TCRLA_Public/180319.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, March 19, 2018, Vol. 19, No. 55



PARANA: Fitch Affirms BB- Long-Term IDR; Outlook Stable

D O M I N I C A N   R E P U B L I C

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Illegal Aliens Are 95% of Workforce in Border
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Turmoil at Border Hurts Tourism, Exports
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Study Debunks Medina's Claim on Jobs Growth


DIGICEL GROUP: Vanessa Slowey Leaves Firm


METROFINANCIERA SAPI: Fitch Affirms B- LT IDR; Outlook Negative

P U E R T O    R I C O

ALLIED FINANCIAL: Escobar Buying Aguadilla Property for $34K
ALLIED FINANCIAL: Redemption Right Timely Asserted, Judge Rules
KELLERMEYER BERGENSONS: Loan Upsize Credit Neutral, Moody's Says
TOYS "R" US: Seeks Court Approval to Wind Down U.S. Business


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Moody's Cuts Ratings to C; Outlook Stable
VENEZUELA: Crude Exports to the U.S. Reach 15-year Low


* BOND PRICING: For the Week From March 12 to March 16, 2018

                            - - - - -


PARANA: Fitch Affirms BB- Long-Term IDR; Outlook Stable
Fitch Rating has affirmed the Brazilian state of Parana's
Long-Term Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at 'BB-'. The Rating Outlook
is Stable. The Rating Outlook reflects Brazil's Stable Outlook.
Fitch has also affirmed Parana's National Long-Term rating at
'AA+(bra)'/Stable Outlook.


Finances: Fitch believes Parana's finances are a neutral rating
factor and reflect a stable trend. Operating margins have averaged
4.1% per year over the last five years, which compared to other
large states in Brazil, is adequate and in line with international
peers. In 2017, Parana registered an overall fiscal surplus of
6.1%, reflecting the receipt of extraordinary tax revenues and
migration of some payments to 2018. Excluding these events, the
state would register a small deficit.

Debt and Other Long-term Liabilities: Fitch considers Parana's
debt profile to be a strong rating factor with a stable trend.
Parana's consolidated debt of BRL19.7 billion in 2017 represented
a moderate 45.6% of the entity's current revenues (52.3% in 2016).
Parana has also exhibited adequate debt sustainability as
consolidated debt service corresponded to 46% of operating balance
in 2017 (51.8% in 2016). The state benefited from a renegotiation
with the federal government to postpone debt service in 2017 until
June 2018. Around 90% of the debt is directly, or indirectly,
related to the federal government.

Economy: Fitch considers Parana's economy to be a neutral rating
factor with a stable trend. Parana's economy is highly influenced
by the services sector in addition to soft commodities. These
activities presented a slightly positive performance in 2017. The
state's contribution to Brazil's GDP has been fairly stable in the
last five years, posting an estimated GDP of BRL409.3 billion in
2017(roughly 6% of the Brazilian GDP). Parana's population is 11.3
million, equal to approximately 5.0% of the Brazilian population,
implying a GDP per capita of USD11,956.

Management and Administration: Management is a neutral rating
factor with a stable trend. Information disclosure practices are
compatible to national and international peers since financial
information is fully available and is frequently updated. Parana's
reliance on non-recurring, non-operating revenue is below average.
Fitch believes the accuracy of fiscal forecasts is average, with
budgets and outturns diverging less than 5%. Financials are
analyzed by the regional court of account (TCE/PR) annually. Main
points are related to accounting practices. External parties are
not auditing state financials at this time.

Institutional Framework: Fitch considers the institutional
framework to be weak with a stable trend. This is mostly because
of very low fiscal flexibility stemming from subdued fiscal
collection coupled with rigid cost structure. Moreover, the
federal government has great influence over local and regional
governments (LRGs), as exhibited by the vertical issuance of laws,
and, in many instances, the federal government being the largest
LRG creditor.


Parana's IDRs are constrained by the sovereign; therefore, any
rating actions affecting Brazil should result in a similar action
for Parana. An increased cost structure may lead to further
downgrades in both national and international ratings.


Fitch does not expect a change in the government's willingness to
provide support for Parana debt in case of need.

Fitch assumes Parana to maintain international and domestic market
access even if there is a return of higher international financial
volatility and further domestic confidence shocks.


State of Parana:
-- Long-Term Foreign and Local Currency IDRs at 'BB-'; Outlook
-- Short-Term Foreign and Local Currency IDRs at 'B';
-- National Long-Term Rating at 'AA+(bra)'; Outlook Stable;
-- National Short-Term Rating at 'F1+(bra)'.

D O M I N I C A N   R E P U B L I C

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Illegal Aliens Are 95% of Workforce in Border
Dominican Today reports that Defense Minister Ruben Dario Paulino
said as much as 95% of the workforce in the northwest and border
communities are undocumented persons of Haitian origin, and noted
that "this has to be resolved."

The official attended a multi-sector meeting in Dajabon province,
where he disclosed a report to the press on the progress in the
plan of reinforcement along the Haiti border, according to
Dominican Today.

He said the plan has returned 2,792 undocumented people in the
past eight days and seized over a ton-and-a-half of garlic, seven
motorcycles, two cars, two SUVs, two trucks, five packages of
cigarettes of forged brands and four firearms, the report notes.

"We have had tremendous acceptance from all the local authorities.
We hope that this plan will continue with the same daily
reinforcement, the same results that we have had so far," said Mr.
Paulino, the report notes.

Mr. Paulino added that the plan will continue to be strengthened,
"not only to deal with human trafficking but of for firearms and
merchandise smuggling."

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Nov. 20, 2017, Fitch Ratings has affirmed Dominican Republic's
Long-Term Foreign-Currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at 'BB-'
with a Stable Outlook.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Turmoil at Border Hurts Tourism, Exports
Dominican Today reports that Industries Association (AIRD)
Executive Vice President Circe Almanzar said the recent incidents
at the border town of Pedernales pose a threat to the region's
stability and Dominican Republic's image as a tourism haven and
world exporter.

"The authorities must not allow this type of situation, they must
resolve the paralysis of the border as soon as possible. I think
this should serve as a signal to the authorities that security is
very important, no matter where we are, because this is a symptom
of a security problem," the report quoted Mr. Almanzar as saying.

It has been a tense week in Pedernales, where a group of Dominican
citizens took to the streets to give the Haitians 24 hours to
leave the province, the report notes.

The turmoil prompted the Govt. to beef up security along the
entire 380-kilometer border, the report relays.

"The situation should leave learning that strengthening citizen
security and economic activity in the area is very important,"
Almanzar said after a breakfast held in the National Statistics
Office (ONE), the report adds.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Nov. 20, 2017, Fitch Ratings has affirmed Dominican Republic's
Long-Term Foreign-Currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at 'BB-'
with a Stable Outlook.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Study Debunks Medina's Claim on Jobs Growth
Dominican Today reports that the Juan Bosch Foundation presented
the study on employment "Radiography of work: Dignified work or
junk jobs?," which found that the country doesn't create  jobs,
nearly half are informal, and that workers produce more but earn
less than in the 1990s.

The research analyzed the GDP's latest data on the labor market
and the cost of household staples, to conclude on the country's
reality on employment, according to Dominican Today.

"This serves to explain why the unemployment rate isn't
significantly reduced, there are currently over 600,000 Dominicans
looking for a job or can work, and can't get one," said social
scientist Matias Bosch, together with lead investigator, economist
Airon Fernandez, the report notes.

He debunked the figures on employment growth announced by
president Danilo Medina, the report relays.  "The growth of the
economically active population "PEA" has been lower than the
amount of jobs which the Government says were created, Mr. Bosch

He said that compared with 2016, only 58,000 net jobs were created
in 2017, on the growth of the PEA, contrary to the hundreds of
thousands that the government says were created, the report

"With this picture of precariousness and shortage of work, it is
very difficult to talk about becoming a middle class country," the
authors said in a statement obtained by the news agency.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Nov. 20, 2017, Fitch Ratings has affirmed Dominican Republic's
Long-Term Foreign-Currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at 'BB-'
with a Stable Outlook.


DIGICEL GROUP: Vanessa Slowey Leaves Firm
RJR News reports that Digicel Group Limited disclosed that Vanessa
Slowey, chief executive officer for the Caribbean and Central
America, has decided to leave the business.

Ms. Slowey has been with the telecommunications company for 15
years initially in the Caribbean where she held a variety of
leadership roles and then as CEO of Digicel in Asia Pacific,
according to RJR News.

There, she was responsible for setting up and driving the
phenomenal growth of the Digicel brand in six markets in the
region, the report notes.

Ms. Slowey returned to the Caribbean to head up the Caribbean and
Central America business in August 2016, the report relays.

In this role, she was instrumental in spearheading and leading the
Digicel 2030 global transformation program, the report adds.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
May 26, 2017, Fitch Ratings has affirmed at 'B' the Long-term
Foreign-currency Issuer Default Ratings (IDR) of Digicel Group
Limited (DGL) and its subsidiaries, Digicel Limited (DL) and
Digicel International Finance Limited (DIFL), collectively
referred to as Digicel. The Rating Outlook is Stable. Fitch has
also affirmed all existing issue ratings of Digicel's debt


METROFINANCIERA SAPI: Fitch Affirms B- LT IDR; Outlook Negative
Fitch Ratings has affirmed Metrofinanciera S.A.P.I. de C.V. Sofom,
E.R.'s (Metrofinanciera) Foreign and Local Currency Long-Term
Issuer Default Ratings (IDRs) at 'B-' and its Short-Term IDRs at
'B'. Fitch also affirmed Metrofinanciera's long-term and short-
term national scale ratings at 'B-(mex)' and 'B(mex)',
respectively. The Rating Outlook of the long-term ratings is

The Negative Outlook reflects the pressure in liquidity
Metrofinanciera will face, if the company is not able to
restructure its credit lines that start to amortize in 2019. The
Negative Outlook also reflects Metrofinanciera's continued
inability to generate profits, mainly reflecting pressure
generated by high loan impairment charges. Even though net losses
decreased in 2017 compared to 2016, Fitch considers this does not
reflect improved performance of its operations as profitability
mostly benefited from the revaluation of its land reserves, a non-
cash nonrecurring source of income.


The affirmation of Metrofinanciera's ratings considers Fitch's
expectations that a restructuring of its debt is highly likely in
the short term and that management's efforts to materially reduce
losses should materialize during 2018. Metrofinanciera's ratings
reflect its still high delinquency portfolio levels as well as the
limited flexibility of its funding structure and its recurring net
losses that reduce its loss-absorption capacity. Ratings also
consider its recovering and modest franchise in the housing
development loans segment in Mexico, reflected in its ability to
increase the volume of earning assets, which considers on- and
off- balance sheet managed portfolios.

Metrofinanciera's business model focuses in granting construction
loans to medium sized homebuilders in Mexico, which represented
64% of its total loan portfolio as of the close of 2017. At the
same time, it continues working in the collection and contention
of delinquency of its legacy mortgage loan portfolio, while
selling foreclosed assets and other unproductive assets it
maintains on its balance sheet.

Metrofinanciera's asset quality represents one of its main
weaknesses, however, Fitch recognizes that its asset quality
metrics have been improving over the past few years as a result of
stricter underwriting standards and clean-ups of the portfolio.
Its impaired loan ratio adjusted to consider charge-offs and
foreclosed assets decreased to 15.6% in 2017 from 24.8% in 2016.
Concentrations per borrower are still relatively high, though they
decreased moderately to 1.8x equity as of the close of 2017
compared to 2x at the end of 2016. Reserve coverage ratio improved
to 55.5% as of December 2017, up from 40% in 2016; in Fitch's
opinion, this ratio is low, however, it is in line with local
regulatory requirements. In its assessment of asset quality, Fitch
considers Metrofinanciera's exposure to other unproductive assets
which continues to be high; these include land reserves and
available for sale properties, which represented 10.2% of total

Reverse of recurrent losses has been one of the main challenges of
Metrofinanciera since 2008, in Fitch's opinion. During 2017, the
company's operational losses decreased to MXN48 million (2016:
MXN-144 million); the improvement was driven by the positive
valuation adjustment of MXN152 million of land bank reserves and
other assets available for sale. Without this revaluation, net
operational losses would have reached MXN200 million as reserve
generation and prudential provisioning of construction loans with
more than nine months of delinquency, negatively affected
profitability. Fitch considers that without material improvements
in asset quality and without a faster foreclosed asset disposal
rate, loan and other impairment charges will continue pressuring
profitability and offsetting management's efforts to increase
income volumes and decrease operational costs. Metrofinanciera's
management forecasts losses of MXN21 million in 2018, and expects
to break-even in 2019.

The company debt to tangible equity ratio remained stable at 6.7x
in 2017, benefitted by the decrease in total assets and lower net
losses. Metrofinanciera's Fitch Core Capital (FCC) and regulatory
capital ratios were 11.6% and 13.7% as of YE17, respectively,
fairly stable compared to 11.7% and 14.2% ratios registered in
2016. Fitch considers that Metrofinanciera's loss absorption
capacity continues to be pressured by the recurring net losses and
by the high level of unproductive assets on its balance sheet.

Metrofinanciera's funding and liquidity profile has a high
influence on its rating and is a rating constraint. All of
Metrofinanciera's on-balance sheet funding is provided by Sociedad
Hipotecaria Federal, S.N.C (SHF) and Fovi (a trust administered by
SHF) and all of it is secured. The company explored the
possibility of issuing securitization transactions to diversify
its funding mix, however, loan portfolio sales such as the one
made to a commercial bank during 2017, were a more feasible and
convenient alternative in terms of cost. The company expects this
to become a recurring source of funds, which in Fitch's view,
would moderately benefit its funding profile. Nevertheless, the
secured nature of all of its credit lines, limits
Metrofinanciera's funding flexibility.

Metrofinanciera's cumulative cash flows are positive from 2018
through 2020; however, debt services payments for two credit lines
with SHF that do not follow a pass-through payment scheme start to
amortize in 2019. This, in Fitch's opinion, will put pressure on
the company's liquidity; moreover, there are negative cumulative
gaps for all maturities greater than three years. Currently,
Metrofinanciera is on negotiations with SHF to restructure these
credit lines which would result in a more comfortable amortization


The ratings could be downgraded if the pressure on its liquidity
persists in the event that the company is not able to restructure
its credit lines with SHF due in 2019, in the foreseeable future
or if its debt to tangible capital ratio increases consistently
above 8x. Ratings could also be downgraded if Metrofinanciera does
not improve its profitability ratios to levels close to its break-
even point within the next 12 months.

The Outlook could be revised to Stable if Metrofinanciera is able
to materially reverse the negative trend in its financial
performance, while it continues to grow its construction loan
portfolio, with continued improvements in asset quality ratios and
an improvement in its debt maturity schedule for 2019 and beyond.

Fitch has affirmed the following ratings:

Metrofinanciera S.A.P.I. de C.V. Sofom, E.R.
-- Long-term foreign currency IDR at 'B-';
-- Short-term foreign currency IDR at 'B';
-- Long-term local currency IDR at 'B-';
-- Short-term local currency IDR at 'B';
-- National Long-term rating at 'B-(mex)';
-- National Short-term rating at 'B(mex)'.

The Rating Outlook of the long-term ratings is Negative.

P U E R T O    R I C O

ALLIED FINANCIAL: Escobar Buying Aguadilla Property for $34K
Allied Financial, Inc., asks the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the
District of Puerto Rico to authorize the sale of a lot of land
located at Barrio Aguacate Road No. 110 Km 5.1, Aguadilla, Puerto
Rico, Registered as Property Num. 30,062, at page No. 134, of Vol.
627 in Aguadilla Registry Num. 4, to Sandro Escobar for $34,412.

Objections, if any, must be filed within 21 days from the date the
Motion was served.

The Debtor listed in its Schedules an interest in the Property.
The Property has approximately 860,303 square meters.  The Debtor
listed it with a value of $38,714 in its Schedules.

The Debtor listed Oriental Bank as a creditor with a secured claim
over the Property in the amount of $38,714.  It acquired the
Property via Deed of Judicial Sale and Cancelation of Mortgage
Note by Notary Public Shariann Morales Feliciano.  It has
identified the Purchaser as a potential buyer for the Property in
the amount of $34,412.  The offer constitutes a value equal to $40
per square meter.

Although there is no recent appraisal of the Property, the Debtor
is selling it for the same price per square meter as previous
sales in the same area.  The Purchaser is a willing and able
purchaser.  The sale of the Property is in benefit of the estate
and all parties in interest.  Oriental Bank has accepted the

The transfer of the Property will be free and clear of liens, and
exempt from the payment of taxes, stamps and vouchers, pursuant to
the provisions of 11 USC 1146, if the transaction for some reason
is delayed and takes place under the Plan of Reorganization.

Each of the parties to the sale will assume its own payment of
expenses under the provisions of the Notary Law of Puerto Rico.
Furthermore, the Debtor received from the Purchaser a check in the
amount of $2,000 as a good faith deposit under the purchase
option, which will be applied to the purchase price at the closing
if the Purchaser exercises the option and buys the Property as per
the terms and conditions of the agreement.  The sale will be free
and clear of all liens including, but not limited to those listed.

The Property, as of the date, has property tax debt, in the total
amount of $858.  Any amounts owed to CRIM will be paid first with
the proceeds of the sale.  The Purchase Option Agreement will
expire 90 days from the date of the agreement or 10 days from the
date the sale is approved by the Court, whichever is later.  There
are no common maintenance fees or homeowners' association dues in
relation to the Property, since such association does not exist.

The Debtor submits that the Sale satisfies the sound business
reason test, is a proper exercise of the Debtor's business
judgment, and is in the best interest of the estate and should be

A copy of the Contract attached to the Motion is available for
free at:

                    About Allied Financial

Allied Financial, Inc., filed a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition
(Bankr. D.P.R. Case No. 16-00180) on Jan. 15, 2016.  In the
petition was signed by Rafael Portela, president of the Board of
Directors, the Debtor disclosed total assets of $10.3 million and
total debt of $9.14 million.  Judge Mildred Caban Flores presides
over the case.  C. Conde & Assoc. is counsel to the Debtor.

ALLIED FINANCIAL: Redemption Right Timely Asserted, Judge Rules
Judge Mildred Caban Flores of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the
District of Puerto Rico denied WM Capital Partner 53, LLC's motion
for summary judgment and granted in part and denied in part Allied
Financial, Inc.'s cross-motion.

Allied seeks to exercise its redemption right under Article 1425
of the Puerto Rico Civil Code. WM purchased the litigated credit
from Scotiabank de Puerto Rico, who had acquired it from the
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation as receiver of R-G Premier
Bank, a defunct financial institution. WM posits that federal
receivership law preempts the right of redemption and if the Civil
Code is not preempted, then Allied failed to timely reimburse the
purchase price. The Court finds that Allied has timely asserted
its redemption right, which is not preempted by federal law.

In addressing whether Allied timely exercised its right of
redemption under Article 1425, Judge Flores finds that WM's
argument requiring from Allied full tender of the redemption price
within the nine-day period after its alleged price disclosure is

Based on the uncontested facts, WM filed its motion for
substitution on Oct. 8, 2015, in the Local Court Litigation.
Allied notified WM of its intention to redeem under Article 1425
on that same day. Thus, Allied exercised its redemption right
within the nine-day period.

Allied continued its redemption action before this court and
sought efforts to validate the redemption price. Thus far there is
conflicting evidence in regards to the alleged reimbursement price
and as such, Allied is presently unable to pay WM for the
litigious credit. Once the court determines the reimbursement
price, Allied may proceed with the tender or deposit in court of
said funds. In the meantime, Allied timely exercised its right to
extinguish the litigious credit purchased by WM and therefore WM's
first count for summary judgment is denied.

Turning to the issue of whether Allied's right is preempted by
federal law, Judge Flores finds that WM has not met its burden to
rebut the presumption of the validity of Article 1425.

Regarding Allied's amended cross-motion for summary judgment, it
requests in essence, that (1) WM's motion for summary judgment be
denied; (2) it be allowed to raise its redemption right under
Article 1425; (3) a certain amount be determined as the redemption
price; and (4) WM pay its attorney's fees and costs. Judge Flores
grants Allied's cross-motion for summary judgment in part as to
count one and two. WM's motion for summary judgment is denied;
Allied may assert its redemption right. The remaining counts are
denied because disputed issues of fact exist. The redemption price
is contested and will be determined at trial. Therefore, summary
judgment is not the proper vehicle to address this issue. The
Court shall defer considering sanctions and fees until trial is

The court shall enter a separate order setting a pretrial
conference. WM is ordered to answer the complaint within 14 days
from entry of this order.

The adversary proceeding is ALLIED FINANCIAL, INC., Plaintiff, V.
WM CAPITAL PARTNERS 53, LLC, Defendant, Adv. Case No. 16-00033
(MCF) Bankr. D. P.R.).

A full-text copy of Judge Flores' Opinion and Order is available
at from


                  About Allied Financial

Allied Financial, Inc. filed a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition
(Bankr. D.P.R. Case No. 16-00180) on Jan. 15, 2016.  The petition
was signed by Rafael Portela, president of the Board of Directors.
The Debtor disclosed total assets of $10.3 million and total debt
of $9.14 million.  C. Conde & Assoc. is counsel to the Debtor.
Judge Mildred Caban Flores presides over the case.

KELLERMEYER BERGENSONS: Loan Upsize Credit Neutral, Moody's Says
Moody's said that the proposed upsize of Kellermeyer Bergensons
Services, LLC's first lien term loan facility is credit neutral
given that credit metrics do not weaken significantly pro forma
for this transaction and are offset by better liquidity and the
operating benefits of the acquisitions funded by the upsize.
Credit metrics remain in line with Moody's expectations for the B3
rating category given the company's operating profile. The
company's ratings, including its B3 Corporate Family Rating, B2
rating on its first lien credit facilities, and its stable
outlook, are not affected by this transaction. KBS is planning to
utilize $40 million of incremental first lien term loan to fund
the purchase of a provider of janitorial services to the food
service, restaurant, entertainment and hospitality industries. The
transaction results in about $10 million increase in funded debt,
and slightly weakens KBS' credit metrics. However, it also
enhances the company's near-term liquidity by increasing revolver
availability given the repayment of outstanding borrowings.

Kellermeyer Bergensons Services, LLC, based in Maumee, Ohio and
Oceanside, California, is a national provider of outsourced
janitorial services primarily to the retail industry. The company
serves over 43,500 customer locations across 50 states, Puerto
Rico and Canada. KBS was created as a result of a merger between
Kellermeyer Building Services (founded in 1967) and Bergensons
Property Services (founded in 1984) in 2011. The company is
majority owned by GI Partners since 2014. Inclusive of recent and
contemplated acquisitions, KBS' pro forma revenue base is
estimated to approach $670 million as of FY 2017 versus standalone
revenues of $475 million.

TOYS "R" US: Seeks Court Approval to Wind Down U.S. Business
Toys "R" Us, Inc., has filed a motion seeking Bankruptcy Court
approval to begin the process of conducting an orderly wind-down
of its U.S. business and liquidation of inventory in all 735 of
the Company's U.S. stores, including stores in Puerto Rico.  Toys
"R" Us will provide more details about the plans for the
liquidation of its U.S. stores and going out of business sales in
the near term.

Toys "R" Us also announced that it is pursuing a going concern
reorganization and a sale process for its Canadian and
international operations in Asia and Central Europe, including
Germany, Austria and Switzerland.  The Company's international
operations in Australia, France, Poland, Portugal and Spain are
considering their options in light of this announcement, including
potential sale processes in their respective markets. The
Company's stores in all these international markets are currently
open and serving customers.

In connection with the sale process, the motion the Company filed
with the Bankruptcy Court included bidding procedures for the
Canadian operations.  The Company also disclosed that it is
engaged in discussions with certain interested parties for a
transaction that could combine up to 200 of the top performing
U.S. stores with its Canadian operations.  While discussions
continue on this potential transaction, Toys "R" Us is seeking
court approval to implement the liquidation of inventory in all
the U.S. stores, subject to a right to recall any stores included
in the proposed Canadian transaction.

The previously announced administration of the UK business

Dave Brandon, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said, "I am
very disappointed with the result, but we no longer have the
financial support to continue the Company's U.S. operations. We
are therefore implementing an orderly process to shutter our U.S.
operations and will pursue going concern sales or reorganizations
of certain of our international businesses, while our other
international businesses consider their options."

Mr. Brandon continued, "There are many people and organizations
who have remained in our corner every step along the way. I want
to thank our extraordinary team members who helped build Toys"R"Us
into a global brand. I also want to express my appreciation for my
colleagues on our board who have continued to provide support to
sustain the brand and our operations throughout the restructuring
process. I would also like to thank our vendors who we owe a great
deal of gratitude to for their decades of support. This is a
profoundly sad day for us as well as the millions of kids and
families who we have served for the past 70 years."

The Company and its advisors are working to minimize the impact of
the U.S. liquidation on the Canadian and other international
markets. As part of these efforts, the Company is implementing a
transition services arrangement for the next 60 days and is
developing plans for a potential shared service function to
support the international operations going forward.

                     $60 Million Funding

On March 14, the Company filed a motion with the Bankruptcy Court
for the Eastern District of Virginia, Richmond Division, seeking
authority to (i) close all 744 of its remaining retail stores in
the United States, shut down its distribution centers and
discontinue and wind-down all operations through its Delaware
subsidiaries ("Toys Delaware") and (ii) appoint a group of
liquidators to oversee the liquidation and wind-down process.
Toys Delaware intends to begin conducting store closing
liquidation sales and implementing store closures as soon as
possible, in each case, with the consent of the Court.

In parallel with the Toys Delaware related events, the Company
will seek to obtain approval of an additional $60 million of
funding from its lenders, which will be funded from the escrow
account to a bank account of TRU Taj upon court approval (the "TRU
Taj Financing"). The funds will be available for two purposes: (i)
vendor support; and (ii) working capital, subject to compliance
with the terms of the additional funding, the indenture governing
TRU Taj's 11% senior secured ABL DIP notes (the "DIP Notes) and
its 12% senior secured notes due 2021 (the "Prepetition Notes").
In connection with the TRU Taj Financing, TRU Taj also received
waivers from its lenders relating to any potential insolvency
proceedings of its affiliates in Australia, France, Netherlands,
Poland, Portugal and Spain and the actual bankruptcy filing of its
affiliates in the United Kingdom.

                       Cleansing Materials

On March 15, 2018, Toys "R" Us, Inc., filed with the SEC copies of
the cleansing materials previously shared with third parties
regarding the business of the Company and its subsidiaries (the
"Cleansing Material").  The Cleansing Material includes certain
draft term sheets contemplating a plan of reorganization for the
Company and the obligors under the Prepetition Notes.

A copy of the Cleansing Material is available at:

                        About Toys "R" Us

Toys "R" Us, Inc., is an American toy and juvenile-products
retailer founded in 1948 and headquartered in Wayne, New Jersey,
in the New York City metropolitan area.  Merchandise is sold in
880 Toys "R" Us and Babies "R" Us stores in the United States,
Puerto Rico and Guam, and in more than 780 international stores
and more than 245 licensed stores in 37 countries and
jurisdictions.  Merchandise is also sold at e-commerce sites
including and

On July 21, 2005, a consortium of Bain Capital Partners LLC,
Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Vornado Realty Trust invested $1.3
billion to complete a $6.6 billion leveraged buyout of the

Toys "R" Us is a privately owned entity but still files with the
Securities and Exchange Commission as required by its debt

The Company's consolidated balance sheet showed $6.572 billion in
assets, $7.891 billion in liabilities, and a stockholders' deficit
of $1.319 billion as of April 29, 2017.

Toys "R" Us, Inc., and certain of its U.S. subsidiaries and its
Canadian subsidiary voluntarily filed for relief under Chapter 11
of the Bankruptcy Code (Bankr. E.D. Va. Lead Case No. Case No.
17-34665) on Sept. 19, 2017.  In addition, the Company's Canadian
subsidiary voluntarily commenced parallel proceedings under the
Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act ("CCAA") in Canada in the
Ontario Superior Court of Justice.  The Company's operations
outside of the U.S. and Canada, including its 255 licensed stores
and joint venture partnership in Asia, which are separate
entities, are not part of the Chapter 11 filing and CCAA

Grant Thornton is the monitor appointed in the CCAA case.

Judge Keith L. Phillips presides over the Chapter 11 cases.

In the Chapter 11 cases, Kirkland & Ellis LLP and Kirkland & Ellis
International LLP serve as the Debtors' legal counsel.  Kutak Rock
LLP serves as co-counsel.  Toys "R" Us employed Alvarez & Marsal
North America, LLC as its restructuring advisor; and Lazard Freres
& Co. LLC as its investment banker.  It hired Prime Clerk LLC as
claims and noticing agent.  A&G Realty Partners, LLC, serves as
its real estate advisor.

On Sept. 26, 2017, the U.S. Trustee for Region 4 appointed an
official committee of unsecured creditors.  The Committee retained
Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP as its legal counsel; Wolcott
Rivers, P.C. as local counsel; FTI Consulting, Inc. as financial
advisor; and Moelis & Company LLC as investment banker.

                        Toys "R" Us UK

Toys "R" Us Limited, Toys "R" Us, Inc.'s UK arm with 105 stores
and 3,000 employees, was sent into administration in the United
Kingdom in February 2018.

Arron Kendall and Simon Thomas of Moorfields Advisory Limited, 88
Wood Street, London, EC2V 7QF were appointed Joint Administrators
on Feb. 28, 2018.  The Administrators now manage the affairs,
business and property of the Company.  The Administrators act as
agents only and without personal liability.

The Administrators said they will make every effort to secure a
buyer for all or part of the business.


PETROLEOS DE VENEZUELA: Moody's Cuts Ratings to C; Outlook Stable
Moody's Investors Service downgraded Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A.
(PDVSA)'s ratings to C from Ca. Moody's also lowered the company's
baseline credit assessment (BCA) to c from ca. The rating action
follows Moody's downgrade of the government of Venezuela's rating
to C from Caa3 on March 9, 2018. The ratings outlook is now

Ratings downgraded:

Issuer: Petroleos de Venezuela S.A.

-- Senior Secured 1st Lien Global Notes due 2020 to C from Ca

-- Senior Unsecured Global Notes due 2035 to C from Ca

Outlook Actions:

Issuer: Petroleos de Venezuela S.A.

-- Outlook, Changed To Stable From Negative


The action on PDVSA's ratings considered the strong linkage
between the credit risk of the company and that of Venezuela. In
turn, the downgrade of the Venezuelan government's ratings were
based on Moody's expectation that the continuing erosion of
Venezuela's payment capacity will lead to heavy losses to
bondholders, with ongoing defaults on interest payments on various
bonds compounded by upcoming principal maturities, and the limits
on Venezuela's ability to restructure its debt posed by current US
sanctions that prevent US investors from accepting new debt
instruments under a potential debt exchange, which will further
exacerbate losses.

The ratings of government-related issuers combine: (i) their
underlying BCA, which represents the issuer's intrinsic credit
risks regardless of government support and (ii) Moody's
assumptions about the willingness and the ability of the
respective government to provide extraordinary support in a
distressed situation. In the case of PDVSA, the company's C rating
is in line with that of the government's C rating because of the
strong correlations between the credit risks of the two entities.

PDVSA's ratings could be upgraded if a debt restructure were to
reduce liquidity and refinancing risk that results in lower
severity of losses to bondholders to the point of signaling a
higher rating.

The methodologies used in these ratings were Global Integrated Oil
& Gas Industry published in October 2016, and Government-Related
Issuers published in August 2017.

VENEZUELA: Crude Exports to the U.S. Reach 15-year Low
RJR News reports that Venezuela's crude exports to the United
States declined in February to a 15-year low as oil production
continues falling and US President Donald Trump's administration
weighs new sanctions on the OPEC country.

Financial sanctions imposed by the United States in August on
Venezuela and state-run oil firm PDVSA have created obstacles for
selling crude cargoes to U.S. refiners, shrinking the number of
customers PDVSA has in the U.S, according to RJR News.

In February, PDVSA and its joint ventures sent 21 cargoes to the
United States -- half the number it exported in recent years --
with a total of 378,643 barrels per day of crude, the report

The exports were 21 per cent lower than in January and 43 per cent
below the volume shipped in February of last year, the report

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
March 13, 2018, Moody's Investors Service has downgraded the
Government of Venezuela's foreign currency and local currency
issuer ratings, foreign and local currency senior unsecured
ratings, and foreign currency senior secured rating to C from
Caa3. Concurrently, the foreign currency senior unsecured medium
term note program has also been downgraded to (P)C from (P)Caa3.
The outlook has been changed to stable from negative.


* BOND PRICING: For the Week From March 12 to March 16, 2018

Issuer Name               Cpn     Price   Maturity  Country  Curr
-----------               ---     -----   --------  -------   ---

BA-CA Finance Cayman Lt   0.518    62.07               KY    EUR
AES Tiete Energia SA      6.7842   1.109  4/15/2024    BR    BRL
Argentina Bogar Bonds     2       39.36   2/4/2018     AR    ARS
Automotores Gildemeister  8.25    73.25   5/24/2021    CL    USD
Automotores Gildemeister  6.75    67      1/15/2023    CL    USD
Automotores Gildemeister  8.25    73.25   5/24/2021    CL    USD
Automotores Gildemeister  6.75    65.5    1/15/2023    CL    USD
CA La Electricidad        8.5     63.664  4/10/2018    VE    USD
Caixa Geral De Depositos  1.439   63.167               KY    EUR
Caixa Geral De Depositos  1.469                        KY    EUR
CSN Islands XII Corp      7       68                   BR    USD
CSN Islands XII Corp      7       66.266               BR    USD
Decimo Primer Fideicomiso 6       53.225 10/25/2041    PA    USD
Decimo Primer             4.54    43.127 10/25/2041    PA    USD
Dolomite Capital         13.217   73.108 12/20/2019    CN    ZAR
Enel Americas SA          5.75    56.172  6/15/2022    CL    CLP
Gol Linhas Aereas SA     10.75    35.861  2/12/2023    BR    USD
Gol Linhas Aereas SA     10.75    35.601  2/12/2023    BR    USD
Inversora Electrica       6.5     67.625  9/26/2017    AR    USD
Inversora Electrica       6.5     67.625  9/26/2017    AR    USD
MIE Holdings Corp         7.5     64.78   4/25/2019    HK    USD
MIE Holdings Corp         7.5     64.982  4/25/2019    HK    USD
NB Finance Ltd            3.88    61.816  2/7/2035     KY    EUR
Noble Holding             7.7     74.433  4/1/2025     KY    USD
Noble Holding             5.25    56.279  3/15/2042    KY    USD
Noble Holding             8.7     71.881  4/1/2045     KY    USD
Noble Holding             6.2     60.129  8/1/2040     KY    USD
Noble Holding             6.05    58.38   3/1/2041     KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     7.5     42.5                 KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     5.125   56.938  6/26/2022    KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     7       68.053  4/21/2020    KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     7.125   41.366  6/26/2042    KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     4.375   40.002  4/25/2025    KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     5.25    39.211  6/27/2029    KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     6       44.75   4/5/2023     KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     5.25    39.018  6/27/2029    KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     7.5     42.95                KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     4.375   40.363  4/25/2025    KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     7.125   41.635  6/26/2042    KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     6       52.625  4/5/2023     KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     5.125   55.873  6/26/2022    KY    USD
Odebrecht Finance Ltd     7       67.368  4/21/2020    KY    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela    8.5     74.5   10/27/2020    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela    6       30.458  5/16/2024    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela    6       30.517 11/15/2026    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela    9.75    35.677  5/17/2035    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela    9       39.279 11/17/2021    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela    5.375   30.267  4/12/2027    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela    8.5     72.5   10/27/2020    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela   12.75    45.278  2/17/2022    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela    6       30.367  5/16/2024    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela    6       30.387 11/15/2026    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela    9       39.316 11/17/2021    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela    9.75    35.893  5/17/2035    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela    6       28.346 10/28/2022    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela    5.5     30.123  4/12/2037    VE    USD
Petroleos de Venezuela   12.75    45.23   2/17/2022    VE    USD
Polarcus Ltd              5.6     75      3/30/2022    AE    USD
Provincia del Chubut      4              10/21/2019    AR    USD
Siem Offshore Inc         4.04527 69.5   10/30/2020    NO    NOK
Siem Offshore             3.75176 65.75  12/28/2021    NO    NOK
STB Finance               2.05771 56.243               KY    JPY
Sylph Ltd                 2.367   64.438  9/25/2036    KY    USD
US Capital                1.63611 54.774 12/1/2039     KY    USD
US Capital                1.63611 54.774 12/1/2039     KY    USD
USJ Acucar                9.875   67     11/9/2019     BR    USD
USJ Acucar                9.875   67     11/9/2019     BR    USD
Venezuela                13.625   68.25   8/15/2018    VE    USD
Venezuela                 7.75    44.065 10/13/2019    VE    USD
Venezuela                11.95    40.785  8/5/2031     VE    USD
Venezuela                12.75    45.19   8/23/2022    VE    USD
Venezuela                 9.25    39.645  9/15/2027    VE    USD
Venezuela                11.75    40.005 10/21/2026    VE    USD
Venezuela                 9       36.285  5/7/2023     VE    USD
Venezuela                 9.375   37.69   1/13/2034    VE    USD
Venezuela                13.625   72.25   8/15/2018    VE    USD
Venezuela                 7       34.23   3/31/2038    VE    USD
Venezuela                 7       59.19  12/1/2018     VE    USD


Monday's edition of the TCR-LA delivers a list of indicative
prices for bond issues that reportedly trade well below par.
Prices are obtained by TCR-LA editors from a variety of outside
sources during the prior week we think are reliable.   Those
sources may not, however, be complete or accurate.  The Monday
Bond Pricing table is compiled on the Friday prior to publication.
Prices reported are not intended to reflect actual trades.  Prices
for actual trades are probably different.  Our objective is to
share information, not make markets in publicly traded securities.
Nothing in the TCR-LA constitutes an offer or solicitation to buy
or sell any security of any kind.  It is likely that some entity
affiliated with a TCR-LA editor holds some position in the
issuers' public debt and equity securities about which we report.

Tuesday's edition of the TCR-LA features a list of companies with
insolvent balance sheets obtained by our editors based on the
latest balance sheets publicly available a day prior to
publication.  At first glance, this list may look like the
definitive compilation of stocks that are ideal to sell short.
Don't be fooled.  Assets, for example, reported at historical cost
net of depreciation may understate the true value of a firm's
assets.  A company may establish reserves on its balance sheet for
liabilities that may never materialize.  The prices at which
equity securities trade in public market are determined by more
than a balance sheet solvency test.

Submissions about insolvency-related conferences are encouraged.
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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., Washington, D.C.,
USA, Marites O. Claro, Joy A. Agravante, Rousel Elaine T.
Fernandez, Julie Anne L. Toledo, Ivy B. Magdadaro, and Peter A.
Chapman, Editors.

Copyright 2018.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1529-2746.

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

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

The TCR Latin America subscription rate is US$775 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 Peter A. Chapman at 215-945-7000.

                   * * * End of Transmission * * *