Second Qtr. Ended Dec. 30
TENNECO INC: Incurs US$72 Million 2007 Fourth Quarter Net Loss


B E R M U D A

VIVUS INT'L: Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline Is Feb. 8


B R A Z I L

BANCO NACIONAL: Okays BRL79.6-Million Loan for Cemar
BANCO PATAGONIA: Names UBS Pactual as Market Maker
BRASIL TELECOM: Investors to Swap Shares with Telemar Holders
COMPANHIA ENERGETICA: Sao Paulo Opens Data Room for Stake Sale
EMBRATEL PARTICIPACOES: Carlos Moreira Leaving CEO Post

EMI GROUP: Chairman Tables Bid for Chrysalis Group
FIAT SPA: Moody's Affirms Ba1 Corp. Family Rating; Outlook Pos.
GENERAL MOTORS: IUE-CWA Retirees to Get Belated Christmas Bonus
GERDAU AMERISTEEL: Expanding Jacksonville Mill Rolling Capacity
GERDAU SA: Chaparral Steel Acquisition Is Biggest Takeover Deal

HEXCEL CORP: Net Income Down to US$13-Million in Fourth Quarter
TELE NORTE: Investors to Swap Shares with Brasil Telecom Holders

* BRAZIL: Samsung To Build Ultra-Deepwater Drillship


C A Y M A N   I S L A N D S

BBH AOF: Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline Is Today
BREA EQUITY: Holding Final Shareholders Meeting Today
BREA INVESTMENTS: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today
BREA HOLDINGS: Final Shareholders Meeting Today
COMMERCIAL INVESTMENTS: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today

COMMERCIAL EQUITY: Holding Final Shareholders Meeting Today
LAGUNA EQUITY: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today
LAGUNA INVESTMENTS: Holding Final Shareholders Meeting Today
LAKEHILL INVESTMENTS: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today
LANDMARK EQUITY: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today

MARCUS EQUITY: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today
MARCUS HOLDINGS: Holding Final Shareholders Meeting Today
ORANGE EQUITY: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today
ORANGE INVESTMENTS: Holing Final Shareholders Meeting Today
PARMALAT SPA: Milan Court Commences Trial vs. Citigroup et al.

WESTSHORE HOLDINGS: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today


C H I L E

BELL MICROPRODUCTS: Head Expects LatAm Sales to Increase by 10%
ROCK-TENN CO: Earns US$17.5 Million in 2008 First Quarter
SHAW GROUP: Environmental Unit Bags Deal from General Electric


C O L O M B I A

QUEBECOR WORLD: Selects Arnold & Porter as Bankruptcy Counsel
QUEBECOR WORLD: US$750MM DIP Fund To Buy US$416MM Receivables
QUEBECOR WORLD: Wants Access to RBC's, Soc Gen's Cash Collateral


C O S T A   R I C A

BANCO DE COSTA RICA: Carlos Fernandez Leaves CEO Post
US AIRWAYS: Incurs US$79-Million Net Loss in Fourth Quarter


D O M I N I C A N   R E P U B L I C

AES DOMINICANA: Building Third Dominican Power Plant

* DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Mulls Signing Funding Accord with IMF


E C U A D O R

PETROECUADOR: Feiseh Getting US$1.47B from Block 15 Oil Exports


H O N D U R A S

* HONDURAS: Hondutel Head Marcelo Chimirri Leaves Post


J A M A I C A

AIR JAMAICA: Unions Hope Cabinet Intervention To Help Wage Talks
NATIONAL COMMERCIAL: Cash Plus Injunction Against Bank Ends

* JAMAICA: Pan Caribbean Eyes Cut of Stable Rating to Negative


M E X I C O

ADVANCED MICRO: Fitch Cuts Issuer Default Rating to B- from B
ALASKA AIR: Reports US$125 Million 2007 Full Year Net Income
AVNET INC: Reports US$142.2-Mln Net Income in Qtr. Ended Dec. 31
CONSTELLATION BRANDS: Selling Three Wine Brands for US$134 Mil.
GRUPO MEXICO: Must Disclose Results of Mine Surveys

INDUSTRIAS UNIDAS: Moody's Lowers Senior Notes Rating to Caa1
PRIDE INT: Awards Ultra-Deepwater Drillship Contract to Samsung
VISTA GOLD: Closes Adjacent Properties Acquisition in Mexico


N I C A R A G U A

XEROX CORPORATION: Earns US$1.1 Billion in Year Ended Dec. 31


P A N A M A

CHIQUITA BRANDS: May Bid for Five Million Boxes of Bananas

* PANAMA: Free Trade Pact with Chile Takes Effect on March 7


P E R U

DOE RUN: Says Levels of Lead at La Oroya Drop 61.7%


P U E R T O   R I C O

ADELPHIA COMMS: Ct. Extends Claims Objection Deadline to May 16
ALLIED WASTE: Closes US$33.9MM California Demand Bonds Offering
BURGER KING: May No Longer Buy Tomatoes from Immokalee
MOTHERS WORK: Taps L. Hendrickson as Chief Merchandising Officer
MUSICLAND: Panel Wants Best Buy to Disgorge US$145MM in Payments

SEARS HOLDINGS: Fitch Affirms Issuer Default Rating at BB


V E N E Z U E L A

CHRYSLER: Unit Inks Product Development Pact With Tata Motors
FERTINITRO FINANCE: Fitch Affirms CCC Rating on Secured Bonds
PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Inks Junin Study Contracts with Statoil
PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Oil Output Drops 148,000 bpd in 2007

* BOND PRICING: For the Week January 21 to January 25

                         - - - - -


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


ALITALIA SPA: Air France-KLM to Retain Alitalia Brand
-----------------------------------------------------
Air France-KLM SA has given its reassurance that it will retain
the Alitalia S.p.A. brand after it acquires the Italian
government's 49.9% stake in the national carrier, Thomson
Financial reports, citing the Anpac pilots union.

"There have been full and concrete assurances that there will
not be a 'regionalization' of the Italian flag carrier and the
Alitalia brand's value will be exploited and improved," said
Anpac, which with Anfav and Avia unions, met with Air France CEO
Jean Cyrille Spinetti.

Anpac added that the first phase of the plan will see a network
and fleet rationalization that will allow for a turnaround in
the results in order to reach breakeven beginning 2010, Thomson
Financial relates.

Air France also assured that following the downscaling of
Alitalia's operations at Milan's Malpensa airport, there will be
an expansion of flights to European destinations, Thomson
Financial adds.

Air France, Alitalia and trade unions will meet in February to
discuss the business plan for the national carrier.

As reported in the TCR-Europe on Jan. 17, 2007, Alitalia and
Italy have commenced exclusive sale talks with Air France-KLM.
The carriers have two months to reach an agreement, which would
be approved by the government.

Tommaso Padoa Schioppa, Italy's finance minister, has delivered
a letter to Alitalia S.p.A. approving the commencement of
exclusive talks with Air France-KLM.

In its non-binding offer, Air France plans to:

   -- acquire 100% of the shares of Alitalia through an
      exchange offer;

   -- acquire 100% of Alitalia convertible bonds; and

   -- immediately inject at least EUR750 million into
      Alitalia through a capital increase that will be open to
      all shareholders and be fully underwritten by Air France.

Air France CEO Jean-Cyril Spinetta confirmed plans to cut 1,700
jobs and defended plans to downsize Alitalia's operations in
Milan's Malpensa airport.

Mr. Spinetta also revealed that should the French carrier
acquire 100% of Alitalia shares, Air France would list itself in
the Milan bourse.

Mr. Schioppa will represent the Italian government during sale
talks and will evaluate whether to sell to the state's majority
stake in Alitalia, Agenzia Giornalistica Italia says.

                       About Alitalia

Headquartered in Rome, Italy, Alitalia S.p.A. --
http://www.alitalia.it/-- provides air travel services for
passengers and air transport of cargo on national, international
and inter-continental routes.  The Italian government owns 49.9%
of Alitalia.  The company has operations in Argentina.

Despite a EUR1.4 billion state-backed restructuring in 1997,
Alitalia posted net losses of EUR256 million and EUR907 million
in 2000 and 2001 respectively.  Alitalia posted EUR93 million in
net profits in 2002 after a EUR1.4 billion capital injection.
The carrier booked annual net losses of EUR520 million in 2003,
EUR813 million in 2004, EUR168 million in 2005, and
EUR625.6 million in 2006.

Italian Transport Minister Alessandro Bianchi has warned that
Alitalia may file for bankruptcy if the current attempt to sell
the government's 49.9% stake fails.


ARVINMERITOR INC: To Supply Hyundai Unit w/ Plastic Door Modules
----------------------------------------------------------------
ArvinMeritor, Inc.'s Light Vehicle Systems (LVS) business group
has been awarded a multi-year contract to supply Hyundai North
America with an innovative plastic door module and accompanying
corporate latch product for the new Hyundai Sonata. Production
is scheduled to begin in March 2010.

The highly integrated plastic door module will replace the
current steel version, and is part of ArvinMeritor's smart
systems(TM) product strategy to combine electronics and controls
with heritage mechanical components to enhance vehicle systems
performance.  The door module uses an innovative composite
construction to intelligently integrate the electro-mechanical
and modular components, saving up to 25 percent in weight and
representing the first application of plastic door module
technology at Hyundai.  It is also the first such ArvinMeritor
product to appear on the North American market.

The Hyundai Global Latch will be delivered alongside the highly
integrated plastic and is ArvinMeritor's next generation
corporate latch for Hyundai.  This product is an adaptable
global concept based upon robust functional modules and provides
improvements in security, weight, packaging and cost.

Both of these products will be manufactured in North America
with an initial annual volume projected to be approximately
700,000 units each.

"This new business win is another example of how ArvinMeritor is
leveraging unique integration expertise into innovative modules
and systems," said LVS vice president and general manager of
ArvinMeritor Body Systems, Aziz Aghili.  "These new developments
allow us to bring real value to exciting vehicle manufacturers
such as Hyundai, while continuing to expand our global reach and
customer base."

ArvinMeritor's LVS business group is a market leader in the
product categories it serves, supplying integrated systems and
modules to the world's leading passenger car and light truck
OEMs.  Through smart systems(TM) technologies, the intelligent
application of controls and electronics, ArvinMeritor's
traditional mechanical products are taking on new form and
function at both the component and system levels.  With advanced
technology and systems design expertise in body systems, chassis
and wheels, LVS combines high-quality components into cost-
effective, performance-based solutions for virtually every car
and light truck on the road today.

                     About ArvinMeritor

Headquartered in Troy, Michigan, ArvinMeritor, Inc. (NYSE: ARM)
-- http://www.arvinmeritor.com/-- supplies integrated systems,
modules and components to the motor vehicle industry.  The
company serves light vehicle, commercial truck, trailer and
specialty original equipment manufacturers and certain
aftermarkets.  ArvinMeritor employs about 29,000 people at more
than 120 manufacturing facilities in 25 countries.  These
countries are: China, India, Japan, Singapore, Thailand,
Australia, Venezuela, Brazil, Argentina, Belgium, Czech
Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Spain,
Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, among others.

                         *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Jan. 14, 2008, Fitch Ratings has taken these rating actions on
ArvinMeritor Inc.:

   -- Issuer Default Rating downgraded to 'B+' from 'BB-';

   -- Senior secured revolver affirmed at 'BB' and assigned
      'RR1';

   -- Senior unsecured notes affirmed at 'B+' and assigned
      'RR4'.

Fitch's rating outlook is negative.  The ratings affect
approximately US$1.1 billion of outstanding debt.


AVAYA INC: Works with Extreme Networks in Ethernet Transition
-------------------------------------------------------------
Avaya Inc. is working with its global partner Extreme Networks,
Inc. to provide a transition path for its customers who have
installed the Avaya Cajun(R) line of Ethernet switches and plan
to upgrade their converged network infrastructure.

Avaya is recommending the Extreme Networks BlackDiamond(R) and
Summit(R) Ethernet switches to its customers as the Avaya Cajun
family of switches approach end-of-sale status.  Ethernet
switches are typically used to accommodate the bandwidth
required for advanced applications in IP telephony, security and
wireless local area networks.

"Avaya has been integrating and supporting the Extreme Networks
product lines worldwide in its Intelligent Communications
solutions for more than four years," said Avaya Converged
Communications Division vice president, Simon Woollett.  "It's
only natural that Extreme would be Avaya's preferred offer for
our customers who want to transition from Avaya's Cajun
switches."

"Together, Avaya and Extreme Networks provide the right
combination of ntelligent features, performance, proven
interoperability and management integration, making for a solid
convergence solution," said Extreme Networks' Volume Products
Group vice president and general manager, Douglas Murray.  "Our
ExtremeXOS(TM) based BlackDiamond and Summit switches offer
Avaya's customers the right foundation for voice, video and
data."

Extreme Networks provides comprehensive Ethernet switching
product lines that are well proven in the market to support
Avaya's broad portfolio of communication products.  These
solutions and support services can be purchased by customers
from Avaya and its BusinessPartners in market segments that
include education, government, manufacturing, entertainment,
media, retail and financial services.

                   About Extreme Networks

Extreme Networks, Inc.  (Nasdaq: EXTR) --
http://www.extremenetworks.com-- designs, builds, and installs
Ethernet infrastructure solutions that solve the toughest
business communications challenges.  The company's commitment to
open networking sets it apart from the alternatives by
delivering meaningful insight and unprecedented control to
applications and services.  The company believes openness is the
best foundation for growth, freedom, flexibility, and choice.
Extreme Networks focuses on enterprises and service providers
who demand high performance, converged networks that support
voice, video and data, over a wired and wireless infrastructure.

                       About Avaya Inc.

Headquartered in Basking Ridge, New Jersey, Avaya Inc. (NYSE:
AV) -- http://www.avaya.com/-- designs, builds and manages
communications networks for more than one million businesses
worldwide, including more than 90% of the FORTUNE 500(R).  Avaya
is a world leader in secure and reliable Internet Protocol
telephony systems and communications software applications and
services.

Avaya has locations in Malaysia, Argentina and the United
Kingdom.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Nov. 19, 2007, Moody's Investors Service has assigned a B2
corporate family rating to newly private Avaya, Inc. as well as
Ba3 ratings to its new senior secured US$200 million revolver
and US$3.8 billion term loan.  The company was acquired by TPG
Capital LLC and Silver Lake Partners on Oct. 26, 2007 for US$8.3
billion. Moody's also withdrew the company's previous Ba3
corporate family rating and shelf ratings, which were placed
under review for downgrade after the company announced the going
private transactions.  Moody's said the outlook is stable.


BALL CORP: Reports US$281.3 Million 2007 Full Year Earnings
-----------------------------------------------------------
Ball Corporation has reported full-year 2007 net earnings of
US$281.3 million, or US$2.74 per diluted share, on sales of
US$7.39 billion, compared to US$329.6 million, or US$3.14 per
diluted share, on sales of US$6.62 billion in 2006.

Fourth quarter 2007 net earnings were US$33.3 million, or 33
cents per diluted share, on sales of US$1.76 billion, compared
to US$48.3 million, or 46 cents per diluted share, on sales of
US$1.59 billion in the fourth quarter of 2006.

In both 2007 and 2006 results included costs from business
consolidation activities and significant non-operating items.
Fourth quarter 2007 results included net after-tax costs of
approximately US$27 million, or 27 cents per diluted share, for
business consolidation primarily in the company's food and
household products packaging, Americas, segment.  Full-year 2007
results included the fourth quarter business consolidation costs
and a third quarter after-tax charge of US$51.8 million, or 50
cents per diluted share, related to a customer settlement.

Fourth quarter 2006 results included net after-tax costs of
US$20.2 million, or 19 cents per diluted share, from business
consolidation activities, reduced by a one-time tax gain.  Full-
year 2006 results included property insurance proceeds resulting
from a fire at a plant in Germany, offset by business
consolidation costs, for a net after-tax gain of US$25.6
million, or 24 cents per diluted share.

Chairperson, president and chief executive officer, R. David
Hoover said "2007 was a record year for Ball in terms of
operating results."

"On a comparable basis, our diluted earnings per share were
US$3.50 in 2007, up 21 percent from our previous record of
US$2.90 in 2006.  This came despite a difficult fourth quarter
comparison where, also on a comparable basis, we earned 60 cents
per diluted share in the period in 2007 versus 65 cents in the
fourth quarter of 2006," Mr. Hoover said.

"While we generally are pleased with our results from 2007, we
have identified and are executing on numerous initiatives that
we believe will lead to further improvements in 2008 and better
position us for the longer term," Mr. Hoover said.  "Earlier
this week our board of directors elected John A. Hayes as
executive vice president and chief operating officer of Ball
Corporation. John has done a superior job of leading our
operations in Europe in recent years.  We look forward to having
him as chief operating officer for all of our businesses."

             Metal Beverage Packaging, Americas

Metal beverage packaging, Americas, segment operating earnings
were US$213.6 million in 2007 on sales of US$2.76 billion,
including an US$85.6 million charge for a customer settlement,
compared to US$269.4 million on sales of US$2.60 billion in
2006.  For the fourth quarter, earnings were US$57.8
million on sales of US$666.6 million in 2007, compared to
US$75.9 million on sales of US$611.9 million in 2006.

"Continued strong demand for specialty size cans contributed to
overall results in our metal beverage packaging, Americas,
segment in 2007," Mr. Hoover said.  "Work is progressing on
schedule to install a new 24-ounce can production line in our
Monticello, Indiana, beverage can plant.  That capacity will
come on stream later this year to help us keep up with the
growing demand for that particular container, primarily for
energy drinks and beer."

Ball Corp.'s board of directors approved yesterday the
corporation's participation in a one-line metal beverage
container plant in southeastern Brazil.  The plant will be part
of Latapack-Ball Embalagens, Ltda., the company's 50-50 joint
venture can company in Brazil.  Its capacity will be 900 million
cans per year and can be expanded to 2 billion cans per year as
demand grows.  The plant will be financed entirely by cash flows
from the joint venture, and production is expected to begin in
mid-2009.

            Metal Beverage Packaging, Europe/Asia

Metal beverage packaging, Europe/Asia, segment results in 2007
were operating earnings of US$256.1 million on sales of US$1.9
billion, compared to US$268.7 million on sales of US$1.51
billion in 2006, which included a pre-tax property insurance
gain of US$75.5 million related to a fire in a German
plant.  For the fourth quarter, operating earnings in 2007 were
US$37.6 million on sales of US$455.5 million, compared to US$33
million on sales of US$352.6 million in the fourth quarter of
2006.

Ball Corp. announced today plans to build a new beverage can
manufacturing plant in Poland in order to meet the rapidly
growing demand for beverage cans there and elsewhere in Central
and Eastern Europe.  The plant will be built in Lublin, near the
borders of Belarus and Ukraine.  It will initially have one
production line with an annual capacity of approximately 750
million cans per year and is expected to begin production in the
first half of 2009.

"Our metal beverage packaging, Europe/Asia, segment had a strong
2007, with improved results throughout Europe and in China, and
we have numerous growth opportunities," Mr. Hoover said.  "We
currently are speeding up certain production lines in Germany
and Poland in advance of the busy 2008 summer selling season.
In addition, during the fourth quarter of 2007 we announced
plans for a beverage can plant in India that will use existing
manufacturing equipment."

     Metal Food & Household Products Packaging, Americas

Metal food and household products packaging, Americas, segment
results for 2007 were a loss of US$8 million on sales of US$1.18
billion, including business consolidation costs of US$44.2
million, compared to US$2.4 million on sales of US$1.14 billion
in 2006.  For the fourth quarter of 2007, segment results were a
loss of US$33.4 million on sales of US$271.1 million, compared
to a loss of US$23.2 million on sales of US$288.1 million in the
same period of 2006.  The fourth quarter and full-year 2007
results included business consolidation costs of US$44.2
million.  The fourth quarter and full-year 2006 results include
business consolidation costs of US$33.8 million and US$35.5
million, respectively.

"Work has begun on the further restructuring announced early in
the fourth quarter of our metal food and household products
packaging, Americas, segment," Mr. Hoover said.  "The
restructuring plan includes closing aerosol can production
plants in California and Georgia and exiting the custom and
decorative tinplate can business.  Even though the anticipated
annualized cost savings of US$15 million from this restructuring
are not expected until 2009, we believe other improvements we
have already made and continue to make in pricing and operating
efficiencies will lead to much improved performance in this
segment in 2008."

                 Plastic Packaging, Americas

Plastic packaging, Americas, segment results for 2007 were
operating earnings of US$25.9 million on sales of US$752.4
million, compared to US$28.3 million on sales of US$693.6
million in 2006.  For the fourth quarter, earnings in 2007 were
US$8.8 million on sales of US$172.1 million, compared to US$10
million on sales of US$172.6 million for the same period in
2006.

"Plastic packaging, Americas, segment results were down slightly
in 2007 from 2006 and are at unacceptable levels," Mr. Hoover
said.  "We will continue to emphasize our heat set and other
higher margin plastic containers while pursuing price increases
for commodity plastic containers for water and carbonated soft
drinks, where returns are well below our cost of capital and
must improve."

                 Aerospace and Technologies

Aerospace and Technologies segment results were operating
earnings of US$64.6 million on sales of US$787.8 million in
2007, compared to US$50 million on sales of US$672.3 million in
2006.  For the fourth quarter, earnings were US$11.1 million on
sales of US$190.9.  Fourth quarter 2006 earnings were US$16.7
million on sales of US$166.6 million.

"Our aerospace and technologies segment enjoyed an outstanding
year in 2007, even though fourth quarter results were down from
a year ago," Mr. Hoover said.  "We have several large projects,
such as the WorldView 2 satellite for DigitalGlobe, in progress
and are competing for several other large contracts. The market
continues to hold strong demand for the products and
technologies for which we are most recognized."

                           Outlook

Raymond J. Seabrook, executive vice president and chief
financial officer, said adjusted free cash flow for 2007 was
US$440 million and that 2008 free cash flow will be lower due to
higher cash taxes, a one-time after-tax payment of US$42 million
for the customer settlement reached in the third quarter of 2007
and higher 2008 capital expenditures, offset partially by a
reduction in working capital.

"In part due to lower than expected capital expenditures in 2007
which will be spent in 2008, and due to growth projects in the
company's worldwide beverage can business, we expect capital
spending to exceed US$300 million in 2008," Mr. Seabrook said.
"Approximately 75 percent of our anticipated capital spending
will be in our beverage can segments, with more than US$150
million of the total earmarked for top-line growth projects.
Cost reduction and maintenance capital spending for the total
company should be approximately 60 percent of overall
depreciation.

"Our credit profile remains strong with net debt at the end of
2007 at US$2.2 billion.  This strong credit profile should allow
us to repurchase approximately US$300 million of our common
stock in 2008, including the accelerated share buyback program
we announced in December," Mr. Seabrook said.

"We are optimistic about 2008," Mr. Hoover said.  "We are
focused on getting results in our food and household products
packaging and plastic packaging segments to more acceptable
levels.

"We have attractive opportunities for growth in our beverage can
operations worldwide, and much of our capital spending will be
directed at these opportunities.  Our aerospace and technologies
segment is coming off of a remarkable record year that will be
difficult to duplicate, but results in 2008 should remain
strong," Mr. Hoover said.

"For full year 2008 we will work hard to achieve greater than
the US$3.50 per diluted share we made in 2007, excluding
restructuring and customer settlement costs," Mr. Hoover said.

                      About Ball Corp.

Headquartered in Broomfield, Colorado, Ball Corp. --
http://www.ball.com/-- is a supplier of high-quality metal and
plastic packaging products.  It owns Ball Aerospace &
Technologies Corp. -- a developer of sensors, spacecraft,
systems and components for government and commercial customers.
Ball Corp. reported sales of US$7.4 billion in 2007 and the
company employs about 15,500 people worldwide, including
Argentina, Hong Kong and China.

                        *     *     *

As of July 30, 2007, the company holds Moody's Ba1 long-term
corporate family rating, bank loan debt, senior unsecured debt,
and probability of default rating.  Moody's said the outlook is
stable.

Standard & Poor's rates the company's long-term foreign and
local issuer credits at BB+ with a stable outlook.

Fitch also rates the company's bank loan debt at BB+ and long-
term issuer default rating and senior unsecured debt at BB.
Fitch said the outlook is stable.


BRANDO HERMANOS: Proofs of Claim Verification Ends on March 12
--------------------------------------------------------------
Mirta A. Calfun de Bendersky, the court-appointed trustee for
Brando Hermanos S.A.'s bankruptcy proceeding, verifies
creditors' proofs of claim until March 12, 2008.

Ms. Calfun de Bendersky will present the validated claims in
court as individual reports on April 23, 2008.  The National
Commercial Court of First Instance in Buenos Aires will
determine if the verified claims are admissible, taking into
account the trustee's opinion, and the objections and challenges
that 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 Brando Hermanos and its
creditors.

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

A general report that contains an audit of Brando Hermanos'
accounting and banking records will be submitted in court on
June 4, 2008.

Ms. Calfun de Bendersky is also in charge of administering
Brando Hermanos' assets under court supervision and will take
part in their disposal to the extent established by law.

The trustee can be reached at:

         Mirta A. Calfun de Bendersky
         Avenida Santa Fe 2521
         Buenos Aires, Argentina


GETTY IMAGES: S&P Affirms BB Corp. Credit Rating; Outlook Neg.
--------------------------------------------------------------
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services has affirmed its ratings and
outlook on Seattle, Washington-based visual imagery company
Getty Images Inc., including its 'BB' corporate credit rating,
following the company's announcement that it is exploring
strategic alternatives.  The outlook is negative.

"We believe that a sale of the company could potentially result
in a weakened credit profile, but that current unfavorable
economic and credit market conditions suggest a lower
probability of a transaction within the next three months," said
S&P's credit analyst Tulip Lim.

The ratings on Getty Images reflect risks related to its limited
business diversity, its reliance on sales to the cyclical
advertising and publishing industries, the trend of organic
revenue decline, and secular pressures related to the
unfavorable economics of digital migration.  The company's good
competitive position in the niche market for generic (or stock)
visual imagery, solid discretionary cash flow generation, and
low leverage partially offset these risks.

Headquartered in Seattle, Washington, Getty Images, Inc. --
http://corporate.gettyimages.com/-- creates and distributes
visual content.  The company has corporate offices in Australia,
the United Kingdom and Argentina.


SUN MICROSYSTEMS: Earns US$260 Mil. in Second Qtr. Ended Dec. 30
----------------------------------------------------------------
Sun Microsystems, Inc., reported results for its fiscal second
quarter, which ended Dec. 30, 2007.

Revenues for the second quarter of fiscal 2008 were US$3.615
billion, an increase of approximately 1.4 percent as compared
with US$3.566 billion for the second quarter of fiscal 2007.
Total gross margin as a percent of revenues was 48.5, an
increase of 3.5 percentage points, as compared with the second
quarter of fiscal 2007.

Net income for the second quarter of fiscal 2008 on a GAAP basis
was US$260 million, as compared with a net income of US$133
million, for the second quarter of fiscal 2007.  GAAP net income
for the second quarter of fiscal 2008 included a US$32 million
restructuring charge.

Cash generated from operations for the second quarter of fiscal
2008 was US$336 million, and the cash and marketable debt
securities balance at the end of the quarter was US$4.677
billion.

"Today's results clearly demonstrate steady progress against our
financial targets and highlight the accelerating demand set to
fuel growth in the back half of the fiscal year," said Jonathan
Schwartz, Chief Executive Officer of Sun Microsystems.
"Headlining the results were improved margins and strong
bookings along with double digit growth in emerging markets
including India, China, Latin America, Eastern Europe, the
Middle East and Africa.  Adding to the momentum were the
SolarisTM Operating System OEM agreement with Dell and our
introduction of the industry's first open source datacenter
virtualization and management platform, Sun xVM."

Headquartered in Santa Clara, California, Sun Microsystems Inc.
(NASDAQ: SUNW) -- http://www.sun.com/-- provides network
computing infrastructure solutions that include computer
systems, data management, support services and client solutions
and educational services.  It sells networking solutions,
including products and services, in most major markets worldwide
through a combination of direct and indirect channels.

Sun Microsystems conducts business in 100 countries around the
globe, including Brazil, Argentina, India, Hungary, United
Kingdom, Singapore, among others.

                        *     *     *

Sun Microsystems Inc. carries Moody's "Ba1" probability of
default and long-term corporate family ratings with a stable
outlook.  The ratings were placed on Sept. 22, 2006, and
Sept. 22, 2005, respectively.

Sun Microsystems also carries Standard & Poor's "BB+" long-term
foreign and local issuer credit ratings, which were placed on
March 5, 2004, with a stable outlook.


TENNECO INC: Incurs US$72 Million 2007 Fourth Quarter Net Loss
--------------------------------------------------------------
Tenneco has reported a fourth quarter net loss of US$72 million,
or US$1.57 per diluted share, versus net income of US$15
million, or 31-cents per diluted share in fourth quarter 2006.
The loss was due to previously announced charges taken in the
fourth quarter for actions that advance the company's financial
strategy.  These include costs for refinancing a portion of the
company's debt, which will reduce interest expense, and non-cash
tax charges for realigning the European ownership structure,
which more effectively aligns the company's American and
European assets and revenues with liabilities and expenses.
This action will reduce cash taxes and accelerates the use of
United States net operating losses.

Based in Lake Forest, Illinois, Tenneco Inc., (NYSE: TEN) --
http://www.tenneco.com/-- manufactures automotive ride and
emissions control products and systems for both the original
equipment market and aftermarket.  Brands include Monroe(R),
Rancho(R), and Fric Rot ride control products and Walker(R) and
Gillet emission control products.  The company has operations in
Argentina, Japan, and Germany, with its European operations
headquartered in Brussels, Belgium.  The company has
approximately 19,000 employees worldwide.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Nov. 6, 2007, Fitch Ratings assigned a rating of 'BB-' to
Tenneco Inc.'s new senior unsecured notes due 2015.  The new
notes replace a portion of the company's existing US$475 million
in 10.25% senior secured second-lien notes for which the company
is tendering.  Fitch said the rating outlook is positive.




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


VIVUS INT'L: Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline Is Feb. 8
------------------------------------------------------
Vivus International Limited's creditors are given until
Feb. 8, 2008, to prove their claims to Mike Morrison, 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.

Vivus International's shareholders agreed on Jan. 10, 2007, to
place the company into voluntary liquidation under Bermuda's
Companies Act 1981.

The liquidator can be reached at:

         Mike Morrison
         KPMG Advisory Limited
         Crown House, 4 Par-la-Ville Road
         Hamilton, HM 08, Bermuda




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


BANCO NACIONAL: Okays BRL79.6-Million Loan for Cemar
----------------------------------------------------
Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Economico e Social said in a
statement that it has authorized a BRL79.6 million loan for
power distributor Companhia Energetica do Maranhao aka Cemar.

Banco Nacional told Business News Americas that Cemar will use
the proceeds to increase its distribution network and boost the
quality of its operational standards to lessen power theft.

According to BNamericas, Banco Nacional will lend Cemar about
60% of the project's BRL133 million total value.

Banco Nacional told BNamericas that Cemar will borrow the money
through Brazilian bank Unibanco, which will redirect the loan.

Cemar wanted to lessen power losses to 29.1% by the end of 2007
from 29.9% in 2004.  It wants to further decrease losses to
26.1% in 2010, BNamericas says, citing Banco Nacional.

                         About Cemar

Companhia Energetica do Maranhao aka Cemar is the electricity
distribution company operating in the state of Maranhao in
northeast Brazil.  Cemar currently serves 1.4 million customers
in its 333,366-square-kilometer concession area.

                     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.

                        *     *     *

Banco Nacional currently carries a Ba2 foreign long-term bank
deposit rating from Moody's, and a BB+ long-term foreign issuer
credit rating from Standards and Poor's.  The ratings were
assigned in August and May 2007, respectively.


BANCO PATAGONIA: Names UBS Pactual as Market Maker
--------------------------------------------------
Banco Patagonia said in a statement that it has hired investment
bank UBS Pactual as market maker to handle Brazilian depositary
receipts on the Sao Paulo stock exchange Bovespa.

Business News Americas relates that Banco Patagonia conducted an
initial public offering on the Buenos Aires, Sao Paulo and New
York stock exchanges in July 2007.  It raised US$255 million.

Meanwhile, Banco Patagonia said in the filing that it placed a
new ARS34.6-million securitization.

Banco Patagonia told BNamericas that investor demand for the
Ribeiro XXI securitization totaled ARS106 million, about 3.61
times the amount initially offered.

The securities were placed at a rate of 12.99%.  They mature
have a 3.87-month duration, BNamericas states.

Banco Patagonia specializes in public offerings of
securitizations.  It became Argentina's fifth largest locally
owned private bank through its purchase of Lloyds TSB Argentina
in late 2004.  The bank operates through 139 branches and has
202 ATM machines.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
May 4, 2007, Moody's Investors Service upgraded Banco Patagonia
SA's local currency deposit rating is upgraded to Ba1 from Ba3.
Moody's confirmed that it raised its bank financial strength
rating on Banco Patagonia to D from E+, in connection with the
rating agency's implementation of its refined joint default
analysis and updated BFSR methodologies for banks in Argentina.
Its foreign currency deposit rating was affirmed at Caa1, with
positive outlook.  The company's long-term Argentine national
scale rating for local currency deposits is raised to Aa1.ar
from Aa2.ar. and its long term foreign currency deposit rating
in national scale was affirmed at Ba1.ar.  The foreign currency
subordinated debt rating was upgraded to B2 from Caa1.  The
outlook on the debt rating was positive.  The national scale
rating for foreign currency subordinated debt was raised to
Aa3.ar from Ba1.ar.


BRASIL TELECOM: Investors to Swap Shares with Telemar Holders
-------------------------------------------------------------
Romina Nicaretta at Bloomberg News reports that holders of
Telemar Norte Leste SA and Brasil Telecom SA's shares plan to
swap stakes in what may be the precursor to a merger of the two
telecom companies.

According to the same report, the planned exchange was disclosed
in a regulatory filing on Jan. 23 by holding companies Zain
Participacoes SA and Argolis Participacoes SA.

Bloomberg suggests that this latest development could eventually
lead to Telemar's buyout of Brasil Telecom.  The same report
said that Telemar's shareholders confirmed Jan. 10 that they are
indeed in talks to acquire Brasil Telecom.

Brasil Telecom denies this market speculation.  In regulatory
filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission dated
Jan. 9 and Jan. 18, Brasil Telecom said that Zain Participacoes,
one of its controlling companies, has clarified that it has not
entered into a merger or sale talks with Oi, "not even on a
preliminary nature."

Business News Americas previously reported that Oi has offered
BRL4.8 billion to buy Solpart, one of the controlling companies
of Brasil Telecom.  Zain owns 68% of Solpart, while the latter
has 51% of Brasil Telecom.

Meanwhile, if a merger would result between the two telecom
companies, antitrust laws might be violated.  But Brazilian
Communications Minister Helio Costa told Valor Economico that
the law cound be amended in order to facilitate such a merger.
Analysts said in different reports that the likely merger would
get government's supports because it would prevent other foreign
telecom companies, like Mexico's Telmex or Spain's Telefonica,
to control the local market.

                      About Telemar Norte

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.

                     About Brasil Telecom

Headquartered in Brasilia, Brazil, Brasil Telecom Participacoes
SA -- http://www.brasiltelecom.com.br-- is a holding company
that conducts substantially all of its operations through its
wholly owned subsidiary, Brasil Telecom SA.  The fixed-line
telecommunications services offered to the company's customers
include local services, including all calls that originate and
terminate within a single local area in the region, as well as
installation, monthly subscription, measured services, public
telephones and supplemental local services; intra-regional long-
distance services, which include intrastate and interstate
calls; interregional and international long-distance services;
network services, including interconnection and leasing; data
transmission services; wireless services, and other services.


                        *     *     *

To date, Brasil Telecom carries Moody's Investors Service's Ba1
senior unsecured and credit default swap ratings.


COMPANHIA ENERGETICA: Sao Paulo Opens Data Room for Stake Sale
--------------------------------------------------------------
Companhia Energetica de Sao Paulo said in a statement that the
Sao Paulo state government has opened the data room for the sale
of its 33.37% controlling stake in the firm.

Business News Americas relates that the state hasn't decided on
the date for the auction of the stake.  However, the auction is
expected in the first quarter of 2008.

According to the press, the 33.37% stake could be sold for as
much as BRL7 billion.

Sao Paulo governor Jose Serra told state newswire Agencia Estado
that the value is wrong and that it is not an official estimate.

Headquartered in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Companhia Energetica de Sao
Paulo (BOVESPA: CESP3, CESP5 and CESP6) is the country's third
largest power generator, majority owned by the State of Sao
Paulo.  CESP operates 6 hydroelectric plants with total
installed capacity of 7,456 MW and reported net revenues of
BRL1,983 million in the last twelve months through
Sept. 30, 2006.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Oct. 10, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services has raised its
ratings on electricity generator Companhia Energetica de Sao
Paulo, including its corporate credit rating to 'B' from 'B-'.
At the same time, S&P raised its Brazil national scale ratings
on CESP to 'brBBB-' from 'brBB'.  S&P said the outlook remains
positive on both scales.


EMBRATEL PARTICIPACOES: Carlos Moreira Leaving CEO Post
-------------------------------------------------------
Embratel Participacoes said in a statement that Carlos Henrique
Moreira is resigning as its chief executive officer.

Mr. Moreira told news daily Valor Economico that he had been
wanting to leave the post since 2006 to have more personal time.

Business News Americas relates that Mr. Moreira will remain in
Embratel Participacoes as its chairperson and its representative
on the boards of Brazil's largest pay television provider Net
Servicos and satellite unit Star One.

Embratel Participacoes Mexican executive Jose Formoso Martinez
has replaced Mr. Moreira, BNamericas says.  Mr. Martinez is an
engineer and had been general director at Mexican cable operator
Cablevision, Guatemalan operator Telgua, El Salvadorian operator
Telecom and Nicaraguan operator PCS.

Mr. Martinez was already sharing the chief executive position
with Mr. Moreira, BNamericas states.

Embratel Participacoes SA offers a range of complete
telecommunications solutions to the market all over Brazil,
including local, long distance domestic and international
telephone services, data, video and Internet transmission, and
is present all over the country with its satellite solutions.
Embratel is the market leader in revenues with Long Distance,
Domestic and International calls.

Embratel Participacoes is rated by Moody's:

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


EMI GROUP: Chairman Tables Bid for Chrysalis Group
--------------------------------------------------
EMI Group Plc chairman Guy Hands made a bid for Chrysalis Group
Plc following Chrysalis founder Chris Wright's decision to carry
out a review of the business that might lead to its sale, The
Times reports.

According to the report, Mr. Hands' competitors for Chrysalis
are Warner Chappell and Sony/ATV, which also tabled an offer
through Chrysalis' adviser Jefferies International.

FT relates that private equity funds Saban Capital Group, GTCR
Golder Rauner and Apollo Management, and music publishing
specialists Primary Wave and Cherry Lane have also shown
interest in Chrysalis.

FT said analysts valued the Chrysalis group at more than GBP150
million.

Headquartered in London, England, The Chrysalis Group --
http://www.chrysalis.com/-- is an independent music company.
It is comprised of Chrysalis Music and CD distribution Lasgo
Chrysalis.  On July 31, 2007, the company completed the sale of
Chrysalis Radio for GBP170 million to Global Radio.

                         About EMI

Headquartered in London, United Kingdom, EMI Group PLC --
http://www.emigroup.com/-- is the world's largest independent
music company, operating directly in 50 countries and with
licensees in a further 20.  The group has operations in Brazil,
China, and Hungary.  The group employs over 6,600 people.
Revenues in 2005 were near EUR2 billion and operating profit
generated was over EUR225 million.

EMI Group's consolidated balance sheet for the fiscal year ended
March 31, 2007, showed GBP1.498 billion in total assets,
GBP2.649 billion in total liabilities and GBP1.151 billion in
shareholders' deficit.

The company issued two profit warnings since January 2007.


FIAT SPA: Moody's Affirms Ba1 Corp. Family Rating; Outlook Pos.
---------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service has affirmed Fiat SpA's Ba1 Corporate
Family Rating, and the group's other long-term senior unsecured
ratings.  At the same time, the positive outlook was maintained.
The short term Not Prime rating remains unchanged.

Moody's Senior Vice President and the lead analyst for the
European automotive sector, Falk Frey said:  "In 2007 Fiat
continued on its successful path towards a sustainable recovery
of its financial profile mainly driven by further operating
improvements at Fiat Group Automobiles but also higher
contributions from all other industrial businesses in particular
Iveco and CNH.  This strong performance of Fiat is very much in
line with Moody's expectations of late August when we changed
our outlook to positive on the rating"

Mr. Frey went on to say, "Moody's believes that 2008 might be
more challenging for Fiat, as a weakness in the overall economy
and the strengthening competitive landscape could slow down the
strong growth observed in the last few years.  Should Fiat be
able to sustain its market share performance achieved in Europe
last year also during 2008 while at least consolidating the
level of operating profitability reached in 2007, the ratings
could be upgraded to investment grade over the next 6 to 12
months."

Moody's says that the positive outlook is based on the
expectation that the company is well positioned to sustain the
current momentum, benefiting from (i) the strong demand of the
Fiat 500 launched in Q3 2007, (ii) a gradual overhaul of its
Alfa Romeo and Lancia models, (iii) an ongoing improvement of
Fiat Group Automobiles' dealer network as well as (iv) ongoing
efficiency gains.  Moody's nonetheless notes that company's
performance may no longer be aided by the favourable 2007
environment, notably in the company's core markets, but that the
heavy restructuring engaged by the company in the past years
should mitigate this possible headwind.

As Moody's outlined in its last press release dated
Aug. 22, 2007, the possibility of another positive rating change
as indicated by the positive outlook would be mainly dependent
on Fiat's ability to demonstrate the robustness of its current
business model in a more challenging market environment in 2008.
Among those challenges are Fiat's ability (i) to maintain
positive market share trend in Western Europe and Latin America,
Fiat's principal markets and (ii) to further solidify the
profitability and cash flows which will be necessary to fund
rising capital expenditure needs in order to keep a robust and
steady renewal rate.  In Moody's view, this sustained
development is a key factor to sustain the regained strength in
the company's competitive position and a factor where Fiat has
to close the gap compared to its direct peers.  A successful
execution of these challenges should go in line with a
trajectory of credit metrics towards RCF/Net debt above 50%,
which is one of the metrics expected from Baa Automotive
credits.

Moody's last rating action on Fiat SpA was an upgrade of the
Corporate Family Rating to Ba1 with a positive outlook from Ba2
on Aug. 22, 2007.

                      About Fiat S.p.A.

Headquartered in Turin, Italy, Fiat S.p.A. --
http://www.fiatgroup.com/-- manufactures and sells automobiles,
commercial vehicles, and agricultural and construction
equipment.  It also manufactures, for use by the company's
automotive sectors and for sale to third parties, other
automotive-related products and systems, principally power
trains (engines and transmissions), components, metallurgical
products and production systems.  Fiat's creditors include Banca
Intesa, Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena, Banca Nazionale del
Lavoro, Capitalia, Sanpaolo IMI, and UniCredito Italiano.

Fiat operates in Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil,
Bulgaria, China, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany,
Greece, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Lituania,
Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Singapore,
Spain, among others.


GENERAL MOTORS: IUE-CWA Retirees to Get Belated Christmas Bonus
---------------------------------------------------------------
General Motors Corp. has finally agreed to pay IUE-CWA retirees
their Christmas bonus despite the fact that the Division has not
yet inked a new contract with the automaker, according to a
press release from the union.  The decision comes after a great
deal of pressure from the union and its retirees, who rely on
the payment to help cover holiday expenses.

"We are pleased the GM has recognized the hardship the delay in
this payment has placed on our retirees," IUE-CWA President Jim
Clark said.  "We have serious obstacles in reaching terms for
our active employees, but retirees should not be held hostage to
that process."

Payments will be made on or around March 17 to eligible IUE-CWA
retirees.  This includes both traditional IUE-CWA GM retirees
and eligible IUE-CWA Delphi "covered employees" who retired
after Jan. 1, 2000.  That covers, for example, those from Delphi
who "checked the box" to be covered by GM and Delphi retirees
who were extended GM coverage as part of the bankruptcy contract
settlement.

Payments will be US$700 for eligible retirees.  Eligible IUE-CWA
surviving spouses will receive 65% of that amount, or US$455.
The bonus will be cut in half for any eligible retiree with an
outstanding disability overpayment.  Payments to eligible
retirees or surviving spouses retired from Delphi will be pro-
rated based on the ratio of GM credited service.

"This agreement goes a long way to demonstrating good faith for
both parties," Automotive Conference Board Chairman Willie
Thorpe said.  "We can now focus on securing both a contract and
a long-term future for our members at Moraine."

                          About GM

Headquartered in Detroit, Michigan, General Motors Corp. (NYSE:
GM) -- http://www.gm.com/-- was founded in 1908.  GM employs
about 280,000 people around the world and manufactures cars and
trucks in 33 countries, including the United Kingdom, Germany,
France, Russia, Brazil and India.  In 2006, nearly 9.1 million
GM cars and trucks were sold globally under the following
brands:Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden,
HUMMER, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn and Vauxhall.  GM's OnStar
subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security
and information services.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Nov. 9, 2007, Moody's Investors Service affirmed its rating for
General Motors Corporation (B3 Corporate Family Rating, Ba3
senior secured, Caa1 senior unsecured and SGL-1 Speculative
Grade Liquidity rating) but changed the outlook to Stable from
Positive.  In an environment of weakening prospects for US auto
sales GM has announced that it will take a non-cash charge of
US$39 billion for the third quarter of 2007 related to
establishing a valuation allowance against its deferred tax
assets (DTAs) in the US, Canada and Germany.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Oct. 23, 2007,
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services affirmed its 'B' corporate
credit rating and other ratings on General Motors Corp. and
removed them from CreditWatch with positive implications, where
they were placed Sept. 26, 2007, following agreement on the new
labor contract.  S&P said the outlook is stable.


GERDAU AMERISTEEL: Expanding Jacksonville Mill Rolling Capacity
---------------------------------------------------------------
Gerdau Ameristeel told Business News Americas that it will
increase rolling capacity at Jacksonville Steel Mill, its mill
in Florida, to one million tons by 2010.

Gerdau Ameristeel said in a statement that Gerdau Ameristeel
wants to add 400,000 tons of rolling capacity at the
Jacksonville Steel Mill to match its recently expanded melting
capacity.  The mill primarily makes rebar and wire rod.

Headquartered in Tampa, Florida, Gerdau Ameristeel Corporation
(NYSE: GNA; TSX: GNA.TO) -- http://www.ameristeel.com/-- is a
mini-mill steel producer in North America.  Through its
vertically integrated network of 17 mini-mills, 17 scrap
recycling facilities and 52 downstream operations, Gerdau
Ameristeel serves customers throughout North America.  The
company's products are sold to steel service centers, steel
fabricators, or directly to original equipment manufactures for
use in a variety of industries, including construction, cellular
and electrical transmission, automotive, mining and equipment
manufacturing.  Gerdau Ameristeel is a unit of Brazilian firm
Gerdau SA.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Nov. 26, 2007,
Moody's Investors Service affirmed Gerdau S.A.'s Ba1 corporate
family rating and stable outlook, following the announcement of
an agreement to acquire the specialty steel operations of Quanex
Corporation, mainly represented by its MacSteel division for
some US$1.46 billion in cash. All other ratings related to the
company were affirmed.

Ratings affirmed are:

Issuer: Gerdau S.A.

-- Ba1 Global Local Currency Corporate Family Rating

-- US$600 million Senior Unsecured Guaranteed Perpetual Notes:
    Ba1 Foreign Currency Rating

Issuer: Gerdau Brazil (fictitious entity representing the
Brazilian operations of Gerdau S.A. comprising Gerdau Acominas
S.A., Gerdau Acos Longos S.A., Gerdau Acos Especiais S.A., and
Gerdau Comercial de Acos S.A.).

-- Ba1 Global Local Currency Corporate Family Rating

Issuer: Gerdau Ameristeel Corporation

-- Ba1 Probability of Default Rating
-- Ba1 Corporate Family Rating
-- US$405 million Senior Unsecured Regular Bond: Ba1, LGD4 59%

Issuer: Jacksonville Economic Development Comm.

-- US$23 million Senior Unsecured Revenue Bonds guaranteed by
    Gerdau Ameristeel: Ba1, LGD4 59%

Outlook for all ratings: stable


GERDAU SA: Chaparral Steel Acquisition Is Biggest Takeover Deal
---------------------------------------------------------------
PricewaterhouseCoopers said in a report that Gerdau SA's
acquisition of US firm Chaparral Steel was the biggest takeover
transaction by a Brazilian company last year.

Business News Americas relates that Gerdau unit Gerdau
Ameristeel closed the deal to buy Chaparral Steel for US$4.22
billion in September 2007.

Meanwhile, Gerdau's accord to buy US-based Quanex Corp.'s steel
mill operation Macsteel for US$1.70 billion was also listed in
the 2007 ranking.

According to PricewterhouseCoopers' report, Gerdau also figures
among the Brazilian companies that conducted 10 or more mergers
or acquisitions last year.

Headquartered in Porto Alegre, Brazil, Gerdau SA
-- http://www.gerdau.com.br/-- produces and distributes crude
steel and related long rolled products, drawn products, and long
specialty products.  In addition to Brazil, Gerdau operates in
Argentina, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Uruguay, India and the
United States.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Nov. 26, 2007, Moody's Investors Service affirmed Gerdau S.A.'s
Ba1 corporate family rating and stable outlook, following the
announcement of an agreement to acquire the specialty steel
operations of Quanex Corporation, mainly represented by its
MacSteel division for some US$1.46 billion in cash.  All other
ratings related to the company were affirmed.

Ratings affirmed are:

Issuer: Gerdau S.A.

-- Ba1 Global Local Currency Corporate Family Rating

-- US$600 million Senior Unsecured Guaranteed Perpetual Notes:
    Ba1 Foreign Currency Rating

Issuer: Gerdau Brazil (fictitious entity representing the
Brazilian operations of Gerdau S.A. comprising Gerdau Acominas
S.A., Gerdau Acos Longos S.A., Gerdau Acos Especiais S.A., and
Gerdau Comercial de Acos S.A.).

-- Ba1 Global Local Currency Corporate Family Rating

Issuer: Gerdau Ameristeel Corporation

-- Ba1 Probability of Default Rating
-- Ba1 Corporate Family Rating
-- US$405 million Senior Unsecured Regular Bond: Ba1, LGD4 59%

Issuer: Jacksonville Economic Development Comm.

-- US$23 million Senior Unsecured Revenue Bonds guaranteed by
   Gerdau Ameristeel: Ba1, LGD4 59%

Outlook for all ratings: stable


HEXCEL CORP: Net Income Down to US$13-Million in Fourth Quarter
---------------------------------------------------------------
Hexcel Corporation reported results for the fourth quarter and
full year of 2007.  Net sales from continuing operations during
the quarter were US$317.6 million, 20.8% higher than the
US$262.9 million reported for the fourth quarter of 2006.
Related operating income for the fourth quarter was US$20.8
million, compared to US$17.5 million for the same quarter last
year.

Included within the 2007 operating income figure is US$9.4
million of pension settlement expense associated with the
termination of Hexcel's U.S. defined benefit pension plan and
US$3.2 million of impairment costs on certain purchased
technology and fixed assets, incurred as part of its portfolio
realignment.  Net income from continuing operations for the
fourth quarter of 2007 was US$13.0 million compared to US$17.7
million in 2006.  Net income from continuing operations for the
fourth quarter of 2007 was US$0.20 per share excluding one-time
items of the termination of Hexcel's U.S. defined pension plan,
the impairment costs and favorable tax adjustments.  Net income
for the fourth quarter of 2006 included the benefit from an
after-tax gain of US$9.6 million on the sale of a joint venture
interest.  Adjusted net income in the fourth quarter of 2006 was
US$6.9 million.

Chief Executive Officer David E. Berges commented, "This was a
very good closing quarter to a successful year of significant
transition for Hexcel.  Fourth quarter sales were at record
levels, led by the extremely strong growth in revenues from
aerospace (both commercial and defense) and assisted by strong
sales in the wind energy markets.  Our diluted earnings per
share for the quarter were a solid US$0.20 excluding the one-
time items, as compared to US$0.08 last year."

"For the year, we not only met all of our financial targets, we
accomplished or made great progress on all of our strategic
goals.  Our portfolio realignment is now complete and has
resulted in a more focused Company with better long-term growth
prospects.  Over 80% of our markets and submarkets delivered
double digit growth this year and have the potential to continue
doing so for years to come.  Our restructuring programs have
resulted in a single, lean entity, down from three business
units in 2005.  Our capacity expansion programs are all on
track, new product introductions are being embraced and we are
well positioned for the A350XWB."

"Despite the distractions presented by the restructuring and
business sale transactions, we are pleased with our financial
progress, particularly in the second half.  Adjusted operating
income margin was up for the fourth year in a row, at 11.5% of
sales, 40 basis points better than 2006, despite 30 basis points
of compression from exchange rates.  We have also achieved our
longstanding goal of reducing our net debt to EBITDA leverage
ratio below two times."

"As described in our 2008 Outlook, published in December 2007,
we expect the good growth trends to continue through at least
the next three years, thanks to sustained increases in wind
energy markets and in aircraft production, plus incremental new
programs from customers such as at Airbus, Boeing and USEC.  We
expect continued improvement of our financial performance.
While the impact of the recently announced delays of the 787
have not yet been determined, we are targeting to offset any
negative effects and do not expect it to cause a change in our
2008 earnings outlook of US$0.90 to US$0.95 per diluted share."

                     About Hexcel Corp.

Headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut, Hexcel Corporation
(NYSE: HXL) -- http://www.hexcel.com/-- is an advanced
structural materials company.  It develops, manufactures and
markets lightweight, high-performance structural materials,
including carbon fibers, reinforcements, prepregs, honeycomb,
matrix systems, adhesives and composite structures, used in
commercial aerospace, space and defense and industrial
applications.

The company has operations in Australia, Brazil, China, France
and Japan, among others.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on April 5, 2007,
Moody's Investors Service has raised the ratings of Hexcel
Corporation, Corporate Family Rating to Ba3 from B1.  The
ratings on Hexcel's senior secured credit facility have been
upgraded to Ba1 from Ba2, while the subordinated notes ratings
were upgraded to B1 from B3.  Moody's said the ratings outlook
is stable.


TELE NORTE: Investors to Swap Shares with Brasil Telecom Holders
----------------------------------------------------------------
Romina Nicaretta at Bloomberg News reports that holders of
Telemar Norte Leste SA and Brasil Telecom SA's shares plan to
swap stakes in what may be the precursor to a merger of the two
telecom companies.

According to the same report, the planned exchange was disclosed
in a regulatory filing on Jan. 23 by holding companies Zain
Participacoes SA and Argolis Participacoes SA.

Bloomberg suggests that this latest development could eventually
lead to Telemar's buyout of Brasil Telecom.  The same report
said that Telemar's shareholders confirmed Jan. 10 that they are
indeed in talks to acquire Brasil Telecom.

Brasil Telecom denies this market speculation.  In regulatory
filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission dated
Jan. 9 and Jan. 18, Brasil Telecom said that Zain Participacoes,
one of its controlling companies, has clarified that it has not
entered into a merger or sale talks with Oi, "not even on a
preliminary nature."

Business News Americas previously reported that Oi has offered
BRL4.8 billion to buy Solpart, one of the controlling companies
of Brasil Telecom.  Zain owns 68% of Solpart, while the latter
has 51% of Brasil Telecom.

Meanwhile, if a merger would result between the two telecom
companies, antitrust laws might be violated.  But Brazilian
Communications Minister Helio Costa told Valor Economico that
the law cound be amended in order to facilitate such a merger.
Analysts said in different reports that the likely merger would
get government's supports because it would prevent other foreign
telecom companies, like Mexico's Telmex or Spain's Telefonica,
to control the local market.

                    About Brasil Telecom

Headquartered in Brasilia, Brazil, Brasil Telecom Participacoes
SA -- http://www.brasiltelecom.com.br-- is a holding company
that conducts substantially all of its operations through its
wholly owned subsidiary, Brasil Telecom SA.  The fixed-line
telecommunications services offered to the company's customers
include local services, including all calls that originate and
terminate within a single local area in the region, as well as
installation, monthly subscription, measured services, public
telephones and supplemental local services; intra-regional long-
distance services, which include intrastate and interstate
calls; interregional and international long-distance services;
network services, including interconnection and leasing; data
transmission services; wireless services, and other services.

                    About Telemar Norte

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 on April 27, 2007, Standard & Poor's placed on
CreditWatch with negative implications the 'BB+' corporate
credit rating on Tele Norte Leste Participacoes S.A.  The
creditwatch resulted from TmarPart's decision to buy out its
holding company's preferred shares.


* BRAZIL: Samsung To Build Ultra-Deepwater Drillship
----------------------------------------------------
Pride International said in a statement that it has awarded
Korean firm Samsung Heavy Industries a contract to construct an
ultra-deepwater drillship for Brazilian state-run oil firm
Petroleo Brasileiro SA aka Perobras.

Business News Americas relates that the vessel would be
delivered from the shipyard in the first quarter 2011, after
construction, commissioning and system integrated testing.

According to BNamericas that Petrobras will use the unit.  The
firm has the option to sign a firm contract for up to seven
years.

Pride International told BNamericas that it will get a fixed
daily rate and performance bonus of up to 17% of the daily rate
from Petrobras.  Contract revenues could range from US$916
million to US$1.24 billion.

The rig will initially be equipped for drilling in water depths
of up to 10,000 feet.  The estimated construction cost of the
rig, which includes commissioning and system integrated testing
but excludes capitalized interest, is US$720 million, BNamericas
states, citing Pride International.

                About Samsung Heavy Industries

Headquartered in South Korea, Samsung Heavy Industries Company
Limited's principal activity is the manufacturing of ships,
conveyance machines, chemical equipment and construction
equipment.

                  About Pride International

Headquartered in Houston, Texas, Pride International Inc.
(NYSE: PDE) -- http://www.prideinternational.com/-- provides
onshore and offshore contract drilling and related services in
more than 25 countries, operating a diverse fleet of 277 rigs,
including two ultra-deepwater drillships, 12 semisubmersible
rigs, 28 jackups, 16 tender-assisted, barge and platform rigs,
and 214 land rigs.  The company maintains worldwide operations
in France, Mexico, Kazakhstan, India, and Brazil, among others.

                  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, and 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.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 26, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned BB+
long-term sovereign foreign currency rating and B short-term
sovereign foreign currency rating on Brazil.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
May 14, 2007, Fitch Ratings upgraded Brazil's long-term foreign
and local currency sovereign Issuer Default Ratings to 'BB+'
from 'BB' and the Country Ceiling to 'BBB-' from 'BB+'.  In
addition, Fitch affirmed Brazil's Short-term IDR at 'B'.  Fitch
said the rating outlook is stable.




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


BBH AOF: Proofs of Claim Filing Deadline Is Today
-------------------------------------------------
BBH AOF Genpar, Limited's creditors are given until
Jan. 28, 2008, to prove their claims to Robert Gould, 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.

BBH AOF's shareholders agreed on Nov. 26, 2007, to place the
company into voluntary liquidation under The Companies Law (2004
Revision) of the Cayman Islands.

The liquidator can be reached at:

          Robert Gould
          Attention: Laura Del Fuoco
          Walkers
          Walker House, 87 Mary Street
          George Town, Grand Cayman KY1-9001
          Cayman Islands
          Phone: 345 814 4568
          Fax: 345 814 8268
          E-mail:laura.delfuoco@walkersglobal.com


BREA EQUITY: Holding Final Shareholders Meeting Today
-----------------------------------------------------
Brea Equity Limited will hold its final shareholders meeting on
Jan. 28, 2008, at 9:15 a.m. at the office of the company.

These agendas will be taken during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Brea Equity's shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920


BREA INVESTMENTS: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today
-----------------------------------------------------
Brea Investments Limited will hold its final shareholders
meeting on Jan. 28, 2008, at 9:00 a.m. at the office of the
company.

These agendas will be taken up during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Brea Investments' shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920


BREA HOLDINGS: Final Shareholders Meeting Today
-----------------------------------------------
Brea Holdings Limited will hold its final shareholders meeting
on Jan. 28, 2008, at 10:00 a.m. at the office of the company.

These agendas will be taken during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Brea Holdings' shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920


COMMERCIAL INVESTMENTS: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today
-----------------------------------------------------------
Commercial Investments Limited will hold its final shareholders
meeting on Jan. 28, 2008, at 9:30 a.m. at the office of the
company.

These agendas will be taken during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Commercial Investments' shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920


COMMERCIAL EQUITY: Holding Final Shareholders Meeting Today
-----------------------------------------------------------
Commercial Equity Limited will hold its final shareholders
meeting on Jan. 28, 2008, at 9:45 a.m. at the office of the
company.

These agendas will be taken during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Commercial Equity's shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920


LAGUNA EQUITY: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today
--------------------------------------------------
Laguna Equity Limited will hold its final shareholders meeting
on Jan. 28, 2008, at 11:45 a.m. at the office of the company.

These agendas will be taken during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Laguna Equity's shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920


LAGUNA INVESTMENTS: Holding Final Shareholders Meeting Today
------------------------------------------------------------
Laguna Investments Limited will hold its final shareholders
meeting on Jan. 28, 2008, at 11:30 a.m. at the office of the
company.

These agendas will be taken during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Laguna Investments' shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920


LAKEHILL INVESTMENTS: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today
---------------------------------------------------------
Lakehill Investments Limited will hold its final shareholders
meeting on Jan. 28, 2008, at 10:15 a.m. at the office of the
company.

These agendas will be taken during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Lakehill Investments' shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920


LANDMARK EQUITY: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today
----------------------------------------------------
Landmark Equity Limited will hold its final shareholders meeting
on Jan. 28, 2008, at 11:00 a.m. at the office of the company.

These agendas will be taken during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Landmark Equity's shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920


MARCUS EQUITY: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today
--------------------------------------------------
Marcus Equity Limited will hold its final shareholders meeting
on Jan. 28, 2008, at 1:00 p.m. at the office of the company.

These agendas will be taken during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Marcus Equity's shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920


MARCUS HOLDINGS: Holding Final Shareholders Meeting Today
---------------------------------------------------------
Marcus Holding Limited will hold its final shareholders meeting
on Jan. 28, 2008, at 1:15 p.m. at the office of the company.

These agendas will be taken during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Marcus Holding's shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920


ORANGE EQUITY: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today
--------------------------------------------------
Orange Equity Limited will hold its final shareholders meeting
on Jan. 28, 2008, at 10:30 a.m. at the office of the company.

These agendas will be taken during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Orange Equity's shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920


ORANGE INVESTMENTS: Holing Final Shareholders Meeting Today
-----------------------------------------------------------
Orange Investments Limited will hold its final shareholders
meeting on Jan. 28, 2008, at 10:45 a.m. at the office of the
company.

These agendas will be taken during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Orange Equity's shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920


PARMALAT SPA: Milan Court Commences Trial vs. Citigroup et al.
--------------------------------------------------------------
A court in Milan, Italy, has commenced trial against Citigroup
Inc., UBS AG, Deutsche Bank AG, Morgan Stanley and nine
individuals on charges of market rigging that led to Parmalat
S.p.A.'s bankruptcy in December 2003, published reports say.

Lawyers for the banks rejected claims that the concerned firms,
as well as their current and former managers, withheld
information on Parmalat's true financial situation prior to its
collapse, Bloomberg News reports.

Milan prosecutors accused the banks of disguising the terms of
Parmalat bond sales and other financing from investors, thus
helping Parmalat conceal its financial situation.

Giuseppe Bana, a lawyer for UBS, said the bank had "absolutely
nothing to do" with Parmalat's breakdown, Bloomberg News says.

"Neither Citigroup nor its employees did anything wrong," Nerio
Dioda, was quoted by Bloomberg News as saying.  "Why would the
bank have lent US$500 million to Parmalat if it thought it was
in trouble?"

In a statement, Citigroup said it is "convinced that the trial
will finally prove that Citi and its employee are wholly
innocent of the charges being brought and that, instead, it is
the largest victim of the worst fraud in the history of modern
Italy."

Ten executives at Citibank, a unit of Citigroup, might face
trial for abetting Parmalat S.p.A.'s financial collapse in
December 2003.

                    Bondholders Join Case

Meanwhile, more than 40,000 bondholders asked to join the case
as civil parties, seeking damages on top of provision for
restitution if the banks are convicted, Dow Jones says.

According to Reuters, market-rigging cases permit third parties
to join and make a claim for damages.

"Let's hope we'll see some results," Carlo Federico Grosso, who
represents around 36,000 bondholders, told Bloomberg News.

Judge Gabriella Manfrin reset the hearing to March 7, 2008, to
allow more time to review the civil claims.

"It will finally be proven in court that Citi is in fact a
victim of this fraud," Citigroup said.

Headquartered in Milan, Italy, Parmalat S.p.A. --
http://www.parmalat.net/-- sells nameplate milk products that
can be stored at room temperature for months.  It also has about
40 brand product lines, which include yogurt, cheese, butter,
cakes and cookies, breads, pizza, snack foods and vegetable
sauces, soups and juices.

The company's U.S. operations filed for chapter 11 protection on
Feb. 24, 2004 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Case No. 04-11139).  Gary
Holtzer, Esq., and Marcia L. Goldstein, Esq., at Weil Gotshal &
Manges LLP, represent the Debtors.  When the U.S. Debtors filed
for bankruptcy protection, they reported more than
US$200 million in assets and debts.  The U.S. Debtors emerged
from bankruptcy on April 13, 2005.

Parmalat S.p.A. and its Italian affiliates filed separate
petitions for Extraordinary Administration before the Italian
Ministry of Productive Activities and the Civil and Criminal
District Court of the City of Parma, Italy on Dec. 24, 2003.
Dr. Enrico Bondi was appointed Extraordinary Commissioner in
each of the cases.  The Parma Court has declared the units
insolvent.

On June 22, 2004, Dr. Bondi filed a Sec. 304 Petition, Case No.
04-14268, in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern
District of New York.

Parmalat has three financing arms: Dairy Holdings Ltd., Parmalat
Capital Finance Ltd., and Food Holdings Ltd.  Dairy Holdings and
Food Holdings are Cayman Island special-purpose vehicles
established by Parmalat S.p.A.  The Finance Companies are under
separate winding up petitions before the Grand Court of the
Cayman Islands.  Gordon I. MacRae and James Cleaver of Kroll
(Cayman) Ltd. serve as Joint Provisional Liquidators in the
cases.  On Jan. 20, 2004, the Liquidators filed Sec. 304
petition, Case No. 04-10362, in the United States Bankruptcy
Court for the Southern District of New York.  In May 2006, the
Cayman Island Court appointed Messrs. MacRae and Cleaver as
Joint Official Liquidators.  Gregory M. Petrick, Esq., at
Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP, and Richard I. Janvey, Esq.,
at Janvey, Gordon, Herlands Randolph, represent the Finance
Companies in the Sec. 304 case.

The Honorable Robert D. Drain presides over the Parmalat
Debtors' U.S. cases.  On June 21, 2007, the U.S. Court Granted
Parmalat Permanent Injunction.


WESTSHORE HOLDINGS: Final Shareholders Meeting Is Today
-------------------------------------------------------
Westshore Holdings Limited will hold its final shareholders
meeting on Jan. 28, 2008, at 11:15 a.m. at the office of the
company.

These agendas will be taken up during the meeting:

          1) accounting of the winding-up process; and
          2) authorizing the liquidator to retain the records
             of the company for a minimum of six years from
             the dissolution of the company, after which they
             may be destroyed.

Westshore Holdings' shareholders agreed on Nov. 20, 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: Bonnie Willkom
             P.O. Box 1111, Grand Cayman KY1-1102
             Cayman Islands
             Telephone: (345)-949-5122
             Fax: (345)-949-7920




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


BELL MICROPRODUCTS: Head Expects LatAm Sales to Increase by 10%
---------------------------------------------------------------
Bell Microproducts' Latin American head Louis Leonardo told
Business News Americas that the firm expects sales in Latin
America to increase 10% in 2008.

BNamericas relates that Bell Microproducts sees overall growth
of up to 7% in 2008.

According to BNamericas, Latin America sales grew 12% in 2007,
from 2006, accounting for 14% of quarterly revenues that totaled
almost US$11.1 billion.

The report says that Bell Microproducts had initially estimated
20% growth for Latin America.  The firm then found it necessary
to readjust to consider a more moderate increase in sales due to
the US "subprime crisis."

Mr. Leonardo commented to BNamericas, "Usually if the US catches
a cold, Latin America gets pneumonia.  It definitely will have
an impact.  I see our growth coming not as much from the
commodity side of the business but from the conversion from the
desktop environment to the notebook, and enterprise and storage
solutions."

Local manufacturers have the largest share in Latin America with
regards to the personal computers segment, with their white box
products, BNamericas relates, citing Mr. Leonardo.  However,
there was a strong shift from desktops to laptops last year,
increasing the share of multinational brands.

Mr. Leonardo told BNamericas that in the storage segment the
launching of low-cost product lines by firms like Network
Appliance and Hitachi Data Systems makes it more affordable for
companies in Latin America, particularly mid-size firms, to
upgrade these products.

"In the next years we see strong increasing demand for storage,
both in the business side as well as in the individual side.
And for Bell Micro that is encouraging because, as a worldwide
group and even in Latin America, our strength has been in the
storage side first," Mr. Leonardo commented to BNamericas.

BNamericas reports that part of the strategies to get the 10%
growth include getting closer to clients by bringing more
products into each of the nations instead of being overly
dependent on the US operation.  Bell Microproducts will add more
personnel in the sales, technical and marketing areas in the
Latin American subsidiaries and in other nations.

Mr. Leonardo commented to BNamericas, "Throughout Central
America and the Caribbean we are expanding the work force as it
is important that we supply direct support to the resellers that
we are selling to.  And that was one of the big things that has
helped us in 2007 in that region."

The largest growth in Latin America last year was in Central
America and the Caribbean, with a 25% increase.  The growth was
mostly due to government bids in Guatemala and the Dominican
Republic, BNamericas states.

Headquartered in San Jose, California, Bell Microproducts Inc.
(Nasdaq: BELM) -- http://www.bellmicro.com/-- is an
international, value-added distributor of high-tech products,
solutions and services, including storage systems, servers,
software, computer components and peripherals, as well as
maintenance and professional services.  Bell is a Fortune 1000
company that has operations in Argentina, Brazil, Chile and
Mexico.

                        *     *     *

The company has received waivers from its lenders into March
2008 relating to the filing of financial reports with the SEC
and the provision of audited financial reports.


ROCK-TENN CO: Earns US$17.5 Million in 2008 First Quarter
---------------------------------------------------------
Rock-Tenn Company reported net income of US$17.5 million for the
first quarter of fiscal 2008 compared to US$15.1 million for the
prior year quarter.

The company's net sales of US$596.3 million for the first
quarter of fiscal 2008 increased US$62.4 million, or 11.7%, over
the first quarter of fiscal 2007.

Segment income was US$48.0 million compared to US$42.5 million
in the prior year quarter, or 12.9% over the prior year quarter.

For the first quarter of fiscal 2008, the company's income
including pre-tax restructuring and other costs of US$3.0
million, primarily related to the decision to close the
Chicopee, Massachusetts folding carton plant.  The closing of
the Chicopee plant takes advantage of low cost production
capacity resulting from our acquisition related capital
investments in one of the plants we acquired from Gulf States in
2005 and furthers the company's strategy of concentrating
production in larger facilities with market leading cost
positions.  Rock-Tenn's pre-tax restructuring and other costs
were US$0.5 million, or US$0.01 per diluted share after-tax, for
the first quarter of fiscal 2007.

                      Segment Results

Consumer Packaging Segment

Consumer Packaging segment net sales were US$327.3 million in
the first quarter of fiscal 2008 compared to US$303.1 million in
the prior year quarter, due to higher unit pricing in the fiscal
2008 quarter representing pass through of higher paperboard
costs and increased sales volumes.  Segment income increased
US$4.6 million over the prior year quarter to US$16.3 million in
the first quarter of fiscal 2008. Segment return on sales
increased to 5.0% compared to 3.9% in the prior year quarter.

Paperboard Segment

Paperboard segment net sales increased US$24.2 million from the
prior year quarter to US$235.0 million on higher selling prices
and a 1,624 increase in tons shipped.  Bleached paperboard tons
shipped increased 7.6% over the prior year quarter to 79,623
tons.  The average selling price for all paperboard grades
increased US$41 per ton over the prior year quarter.  Average
recycled fiber costs increased US$49 per ton over the prior year
quarter and energy and chemical costs each increased US$4 per
ton of recycled paperboard.  Segment income was US$21.5 million
compared to US$23.9 million in the prior year quarter.  During
the quarter we received approximately US$1.7 million in recovery
of previously expensed environmental costs, which was largely
offset by approximately US$1.3 million of impact in our Dallas
mill associated with a dryer section failure and rebuild in
December.

Merchandising Displays Segment

Merchandising Displays segment net sales increased US$21.1
million, or 34.6%, over the prior year first quarter, to US$82.0
million on strong demand for promotional displays.  Segment
income increased 56.9% to US$8.0 million compared to US$5.1
million in the prior year quarter.

Corrugated Packaging Segment

Corrugated Packaging segment net sales increased US$4.6 million
over the prior year quarter to US$41.2 million in the first
quarter of fiscal 2008, due to increased volumes and price
increases to recover higher paperboard costs.  Segment income
was US$2.2 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2008 and
US$1.8 million in the prior year quarter.

Rock-Tenn Company Chairman and Chief Executive Officer James A.
Rubright stated, "Strong sales growth in our consumer packaging,
corrugated packaging and merchandising display segments drove
our 27.5% increase in adjusted net income per share.  Operating
efficiencies flowing from our commitment to performance
excellence in our consumer-packaging segment enabled us to
achieve the return on sales target of 5% that we established
when we acquired the Gulf States assets in 2005."

Net cash provided by operating activities in the first quarter
of fiscal 2008 was US$22.3 million compared to US$32.3 million
in the prior year quarter.  The decrease was primarily due to
the reduction of non-debt current liabilities.

Headquartered in Norcross, Georgia, Rock-Tenn Company (NYSE:
RKT) -- http://www.rocktenn.com/-- provides a wide range of
marketing and packaging solutions to consumer products
companies, with operating locations in the United States,
Canada, Mexico, Argentina and Chile.  The company is one of
North America's manufacturers of packaging products,
merchandising displays and bleached and recycled paperboard.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Jan. 15, 2008, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services placed its
'BB+' corporate credit rating on Rock-Tenn Co. on CreditWatch
with negative implications.  At the same time, S&P placed the
'BB-' rating on the company's existing senior unsecured notes on
CreditWatch with developing implications.


SHAW GROUP: Environmental Unit Bags Deal from General Electric
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Shaw Group Inc.'s Environmental & Infrastructure Group has
been awarded a contract by the General Electric Company for work
on the Upper Hudson River dredging project.  The value of Shaw's
contract, which will be included in the company's fiscal year
2008-second quarter backlog, was not disclosed.

"We are pleased to assist GE in the important environmental
cleanup of the Hudson River," said Ronald W. Oakley, president
of Shaw's Environmental & Infrastructure Group.  "With our
involvement in the Hudson River project, and the Fox River
project in Wisconsin, Shaw is playing a significant role in two
of the largest and most important sediment remediation projects
in the U.S."

Once dredging begins, Shaw will operate the processing
facilities needed to manage sediments that are dredged from the
Upper Hudson River.  These facilities include:

   -- a barge terminal where sediments will be delivered and
      unloaded;

   -- a dewatering building with specialized equipment that will
      press water from dredged sediments;

   -- a water treatment plant that will remove polychlorinated
      biphenyls (PCBs) from the water; and

   -- large railroad staging facilities for the rail cars
      transporting the processed sediment for disposal.

Shaw will manage the project out of its Latham, N.Y., office.

With this contract, Shaw plans to utilize local subcontractors
and local manpower from Washington County and the Capital
District Region in New York.

                      About Shaw Group

Based in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, The Shaw Group Inc. (NYSE: SGR)
-- http://www.shawgrp.com/-- provides services to the
environmental, infrastructure and homeland security markets,
including consulting, engineering, construction, remediation and
facilities management services to governmental and commercial
customers.  It is also a vertically integrated provider of
engineering, procurement, pipe fabrication, construction and
maintenance services to the power and process industries.  The
company segregates its business activities into four operating
segments: Environmental & Infrastructure; Energy & Chemicals;
Maintenance, and Fabrication, Manufacturing & Distribution.  In
January 2005, the company sold substantially all of the assets
of its Shaw Power Technologies, Inc. and Shaw Power Technologies
International, Ltd. units to Siemens Power Transmission and
Distribution Inc., a unit of Siemens AG.

The company has operations in Chile, China, Malaysia, the United
Kingdom and, Venezuela, among others.

                        *     *     *

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services affirmed its 'BB' corporate
credit rating on The Shaw Group Inc. and removed it from
CreditWatch, where it was placed with negative implications in
October 2006.  S&P said the outlook is stable.

In addition, 'BB' senior secured debt rating was affirmed after
the US$100 million increase to the company's revolving credit
facility.




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


QUEBECOR WORLD: Selects Arnold & Porter as Bankruptcy Counsel
-------------------------------------------------------------
Quebecor World Inc. and its debtor-affiliates ask the U.S.
Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York for
authority to hire Arnold & Porter as their counsel, nunc pro
tunc to Jan. 21, 2008.

The Debtors relate that Arnold & Porter has provided a wide
range of legal representation and counseling for many years to
the Debtors and certain of their non-debtor affiliates.

In addition, the Debtors say that before the bankruptcy filing,
the Debtors sought the services of the firm with respect to,
among other things, advice regarding restructuring matters in
general and preparation for the potential commencement and
prosecution of Chapter 11 cases for the Debtors.  As any
successful restructuring of the Debtors' finances and operations
is inextricably linked to the restructuring of the Debtors' non-
debtor affiliates, the Debtors requested the firm to work
closely with Quebecor World Inc.'s Canadian restructuring
counsel for appropriate court supervised restructuring processes
in Canada and the United States.

During the Chapter 11 cases, Arnold & Porter will:

    -- advise the Debtors with respect to their powers and
       duties as Debtors and debtors-in-possession in the
       continued management and operation of their businesses
       and properties;

    -- advise and consult on the conduct of the Chapter 11
       cases, including all of the legal and administrative
       requirements of operating in Chapter 11;

    -- attend meetings and negotiate with representatives of
       creditors and of the Debtors' employees and other
       parties-in-interest;

    -- advise the Debtors in connection with any contemplated
       sales of assets, business combinations, or investment
       transactions.

    -- advise the Debtors in connection with postpetition
       financing and cash collateral arrangements and
       negotiating and drafting documents, relating thereto,
       among other things;

    -- advise the Debtors on matters relating to the evaluation
       of the assumption, rejection or assignment of unexpired
       leases and executory contracts;

    -- provide advice to the Debtors with respect to legal
       issues arising in or relating to the Debtors' ordinary
       course of business.

    -- take necessary action to protect and preserve the
       Debtors' estates, including the prosecution of actions
       and proceedings on their behalf, the defense of any
       actions and proceedings commenced against the estates,
       and negotiations concerning all litigations;

    -- develop and implement protocols for the coordination of
       the Chapter 11 cases with restructuring cases filed on
       behalf of the Debtors and non-debtor affiliates in
       Canada;

    -- prepare on behalf of the Debtors motions, applications,
       answers, orders, reports and papers necessary to the
       administration of the estates;

    -- negotiate and prepare, on the Debtors' behalf, plans of
       reorganization, disclosure statements and all related
       agreements or documents and take any necessary action on
       behalf of the debtors to obtain confirmation of those
       plans;

    -- attend meetings with third parties and participate in
       negotiations;

    -- appear before the Court, other courts, and the U.S.
       Trustee; and protect the interests of the Debtors'
       estates before those courts and the U.S. Trustee;

    -- meet and coordinate with other counsel and other
       professionals retained on behalf of the Debtors and
       approved by the Court; and

    -- perform all other necessary legal services and provide
       all other necessary legal advice to the Debtors in
       connection with the Chapter 11 cases and related matters.

The firm will bill the Debtors for its services at its usual
hourly rates.  Presently, Arnold & Porter's hourly rates range
from US$550 to US$825 for partners, and US$300 to US$560 for
associates.  The firm will also seek reimbursement for out-of-
pocket expenses incurred in its representation of the Debtors.

The Debtors and certain non-debtor affiliates have made certain
payments to Arnold & Porter within the 90-day period prior the
bankruptcy filing for services rendered by the firm and as
retainer.

As of the bankruptcy filing, the firm held a retainer of
US$939,053.  The firm will apply the retainer to pay its fees
and disbursements as allowed by the Court

Michael J. Canning, Esq., at Arnold & Porter says he and the
firm are "disinterested persons" as that term is defined in
Section 101(14) of the Bankruptcy Code and does not hold or
represent any interest adverse to the Debtors' estates.

The firm can be reached at:

             Michael J. Canning, Esq.
             Arnold & Porter LLP
             399 Park Avenue
             New York, NY 10022-4690
             Tel: (212) 715-1110
             Fax: (212) 715-1399
             http://www.arnoldporter.com/

Based in Montreal, Quebec, Quebecor World Inc. (TSX: IQW) (NYSE:
IQW), -- http://www.quebecorworldinc.com/-- provides market
solutions, including marketing and advertising activities, well
as print solutions to retailers, branded goods companies,
catalogers and to publishers of magazines, books and other
printed media.  It has 127 printing and related facilities
located in North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia.  In
the United States, it has 82 facilities in 30 states, and is
engaged in the printing of books, magazines, directories, retail
inserts, catalogs and direct mail.  In Canada it has 17
facilities in five provinces, through which it offers a mix of
printed products and related value-added services to the
Canadian market and internationally.

Quebecor World has approximately 27,500 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.

The company is an independent commercial printer in Europe with
19 facilities, operating in Austria, Belgium, Finland, France,
Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.  In March
2007, it sold its facility in Lille, France.  Quebecor World
(USA) Inc. is its wholly owned subsidiary.

Quebecor World and its debtor-affiliates filed for chapter 11
bankruptcy on Jan. 21, 2008 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y Lead Case No.
08-10152).  Anthony D. Boccanfuso, Esq., at Arnold & Porter LLP
represents the Debtors in their restructuring efforts.  The
Debtors listed total assets of US$5,554,900,000 and total debts
of US$4,140,700,000 when they filed for bankruptcy.

As of Sept. 30, 2007, Quebecor World's unaudited consolidated
balance sheet showed total assets of US$5,554,900,000, total
liabilities of US$3,964,800,000, preferred shares of
US$175,900,000, and total shareholders' equity of
US$1,414,200,000.

(Quebecor World Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 2; Bankruptcy
Creditors' Service, Inc., http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or
215/945-7000)


QUEBECOR WORLD: US$750MM DIP Fund To Buy US$416MM Receivables
-------------------------------------------------------------
Quebecor World Inc. and its debtor-affiliates ask the U.S.
Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York for
permission to immediately obtain up to an aggregate of
US$750,000,000 revolving loans and letters of credit under a
debtor-in-possession facility to allow them to purchase
Receivables Portfolio worth US$416,800,000.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter yesterday, the
Debtors formally sought the Bankruptcy Court's authority to
enter into a US$1,000,000,000 senior secured superpriority DIP
credit agreement from a syndicate of lenders led by Credit
Suisse Securities (USA), LLC, as administrative and collateral
agent, and Morgan Stanley Senior Funding Inc.

Receivables Portfolio refers to certain accounts receivable and
other related rights sold, assigned and initially transferred by
the Debtors to one of its non-debtor affiliate, Quebecor World
Finance Inc., who, in turn, sold those account receivables to
third parties.

As previously reported, the US$1,000,000,000 DIP Facility
comprises of a US$600,000,000 term loan and a US$400,000,000
revolving credit facility.  The Revolving Credit Facility also
includes a US$100,000,000 letter of credit subfacility and a
US$25,000,000 swing line subfacility.

Aside from purchasing the Receivables Portfolio, the remaining
proceeds of the DIP Facility will be used to provide the Debtors
financing for working capital, letters of credit, capital
expenditures and other general corporate purposes, the Debtors'
proposed counsel Michael J. Canning, Esq., at Arnold & Porter
LLP, in New York, says.

The DIP Facility's Borrowing Base will mean at any time of
determination the sum of:

   (a) up to 85% of eligible US and Canadian trade accounts
       receivable of the Debtors, other than accounts receivable
       subject to a lien in favor of the lenders under the
       existing Credit Agreements with the Royal Bank of Canada
       and the Societe Generale (Canada); and

   (b) the lesser of up to 85% of the Orderly Liquidation Value
       Percentage of eligible US inventory of the Debtors,
       other than inventory subject to a lien in favor of the
       lenders under the Existing Credit Agreements, and (y) up
       to 65% of eligible US inventory of the Debtors, minus (z)
       reserves to be reasonably determined by Credit Suisse.

The DIP Facilities, the Guarantees and any Hedging Arrangements
will be secured by substantially all the assets of the Debtors,
except any proceeds of Avoidance Actions.  Security granted to
the Lenders will include:

   -- a perfected first-priority pledge of all the equity
      interests of Quebec World (USA), Inc.;

   -- a perfected first priority pledge of all the equity
      interests held by Quebec World, Inc., QWUSA or any other
      Guarantor; and

   -- a perfected first-priority security interests in, and
      mortgages on, substantially all assets of QWI, QWUSA and
      each Guarantor.

The Collateral will not include accounts receivable of European
Guarantors, which are subject to existing factoring arrangements
or factoring arrangements that are otherwise acceptable to the
DIP Agent up to an amount to be agreed.  The DIP Agents' liens
on the Collateral will be junior to:

   -- all valid liens presently held securing indebtedness
      pursuant to the Amended and Restated Credit Agreement
      among QWI, QWUSA, the lenders, Royal Bank of Canada, as
      administrative agent, and RBC Capital Markets, as
      arranger;

   -- all valid liens presently held securing indebtedness
      pursuant to that certain Credit Agreement, among QWI,
      QWUSA and Societe Generale (Canada), as lender;

   -- capitalized leases, purchase money security interests or
      mechanics' liens in existence at the bankruptcy filing or
      perfected subsequent to the bankruptcy filing;

   -- other limited liens to be agreed on; and

   -- the Carve-Out for the payment of allowed fees and
      disbursements of professionals hired by the Debtors and a
      statutory committee of unsecured creditors.

The superpriority perfected security interests in the assets of
QWI in its insolvency proceedings under the Canadian Companies'
Creditors Arrangement Act will be subject and subordinate to an
administration charge.

Loans under the Term Facility will be prepaid with 100% of the
net cash proceeds of all asset sales or other dispositions of
property by the Debtors; 100% of the net cash proceeds of
issuances, offerings or placements of debt obligations of the
Debtors; and 100% of Extraordinary Receipts.

Mandatory prepayments under the Revolving Credit Facility will
be required if the DIP Revolving Credit Facility Usage exceeds
the then effective commitments under the Revolving Credit
Facility or the DIP Revolving Credit Facility Usage exceeds
Availability.

Voluntary prepayments of the borrowings under the Revolving
Credit Facility will be permitted at any time without premium or
penalty, subject to payment of customary breakage costs in the
case of a prepayment of an adjusted LIBOR borrowing other than
on the last day of the relevant interest period.

Mr. Canning asserts that approval of the DIP Facility will
enable the Debtors to maintain the confidence of their vendors,
customers and employees.  Absent approval of the DIP Facility,
the Debtors will run out of cash before the end of January 2008,
resulting in severe disruptions to their business, he further
asserts.

                    About Quebecor World

Based in Montreal, Quebec, Quebecor World Inc. (TSX: IQW) (NYSE:
IQW), -- http://www.quebecorworldinc.com/-- provides market
solutions, including marketing and advertising activities, well
as print solutions to retailers, branded goods companies,
catalogers and to publishers of magazines, books and other
printed media.  It has 127 printing and related facilities
located in North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia.  In
the United States, it has 82 facilities in 30 states, and is
engaged in the printing of books, magazines, directories, retail
inserts, catalogs and direct mail.  In Canada it has 17
facilities in five provinces, through which it offers a mix of
printed products and related value-added services to the
Canadian market and internationally.

Quebecor World has approximately 27,500 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.

The company is an independent commercial printer in Europe with
19 facilities, operating in Austria, Belgium, Finland, France,
Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.  In March
2007, it sold its facility in Lille, France.  Quebecor World
(USA) Inc. is its wholly owned subsidiary.

Quebecor World and its debtor-affiliates filed for chapter 11
bankruptcy on Jan. 21, 2008 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y Lead Case No.
08-10152).  Anthony D. Boccanfuso, Esq., at Arnold & Porter LLP
represents the Debtors in their restructuring efforts.  The
Debtors listed total assets of US$5,554,900,000 and total debts
of US$4,140,700,000 when they filed for bankruptcy.

As of Sept. 30, 2007, Quebecor World's unaudited consolidated
balance sheet showed total assets of US$5,554,900,000, total
liabilities of US$3,964,800,000, preferred shares of
US$175,900,000, and total shareholders' equity of
US$1,414,200,000.

(Quebecor World Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 2; Bankruptcy
Creditors' Service, Inc., http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or
215/945-7000)


QUEBECOR WORLD: Wants Access to RBC's, Soc Gen's Cash Collateral
----------------------------------------------------------------
Quebecor World Inc. and its debtor-affiliates ask the U.S.
Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York for
permission to use certain collateral pledged to the prepetition
secured lenders.  The prepetition secured lenders are group
lenders led by Royal Bank of Canada and another group of lenders
led by Societe Generale (Canada).

The Debtors tell the Court that they do not have sufficient
liquidity to pay obligations that either are currently due or
are expected to become due in early 2008, proposed counsel
Michael J. Canning, Esq., at Arnold & Porter, LLP, in New York,
relates.  RBC Lenders have indicated that it will not provide
any further advances from a US$750,000,000 prepetition credit
agreement because the Debtors have not satisfied conditions and
refinancing milestones set by the RBC Lenders.

Mr. Canning adds that suppliers are demanding cash terms and
customers are threatening to cease doing business with the
Debtors unless they are provided with letters of credit or
similar accommodations.  Hence, the Debtors need infusion
of additional cash.

                US$750 Million RBC Credit Facility

The RBC Lenders committed to provide a US$750,000,000 revolving
credit facility, which was secured up to a maximum of
US$135,000,000 by:

   (a) unlimited guaranties from certain Debtors;

   (b) a pledge of the shares of Debtor QW Memphis Corp. by the
       Debtors Quebecor World (USA) Inc., the Webb Company, and
       Quebecor World Memphis, LLC;

   (c) a pledge of the shares of QWUSA by Debtor Quebecor
       Printing Holding Company;

   (d) security on all personal and real property of QW Memphis,
       excluding accounts receivable subject to the Existing
       Receivables Facility and certain real estate located in
       Covington, Tennessee; and

   (d) security on all inventory of QWI located in Canada.

As of Jan. 18, 2008, the aggregate amount of indebtedness
outstanding under the RBC Credit Agreement was approximately
US$735,000,000.

             CADUS$136 Million Soc Gen Credit Agreement

A Soc Gen Credit Agreement, on the other hand, provides for an
equipment financing credit facility in the aggregate amount of
the US$136,165,415, expiring on July 1, 2015.  The amounts due
under the Soc Gen Credit Agreement are guaranteed and secured on
a pari passu basis up to US$35,000,000 by the same collateral as
the credit facilities under the RBC Credit Agreement.  As of
Jan. 11, 2008, the aggregate amount outstanding under the Soc
Gen Credit Agreement was approximately US$155,000,000.

To protect the interest of the Prepetition Secured Lenders in
the QW Memphis Collateral, for any diminution in value from the
use of the QW Memphis Collateral, and for the imposition of the
automatic stay, the Debtors will release any liens of the
Prepetition Secured Lenders in QW Memphis' accounts immediately
on the entry of an interim cash collateral order.

           Establishment of Cash Collateral Account

The Debtors will establish a cash collateral account with a
certain bank.  Certain security interests and liens will be
granted:

   (a) to the Prepetition Secured Lenders, a valid, binding,
       continuing, enforceable, fully perfected first priority
       senior security interest in and lien on the Memphis Cash
       Collateral Account, securing any Prepetition Secured
       Indebtedness that is secured by valid, perfected non
       avoidable and enforceable liens in existence as of the
       bankruptcy filing; provided that the security interest
       granted will be included in the cap on the Prepetition
       Secured Indebtedness provided for in the Prepetition
       Security Agreements; and

   (b) to Credit Suisse Securities (USA), LLC, as the DIP
       Facility's Administrative Agent, a valid, binding,
       continuing, enforceable, fully perfected security
       interest in and lien on the Memphis Cash Collateral
       Account immediately junior to the Prepetition Secured
       Lenders' Lien.

The Debtors will deposit in the Memphis Cash Collateral Account
an amount equal to the bankruptcy filing value of the QW Memphis
Inventory divided by 46 each day until the date on which the
balance on deposit in the Memphis Cash Collateral Account is
equal to the QW Memphis bankruptcy filing inventory amount.  As
of Jan. 22, 2008, the Debtors have not disclosed the approximate
bankruptcy filing value of the Memphis Inventory.

On the Memphis Inventory Release Date, the Debtors will release
any Liens of the prepetition secured lenders in the QW Memphis
Bankruptcy Filing Inventory.

                   About Quebecor World

Based in Montreal, Quebec, Quebecor World Inc. (TSX: IQW)
(NYSE: IQW), -- http://www.quebecorworldinc.com/-- provides
market solutions, including marketing and advertising
activities, well as print solutions to retailers, branded goods
companies, catalogers and to publishers of magazines, books and
other printed media.  It has 127 printing and related facilities
located in North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia.  In
the United States, it has 82 facilities in 30 states, and is
engaged in the printing of books, magazines, directories, retail
inserts, catalogs and direct mail.  In Canada it has 17
facilities in five provinces, through which it offers a mix of
printed products and related value-added services to the
Canadian market and internationally.

Quebecor World has approximately 27,500 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.

The company is an independent commercial printer in Europe with
19 facilities, operating in Austria, Belgium, Finland, France,
Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.  In March
2007, it sold its facility in Lille, France.  Quebecor World
(USA) Inc. is its wholly owned subsidiary.

Quebecor World and its debtor-affiliates filed for chapter 11
bankruptcy on Jan. 21, 2008 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y Lead Case No.
08-10152).  Anthony D. Boccanfuso, Esq., at Arnold & Porter LLP
represents the Debtors in their restructuring efforts.  The
Debtors listed total assets of US$5,554,900,000 and total debts
of US$4,140,700,000 when they filed for bankruptcy.

As of Sept. 30, 2007, Quebecor World's unaudited consolidated
balance sheet showed total assets of US$5,554,900,000, total
liabilities of US$3,964,800,000, preferred shares of
US$175,900,000, and total shareholders' equity of
US$1,414,200,000.

(Quebecor World Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 2; Bankruptcy
Creditors' Service, Inc., http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or
215/945-7000)




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


BANCO DE COSTA RICA: Carlos Fernandez Leaves CEO Post
-----------------------------------------------------
A Banco de Costa Rica spokesperson told Business News Americas
that Carlos Fernandez has resigned as the bank's chief executive
officer.

Mr. Fernandez's resignation will take effect on April 1,
BNamericas states, citing the spokesperson.

Banco de Costa, established in 1877, is Costa Rica's second
largest bank with a local deposit market share of 20% as of
June 2006.  Banco de Costa has three local wholly owned
subsidiaries in non-credit activities (securities brokerage,
mutual fund and pension fund management).  It also has a 51%
stake (increased from 20% in 2005) in Banco Internacional de
Costa Rica aka BICSA, a Panama-based trade finance and corporate
bank established in 1976 (24% of the bank's consolidated loans
at end-September 2006).  The larger local peer Banco Nacional de
Costa Rica (also state-owned) holds the remainder 49% stake in
BICSA.  Banco del Costa Rica offers a wide array of universal
banking services to 1.2 million clients through its network of
178 branches and 267 ATMs.  Around 77% of loans are to the
corporate and commercial sectors, while the retail segment
provides the remainder 23% (35% contribution in the bank's
domestic operations).

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 11, 2007, Fitch Ratings has affirmed the Issuer Default
Ratings and all other ratings of Banco de Costa Rica as:

  -- Long-term foreign currency IDR at 'BB';
  -- Short-term foreign currency IDR at 'B';
  -- Long-term local currency IDR at 'BB+';
  -- Short-term local currency IDR at 'B';
  -- Individual at 'C/D';
  -- Support at '3';
  -- Support Floor at 'BB';
  -- National-scale long-term rating at 'AA+(cri)';
  -- National-scale short-term rating at 'F1+(cri)'.


US AIRWAYS: Incurs US$79-Million Net Loss in Fourth Quarter
-----------------------------------------------------------
US Airways Group, Inc. has posted net loss for the fourth
quarter of US$79 million, compared to a net profit of
US$12 million, for the same period last year.  Excluding net
special items of US$37 million, the company incurred a net loss
of US$42 million for its fourth quarter 2007.  This compares to
a net profit excluding special items of US$86 million for the
fourth quarter of 2006, which included US$74 million of net
special items.

For the full year 2007, the company reported a net profit of
US$427 million, which compares to a net profit before cumulative
effect of change in accounting principle of US$303 million for
the full year 2006.  Excluding net special items of US$13
million, the company reported a net profit of US$440 million.
This compares to a net profit excluding special items and before
cumulative effect of change in accounting principle of US$507
million for the same period last year, which included
US$204 million of net special items.

US Airways Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Doug
Parker stated, "Our 2007 results represent another profitable
year since our merger in 2005 and we couldn't be more proud of
our 36,000 employees for their outstanding efforts.  To
recognize their hard work and dedication, we will celebrate
these results by distributing $49 million in profit sharing to
our team in early March."

"Our fourth quarter results were materially impacted by
increases in fuel prices.  Had our fuel price per gallon simply
remained at last year's fourth quarter levels, our 2007 fourth
quarter fuel expense would have been approximately US$230
million lower."

"We were particularly pleased with the performance of our
operation in the fourth quarter.  Our team did an excellent job
of taking care of our customers during the peak holiday season
under difficult weather conditions.  As reported by the
Department of Transportation, US Airways was second among
the Big Six airlines in on-time performance for the month of
November and we believe our December results were even better
relative to our peers.  Our employees have done a phenomenal job
of restoring US Airways' operational integrity and we thank them
for their outstanding work."

"As we begin 2008, our industry appears to be headed for another
difficult period due to extremely high oil prices and a
potentially softening economy.  However, US Airways is well
prepared for such an environment.  We have a very strong balance
sheet and from an operating standpoint, we completed the
major integration milestones of obtaining a single operating
certificate and completed other systems integrations in 2007.
We enter 2008 with a team that is doing an excellent job of
taking care of our customers and aggressively managing our
expenses.  We look forward to continuing that trend during the
year ahead," concluded Mr. Parker.

                Revenue and Cost Comparisons

Mainline passenger revenue per available seat mile (PRASM) in
the fourth quarter was 10.51 cents, up 3.9 percent over the same
period last year.  Express PRASM was 18.49 cents, up 5.2 percent
over the fourth quarter 2006.  Total mainline and Express PRASM
for US Airways Group was 11.83 cents, which was up 4.3 percent
over the fourth quarter 2006 on a 4.4 percent decline in total
available seat miles.

Mainline cost per available seat mile (CASM) at US Airways Group
was 12.04 cents, up 9.7 percent versus the same period last year
on a decrease in mainline capacity of 4.6 percent versus the
fourth quarter of 2006.  Fuel was the largest driver of this
increase as average mainline fuel price per gallon increased
32.6%.  Excluding fuel, unrealized and realized gains/losses
on fuel hedging instruments, and net special items, mainline
CASM was 8.09 cents, up 5.8 percent from the same period last
year.

Chief Financial Officer Derek Kerr stated, "The increase in CASM
excluding fuel and special items was largely driven by a
continued reduction in capacity and the execution of our
operational improvement plan to enhance reliability.  That
operational improvement plan is working and we anticipate
the increase in non-fuel unit costs will be smaller beginning in
the second quarter and for the remainder of the year."

                          Liquidity

As of Dec. 31, 2007, the company had US$3.0 billion in total
cash and investments, of which US$2.5 billion was unrestricted.

                  Fourth Quarter Special Items

During its fourth quarter, the Company recognized US$37 million
of net special items.  Expenses for the quarter included a US$99
million increase to long-term disability obligations for pilots
as a result of a change in the FAA mandated pilot retirement age
from 60 to 65, US$15 million of merger related transition
expenses, a US$10 million impairment loss on available for sale
auction rate securities considered to be other than temporary,
and US$5 million related to the reduction of flying at the
Pittsburgh hub.  These expenses were offset by a US$59 million
non-cash credit for unrealized net gains associated with the
change in fair value of the Company's outstanding fuel hedge
contracts, a US$17 million gain recognized on the sale of stock
in ARINC Incorporated, US$7 million in tax credits due to an IRS
rule change allowing the company to recover tax amounts for the
years 2003-2006 for certain fuel usage, a US$5 million pension
curtailment gain related to the FAA mandated retirement age
change, and a US$4 million non-cash benefit for income taxes
related to the reversal of non-cash tax provision from the
utilization of pre-acquisition NOL recorded through the third
quarter of 2007 due to the loss recorded in the fourth quarter.

               Other Notable Accomplishments

Operations:

    * Completed biannual Department of Defense audit required of
      all commercial carriers that provide transportation for
      military and DOD personnel.  The audit confirmed that US
      Airways meets or exceeds all requirements established in
      12 operations and maintenance areas.

    * Implemented operational performance initiatives designed
      to improve reliability, convenience and appearance; as a
      result, the airline's fourth quarter on-time performance
      improved 3.4 points to 76.9 percent over the fourth
      quarter 2006.

    * Recalled 200 furloughed flight attendants.

Marketing:

    * Announced the airline's first ever service to London's
      Heathrow Airport from Philadelphia, which is scheduled to
      start March 29, 2008.  The airline plans to operate the
      flights with US Airways' flagship international aircraft,
      the Airbus A330 with 29 Envoy and 259 economy seats.

    * Launched new, upgraded First Class menus on flights in the
      United States, Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean.
      The new menus were developed based on feedback from US
      Airways frequent flyers and with significant input from
      the airline's flight attendants.  Entrees are based on
      classic American cuisine, featuring fresh, high-quality
      ingredients with an emphasis on healthier choices.

    * Added PayPal as a new payment method for customers
      purchasing tickets through usairways.com.  Customers may
      now choose from numerous payment options, including Pay
      Pal, credit card, debit card and Bill Me Later.

    * Became the first airline to implement Text Message
      technology that allows customers to receive on-demand
      flight status and enroll in the frequent flyer program via
      mobile phone or PDA.  Customers are able to check the
      status of their flight by simply texting their flight
      number to TEXTUS (839887). Sending the word "join" to the
      same number allows a customer to instantly join the
      Dividend Miles program at any time.

    * Introduced upgraded buy on board in-flight meals and
      snacks with its In-Flight Cafe service.  The new menus
      feature a selection of fresh meals and a snack box that
      will change every two months to offer customers greater
      variety.

Finance:

    * Agreed to terms to add seven Airbus A330-200s to the
      airline's widebody fleet.  These additional aircraft
      augment an existing order for ten A330-200s, and will be
      used to support the airline's international growth plans.

                      About US Airways

Based in Tempe, Arizona, US Airways Group Inc.'s (NYSE: LCC) -
http://www.usairways.com/-- primary business activity is the
ownership of the common stock of US Airways, Inc., Allegheny
Airlines, Inc., Piedmont Airlines, Inc., PSA Airlines, Inc.,
MidAtlantic Airways, Inc., US Airways Leasing and Sales, Inc.,
Material Services Company, Inc., and Airways Assurance Limited,
LLC.

US Airways has operations in Japan, Australia, China, Costa
Rica, Philippines, and Spain, among others.

Under a Chapter 11 plan declared effective on March 31, 2003,
USAir emerged from bankruptcy with the Retirement Systems of
Alabama taking a 40% equity stake in the deleveraged carrier in
exchange for US$240 million infusion of new capital.

US Airways and its subsidiaries filed another chapter 11
petition on Sept. 12, 2004 (Bankr. E.D. Va. Case No. 04-13820).
Brian P. Leitch, Esq., Daniel M. Lewis, Esq., and Michael J.
Canning, Esq., at Arnold & Porter LLP, and Lawrence E. Rifken,
Esq., and Douglas M. Foley, Esq., at McGuireWoods LLP, represent
the Debtors in their restructuring efforts.  In the Company's
second bankruptcy filing, it lists US$8,805,972,000 in total
assets and US$8,702,437,000 in total debts.

The Debtors' Chapter 11 plan for its second bankruptcy filing
became effective on Sept. 27, 2005.  The Debtors completed their
merger with America West on the same date.

                        *     *     *

US Airways Group Inc.'s USUS$1.6 billion secured credit facility
due 2014, currently being syndicated, carries Standard & Poor's
Ratings Services 'B' rating.  That rating was assigned in March
2007.




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


AES DOMINICANA: Building Third Dominican Power Plant
----------------------------------------------------
AES Dominicana Energia Finance, S.A., will construct its third
power plant in the Dominican Republic, Dominican Today reports.

Dominican Today relates that the plant will have a coal-fired
unit to produce some 150 megawatts in its Itabo complex.

The investment for the project will depend on whether the two
coal-fired generation projects the Dominican government would be
carried out in Montecristi and Azua, Dominican Today says,
citing AES Dominicana president Marco de la Rosa.  Once there
are more details on the two plants, AES Dominicana would
evaluate if a new third unit at Itabo is feasible, whose cost
hasn't been determined as it depends on its characteristics and
capacity.

Mr. de la Rosa told Dominican Today that AES Dominicana would
construct its third coal-fired plant in its Itabo facilities.
AES Dominicana's short-term investment plans are aimed at adding
more needed energy production to the Dominican Republic through
the third plant.

AES Dominicana signed a letter of intent with the company
Electrical Power of San Pedro de Macoris for the construction of
a gas pipeline of 40 kilometers from its plants at AES Andres at
an estimated cost of US$28 million, Dominican Today states,
citing Mr. de la Rosa.

AES Dominicana is an energy group operating in the Dominican
Republic, which manages two of AES Corp.'s wholly owned
generation assets, Andres and Dominican Power.  AES Dominicana,
through an AES Corp subsidiary, also has a management agreement
to operate EDE-Este, one of the three distribution companies in
the country.  Andres is a power plant with a 304-megawatt
combined cycle generation facility with duel fuel capability
(gas and diesel) but with natural gas supplied through the
liquefied natural gas import facility serving as the primary
fuel while DPP is a 236-megawatt power plant comprising two
simple-cycle combustion turbines that can burn both natural gas
and fuel oil Number 2.  Both plants together have PPA contracts
with EDE-Este for 260 megawatts that increase over time, but
Andres is currently servicing all contracts given its greater
efficiency.  Andres LNG terminal includes a large tanker berth
and jetty, an LNG refueling pier, and a one million barrel
(160,000 cubic meters) LNG storage tank, as well as
regasification and handling facilities for both LNG and diesel.

Fitch ratings assigned a B- Long-term rating on AES Dominicana's
US$16 million senior unsecured notes.  On Feb. 27, 2007, Fitch
assigned a B- Long-term issuer default rating on the company.
Fitch said the outlook is stable.


* DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Mulls Signing Funding Accord with IMF
-----------------------------------------------------------
The Dominican Republic is considering whether to sign for
continued International Monetary Fund surveillance as its stand-
by arrangement with the fund approaches, DR1 Newsletter reports.

DR1 Newsletter relates that continued price increase for oil in
the international market is still a problem, and increases in
world food prices and a deficit in the Dominican Republic's
balance of payment accounts should make the government
reconsider its decision to end the agreement with International
Monetary on Jan. 31.

News daily Hoy relates that a recession in the US economy would
hurt the Dominican economy more than an increase in fuel prices.

Reports say that Dominican Republic President Leonel Fernandez
ordered his economic team to conduct proper studies about the
possibility of re-entering into the stand-by arrangement with
the International Monetary.

Presidential administrative minister Luis Manuel Bonetti
commented to DR1 Newsletter that the government did a good job
in handling the economy and that the nation has done enough to
continue without the International Monetary.

According to DR1 Newsletter, the Dominican Republic's private
business sector suggested that the government should continue
the International Monetary's surveillance.

American Chamber of Commerce head Christopher Paniagua told
Dominican Today that the government should renew the stand-by
accord as it provides the confidence needed to continue boosting
the economic stability of the country.  It also sends the
adequate signals to the local and international markets that are
eager for economic certainty and clear game rules for free
enterprise.

Once the agreement with the International Monetary isn't
renewed, the Dominican Republic could face problems, especially
in an electoral year, Dominican Today notes, citing Mr.
Paniagua.

"Let's remember that erroneous signals to the international
markets could bring unfavorable consequences for the economy,
mainly in an electoral year," Mr. Paniagua told Dominican Today.

Many of the challenges that the government has experienced have
been solved.  If an accord is signed with the International
Monetary it doesn't have to be under the same conditions as the
stand-by pact that will end this month, Hoy states, citing Mr.
Bonetti.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
May 4, 2007, Moody's Investors Service upgraded the Dominican
Republic government's foreign- and local-currency bond ratings
to B2 from B3.  The Dominican Republic's foreign-currency
country ceiling was upgraded to Ba3 from B1.  The country's
ceiling for foreign-currency bank deposits was also upgraded to
B3 from Caa1.  Moody's said all ratings have stable outlook.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 26, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned B+
long-term sovereign local and foreign currency ratings and C
short-term sovereign local and foreign currency ratings on the
Dominican Republic.  S&P said the outlook for all the ratings is
stable.




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


PETROECUADOR: Feiseh Getting US$1.47B from Block 15 Oil Exports
---------------------------------------------------------------
Ecuadorian hydrocarbons fund Feiseh will get US$1.47 billion
from state-run Petroecuador's Block 15 oil exports last year,
Dow Jones Newswires reports, citing Wilson Pastor, a the
government official in charge of the field.

Dow Jones relates that the Ecuadorian government confiscated
Block 15 from Occidental Petroleum Corp. in 2006 in a contract
dispute.

Mr. Pastor commented to Dow Jones, "We had budgeted to give to
Feiseh around US$621 million, with an oil price of US$42 per
barrel, but the price was around US$60 per barrel and we
overshot the goal."

The report says that the amount excludes operating and
administrative costs for Block 15, which produced an average of
88,173 barrels a day in 2007.

Petroecuador wants to increase Block 15's output by 21% to
107,000 barrels a day this year, working with a budget of US$713
million, Dow Jones notes.  Of the US$713 million, some US$437
million will be invested.  The remainder will go to operating
and administrative costs.

The Ecuadorian government will have completed by March the
creation of new company Petroamazonas S.A., which will
administer Block 15, Dow Jones says, citing Mr. Pastor.
Petroamazonas will also be responsible for the Panacocha field,
Dow Jones says, citing Mr. Pastor.

According to Dow Jones, Panacocha is a Petroecuador field with
65 million barrels of reserves of crude oil.  The field will
start production at 2,000 barrels per day, which will increase
to 20,000 barrels a day next year.

Petroecuador will own Petroamazonas with an 80% stake.
Petroecuador's affiliate Petroproduccion will have a 20% in
Petroamazonas, which will have financial and operational
autonomy, Dow Jones states.

In previous years, Petroecuador, according to published reports,
was 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.  In 2008, a new management team was
appointed to turn around the company's operations.




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


* HONDURAS: Hondutel Head Marcelo Chimirri Leaves Post
------------------------------------------------------
Marcelo Chimirri has resigned as Honduran state-run telecom firm
Hondutel's head to pursue the mayoral election of Tegucigalpa,
news daily La Tribuna reports.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 17, 2007, Raul Valladares, the private secretary to the
Honduran president, said that Hondutel will have a new chief on
Jan. 2, 2008, as Marcelo Chimirri wouldn't return to his
position.  Mr. Chimirri has been unable to carry out his job as
Hondutel head since the probe began, Business News Americas
reports.  President Manuel Zelaya had appointed economy minister
Jorge Rosa as temporary head of state-run telecom firm Hondutel.
A court hearing on the charges filed against Mr. Chimirri was
set for Dec. 5, 2007.  Mr. Chimirri asked Honduras' President
Manuel Zelaya for a one-month leave from the company to deal
with impending trial on espionage and abuse of authority
charges.  Hondutel allegedly allowed tapping of calls made by
government officials, including President Zelaya and congress
head Roberto Michelleti.  The crime investigation agency DGIC
then raided Hondutel offices in San Pedro Sula and confiscated
equipment.  President Zelaya issued the order for the search and
arrest of Mr. Chimirri on Oct. 22, 2007.  The police raided Mr.
Chimirri's residence on Nov. 9, 2007.  However, Mr. Chimirri was
in La Ceiba for the launch of a cellphone service.  Mr.
Chimirri, through his family, sought guarantees that his human
rights would be respected.  He also requested asylum in the
Italian consulate, due to his Italian lineage.

Mr. Chimirri allegedly said that the resignation was part of the
process of being able to run for mayor.  Public officials can't
run for other positions under the law, Business News Americas
relates.

                        *     *     *

Moody's Investor Service assigned these ratings on Honduras:

                     Rating     Rating Date

   Senior Unsecured    B2       Sept. 29, 1998
   Long Term IDR       B2       Sept. 29, 1998




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


AIR JAMAICA: Unions Hope Cabinet Intervention To Help Wage Talks
----------------------------------------------------------------
Unions representing employees at Air Jamaica are hopeful that an
intervention by the Cabinet will help speed up wage talks, Radio
Jamaica reports.

National Workers Union Vice-President Granville Valentine told
Radio Jamaica that he was told Cabinet would intervene in the
negotiation.

The issue of a new wage package wasn't on the agenda of a
meeting between Air Jamaica, the union representatives, and the
minister without portfolio Don Wehby, Radio Jamaica says, citing
Mr. Valentine.

Job restructuring and statutory deductions were discussed at
length during the meeting, Mr. Wehby told Radio Jamaica.

Another meeting will be held this week, Radio Jamaica states.

Headquartered in Kingston, Jamaica, Air Jamaica --
http://www.airjamaica.com/-- was founded in 1969.  It flies
passengers and cargo to almost 30 destinations in the Caribbean,
Europe, and North America.  Air Jamaica offers vacation packages
through Air Jamaica Vacations.  The company closed its intra-
island services unit, Air Jamaica Express, in October 2005.  The
Jamaican government assumed full ownership of the airline after
an investor group turned over its 75% stake in late 2004.  The
government had owned 25% of the company after it went private in
1994.  The Jamaican government does not plan to on Air Jamaica
permanently.

                        *     *     *

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

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
June 12, 2007, Moody's Investors Service assigned a rating of B1
to Air Jamaica Limited's guaranteed senior unsecured notes.


NATIONAL COMMERCIAL: Cash Plus Injunction Against Bank Ends
-----------------------------------------------------------
The injunction that a Jamaican court granted to Cash Plus
Limited against the National Commercial Bank expired on
Thursday, Radio Jamaica reports.

According to Radio Jamaica, Cash Plus obtained the injunction
blocking the National Commercial from closing its accounts last
year.

Radio Jamaica notes that Cash Plus' legal team is trying to
convince the Supreme Court to grant a further extension of the
injunction.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 10, 2007, the attorneys for Cash Plus sought another
injunction against the National Commercial before the Jamaican
court.  The National Commercial's management allegedly
implemented precautionary measures to protect its workers from
angry supporters of alternative investment schemes.  The
management instructed the workers not to wear their uniforms to
work.  The instruction was reportedly issued on Wednesday when
persons accusing the National Commercial of taking part of a
plot to destroy alternative investment schemes threatened the
bank.  Justice Marva McIntosh granted CASH Plus Limited a nine-
day injunction, blocking the National Commercial from closing
the 16 accounts held with the bank.  The injunction effectively
prevented the National Commercial from closing Cash Plus'
accounts at its Duke Street and Barry Street unit in Kingston by
Dec. 4.  Some of Cash Plus' account with the National Commercial
include:

          -- remittance account,
          -- foreign currency account,
          -- Cash Mart Ltd,
          -- Cash Plus Foods Ltd,
          -- Atlantic Gas Distributors Ltd,
          -- ExMil Security Company Ltd operating and general
             accounts, and
          -- the Drax Hall Ltd development local and foreign
             currency accounts.

Meanwhile, the attorneys for the National Commercial served
notice that they would file an appeal on the court's decision.
They were granted leave to take the matter to the Appeal Court,
Radio Jamaica notes.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 18, 2006, Standard & Poor's Rating Services affirmed its
'B/B' counterparty credit and CD ratings on National Commercial
Bank Jamaica Ltd.  S&P said the outlook is stable.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
May 2, 2007, Fitch Ratings affirmed these ratings on Jamaica-
based National Commercial Bank Jamaica Limited:

          -- long-term foreign and local currency Issuer Default
             Ratings (IDR) at 'B+';

          -- short-term foreign and local currency rating at
             'B';

          -- individual at 'D';

          -- support at 4.

The rating outlook on the bank's ratings is stable, in line with
Fitch's view of the sovereign's creditworthiness.


* JAMAICA: Pan Caribbean Eyes Cut of Stable Rating to Negative
--------------------------------------------------------------
Radio Jamaica reports that Pan Caribbean Financial Services
Limited said in its outlook for this year that there is
increased probability of a rating downgrade for Jamaica.

Pan Caribbean told Radio Jamaica that Jamaica's stable rating
could be revised to negative in the first six months of 2008,
based on the increasingly conservative posture of rating
agencies.  The downgrade would be based on:

          -- fiscal deficit overshooting target,
          -- rising inflation,
          -- deteriorating current account, and
          -- a dismal growth outlook.

Should the pending United States recession constrain foreign
currency inflows, the Jamaican dollar could depreciate sharply,
Radio Jamaica says, citing Pan Caribbean.  If the decrease in
confidence continues, investors could increase demand for US
dollar assets.  The condition could be exacerbated by a rating
downgrade.

Meanwhile, brokers told The Jamaica Gleaner that the emergency
cut in interest rates by the United States central bank will
have no immediate direct effect on the local markets.

Dehring Bunting and Golding's Christopher Chin-Loy commented to
The Gleaner, "The bond market is where there would be some
impact."

The Jamaica Observer reports that business leaders in Jamaica
urged the government to move aggressively but cautiously to deal
with the nation's economic problems.  They suggested a possible
20% reduction of the civil service as one solution.

Life of Jamaica Chief Executive Officer Richard Byles commented
to The Observer, "Over the last four to five years we've missed
every target we've set ourselves.  [The finance ministry] is
gonna have to make this budget work - set better targets and
reach them."

According to The Observer, Godfrey Dyer, the former head of
Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association, suggested that the
upcoming budget would "tell us whether we have a serious
government in place".

An of control wage fund had to be addressed and the civil
service had to be cut, Mr. Byles told The Observer.  He also
suggested a "sub-inflation increase as a tough medicine to
swallow politically."

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 26, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned B
long- and short-term sovereign local and foreign currency
ratings on Jamaica.  Standard & Poor's said the outlook for all
the ratings is stable.

As reported on Oct. 16, 2007, Fitch Ratings affirmed Jamaica's
ratings and the Stable Outlook as:

  -- Foreign and local currency Issuer Default Ratings 'B+';
  -- Country ceiling 'BB-';
  -- Bond obligations 'B+/RR4'.




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


ADVANCED MICRO: Fitch Cuts Issuer Default Rating to B- from B
-------------------------------------------------------------
Fitch has downgraded these ratings on Advanced Micro Devices
Inc.:

   -- Issuer Default Rating to 'B-' from 'B'; and
   -- Senior unsecured debt to 'CCC'/RR6 from 'CCC+/RR6'.

The Rating Outlook remains Negative.  Approximately US$4.1
billion of debt securities are affected by Fitch's actions.

The downgrade and Negative Outlook mainly reflect Fitch's
expectations that Advanced Micro's:

   -- operating performance, which was significantly weaker
      than expected over the last several quarters due to a
      combination of a key product delay and Intel Corp.'s
      strengthened product portfolio, will not meaningfully
      improve over the near-term.  For 2008, Fitch believes the
      company will benefit from anticipated microprocessor unit
      (MPU) growth, a refreshed product portfolio, and lower
      fixed costs after having restructured operations during
      2007.  Nonetheless, Fitch believes average selling prices
      will remain pressured, driven by Intel's low-cost
      manufacturing footprint, sales mix shift toward lower-
      priced models in emerging markets and desktops for newer
      original equipment manufacturer relationships,
      constraining potential profitability expansion.

   -- financial flexibility will continue to be limited by the
      company's modest liquidity position (consisting solely of
      US$1.9 billion of available cash, an amount that could be
      augmented by additional equipment sales during 2008),
      particularly with the company's limited intermediate-term
      profitability prospects and significant planned capital
      expenditures of US$1.1 billion in 2008.  Fitch believes
      the company will burn more than US$500 million in 2008
      (compared to US$1.9 billion usage in 2007) unless the
      company cuts capital spending, either via postponing
      discretionary investments and/or moving forward with an
       'asset light' strategy.

Fitch believes that additional negative rating actions would
likely occur if: (1) the company depletes its current cash
balance at a faster than expected pace; or (2) profitability
contracts further.

The ratings could be stabilized if over the next few quarters,
the company: (1) Steadily improves profitability and (2)
bolsters financial flexibility by obtaining additional external
funding.

Ratings concerns continue to center on:

   -- Significant product technology risk associated with the
      MPU market, resulting in cyclical operating results.
      However, given its relatively weak financial flexibility
      and limited market share, Fitch believes the company's
      ability to withstand technology roadmap missteps is
      limited.

   -- Intel's meaningful manufacturing technology advantage
      over Advanced Micro, driven by capital expenditures
      consistently in excess of US$5 billion, effectively
      requiring the company to continue investing aggressively
      to upgrade its manufacturing facilities; and

   -- expectations that the company's debt levels will remain
      high, driven by the company's investment  requirements,
      thereby constraining its financial flexibility over the
      long-term.

The ratings are supported by the company's:

   -- expectations for solid MPU unit growth over the next
      couple of years;

   -- strengthened and expanding relationships with all
      personal computer original equipment manufacturers, most
      recently including Toshiba Corporation ('BBB/F2' with a
      Stable Outlook by Fitch) and Dell Inc. ('A/F1'; Stable
      Outlook), driven in part by its enhanced ability to
      provide platform products to the marketplace following
      the acquisition of ATI Technologies in October 2006; and

   -- staggered and longer-term debt maturities, as well as its
      now proven willingness to cut capital spending in the
      face of less favorable market conditions.

At Sept. 29, 2007, total debt was US$5.3 billion and consisted
of:

   -- US$1.0 billion of secured debt related to Fab 36,
      including US$866 million of Fab 36 Secured Euro Term Loan
      due 2011;

   -- US$1.5 billion 5.75% convertible senior unsecured notes
      due 2012;

   -- US$2.2 billion 6% senior unsecured convertible notes due
      2015;

   -- US$390 million 7.75% senior unsecured notes due 2012; and

   -- other debt, including capital leases, of approximately
      US$242 million.

The Recovery Ratings reflect Fitch's belief that Advanced Micro
would be liquidated rather than reorganized in a bankruptcy
scenario, given Fitch's estimates that the company's projected
liquidation value of US$1.1 billion would exceed a
reorganization value of only US$615 million, driven by the
meaningful deterioration of the company's operating EBITDA over
the past year.  In estimating liquidation, Fitch applies advance
rates of 80%, 20%, and 10%, respectively, to its accounts
receivables, inventories, and property, plant, and equipment
balances as of the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2007.  Fitch arrives
at an adjusted reorganization value of US$1.0 billion after
subtracting administrative claims.  Based upon these
assumptions, and given that approximately US$1.0 billion of
unrated borrowings related to Fab 36 and capital leases are
essentially secured, minimal recovery (0-10%) would be available
for the approximately US$4.2 billion of senior unsecured debt,
resulting in 'RR6' ratings.

Headquartered in Sunnyvale, California, Advanced Micro Devices
Inc. (NYSE: AMD) -- http://www.amd.com/-- provides innovative
processing solutions in the computing, graphics and consumer
electronics markets.  The company has a facility in Singapore.
It has sales offices in Belgium, France, Germany, the United
Kingdom, Mexico and Brazil.


ALASKA AIR: Reports US$125 Million 2007 Full Year Net Income
------------------------------------------------------------
Alaska Air Group, Inc. has reported full year net income of
US$125.0 million, or US$3.09 per diluted share, compared to a
net loss of US$52.6 million, or US$1.39 per share, in 2006.  The
prior year results include charges related to the transition to
an all-Boeing 737 fleet at Alaska Airlines and for voluntary
severance programs related to new labor contracts.  Both periods
include adjustments resulting from mark-to-market fuel hedge
accounting.  Excluding the impact of these items, the company
would have reported net income of US$92.3 million, or US$2.28
per diluted share, compared to net income of US$137.7 million,
or US$3.45 per diluted share, in 2006.

The company reported fourth quarter net income of US$7.4
million, or US$0.19 per diluted share, compared to a net loss of
US$11.6 million, or US$0.29 per share, in 2006.  Similar to the
items noted above, both periods include mark-to-market fuel
hedge accounting adjustments and 2006 includes a favorable
adjustment related to the voluntary severance programs.
Excluding the impact of these adjustments, the company would
have reported a fourth quarter net loss of US$17.9 million, or
US$0.46 per share, compared to a net loss of US$3.4 million, or
US$0.08 per share, in 2006.  A reconciliation of these non-GAAP
measures can be found on page 6.

"It's frustrating to report a fourth quarter adjusted loss in
what has been a solid year relative to other carriers," said
chairperson and chief executive officer, Bill Ayer.  "The loss
was driven primarily by skyrocketing fuel costs combined with
fares that have not kept pace.  However, our fleet transition,
fuel hedging program and other efforts to reduce fuel
consumption put us in an excellent position to compete in this
difficult environment."

Alaska Airlines' mainline passenger traffic in the fourth
quarter increased 6.0 percent on a capacity increase of 4.6
percent.  Load factor increased by 1.0 percentage points to 74.7
percent. Alaska Air's mainline operating revenue per available
seat mile (ASM) increased 2.7 percent and its operating costs
per ASM excluding fuel and the special items mentioned above
decreased 3.0 percent from the prior year.  The company's total
pretax income for the quarter was US$15.2 million, compared to a
pretax loss of US$12.1 million in 2006.  Excluding the items
noted above, the company would have reported a pretax loss of
US$18.8 million for the quarter compared to a US$1.9 million
pretax loss in the fourth quarter of 2006.

Horizon Air's combined passenger traffic in the fourth quarter
increased 9.7 percent on a 10.3 percent capacity increase.  Load
factor declined by 0.4 percentage points to 72.6 percent.
Horizon's combined operating revenue per ASM increased 3.9
percent and its operating costs per ASM excluding fuel decreased
0.8 percent.  Horizon's total pretax loss for the quarter was
US$4.8 million, compared to a pretax loss of US$3.5 million in
2006.  Excluding mark-to-market fuel hedge accounting
adjustments, Horizon's pretax loss was US$11.2 million for the
quarter, compared to a pretax loss of US$0.5 million in the
fourth quarter of 2006.

Alaska Air Group had cash and short-term investments at
Dec. 31, 2007, of US$823 million.  The company repurchased
2,593,282 shares of its common stock for US$62.8 million through
Dec. 31, 2007, pursuant to the US$100 million share repurchase
program authorized by the Board of Directors in September 2007.
As of Jan. 23, 2008, the company had repurchased 3,292,882
shares of its common stock for a total of US$79.3 million.

                    About Alaska Air Group

Seattle, Washington-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-Latin America on
Sept. 26, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services has revised
its outlook on Alaska Air Group Inc. and its major operating
subsidiary, Alaska Airlines Inc., to negative from stable.  All
ratings, including the 'BB-' long-term corporate credit rating
for both entities, have been affirmed.


AVNET INC: Reports US$142.2-Mln Net Income in Qtr. Ended Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
Avnet Inc. reported revenue of US$4.75 billion for second
quarter fiscal 2008 ended Dec. 29, 2007, representing an
increase of 22.2% over second quarter fiscal 2007.  Pro forma
revenue growth, as defined in the Non-GAAP Financial Information
Section, was 6.3% over the prior year second quarter.  Net
income for second quarter fiscal 2008 was US$142.2 million, as
compared with net income of US$99.1 million, or US$0.67 per
share, for the second quarter last year.  Included in the
current quarter results are a one-time gain on the sale of a
building and an additional gain from a prior sale of a business
resulting from the receipt of a contingent payment.  Excluding
these items, net income and diluted earnings per share were
US$135.9 million and US$0.89, respectively, representing an
increase of 37.1% and 32.8% over the year ago period.  Included
in these results is stock compensation expense of US$0.02 per
diluted share in the current and prior year quarters.

Operating income for second quarter fiscal 2008 was a record
US$207.9 million, up 26.9% as compared with operating income of
US$163.8 million in the year ago quarter.  Operating income as a
percent of sales was 4.4%, up 16 basis points from last year's
second quarter.

Roy Vallee, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, commented,
"Our results continue to demonstrate the positive impact that
our value-based management strategy, augmented by value-creating
acquisitions, is having on our business.  While sequential sales
growth reflected normal seasonal trends, our year-over-year
growth of 22% was bolstered by seven value-creating acquisitions
that span both operating groups and all three regions.  In
addition to the top line growth, we increased year-over-year
operating income 27% and, excluding the gain on the sale of
assets, increased EPS 33% while driving return on capital
employed to a record 12.8%."

                   Operating Group Results

Electronics Marketing (EM) sales of US$2.48 billion in the
second quarter fiscal 2008 were up 6.2% year over year on a
reported basis and up 2.4% when adjusted to exclude the impact
of changes in foreign currency exchange rates.  EM sales in the
Americas, EMEA and Asia regions increased 3.7%, 7.2% and 8.5%,
respectively, year over year. EM operating income of US$126.6
million for second quarter fiscal 2008 was up 6.4% over the
prior year second quarter operating income of US$119.1 million
and operating income margin of 5.1% was flat as compared with
the prior year quarter.

Mr. Vallee added, "Electronics Marketing's revenue growth was
above our expectations and represents the third consecutive
quarter of moderate acceleration in year-over-year growth.  The
Americas region grew sequentially and returned to positive year-
over-year growth following four quarters of negative growth.  EM
had another strong performance in its interconnect, passive and
electromechanical (IP&E) product line which grew revenue at a
double digit rate over the year ago quarter. Since the beginning
of the fiscal year, we closed three IP&E international
acquisitions, which should increase EM's global revenue for its
IP&E business to roughly 15% of total revenue exiting this
fiscal year, as compared with 10% just a year ago.

Technology Solutions (TS) sales of US$2.27 billion in the second
quarter fiscal 2008 were up 46.0% year over year on a reported
basis and up 6.9% on a pro forma basis.  On a pro forma basis,
second quarter fiscal 2008 sales in the Americas, EMEA and Asia
were up 6.6%, 1.9%, and 45.6%, respectively, year over year.  TS
operating income was US$99.4 million in the second quarter
fiscal 2008, a 55.3% increase as compared with second quarter
fiscal 2007 operating income of US$64.0 million, and operating
income margin of 4.4% increased by 26 basis points over the
prior year second quarter benefited by the change to net revenue
accounting on the sales of supplier service contracts.

Mr. Vallee further added, "Technology Solutions revenue was
above the high end of our guidance range as we delivered a
strong December quarter aided by better than expected sales in
the final week.  Despite the well-publicized concerns with the
U.S. economy, our Americas region experienced better than
normal sequential growth in our seasonally strong December
quarter and year-over-year pro forma growth of 6.6%. We also
achieved strong sequential growth in the EMEA and Asia regions.
With solid revenue growth, both organically and through our
value-creating acquisitions, TS delivered record operating
income for the quarter."

                          Cash Flow

During the second quarter of fiscal 2008, the company generated
US$83.8 million of cash flow from operations and on a rolling
four quarter basis generated US$553.6 million.  As a result, the
company ended the quarter with US$417.1 million of cash and cash
equivalents and net debt (total debt less cash and cash
equivalents) of US$863.0 million.

Ray Sadowski, Chief Financial Officer, stated, "We had a solid
quarter of cash flow generation which further strengthened our
credit statistics and our overall balance sheet.  We achieved
record levels of working capital velocity due to business mix
and EM's year-over-year improvement in inventory turns and net
days.  This improvement in velocity, combined with the year-
over-year growth in operating income margin, drove return on
working capital 336 basis points above last year's second
quarter."

                           Outlook

For Avnet's third quarter fiscal 2008, management expects normal
seasonality at both operating groups with sales at EM
anticipated to be in the range of US$2.64 billion to US$2.74
billion and sales for TS to be between US$1.73 billion and
US$1.83 billion.  Therefore, Avnet's consolidated sales are
forecasted to be between US$4.37 billion and US$4.57 billion for
the third quarter of fiscal 2008.  Management expects third
quarter earnings to be in the range of US$0.85 to US$0.89 per
share, up 16.4% - 21.9% as compared with last year's third
quarter.  The above EPS guidance does not include the
amortization of intangible assets or integration charges related
to acquisitions that have closed or will close in the March
quarter.

                      About Avnet Inc.

Headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, Avnet, Inc. --
http://www.avnet.com/-- distributes electronic components and
computer products, primarily for industrial customers.  It has
operations in the following countries: Australia, Belgium,
China, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan,
Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, and Sweden,
Brazil, Mexico and Puerto Rico.

                        *     *     *

Moody's Investors Service affirmed Avnet's Ba1 corporate family
long-term debt ratings in March 2007.  Moody's said the outlook
is positive.


CONSTELLATION BRANDS: Selling Three Wine Brands for US$134 Mil.
---------------------------------------------------------------
Constellation Brands Inc. has entered into an agreement to sell
the Almaden and Inglenook wine brands, and the Paul Masson
winery located in Madera, California, to The Wine Group LLC for
US$134 million in cash, subject to closing adjustments.

Close of the transaction is subject to routine and customary
regulatory review, and is expected by the end of Constellation's
fiscal year on Feb. 29, 2008.

"This transaction, when coupled with the recent acquisition of
Clos du Bois, the number one super-premium U.S. wine brand, will
allow our wine sales forces to focus on selling higher-growth,
higher-margin premium wines," Rob Sands, Constellation Brands
president and chief executive officer, said.  "This change also
demonstrates our commitment to improve return on invested
capital."

Almaden and Inglenook are table wines which retail for less than
US$3 per 750 ml bottle equivalent," Mr. Sands added.  "The
Mission Bell Winery, also in Madera, California, will be
retained and allows the company to increase premium wine
production in California's important San Joaquin Valley wine
producing region.  This winery will also provide wine production
services to The Wine Group for a period of time on a contract
basis.

The transaction is expected to result in a pre-tax loss of
approximately US$27 million or an after-tax loss of US$0.13
diluted earnings per share on a reported basis, and will be
excluded from the company's comparable basis earnings per share.
The loss on the disposal is driven by the higher write-off of
goodwill unrelated to these brands as required by generally
accepted accounting principles in the U.S. and the low tax basis
associated with goodwill.

Proceeds from the transaction will be used to reduce borrowings.
The impact of this transaction is expected to be slightly
dilutive to ongoing reported basis and comparable basis diluted
earnings per share for fiscal 2009.  The Almaden and Inglenook
wine brands are expected to generate approximately US$130
million of net sales for fiscal 2008, and represent
approximately 10 million 9-liter cases of the company's U.S.
wine volume.

The proceeds from this transaction do not impact free cash flow,
and therefore the company's free cash flow guidance for fiscal
2008 remains unchanged at US$280 - US$300 million.

                 About Constellation Brands

Headquartered in Fairport, New York, Constellation Brands Inc.
(NYSE:STZ) -- http://www.cbrands.com/-- has more than 250
brands in its portfolio, sales in approximately 150 countries
and operates approximately 60 wineries, distilleries and
distribution facilities.  The company has market presence in
the U.K., Australia, Canada, New Zealand; Mexico.

Barton Brands Ltd. is the spirits division of Constellation
Brands Inc. is a producer, importer and exporter of a wide range
of spirits products, including brands such as Black Velvet
Canadian Whisky, Ridgemont Reserve 1792 bourbon, and Effen
vodka.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on Dec. 3, 2007,
Fitch Ratings assigned a 'BB-' rating to a note registered by
Constellation Brands Inc. to fund the purchase price of Beam
Wine Estates Inc., a subsidiary of Fortune Brands Inc: US$500
million 8.375% senior unsecured note due Dec. 15, 2014.  Fitch
said the rating outlook is negative.


GRUPO MEXICO: Must Disclose Results of Mine Surveys
---------------------------------------------------
Jonathon Shacat at The Sierra Vista Herald and The Bisbee Daily
Review reports that a coordinator of an independent health and
safety support network has urged Grupo Mexico SA, de C.V., to
disclose the results of a survey being conducted on the
conditions at the Cananea, Sonora, copper mine.

The Herald and The Review relates that Grupo Mexico said it
contracted Dupont and Safety Solutions International to conduct
the survey.

According to The Herald and The Review, Dupont and Safety
Solutions are supposed to disclose inspection reports and
recommendations later in January 2008.

Maquiladora Health and Safety Support Network coordinator
Garrett Brown told The Herald and The Review that information
should be made available to the public.

Mr. Brown commented to The Herald and The Review, "A sanitized
summary of the consultants' workplace survey will not give
Mexican society any confidence that Grupo Mexico actually
recognizes its responsibility to protect the lives and health of
its employees."

The Herald and The Review relates that Mr. Brown coordinated a
team of occupational health professionals that toured the mine
to:

          -- inspect processing plants, and
          -- conduct lung function tests on about 70 workers in
             early October.

Mr. Brown's group released a preliminary report in November 2007
that documented dangerous conditions at the Grupo Mexico
facility, The Herald and The Review notes.  However, the Mexican
Labor Department declared the group's study as not legally valid
as it wasn't carried out by the department and was completed
while the miners were protesting.  Mr. Brown then released early
this year the final version of the team's study, listing serious
safety and health-related hazards at the open-pit mine and
related processing plants.  The study also has a full text of a
report of the Mexican Labor Department investigators that
inspected the facility in April.

According to The Herald and The Review, the labor department's
report listed some 72 corrective actions that include:

          -- fixing the brakes on cranes, and
          -- reassembling dismantled dust collectors in the
             concentrator buildings.

The Labor Department had said it would carry out extraordinary
inspections of the mine when it returns to production, the
reports say.

Labor Department Secretary Javier Lozano Alarcon said he will
inspect the mine this week, The Herald and The Review 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.


INDUSTRIAS UNIDAS: Moody's Lowers Senior Notes Rating to Caa1
-------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service has downgraded its ratings on the
US$200 million in Guaranteed Senior Unsecured Notes due in 2016
issued by Industrias Unidas, S.A. de C.V.'s to Caa1 from B3.  At
the same time, Moody's downgraded the company's corporate family
rating to B3 from B2 and assigned a negative outlook to all
ratings.  The rating actions were driven by weaker credit
protection metrics and liquidity than anticipated and likely
continued sales volume and margin pressure for the next couple
of years, due to persistent weakness in United States housing
starts and commercial construction.

These ratings were affected:

   -- Industrias Unidas, S.A. de C.V. Corporate Family Rating:
      B3

   -- US$200 million of Gteed. Senior Unsecured Notes due 2016:
      Caa1

The outlook on the ratings is negative.

The rating on the notes is Caa1 because Moody's is concerned
that the issuer and the guarantors of the notes may not have
sufficient cash and operating cash flow to fund all coupon
payments due over the next two years.  The rating also
incorporates Moody's expectation that Industrias Unidas is
unlikely to receive dividends or other cash transfers from
subsidiaries that do not provide guarantees for the notes.
Finally, the Caa1 rating considers that assets reported by the
company and the guarantors provide more than three times
coverage of total debt outstanding, although Moody's expects
that their market value would be substantially less than their
book value.

When first rating the company and its notes back in October
2006, Moody's anticipated that 2007 could present slower sales
growth and thus impact operating margins.  However, "actual
results were worst than expected and during 2007 Industrias
Unidas faced lower MOM (margin over metal), operating margins
and sales volumes due to unfavorable market conditions,
especially in the U.S.", said Moody's senior analyst Nymia
Almeida.  Over 65% of the company's sales are to end markets in
the U.S. and most are related to the construction industry.
Specifically, 36% of U.S. sales are related to housing
construction and 35% are related to commercial construction.

As a consequence, credit metrics have deteriorated. Leverage
skyrocketed and interest coverage, as per adjusted EBIT to
interest expenses, fell from 2.9 times in 2006 to negative 0.5
times in the last twelve months ending on Sep. 30, 2007.  Under
current market conditions for copper prices and the construction
industry, Moody's believes that interest coverage will remain
low, although possibly positive, over the next couple of years.
In addition, Industrias Unidas' liquidity position is worrisome.
Despite the fact that the company's cash position as of
September 2007 of US$66 million represented over 2.0 times short
term debt, interest payments of approximately US$36 million in
2008 will compromise its cash position, especially when
considering only cash held by the company and the guarantors of
the notes.

The company's ongoing efforts to reduce working capital needs
are positive for the ratings, with a 20% reduction in average
inventories in 2007, from 31,000 tons in December 2006 to 24,000
tons in December 2007.  In addition, the fact that 70% of the
group's sales are denominated in U.S. dollars is positive since
this may provide a natural hedge for U.S. dollar denominated
debt if volumes do not drop materially.

The negative outlook reflects Moody's concerns that the negative
operating income at Industrias Unidas and the guarantors may not
allow for sufficient accumulation of funds for interest payments
on the notes and the likely expected continued deterioration in
the company's end markets in the U.S.construction industry.

A downgrade of the rating on the notes would be likely if the
cash balance at Industrias Unidas and the guarantors declines to
below US$20 million.  A downgrade of the corporate family rating
would be likely if the company is unable to renew the revolver
credit facilities available to its U.S. subsidiaries and/or if
cash and cash equivalents drop below 1.7 times short term debt.

An upgrade is unlikely in the near term, but would require
adjusted debt/EBITDA of below 3.0 times and an EBIT margin of
above 5% on a sustainable basis, leading to an EBIT interest
coverage ratio of above 1.5 times.

Industrias Unidas is one of Mexico's largest diversified
industrial groups, manufacturing a wide range of copper-based
and electrical products for the housing and electrical power
sectors mainly in Mexico and the U.S.  The company processes
over 220,000 of metric tons of copper per year.  As of September
2007, last twelve month revenues were in excess of US$2.4
billion.


PRIDE INT: Awards Ultra-Deepwater Drillship Contract to Samsung
---------------------------------------------------------------
Pride International said in a statement that it has awarded
Korean firm Samsung Heavy Industries a contract to construct an
ultra-deepwater drillship for Brazilian state-run oil firm
Petroleo Brasileiro SA.

Business News Americas relates that the vessel would be
delivered from the shipyard in the first quarter 2011, after
construction, commissioning and system integrated testing.

According to BNamericas that Petroleo Brasileiro will use the
unit.  The firm has the option to sign a firm contract for up to
seven years.

Pride International told BNamericas that it will get a fixed
daily rate and performance bonus of up to 17% of the daily rate
from Petroleo Brasiliero.  Contract revenues could range from
US$916 million to US$1.24 billion.

The rig will initially be equipped for drilling in water depths
of up to 10,000 feet.  The estimated construction cost of the
rig, which includes commissioning and system integrated testing
but excludes capitalized interest, is US$720 million, BNamericas
states, citing Pride International.

                About Samsung Heavy Industries

Headquartered in South Korea, Samsung Heavy Industries Company
Limited's principal activity is the manufacturing of ships,
conveyance machines, chemical equipment and construction
equipment.

                  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, and 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 Pride International

Headquartered in Houston, Texas, Pride International Inc.
(NYSE: PDE) -- http://www.prideinternational.com/-- provides
onshore and offshore contract drilling and related services in
more than 25 countries, operating a diverse fleet of 277 rigs,
including two ultra-deepwater drillships, 12 semisubmersible
rigs, 28 jackups, 16 tender-assisted, barge and platform rigs,
and 214 land rigs.  The company maintains worldwide operations
in France, Mexico, Kazakhstan, India, and Brazil, among others.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Nov. 22, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Service raised its
corporate credit rating on offshore contract drilling firm Pride
International Inc. to 'BB+' from 'BB'.  At the same time, S&P
raised the rating on the company's unsecured debt to 'BB+' from
'BB-'.  S&P said the outlook is stable.


VISTA GOLD: Closes Adjacent Properties Acquisition in Mexico
------------------------------------------------------------
Vista Gold Corp. has completed the acquisition of interests in
various mineral properties adjacent to the company's Guadalupe
de los Reyes Project in Sinaloa, Mexico, as previously announced
on Dec. 19, 2007.  This acquisition has the effect of
consolidating the company's land position in this area.  The
consideration paid by the company for the acquisition of these
interests included cash payments totaling US$451,821 and the
issuance of a total of 213,503 common shares of Vista Gold, to
various parties.

Vista Gold Corp. (TSX & Amex: VGZ), based in Littleton,
Colorado, evaluates and acquires gold projects with defined gold
resources.  Additional exploration and technical studies are
undertaken to maximize the value of the projects for eventual
development.  The corporation's holdings include the Maverick
Springs, Mountain View, Hasbrouck, Three Hills, Wildcat projects
and Hycroft mine, all in Nevada, the Long Valley project in
California, the Yellow Pine project in Idaho, the Paredones
Amarillos and Guadalupe de los Reyes projects in Mexico, the
Amayapampa project in Bolivia, and the Awak Mas deposit in
Indonesia.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on April 1, 2004,
Vista Gold's independent auditors expressed doubt about the
company's ability to continue as a going concern after reviewing
its financial statements for the year ending Dec. 31, 2003.

Losses continued until the year ended Dec. 31, 2004.  For 2004,
Vista reported a consolidated net loss of US$4.9 million.




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


XEROX CORPORATION: Earns US$1.1 Billion in Year Ended Dec. 31
-------------------------------------------------------------
Xerox Corporation reported US$1.1 billion of net income for the
year ended Dec. 31, 2007, compared to net income of US$1.2
million for the same period in 2006.  The company also earned
US$382 million for the three months ended Dec. 31, 2007,
compared to net income of US$214 million for the same period in
2007.

Total revenue of US$4.9 billion grew 11 percent in the quarter
with post-sale and financing revenue up 12 percent; this annuity
stream represents about 70 percent of total revenue.  Both total
revenue and post-sale revenue included a currency benefit of
four percentage points as well as the benefit from Xerox's
acquisition of Global Imaging Systems.

"Our growing annuity revenue and strong cash generation, along
with our disciplined approach to controlling costs, result in
consistent delivery of solid performance year after year," said
Anne M. Mulcahy, Xerox chairman and chief executive officer.
"In 2007, we expanded earnings, grew revenue, generated US$1.9
billion in operating cash flow, repurchased US$631 million in
Xerox shares and declared a dividend.  As important, we
fortified our leadership in the marketplace through increased
distribution and innovative technology and document management
services.

"Xerox operates in a global business environment, serving a wide
range of markets with more than 50 percent of our revenue
generated from customers outside the U.S.," she added.  "This
worldwide reach and our effective business model -- combined
with our competitive offerings and strong recurring revenues
-- position us well to continue building value for shareholders.
As a result, we remain committed to delivering on our 2008
full-year EPS guidance of US$1.31 to US$1.35, and we are
increasing our guidance for full-year operating cash flow."

The acquisition of Global Imaging Systems, which provides a
broader distribution to small and mid-size businesses in the
U.S., led to a 10 percent increase in equipment sales, including
a five-point benefit from currency.  In 2007, Xerox introduced
39 products, more than twice the number of products it launched
in 2006.  More than two-thirds of Xerox's equipment sale revenue
comes from products launched in the past two years.

Revenue from color grew 14 percent in the fourth quarter and now
represents 40 percent of Xerox's total revenue, up 3 points from
the fourth quarter of 2006.  Xerox color devices print the
highest volume of pages in the industry -- producing more than
40 billion color pages in 2007, an increase of more than 30
percent from 2006.  In the fourth quarter, the number of color
pages grew 34 percent, and now represent 14 percent of total
pages, up 4 points from the prior year.  Color performance
excludes Global Imaging Systems results.

Xerox services help businesses simplify work processes, manage
office technology and in-house print shops, digitize paper
files, create digital archives and much more.  During 2007,
Xerox Global Services generated US$3.4 billion in annuity
revenue, an 8 percent increase over 2006.

"As businesses shift to more color in the office and begin to
see the cost benefits of simplifying their work processes,
they're turning to Xerox for our innovation and expertise.  Our
focus on color and document services is fueling our annuity
stream and creating long-term value in our company," said
Ms. Mulcahy.

Xerox's production business provides commercial printers and
document-intensive industries with high-speed digital printing
and services that enable on-demand, personalized printing.
Total production revenue increased 5 percent in the fourth
quarter, including a six-point currency benefit. Production
color installs grew 3 percent.  Installs of production black-
and-white systems declined 10 percent.  Demand for the Xerox
Nuvera(R) EA and Xerox Nuvera 288 digital presses as well as
continuous feed systems only partially offset declines from
other high-volume and light-production systems.

Through expanded channels of distribution and competitive
offerings for businesses of any size, Xerox continues to drive
the demand for color in the office with installs of color
multifunction systems up 67 percent.  Total office revenue was
up 14 percent in the fourth quarter, including a five-point
benefit from currency.  Installs of the company's black-and-
white multifunction devices increased 6 percent.

Gross margins were 40.5 percent, down about a half a point from
the fourth quarter of 2006.  Selling, administrative and general
expenses were 24.3 percent of revenue, up 1 point from fourth-
quarter 2006.  The strength of Xerox's annuity-based business
model led to a significant increase in operating cash flow,
generating US$1 billion in the fourth quarter and US$1.9 billion
for the full year.

Since launching its stock buyback program in October 2005, Xerox
has repurchased 137 million shares or 13 percent of outstanding
shares.  Earlier this week, Xerox's Board of Directors
authorized an additional US$1 billion, adding to the remaining
US$370 million available for share repurchase.

Xerox expects first-quarter 2008 earnings in the range of 25 to
28 cents per share.

Headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut, Xerox Corp. --
http://www.xerox.com/-- develops, manufactures, markets,
services and finances a range of document equipment, software,
solutions and services.  Xerox operates in over 160 countries
worldwide and distributes products in the Western Hemisphere
through divisions, wholly owned subsidiaries and third-party
distributors.  The company maintains operations in France,
Japan, Italy, Nicaragua, among others.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 13, 2007, Fitch upgraded Xerox Corp.'s and its subsidiary's
debt as:

  -- Issuer Default Rating to 'BBB' from 'BBB-';
  -- Senior unsecured credit facility to 'BBB' from 'BBB-';
  -- Senior unsecured debt to 'BBB' from 'BBB-';
  -- Trust preferred securities to 'BBB-' from 'BB'.

Approximately US$9.1 billion of securities, including the US$2
billion credit facility, are affected by Fitch's action.  Fitch
says the rating outlook is stable.




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


CHIQUITA BRANDS: May Bid for Five Million Boxes of Bananas
----------------------------------------------------------
Chiquita Brands International may bid for the five million boxes
of bananas that Panama will auction next month, Reuters reports.

Western Panamanian co-operative Coosemupar wants to auction some
four million, 40-pound boxes of premium quality bananas to
international buyers, and one million boxes of other qualities,
Panama's commodity exchange chief Abelardo Carles told Reuters.

Reuters relates that the auction would be on Feb. 14.  It will
mark the end of Coosemupar's long-standing distribution deal
with Chiquita Brands that gave the firm the exclusive rights to
by the crop.

Coosemupar told Reuters that it seeks to sell bananas to
European distributors.  However, Chiquita Brands is unlikely to
be excluded from bidding.

According to Reuters, the sale accounts for around a quarter of
Panama's yearly crop.  It could bring in US$35 million.

The sale is a significant quantity for large buyers although
Panamanian banana production is small compared to Costa Rica and
Colombia, Reuters states, citing Mr. Carles.

Cincinnati, Ohio-based Chiquita Brands International Inc. (NYSE:
CQB) -- http://www.chiquita.com/-- markets and distributes
fresh food products including bananas and nutritious blends of
green salads.  The company markets its products under the
Chiquita(R) and Fresh Express(R) premium brands and other
related trademarks.

Chiquita employs approximately 25,000 people operating in more
than 70 countries worldwide, including Colombia, Panama and the
Philippines.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter on May 16, 2007,
Moody's Investors Service Ratings affirmed these ratings on
Chiquita Brands International Inc.: (i) corporate family rating
at B3; (ii) probability of default rating at B3; (iii) US$250
million 7.5% senior unsecured notes due 2014 at Caa2(LGD5, 89%);
and (iv)  US$225 million 8.875% senior unsecured notes due 2015
at Caa2 (LGD5, 89%).  Moody's changed the rating outlook for
Chiquita Brands to negative from stable.

Troubled Company Reporter reported on May 4, 2007, that Standard
& Poor's Ratings Services placed its 'B' corporate credit and
other ratings on Cincinnati, Ohio-based Chiquita Brands
International Inc. on CreditWatch with negative implications,
meaning that the ratings could be lowered or affirmed following
the completion of their review.  Total debt outstanding at the
company was about US$1.3 billion as of March 31, 2007.


* PANAMA: Free Trade Pact with Chile Takes Effect on March 7
------------------------------------------------------------
A bilateral free trade agreement between Panama and Chile will
take effect on March 7, Prensa Latina reports, citing Panama's
Foreign MInistry.  Under the agreement, Panama will be able to
consolidate its exports to Chile without taxes.

Foreign Affairs Minister Samuel Lewis said that Panama's
excellent relations with Chile allow both countries to expand
bilateral relations to the best interests of all consumers,
Prensa Latina relates.  This latest accord, he added, will allow
agricultural products like cacao and pineapple to penetrate the
Chilean market.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 26, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services has assigned
BB long-term sovereign local and foreign currency ratings on
Panama.

Standard & Poor's also placed B short-term sovereign foreign
currency rating, 3 sovereign foreign currency recovery rating
and a AAA transfer and convertibility assessment rating on the
country.

S&P said the outlook for all the ratings is positive.




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


DOE RUN: Says Levels of Lead at La Oroya Drop 61.7%
---------------------------------------------------
Doe Run told Business News Americas that levels of lead in the
air at La Oroya, Peru, decreased 61.7% at the end of 2007, from
2.08 micrograms per cubic meter the same period in 2006.

Doe Run said in a statement that it is working on projects to
further decrease air pollution levels to lower than 0.5
micrograms per cubic meter from 0.796 micrograms per cubic meter
in 2007.  The firm has invested over US$157 million in
environmental cleanup projects in collaboration with the
Peruvian government efforts.

Doe Run wants to complete the environmental cleanup project Pama
in October 2009.  The firm took on Pama after acquiring La Oroya
from the Peruvian government in 1997, BNamericas states.

Based in St. Louis, Mo., The Doe Run Company --
http://www.doerun.com/-- is a privately held natural resources
company dedicated to environmentally responsible mineral
production, metals fabrication, recycling and reclamation.  The
company and its subsidiaries deliver products and services
needed to provide power, protection and convenience through
premium products and associated metals including lead, zinc,
copper, gold and silver.  As the operator of one of the world's
only multi-metal facilities and the Americas' largest integrated
lead producer, Doe Run employs more than 5,000 people, with U.S.
operations in Missouri, Washington and Arizona, and Peruvian
operations in Cobriza and La Oroya.

Doe Run Peru S.R.L., an indirect Peruvian subsidiary, operates a
smelter in La Oroya, Peru, one of the largest polymetallic
processing facilities in the world, producing an extensive
product mix of non-ferrous and precious metals, including
silver, copper, zinc, lead and gold.  Doe Run Peru also has a
copper mining and milling operation in Cobriza, Peru in the
region of Huancavelica, which is approximately 200 miles
southeast of La Oroya in Peru.

              Doe Run Peru Going Concern Doubt

As reported in the Troubled Company reporter-Latin America on
Aug. 10, 2006, Doe Run Peru has significant capital requirements
under environmental commitments and guarantees and substantial
contingencies related to taxes and has significant debt service
obligations under the revolving credit facility, each of which,
if not satisfied, could result in a default under Doe Run Peru's
credit agreement and collectively raise substantial doubt about
Doe Run Peru's ability to continue as a going concern.

Doe Run Peru continues to have substantial cash requirements in
the future, including the maturity of the revolving credit
facility on Sept. 22, 2006, and significant capital requirements
under environmental commitments.  In addition, there are
substantial contingencies related to taxes.

The Doe Run Peru Revolving Credit Facility expires on
Sept. 22, 2006, and will require negotiations to extend its
terms.  There can be no assurance that Doe Run Peru will be
successful in extending the existing credit agreement or
negotiating a new agreement, or if it is successful, that the
extended or new credit agreement would be at terms that are
favorable to Doe Run Peru.

Any default under the requirements of the Environmental
Remediation and Management Program could result in a default
under the Doe Run Peru Revolving Credit Facility.  A default
under the requirements of the Doe Run Peru Revolving Credit
Facility results in defaults under the Doe Run Revolving Credit
Facility and the indenture governing the bonds.




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


ADELPHIA COMMS: Ct. Extends Claims Objection Deadline to May 16
---------------------------------------------------------------
At the behest of the reorganized Adelphia Communications
Corporation and its debtor-affiliates, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court
for the Southern District of New York extended, until
May 16, 2008, the period wherein the plan administrator Quest
Turnaround Advisors LLC may object to prepetition and
administrative claims.

Shelley C. Chapman, Esq., at Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP, in
New York, relates that the Reorganized ACOM Debtors have
successfully identified and objected to a vast number of
unmeritorious claims despite the staggering amount of claims
filed against them.

As of Dec. 15, 2007, approximately 19,900 claims aggregating
US$3,980,000,000,000 were asserted against the reorganized ACOM
and JV Debtors, Ms. Chapman notes.  To date, the Debtors have
filed 19 omnibus objections addressing US$3,963,000,000,000 of
the filed claims, she informs the Court.

As a result, roughly US$2,910,000,000,000 of the filed claims
have been expunged or withdrawn, while others have been reduced
and allowed, reclassified, or subordinated.  In addition, about
US$9,400,000,000 in claims have been allowed, reduced and
allowed, or expunged as a result of settlements between the
reorganized ACOM Debtors and certain claimants.

The reorganized ACOM Debtors believe that fewer than 50 claims,
totaling US$136,000,000, have not been resolved.

Notwithstanding the brisk pace of the claims process to date,
however, final work on claims resolution remains to be done,
according to Ms. Chapman.  The Plan Administrator and the
reorganized Debtors must conclude the fact-intensive process of
reviewing, analyzing and reconciling the scheduled and filed
claims, she asserts.

The Plan Administrator and the reorganized Debtors relate that
the extension of the Claims Objection Deadline will give them
additional time to:

   (a) fully and finally evaluate and reconcile the remaining
       unresolved claims; and

   (b) ensure that all unmeritorious claims will be
       appropriately challenged.

The extension will not prejudice any claimant or other party in
interest, Ms. Chapman avers.

The reorganized ACOM Debtors believe that they will no longer
seek for a further extension of the Claims Objection Deadline.

                     About Adelphia Comms

Based in Coudersport, Pennsylvania, Adelphia Communications
Corporation (OTC: ADELQ) -- http://www.adelphia.com/-- is a
cable television company.  Adelphia serves customers in 30
states and Puerto Rico, and offers analog and digital video
services, Internet access and other advanced services over its
broadband networks.  The company and its more than 200
affiliates filed for Chapter 11 protection in the Southern
District of New York on June 25, 2002.  Those cases are jointly
administered under case number 02-41729.  Willkie Farr &
Gallagher represents the Debtors in their restructuring efforts.
PricewaterhouseCoopers serves as the Debtors' financial advisor.
Kasowitz, Benson, Torres & Friedman, LLP, and Klee, Tuchin,
Bogdanoff & Stern LLP represent the Official Committee of
Unsecured Creditors.

Adelphia Cablevision Associates of Radnor, L.P., and 20 of its
affiliates, collectively known as Rigas Manged Entities, are
entities that were previously held or controlled by members of
the Rigas family.  In March 2006, the rights and titles to these
entities were transferred to certain subsidiaries of Adelphia
Cablevision LLC.  The RME Debtors filed for chapter 11
protection on March 31, 2006 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Case Nos. 06-10622
through 06-10642).  Their cases are jointly administered under
Adelphia Communications and its debtor-affiliates' chapter 11
cases.  The Bankruptcy Court confirmed the Debtors' Modified
Fifth Amended Joint Chapter 11 Plan of Reorganization on
Jan. 5, 2007.  That plan became effective on Feb. 13, 2007.
(Adelphia Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 182; Bankruptcy Creditors'
Service, Inc., http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000).


ALLIED WASTE: Closes US$33.9MM California Demand Bonds Offering
---------------------------------------------------------------
Allied Waste Industries, Inc.'s wholly-owned subsidiary, Allied
Waste North America, Inc., successfully completed the offering
of US$33.9 million in principal amount of California Municipal
Finance Authority Solid Waste Revenue Variable Rate Demand Bonds
Series 2008A due 2024.  The offering is backed by a letter of
credit as credit enhancement for the bonds.  Inclusive of the
letter of credit fees, the initial all-in cost to Allied Waste
is approximately 4.20%.  As of the date of issuance, the bonds
bear variable interest rates reset weekly based on market rates.

"We are pleased to have the opportunity to collaborate with the
California Municipal Finance Authority," said Allied Waste
Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Peter
Hathaway.  "This attractive rate financing supports continued
economically beneficial investment throughout the State of
California."

Headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona, Allied Waste Industries
Inc. -- http://www.alliedwaste.com/and http://www.disposal.com/
-- (NYSE: AW) provides waste collection, transfer, recycling,
and disposal services for residential, commercial, and
industrial customers in over 100 major markets spanning 37
states and Puerto Rico.  The company has 24,000 employees.

                        *     *     *

Moody's Investor Services placed Allied Waste Industries Inc.'s
long term corporate family and probability of default ratings at
'B1' in February 2007.  The ratings still hold to date with a
positive outlook.


BURGER KING: May No Longer Buy Tomatoes from Immokalee
------------------------------------------------------
Doug Ohlemeier at ThePacker.com reports that Burger King sent a
letter to tomato suppliers, warning that it may stop purchasing
tomatoes from Immokalee, Florida.

According to ThePacker.com, Immokalee workers' union Coalition
of Immokalee Workers demanded fast-food firms to pay a penny a
pound more for tomatoes, causing uneasiness among Florida
growers.

The Associated Press relates that the letter was allegedly a
result to the demands.  The Coalition of Immokalee has demanded
Burger King and other fast food operators to pay workers an
additional penny a pound for the tomatoes they pick.

However, Burger King spokesperson Denise Wilson denied to
ThePacker.com that its warning was connected to the workers'
wage issue.

Ms. Wilson commented to ThePacker.com, "We buy from many regions
and make plans for a variety of reasons.  We're asking our
suppliers for contingency plans, in case of bad weather or
freezes, which happened this January."

ThePacker.com relates that Burger King requested in the letter
that the suppliers come up and present to the fast-food chain
contingency plans "for the possibility that we would choose not
to purchase tomatoes grown on farms in the Immokalee."  The
letter was signed by Burger King's food safety, quality
assurance and regulatory compliance vice president Steven
Grover.

The letter explains that the request is for the prevention of
supply disruptions and that packers should develop plans for a
phased implementation of the plan, ThePacker.com says.

West Coast Tomato Inc. vice president and sales manager Bob
Spencer commented to ThePacker.com, "I would be shocked if
Burger King switched from Florida tomatoes to the only viable
alternative, which would be Mexican tomatoes, because of a labor
dispute in Florida.  We are the most heavily regulated
agricultural community in the world.  If Burger King chooses to
switch to tomatoes grown in Mexico, where there is nowhere near
the regulation and oversight (that we have), it doesn't speak
well on how they feel about protecting their consumers."

The Florida tomato sector would be open to talking with Burger
King about the issue and to see if the packers could show the
firm that it is being fed misinformation regarding the Immokalee
tomato pickers, ThePacker.com states, citing Mr. Spencer.

Headquartered in Miami, Florida, The Burger King (NYSE: BKC)
-- http://www.burgerking.com/-- operates more than 11,000
restaurants in more than 69 countries and territories worldwide.
Approximately 90% of Burger King restaurants are owned and
operated by independent franchisees, many of them family owned
operations that have been in business for decades.  Burger King
Holdings Inc., the parent company, is private and independently
owned by an equity sponsor group comprised of Texas Pacific
Group, Bain Capital and Goldman Sachs Capital Partners.

Burger King Corp. operates restaurants in the Latin American,
Caribbean and Mexican Region.  The company's first international
restaurant opened in 1963 in Puerto Rico.  Since 1994, Burger
King has opened more than 300 restaurants in the Latin American
region, producing some of the strongest comparable store sales
growth for the brand around the world.  Burger King(R)
restaurants in Latin America serve approximately 1,600 customers
per day each, making them some of the highest volume restaurants
in the system.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 3, 2007, Moody's Investors Service has affirmed the Ba2
corporate family rating of Burger King Corporation. Moody's also
affirmed the Ba2 rating assigned to the company's US$250 million
senior secured term loan A, US$1.1 billion senior secured term
loan B, and US$150 million senior secured revolving credit
facility.  In addition, Moody's changed the outlook for Burger
King to stable from negative.


MOTHERS WORK: Taps L. Hendrickson as Chief Merchandising Officer
----------------------------------------------------------------
Lisa Hendrickson, Mothers Work, Inc.'s current Vice President of
Design and Acting Senior Vice President of Merchandising, has
been promoted to the position of Chief Merchandising Officer.
Ms. Hendrickson has over twenty years of apparel
design/merchandising experience and has served as Acting Senior
Vice President of Merchandising since November 2007, and as Vice
President of Design since June 2006.  Ms. Hendrickson previously
served as the Design Director for the company's Motherhood
Maternity(R) brand from February 1998 to May 2006.  From July
1985 to February 1998, Ms. Hendrickson served in a variety of
apparel design positions performing various merchandising
activities including creating private label product lines for
several leading apparel retailers.

Mothers Work President and Chief Creative Officer, Rebecca
Matthias stated, "We are thrilled to have Lisa assume the role
of Chief Merchandising Officer and believe she is the right
person to maintain and improve upon Mothers Work's position as
the market leader in the maternity apparel business.  Having
been with Mothers Work for the past ten years, Lisa is
intimately knowledgeable about our business and the needs of the
maternity apparel customer.  Lisa has brought a great deal to
our company during her time with us, including being the driving
force behind our new patent-pending product, the Secret Fit
Belly(TM), and we look forward to big things from her as she
assumes this new role."

                     About Mothers Work

Based in Philadelphia and founded in 1982, Mothers Work Inc.
(Nasdaq: MWRK) -- http://www.motherswork.com/ -- designs and
retails maternity apparel.  The company operates 1,582 maternity
locations, including 798 stores in 50 states, Puerto Rico and
Canada predominantly under the tradenames Motherhood
Maternity(R), A Pea in the Pod(R), Mimi Maternity(R), and
Destination Maternity(TM), and sells on the web through its
DestinationMaternity.com and brand-specific Web sites.  In
addition, Mothers Work distributes its Oh Baby! by
Motherhood(TM) collection through a licensed arrangement at
Kohl's(R) stores throughout the United States and on Kohls.com.

                        *      *      *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Nov. 29, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services has changed
its outlook on Mothers Work Inc. to negative from stable.  At
the same time, S&P affirmed the 'B' corporate credit rating on
the company.


MUSICLAND: Panel Wants Best Buy to Disgorge US$145MM in Payments
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors in Musicland
Holding Corp. and its debtor-affiliates' Chapter 11 cases asks
the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York
to recharacterize as an equity investment the funds Best Buy Co.
Inc. advanced to or on behalf of The Musicland Group Inc.  In
addition, the Committee also wants Best Buy to disgorge
US$145,385,892 in payments that Musicland made.

The Committee alleges that Best Buy and certain officers and
directors of Musicland engineered a series of transactions
designed to disguise Best Buy's capital investment as debt in an
attempt to recover its investment.

The Committee relates that Best Buy acquired Musicland in
December 2000 in a strategic acquisition to exploit Musicland's
mall-based retail entertainment-related distribution channels,
which annually reached more than 300 million customers.  As part
of the acquisition, Best Buy filed disclosures with the United
States Security and Exchange Commission and made numerous public
statements that it had agreed to assume roughly US$271,000,000
in long-term debt that Musicland had outstanding to various
third-parties.  Consistent with the statements, Best Buy
actually assumed the debt in December 2000, and proceeded to
make additional capital investments in Musicland thereafter
through the 2001 and 2002 calendar years, the Committee says.

According to the Committee, Best Buy's hope to receive a return
on its Musicland investment did not materialize.  Knowing full
well that its capital investment was not recoverable, Best Buy
and Musicland's own officers and directors engineered a series
of transactions designed to disguise Best Buy's capital
investment as debt.  To this end, Best Buy -- practically on the
eve of its sale of Musicland to Sun Capital Partners, Inc. --
caused Musicland to execute several credit-type documents which
characterized Best Buy's capital investment as debt, and,
pursuant to which Musicland transferred more than US$145,000,000
to Best Buy -- purportedly in partial satisfaction of the debt.

The transfers, made while Musicland was insolvent, were
fraudulent or constituted illegal dividends, or, in the
alternative, unlawful payments to Best Buy, Mark T. Power, Esq.,
at Hahn & Hessen LLP, in New York, contends.

"Best Buy represented to the public that the manner in which it
caused the Third Party Debt to be retired represented an
assumption of the Third Party Debt by Best Buy," Mr. Power says.

As of March 31, 2003, the amount of net equity investments that
Best Buy had made in Musicland totaled US$381,256,676, in
addition to Best Buy's US$425,000,000 expenditure to purchase
Musicland Store Corporation's common stock, Mr. Power tells the
Court.

The Committee relates that Best Buy, as lender, and Musicland,
as borrower, executed on March 31, 2003, a Revolving Credit Loan
Agreement, ostensibly to create a lending arrangement between
Best Buy and Musicland.  According to the Loan Agreement,
Musicland was indebted to Best Buy "on account of term loans or
inter-company advances made by [Best Buy] to finance [TMG's
and/or Musicland's] working capital needs in the amount of
US$381,256,676."  In reality the US$381,256,676 constituted
capital investment, not debt, Mr. Power argues.

In a further effort to create the illusion of a lending
relationship, on March 31, 2003, Musicland executed a Revolving
Note for US$400,000,000 for the benefit of Best Buy.  Musicland
made payments to Best Buy to pay down amounts due under the
Note.  On June 16, 2003, Musicland executed a Second Amended and
Restated Promissory Note for US$30,000,000 for the benefit of
Best Buy.

Musicland was later sold to Sun Capital Partners, which formed
Musicland Holding Corp.

Pursuant to a Stock Purchase Agreement dated June 16, 2003, Best
Buy caused MSC to sell its 100% stock ownership interest in TMG
to MHC for US$1.00.

Pursuant to a Note Purchase Agreement dated June 16, 2003, Best
Buy purportedly sold the Second Amended and Restated Note to MHC
for US$1.00.

Musicland officers and directors named in the lawsuit are:

   1. Bradbury H. Anderson, Musicland Director, and Vice
      Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and Director of Best
      Buy;

   2. David P. Berg, Musicland Vice President, Secretary and
      General Counsel;

   3. Connie B. Fuhrman, Musicland Director and President;

   4. Kevin P. Freeland, Musicland President and Senior Vice
      President of Best Buy;

   5. Darren R. Jackson, MSC Senior Vice President of Finance
      and Treasurer/Executive Vice President -- Finance and
      Chief Financial Officer and Director of MSC; and Senior
      Vice President Finance, Treasurer and Chief Executive
      Officer of Best Buy;

   6. Rodger R. Krouse, Musicland Director and Vice President of
      TMG; and Co-Chief Executive Officer of Sun Capital
      Partners Inc.;

   7. Marc J. Leder, Musicland Director and Vice President, and
      Co-Chief Executive Officer of Sun;

   8. Allen U. Lenzmeier, Musicland Director, and Vice Chairman,
      President, Chief Operating Officer and Director of Best
      Buy; and

   9. James L. Muehlbauer, Musicland Vice President, Chief
      Financial Officer-General Counsel and Secretary/Treasurer.

The Committee says Musicland's officers and directors knew,
should have known, or were otherwise mistaken to the fact, that
Best Buy's contributions to Musicland were in the nature of
equity, not debt or were not recoverable under applicable
insider preference laws.  The Committee says the officers and
directors breached their fiduciary duties to Musicland by
authorizing or otherwise permitting Musicland to make the
upstream transfers at a time when it was insolvent.

                  About Musicland Holding

Based in New York, New York, Musicland Holding Corp., is a
specialty retailer of music, movies and entertainment-related
products in the United States and Puerto Rico.  The Debtor and
14 of its affiliates filed for chapter 11 protection on
Jan. 12, 2006 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Lead Case No. 06-10064).  James
H.M. Sprayregen, Esq., at Kirkland & Ellis, represents the
Debtors in their restructuring efforts.   Mark T. Power, Esq.,
at Hahn & Hessen LLP, represents the Official Committee of
Unsecured Creditors.  At March 31, 2007, the Debtors disclosed
US$20,121,000 in total assets and US$321,546,000 in total
liabilities.

The Honorable Stuart M. Bernstein of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court
for the Southern District of New York confirmed the Debtors'
Second Amended Liquidation Plan on Jan. 18, 2007.  (Musicland
Bankruptcy News, Issue No. 45; Bankruptcy Creditors' Service,
Inc., http://bankrupt.com/newsstand/or 215/945-7000)


SEARS HOLDINGS: Fitch Affirms Issuer Default Rating at BB
---------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has affirmed its ratings of Sears Holdings
Corporation as:

Sears Holdings Corp.:

   -- Long-term IDR 'BB';
   -- Senior notes 'BB';
   -- Secured bank facility 'BBB-'.

Sears, Roebuck and Co.:

   -- Long-term IDR 'BB';
   -- Senior notes 'BB'.

Sears Roebuck Acceptance Corp.:

   -- Long-term IDR 'BB';
   -- Senior notes 'BB';
   -- Short-term IDR 'B';
   -- Commercial paper 'B'.

Sears DC Corp.:

   -- Long-term IDR 'BB';
   -- Senior notes 'BB'.

Kmart Holding Corp.:

   -- Long-term IDR 'BB'.

The Rating Outlook is revised to Negative from Stable.
Approximately US$4 billion of total debt was outstanding as of
Nov. 3, 2007.

The affirmations reflect Sears Holdings' broad market presence
in the moderate department store and discounter segments and
solid balance sheet balanced against soft operating results and
significant long-term competitive challenges.  The revision in
Outlook reflects the continued weak sales performance, which has
pressured operating profit margin and credit metrics.  Fitch
does not expect the weakness in top line and margins to abate in
the near term, particularly in light of a challenging economic
environment.  In addition, the longer-term retail strategy
remains unclear, particularly given the recently announced
changes to Sears Holdings' organizational structure, which could
lead to operational disruption in the near term.

Sears Holdings Corp. continues to experience negative comparable
store sales at both Sears, Roebuck & Co. and Kmart Holding Corp.
Sears -- the largest department store operator in the U.S. with
latest 12 months ended Nov. 3, 2007, sales of US$28.6 billion --
has posted declines in comparable store sales for the past seven
years, reflecting competitive pressures and inconsistent
merchandising execution.  Kmart Holding's sales -- which totaled
US$17.9 billion in the LTM period -- stabilized in 2005-2006
following three years of sharp declines, but have been on a
decline again throughout 2007.  Sears Holdings' challenge will
be to generate longer-term sales and earnings growth at both
Sears and Kmart Holding in the face of growing competition
within the department store sector and continued share gains by
discounters and big-box specialty retailers.

While Sears Holdings' EBITDA was supported by aggressive cost
cutting and reduced promotional activity in 2006, it has come
under significant pressure on weak top-line execution,
heightened promotional activity and increased markdowns in the
past year.  LTM EBITDA margin decreased to 6% from 6.7% in the
year ended Feb. 2, 2007.  As a result, LTM credit metrics have
deteriorated with adjusted debt/EBITDAR at 2.8 times versus 2.4
at the end of 2006.  LTM EBITDAR/interest plus rents decreased
to 3.4 from 3.6 during the same period.  Fitch expects further
weakening in the company's credit metrics given the company's
recent outlook for the fourth quarter ending Feb. 2, 2008 and
Fitch's outlook for the retail sector in 2008.

However, liquidity is solid, supported by a cash balance of
US$1.5 billion and US$2.4 billion of availability remaining
under its US$4 billion Credit Agreement as of Nov. 3, 2007.
Cash balances have declined from US$4 billion at the end of 2006
due to significant share repurchases amounting to approximately
US$2.9 billion for the 49 weeks ended Jan. 11, 2008.

The 'BBB-' rating of Sears Holdings' US$4 billion secured
revolver, under which Sears Roebuck Acceptance Corp. and Kmart
Holding are the borrowers, reflects a downstream guarantee from
Sears Holdings to both companies and cross-guarantees between
Sears Roebuck Acceptance Corp. and Kmart Holding Corp.  The
facility is secured primarily by inventories, which range from
US$9 billion-US$12 billion.  The collateral can be released in
the event the company achieves certain performance targets or
ratings levels.  If the collateral is released, leverage and
asset coverage tests would become effective.

The ratings of Sears Roebuck Acceptance Corp.'s senior notes and
commercial paper reflect a guarantee provided by Sears, Roebuck
& Co.  In addition, Sears DC Corp. benefits from an agreement by
Sears to maintain a minimum fixed-charge coverage at Sears DC of
1.005.  Sears, Roebuck & Co. also agrees to maintain an
ownership of and a positive net worth at Sears DC Corp.

Based in Hoffman Estates, Illinois, Sears Holdings Corporation
(NASDAQ: SHLD) - http://www.searsholdings.com/-- parent of
Kmart and Sears, Roebuck and Co., is a broadline retailer with
approximately 3,800 full-line and specialty retail stores in the
United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.




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


CHRYSLER: Unit Inks Product Development Pact With Tata Motors
-------------------------------------------------------------
A unit of Chrysler LLC has entered into an agreement with Tata
Motors Ltd. for the development of an electric version of Tata's
mini truck Ace, media reports say.

Pursuant to a development contract that Tata Motors entered into
with Chrysler's Global Electric Motorcars, the parties will
develop and market battery-operated neighborhood electric
vehicles that will be sold in the United States.

The NEVs, which can ferry passengers and cargo, has passed
required safety and reliability tests, and the prototype is
ready for production, Alka Kshirsagar of the Business Line
relates, citing unnamed sources in the industry.

The vehicles, which will be shipped as completely built units,
will mark Tata Motor's entry into the U.S. markets, BL points
out.

A Tata Motors spokesperson has admitted that the company, in
partnership with an American firm, is exploring the possibility
of a vehicle on the Ace platform with a U.S.-suitable electrical
engine, BL relates.  "But it is premature at this stage to
furnish any details," the spokesperson added.

According to Reuters, Tata Motors will begin exporting around
10,000 units by year-end, and ramp up to 50,000 units.

                       About Tata Motors

India's largest automobile company, Tata Motors Limited --
http://www.tatamotors.com/-- is mainly engaged in the business
of automobile products consisting of all types of commercial and
passenger vehicles, including financing of the vehicles sold by
the Company. The Company's operating segments consists of
Automotive and Others. In addition to its automotive products,
it offers construction equipment, engineering solutions and
software operations. Tata Motors has operations in Russia and
the United Kingdom.

                       About Chrysler LLC

Headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan, Chrysler LLC --
http://www.chrysler.com/-- a unit of Cerberus Capital
Management LP, produces Chrysler, Jeep(R), Dodge and Mopar(R)
brand vehicles and products.  The company has dealers worldwide,
including Canada, Mexico, U.S., Germany, France, U.K.,
Argentina, Brazil, Venezuela, China, Japan and Australia.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 11, 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services revised its
recovery rating on Chrysler's US$2 billion senior secured
second-lien term loan due 2014.  The issue-level rating on this
debt remains unchanged at 'B', and the recovery rating was
revised to '3', indicating an expectation for meaningful (50% to
70%) recovery in the event of a payment default, from '4'.


FERTINITRO FINANCE: Fitch Affirms CCC Rating on Secured Bonds
-------------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has affirmed and removed from Rating Watch
Negative FertiNitro Finance Inc.'s 'CCC' rated US$250 million
8.29% secured bonds due 2020. The Rating Outlook is Stable.  The
rating affirmation with a Stable Outlook reflects the political
and operational risk, even in an environment of high urea and
ammonia prices.

The company informed Fitch that only 130,000 metric tons of
Petroquimica de Venezuela, S.A. (Pequiven) urea offtake would be
redirected to the domestic market in 2008.  In 2007, FertiNitro
faced unplanned shutdowns due to technical and power related
issues.  Uncertainty on production redirection to domestic sales
and technical failures of the plant are still a concern.

The Negative Rating Watch reflected Fitch's concerns on the
implications of the implementation of the Decree-Law 5,218 of
March 6, 2007, which forces the company and other producers of
nitrogen-based fertilizers in Venezuela to direct their output
from global exports markets to satisfy the domestic market
demand, where sales are subject to pricing dictated by the
government.  According to the offtake agreement between Pequiven
and FertiNitro, Pequiven is obligated to re-sell, on a gradually
decreased percentage, its 50% share of the plant's production
outside Venezuela at market prices.

FertiNitro's plant was originally conceived and developed to
convert associated natural gas of Petroleos de Venezuela SA into
ammonia and urea, with export sales of these products generating
dollar revenues for Pequiven.  Price controls could diminish the
economic viability of FertiNitro.  According to the law, the
redirected output must be sold in local currency for the
equivalent of approximately US$72 per metric ton; this price
ceiling is currently one-fourth of the international market
price.

After six months of the decree-law in effect, Fertinitro's sales
have been stable and redirection of its offtake to the domestic
market has been less than expected by Fitch in 2007.  Fitch
believes that some redirection of the company's output might not
cause project revenues to decrease substantially during the next
years.  However, there is still uncertainty associated with the
ultimate volume of diverted output ordered by the decree.
Furthermore, local demand for urea still remains unknown, and
official data from the Venezuela Ministry of Energy and Oil
shows that Pequiven's wholly owned plants in the Tablazo and
Moron complexes are not producing sufficiently to satisfy
domestic requirements.  While local sales from Fertinitro
Finance have averaged 126,000 metric ton of urea since 2004,
sales up to October 2007 grew to 175,000 metric tons.  Fitch
will continue to monitor legislative developments in Venezuela
as well as domestic demand for urea, to take rating action as
appropriate.

Over the coming months, the company's plans to proceed with a
capital expenditures program that will further strengthen their
production capacity.  As of October 2007, the urea trains
produced at 89% of nameplate capacity, above 2006 levels.

Higher prices in the global markets offset the reduced shipments
that resulted from unexpected shutdowns of the urea and ammonia
trains in October 2007.  Ample accumulated cash balances enabled
the company to pay the programmed semi-annual amortization
payments of US$21.3 million.  FertiNitro's debt service coverage
ratio is expected to average 1.77 times in 2008.

FertiNitro ranks as one of the world's largest nitrogen-based
fertilizer plants, with nameplate daily production capacity of
3,600 metric tons of ammonia and 4,400 metric tons of urea.  It
is owned 35% by a Koch Industries, Inc. subsidiary, 35% by
Pequiven (a state-owned petrochemicals company), 20% by a
Snamprogetti S.p.A. subsidiary, and 10% by a Cerveceria Polar,
C.A. subsidiary.


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Inks Junin Study Contracts with Statoil
---------------------------------------------------------------
Venezuelan state-run oil firm Petroleos de Venezuela SA has
entered into two accords with Norway's StatoilHydro for the
study the Junin 10 block in the Orinoco, Business News Americas
reports.

StatoilHydro said in a statement that the first deal covers work
to quantify reserves.  The other accord involves performing a
development study for Junin 10.

StatoilHydro's international exploration and production media
relations officer Kjersti Tvedt Morstl told BNamericas that the
studies will be conducted in parallel.  The initial studies
would take about two years.

StatoilHydro chief executive Helge Lund said in the statement,
"With the signing of these agreements, we are confirming our
long-term commitment to Venezuela and interest to expand our
industrial activity in this country."

                  About StatoilHydro ASA

StatoilHydro ASA, formerly known as Statoil ASA, is an oil
seller and supplier of natural gas to the European market.  The
company is an operator for 39 producing oil and gas fields.  It
also operates more than 1800 service stations in Scandinavia,
Poland, the Baltic counties and Russia.  The company's focus is
on exploration, development and production of oil and natural
gas from the Norwegian Continental Shelf.

                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.

                        *     *     *

In March 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned its
'BB-' senior unsecured long-term credit rating to Petroleos de
Venezuela S.A.'s US$2 billion notes due 2017, US$2 billion notes
due 2027, and US$1 billion notes due 2037.


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Oil Output Drops 148,000 bpd in 2007
------------------------------------------------------------
As published by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting
Countries, El Univeral reports that Venezuela's oil production
has declined to 148,000 barrels per day with an average of 2.39
million bpd.

OPEC has recorded a decrease in January to September, although
the production picked up in the last 2007 quarter, the same
paper states.

Based on the OPEC statistics, the country's oil output has
plunged for two consecutive year.  In 2007, Oil production fell
246,000 bpd from a peak of 2.63 million bpd in 2005, El
Universal relates.

According to the report, OPEC members that will cut production
were Venezuela, Nigeria, Libya, and Ecuador in a medium of
boosted output by most OPEC members.

                  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.

                        *     *     *

In March 2007, Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned its
'BB-' senior unsecured long-term credit rating to Petroleos de
Venezuela S.A.'s US$2 billion notes due 2017, US$2 billion notes
due 2027, and US$1 billion notes due 2037.


* BOND PRICING: For the Week January 21 to January 25
-----------------------------------------------------

Issuer                 Coupon   Maturity   Currency   Price
------                 ------   --------   --------   -----

ARGENTINA
---------
Argnt-Bocon PR11        2.000    12/3/10     ARS      63.36
Argnt-Bocon PR13        2.000    3/15/24     ARS      61.87
Arg Boden               2.000    9/30/08     ARS      29.34
Argent-Par              0.630   12/31/38     ARS      40.33

CAYMAN ISLANDS
--------------
Vontobel Cayman         3.000    2/18/08     JPY      74.90
Vontobel Cayman         7.000    3/31/38     USD      73.65
Vontobel Cayman         7.250    3/29/49     USD      60.87
Vontobel Cayman         7.250    6/27/08     CHF      74.50
Vontobel Cayman         7.450    2/22/08     CHF      51.40
Vontobel Cayman         7.900    2/22/08     CHF      59.95
Vontobel Cayman         8.250    4/25/08     CHF      68.80
Vontobel Cayman         8.250    7/28/08     CHF      60.20
Vontobel Cayman         8.300    3/20/08     CHF      71.70
Vontobel Cayman         8.500    3/27/08     CHF      62.05
Vontobel Cayman         8.700    3/27/08     CHF      66.35
Vontobel Cayman         8.750    3/27/08     CHF      59.35
Vontobel Cayman         8.900    3/27/08     CHF      70.50
Vontobel Cayman         9.050     7/1/08     CHF      59.05
Vontobel Cayman         9.100   10/31/08     CHF      70.40
Vontobel Cayman         9.250    2/22/08     CHF      66.55
Vontobel Cayman         9.350    1/25/08     CHF      73.30
Vontobel Cayman         9.350    1/25/08     CHF      65.15
Vontobel Cayman         9.600    2/22/08     CHF      42.05
Vontobel Cayman        10.000   10/24/08     CHF      70.40
Vontobel Cayman        10.200     2/4/08     CHF      62.00
Vontobel Cayman        10.200    2/15/08     CHF      72.60
Vontobel Cayman        10.350    2/22/08     EUR      74.30
Vontobel Cayman        10.400     7/8/08     CHF      67.00
Vontobel Cayman        10.450    2/22/08     CHF      71.70
Vontobel Cayman        10.500    1/25/08     CHF      60.60
Vontobel Cayman        10.800    9/26/08     CHF      60.20
Vontobel Cayman        10.850    3/27/08     EUR      59.55
Vontobel Cayman        10.900    9/26/08     CHF      71.20
Vontobel Cayman        11.000    2/19/08     JPY      74.90
Vontobel Cayman        11.000    6/20/08     CHF      55.60
Vontobel Cayman        11.150    2/15/08     CHF      74.40
Vontobel Cayman        11.400    2/15/08     CHF      60.60
Vontobel Cayman        11.500    6/27/08     EUR      63.15
Vontobel Cayman        12.250    6/27/08     EUR      63.55
Vontobel Cayman        13.500    2/22/08     CHF      38.60
Vontobel Cayman        16.000     2/4/08     USD      20.70
Vontobel Cayman        20.000    1/23/09     EUR      75.00

PUERTO RICO
-----------
Puerto Rico Cons.       5.900    4/15/34     USD      63.00
Puerto Rico Cons.       6.000   12/15/34     USD      65.00

VENEZUELA
---------
Petroleos de Ven        5.250    4/12/17     USD      72.37
Petroleos de Ven        5.375    4/12/27     USD      60.17
Petroleos de Ven        5.500    4/12/37     USD      58.37
Venezuela               7.000    3/31/38     USD      73.65


                         ***********


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, and Pamella Ritah K. Jala, Editors.

Copyright 2008.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1529-2746.

This material is copyrighted and any commercial use, resale or
publication in any form (including e-mail forwarding, electronic
re-mailing and photocopying) is strictly prohibited without
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Information contained herein is obtained from sources believed
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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
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              * * * End of Transmission * * *