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

               Friday, July 6, 2018, Vol. 19, No. 133



ARGENTINA: OKs Telecom Deal, Puts Competition Conditions


BRAZIL: Presidential Candidates Support President Temer's Policies
PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Losses Arbitration Case after Defense Fails
PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Signs Deal to Finish Rio Refinery With CNPC
VIRTUAL COMMUNICATIONS: Creditors Seek Amendment of Plan Outline

D O M I N I C A N   R E P U B L I C

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: China Discloses Ties With Funding Offer


ECUADOR: Court to Rule on Investor-State Arbitration Clauses


MEXICO: Vote Snubs the Political Establishment
MEXICO: President-Elect Meets With Business Leaders

P U E R T O    R I C O

TOYS R US: Singing Machine Writes Off Bad Debt Due to Bankruptcy

T R I N I D A D  &  T O B A G O

CARIBBEAN AIRLINES: Accused of Failing to Conduct Security Checks

                            - - - - -


ARGENTINA: OKs Telecom Deal, Puts Competition Conditions
Mary Lennighan, writing for Total Telecom, reports that
Argentina's competition body the CNDC has given the go-ahead to
the planned merger of Telecom Argentina with Cablevision subject
to the fulfilment of a number of conditions, including the sale of
fixed-line assets in certain areas and a moratorium on the
provision of quad-play services.

Telecom Argentina and Grupo Clarin-owned Cablevision announced
their all-stock merger almost a year ago, a move designed to
create a stronger competitor in the market, particularly with
regard to the provision of quadruple-play offerings, notes Total
Telecom. Cablevision brings a pay TV asset to the table and a
stronger broadband base, while Telecom Argentina owns mobile
network operator Telecom Personal.

According to the report, the proposed merger of a major telecoms
player and TV provider naturally raised competition concerns,
which the CNDC -- or Comision Nacional de Defensa de la
Competencia -- has sought to address through its ruling on the

In a statement, the CNDC came out in favour of the merger
following a lengthy period of research and analysis, says Total

It will allow the deal to go ahead provided the merged entity
sells off its fixed broadband business in 28 areas of the country
where the merger could affect competition, say the report. It also
requires the new entity to refrain from launching quad-play offers
for a period of between six and 12 months, depending on the
region, to prevent it from gaining an advantage from being first
to market; rivals will thus have time to invest in quad-play or
partner up in order to offer such services.

Telecom Argentina will be compelled to offer a wholesale
residential Internet service under a reference offer to enable
other providers to launch services, notes Total Telecom.

And finally, the CNDC recommended that regulatory authority
(ENACOM) expedite the return of the merged entity's excess
spectrum, which could be as much as 80 MHz, in order to level the
playing field, says report.

The merger deal will see Cablevision absorbed by Telecom
Argentina, but Cablevision will hold a 55% stake in the merged
entity and Telecom Argentina the remaining 45%. Telecom Argentina
in November appointed Carlos Moltini, chief executive of
Cablevision, as its new CEO.

In a separate report, Charley Connor at Latin Lawyer said that
Argentina's competition authority required the new company to
transfer more than 140,000 broadband customers to a rival and
limited its ability to bundle services.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America, S&P
Global Ratings, on June 4, 2018, affirmed its 'B+' long-term
sovereign credit ratings on the Republic of Argentina. The outlook
on the long-term ratings remains stable.

On May 8, 2018, Fitch Ratings affirmed Argentina's Long-Term
Foreign-Currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at 'B' and revised
the Outlook to Stable from Positive.

On December 4, 2017, Moody's Investors Service upgraded the
Government of Argentina's local and foreign currency issuer and
senior unsecured ratings to B2 from B3. The senior unsecured
shelves were upgraded to (P)B2 from (P)B3. The outlook on the
ratings is stable.  At the same time, Argentina's short-term
rating was affirmed at Not Prime (NP). The senior unsecured
ratings for unrestructured debt were affirmed at Ca and the
unrestructured senior unsecured shelf affirmed at (P)Ca.

Moody's said the key drivers of the upgrade of the rating to B2
are: (1) a record of macro-economic reforms that are beginning to
address long existing distortions in Argentina's economy; and (2)
the likelihood that reforms will continue and in turn sustain
the recent return to positive economic growth.

The stable outlook on Argentina's B2 ratings balances Argentina's
credit strengths of its large, diverse economy and moderate income
levels against the credit challenges posed by still high fiscal
deficits and a reliance on external financing, which increases its
vulnerability to external event risk, said Moody's.

On Nov. 10, 2017, Fitch Ratings revised Argentina's Outlook to
Positive from Stable and has affirmed its Long Term Foreign-
Currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at 'B'.

On Oct. 30, 2017, S&P Global Ratings raised its long-term
sovereign credit ratings on the Republic of Argentina to 'B+' from
'B'. The outlook on the long-term ratings is stable.  S&P also
affirmed its short-term sovereign credit ratings on Argentina at
'B'. At the same time, S&P raised its national scale ratings to
'raAA' from 'raA+'. In addition, S&P raised its transfer and
convertibility assessment to 'BB-' from 'B+', in line with its
assessment of sustained local access to foreign exchange.

As previously reported by the TCR-LA, Argentina defaulted on some
of its debt late July 30, 2014, after expiration of a 30-day grace
period on a US$539 million interest payment.  Earlier that day,
talks with a court-appointed mediator ended without resolving a
standoff between the country and a group of hedge funds seeking
full payment on bonds that the country had defaulted on in 2001.
A U.S. judge had ruled that the interest payment couldn't be made
unless the hedge funds led by Elliott Management Corp., got the
US$1.5 billion they claimed. The country hasn't been able to
access international credit markets since its US$95 billion
default 13 years ago. On March 30, 2016, Argentina's Congress
passed a bill that will allow the government to repay holders of
debt that the South American country defaulted on in 2001,
including a group of litigating hedge funds that won judgments
in a New York court. The bill passed by a vote of 54-16.


BRAZIL: Presidential Candidates Support President Temer's Policies
EFE News reports that the controversial policies put in place by
Brazilian President Michel Temer were backed by several candidates
for October's presidential election, considered to be one of the
most uncertain elections in Brazil's history.

Even though Temer's approval rate is barely 4 percent, candidates
Geraldo Alckmin, Marina Silva, Jair Bolsonaro and Alvaro Dias
announced that they supported -- with some nuances -- the
president's policies while speaking at a business summit focusing
on the elections, according to EFE News.

Former Finance Minister Henrique Meirelles also backed President
Temer's policies, which is not surprising, as Minister Meirelles
is the architect of many of the president's reforms, including
public spending cuts and a new labor law that has been denounced
by unions, the report notes.

The report relays that Minister Meirelles seeks to be the
presidential candidate of the governing Brazilian Democratic
Movement party.

The only candidate who criticized President Temer's reforms was
Ciro Gomes, of the Democratic Labor Party, who, despite the
businessmen's booing, reiterated that the labor law was "savage"
and that he would work "from day one" to revoke it.  Mr. Gomes
also said he would raise taxes on large fortunes to reduce taxes
on the poor and the middle class.

Far-right candidate Jair Bolsonaro not only supported President
Temer's policies, but also demanded that the private sector and
the market be granted more liberties, since businessmen "should
rule," the report relays.

Marina Silva, presidential candidate for Brazil's Sustainability
Network Party (REDE), also expressed her support for the private
sector, notes the report.

"We need a government that reduces taxes" and "promotes" the
private sector to spur development and allow citizens to "offer
their best for the country," Silva said in her speech during the
summit organized by the National Industrial Confederation (CNI),
the report notes.

This is Ms. Silva's third presidential bid, as she ran for
president in 2010 and 2014, coming third on both occasions, the
report discloses.

Even though Ms. Silva started her political career in the left-
leaning Workers Party (PT), she has veered right in the last few
years, to the point that she stated that the private sector was
"essential" to provide Brazilians with "education, transportation
and a quality health system," the report notes.

Electoral polls suggest that the results of October's election
will be unpredictable and that the vote will be extremely
atomized, the report relays.

According to recent polls, some 17 percent of Brazilians plan on
voting for Mr. Bolsonaro, 13 percent could vote for Silva, while
Mr. Gomes, Mr. Alckmin, Mr. Dias and Mr. Mireilles are polling in
the single digits, says EFE News.

The leader in the polls continues to be former president Luis
Inacio Lula da Silva, who was recently jailed on corruption
charges, barring him from running for office, the report adds.

PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Losses Arbitration Case after Defense Fails
Sebastian Perry of Latin Lawyer reports that a Cayman offshore
drilling company has asked a US court to enforce a US$662 million
International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR) award against
Petrobras over the early termination of a contract that the
Brazilian state-owned company alleges was procured through

Specifically, Reuters said, Brazil's state-controlled oil company
has been fined $622 million by the international tribunal for
breaching a 2009 contract with a unit of Vantage Drilling.

The tribunal found that Petrobras and its units, Petrobras America
Inc (PAI) and Petrobras Venezuela Investments and Services (PVIS)
breached a drilllship contract with Vantage Deepwater Co., note
the report.

In 2016, Petrobras executive Jorge Zelada was sentenced to 12
years and two months in jail for corruption and money laundering
after he was convicted for unduly awarding Vantage a contract in
2009, recall Reuters.

Petrobras had notified Vantage in 2015 that they had terminated
the contract, claiming Vantage breached terms, following which
Vantage had filed an arbitration claim against PAI, PVIS and
Petrobras for "wrongful termination," the report relates.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Apr 12, 2018, Moody's Investors Service upgraded the corporate
family rating of Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. (Petrobras) to Ba2 from
Ba3. The rating action was triggered by Moody's affirmation on
April 9, 2018 of Brazil's government bond rating at Ba2, with the
outlook changed to stable from negative. The action on Petrobras'
ratings also reflects the company's continued success in improving
its liquidity position and reducing debt leverage. Simultaneously,
Moody's raised the company's baseline credit assessment (BCA) to
ba3 from b1. The rating outlook is stable.

PETROLEO BRASILEIRO: Signs Deal to Finish Rio Refinery With CNPC
EFE News reports that Brazilian state oil company Petroleo
Brasileiro S.A. and China's state-owned China National Petroleum
Corporation signed a letter of intent to conclude construction of
a refinery in Rio de Janeiro, the South American company said.

Work on the refinery, known as the Rio de Janeiro Petrochemical
Complex (Comperj), has been stalled since 2015 due to the
sprawling Car Wash probe, initially focused on a massive bribes-
for-inflated contracts scandal centered on Petrobras, according to
EFE News.

The report notes that the Comperj refinery would provide China its
first refining capacity in the Americas.

The letter of intent, contained in a securities filing sent to the
Sao Paulo Stock Exchange, is part of negotiations announced a year
ago on a "strategic partnership" between the two companies, the
report relays.

The document defines the assets that make up their "integrated
project, which includes the conclusion of the Comperj refinery,"
the report notes.

Separately, the companies are negotiating the sale of a stake in
the Marlim oil field, located in deep waters of the Campos Basin,
to the Chinese company.

Since 2013, Petrobras and CNPC have been partners along with other
companies in a consortium that is developing the massive Libra
field, located in waters off Brazil's southeastern coast, the
report says.

The Brazilian company is currently carrying out an ambitious
restructuring program that includes asset sales and is aimed at
overcoming a severe financial crisis triggered by the Car Wash
scandal, the report adds.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Apr 12, 2018, Moody's Investors Service upgraded the corporate
family rating of Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. (Petrobras) to Ba2 from
Ba3. The rating action was triggered by Moody's affirmation on
April 9, 2018 of Brazil's government bond rating at Ba2, with the
outlook changed to stable from negative. The action on Petrobras'
ratings also reflects the company's continued success in improving
its liquidity position and reducing debt leverage. Simultaneously,
Moody's raised the company's baseline credit assessment (BCA) to
ba3 from b1. The rating outlook is stable.

VIRTUAL COMMUNICATIONS: Creditors Seek Amendment of Plan Outline
Creditors Reva Waldo, Anthony White, Steven Hotchkiss, Troy
Suntheimer, Robin Suntheimer, Steve Ghesquiere and Jackie Stone
object to the first amended disclosure statement filed by Debtor
Virtual Communications Corporation because it fails to address the
issues concerning the guarantee on their unsecured Promissory

Specifically, the plan fails to address the rights of Creditors
and other VCC Promissory Note investors as they pertain to Ronald
Robinson (VCC's former Chairman), who unconditionally guaranteed
repayment of principal and interest to the VCC Noteholders.

The primary issue here is the lack of disclosure on the rights of
the VCC Promissory Note investors to pursue claims against Ronald
Robinson and other VCC officers if the court approves VCC's
Chapter 11 plan. Creditors object to the confirmation of any plan
that wipes out their claims against the guarantor, or any of the
non-debtor corporate insiders, against whom Creditors have been
pursuing claims in Clark County District Court.

It is in the interests of the Debtor and the Debtor's Estate to
address this issue in the disclosure statement as it will prevent
further litigation in this matter. Counsel for Debtor has
indicated that Debtor does not object to Creditors continuing to
pursue claims against Mr. Robinson and other corporate insiders,
and this should be made part of the disclosure plan to prevent
VCC's former Chairman and Note guarantor Ronald Robinson from
arguing that he is not liable as a guarantor based upon the
approval of any reorganization plan.

Accordingly, the disclosure statement should not be approved
unless it is amended to address the Creditors' concerns.

A copy of the Creditors' Objection is available at:

As reported by the Troubled Company Reporter on June 25, 2018, the
Debtor amended the treatment of Class 3 Unsecured Promissory Notes
in its first amended disclosure statement.

The Series A Preferred Distribution will consist of approximately
940,110 shares of Series A Preferred Stock in the Reorganized
Debtor that will be distributed to all Holders of Allowed Class 3
Claims on a Pro Rata Basis according to the principal indebtedness
included in each Holder's Allowed Class 3 Claim.  In other words,
each Holder of an Allowed Class 3 Claim will receive one (1) share
of Series A Preferred Stock in the Reorganized Debtor in exchange
for each $5.00 of principal indebtedness included in the Holder's
Allowed Class 3 Claim.  Upon completion of the Series A Preferred
Distribution, the Holders of Allowed Class 3 Claims will
collectively hold 100% of all issued and outstanding Preferred
Stock in the Reorganized Debtor and 100% of all issued and
outstanding Series A Preferred Stock in the Reorganized Debtor,
subject to dilution.

A full-text copy of the Disclosure Statement dated June 13, 2018,
is available at:

Attorney for Creditors Reva Waldo, Anthony White, Steven
Troy Suntheimer, Robin Suntheimer, Steve Ghesquiere and Jackie

     David Liebrader, Esq. SBN 5048
     601 S. RANCHO DR. STE. D-29
     LAS VEGAS, NV 89106
     Ph: (702) 380-3131

             About Virtual Communications

Virtual Communications Corporation, headquartered in Las Vegas,
Nevada, is a privately-held technology company that develops
technology solutions that enable businesses to improve their
customer interaction experience.  The company's primary product is
the ALICE ("A Live Interactive Communication Experience")
Receptionist software.  The ALICE system, provided as a software
subscription model, permits businesses to control many aspects of
handling visitors to their physical premises without the need for
a designated member of staff to be located in the entity's
reception area.  A single staff member may remotely interact with
visitors to a number of physical locations.  The company currently
sells its product to businesses and government entities in the
United States, Australia, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bermuda, Brazil,
Canada, China and New Zealand.

Virtual Communications Corporation sought protection under Chapter
11 of the Bankruptcy Code (Bankr. D. Nev. Case No. 18-12951) on
May 22, 2018.

In the petition signed by Michael Yoder, president and director,
the Debtor disclosed that it had estimated assets of less than
$50,000 and liabilities of $1 million to $10 million.

Judge Laurel E. Babero presides over the case.

D O M I N I C A N   R E P U B L I C

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: China Discloses Ties With Funding Offer
Dominican Today reports that China Embassy commercial attache Fu
Xinrong headed an event to officially disclose the establishment
of diplomatic relations with the Dominican Republic.

Ms. Fu said the relationships gives the Dominican Republic more
influence on the international stage, according to Dominican

"China promotes the construction of a new type of international
relations, mutual respect, equity and justice, win-win
cooperation," the diplomat said, the report notes.

She said that the first batch of financing offered by China is
US$2.0 million, to be allocated to agriculture, health, medical
care, climate change, poverty reduction, education and
humanitarian aid, the report relays.

She also announced the visit the Ark of Peace Ship in September,
which will attend over 4,000 Dominicans with different health
issues free of charge, the report says.

As part of the event, Fu gave the keys to the People's Republic of
China, as a gesture of friendship, received by Youth minister,
Robiamny Balcacer, and Economy minister, Isidoro Santana, the
report adds.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
April 23, 2018, S&P Global Ratings affirmed its 'BB-/B' long- and
short-term sovereign credit ratings on the Dominican Republic.
The outlook remains stable.


ECUADOR: Court to Rule on Investor-State Arbitration Clauses
EFE News reports that as the negotiation of its new bilateral
investment treaties continues, Ecuador's congress has approved a
motion to ask the constitutional court whether investor-state
arbitration clauses in bilateral investment treaties (BITs) are
prohibited under the Ecuadorean constitution.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
June 1, 2018, S&P Global Ratings, on May 29, 2018, affirmed its
'B-/B' long- and short-term foreign and local currency sovereign
credit ratings on Ecuador. The outlook remains stable.

In addition, S&P affirmed its 'B-' transfer and convertibility
(T&C) assessment for Ecuador.


MEXICO: Vote Snubs the Political Establishment
Santiago Perez and Jose de Cordoba at The Wall Street Journal
report that Mexico's election was a tsunami for the country's
traditional parties, which suffered unprecedented setbacks at the
hands of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and the Movement for National
Regeneration the leftist leader founded just four years ago.

Like Brexit and the presidential election of Donald Trump,
Mexico's historic vote is the latest example of the backlash
against the political establishment that has swept through Europe
and the U.S. amid eroding trust in traditional political parties,
according to The Wall Street Journal.

The report notes that Mr. Lopez Obrador's victory marks an end to
the political party system that dominated Mexico over the past
three decades -- a three-party system of the centrist
Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), the conservative National
Action Party (PAN) and the center-left Party of the Democratic
Revolution (PRD).  His new party is known as Morena, an acronym
that also alludes to the country's patron saint, the Virgin of
Guadalupe, and means dark-skinned in Spanish, the report relays.

"This is the end of the parties as we have known them," said Jesus
Silva-Herzog, a leading political commentator and scholar, the
report notes.  "The legacy parties have their work cut out for
them in remaking themselves and reassessing their identity," he

The report says that Mr. Lopez Obrador's landslide -- he won by
more than 30 percentage points over his closest rival and took
more than half of the vote in a field of four candidates -- is the
widest since Miguel de la Madrid of the PRI won the 1982 election,
before Mexico became a full democracy.

Mr. Lopez Obrador will also be the first Mexican president since
1997 to have an outright majority in Congress, the report relays.

For the ruling PRI, the once-hegemonic party that ruled Mexico as
a single party state from 1929 to 2000, the result was a disaster,
the report notes.  The number of PRI representatives in the 500-
member lower house is expected to drop from 204 to 45, according
to projections from the country's electoral authority, making it
only the fifth-largest party in Congress and below the newly
created and relatively unknown evangelical Social Encounter party,
the report says.  The PRI ran in a coalition with other parties,
the report discloses.

The PRI's tally of governorships has also fallen steadily, from
all 31 states and Mexico City in 1987 to 12 after the vote, in
which it lost Jalisco state in the west, home to Mexico's second-
largest city, Guadalajara, and Yucatan state in the southeast, the
report notes.  It hasn't run Mexico City since 1997.

"The results are catastrophic for the PRI," said Roger Bartra, a
renowned Mexican sociologist, the report relays.  "I don't think
the party will disappear, because it still has a powerful
machinery, but it faces unprecedented challenges," he added.

Having been kicked out of power in 2000, the PRI won back the
presidency six years ago with Enrique Pena Nieto, a telegenic
candidate, the report says.  But he leaves office Dec. 1 with the
lowest approval ratings for any president in modern history amid a
steady stream of corruption scandals and rising criminal violence,
the report notes.  Presidents are constitutionally barred from
running for reelection, the report relays.

Mr. Lopez Obrador's win also weakens his former party, the center-
left PRD, which fell from 53 members of the lower house to 21. Mr.
Lopez Obrador was elected mayor of Mexico City on the PRD's ticket
in 2000, the report discloses.  He ran as the party's presidential
candidate in 2006 and 2012, and left the PRD to form Morena in
2014, the report says.

The conservative PAN, meanwhile, also emerges weaker, and faces
growing internal disputes linked to the nomination of its
candidate, Ricardo Anaya -- deep splits that may grow amid finger
-- pointing after the loss, the report notes.

The broader opposition is so weakened that some analysts speculate
that Morena could become Mexico's next hegemonic party, exerting a
political power similar to the one the PRI exercised from 1929 to
2000, the report relays.

"It's a paradox that the ones who voted for Lopez Obrador to put
an end to the PRI are really voting to construct another PRI,"
said Jose Antonio Crespo, a political analyst at CIDE university
in Mexico City, the report discloses.  "This could mean a setback
to Mexico's democracy," he added.

Like the PRI, Morena is a pragmatic "big tent" including all sorts
of political actors with clashing beliefs, including an alliance
with the Social Encounter party that has conservative views on
issues like same-sex marriage and abortion, according to Jorge
Chabat, a professor at the University of Guadalajara, the report

"There's room for everybody-the left, the right, those with a
history of corruption, those not corrupt," said Mr. Chabat, the
report notes.  "This is very clear-it's back to the future," he

The report discloses that Morena could also take over many of the
PRI's old patronage networks. While the PRI has curbed the power
of top unions while embracing free-market overhauls, Morena has
courted them.  Mr. Lopez Obrador secured support from Mexico's
biggest mining union, with close to 280,000 affiliates, and has
rejected an ambitious reform of the country's education system to
attract the country's two vast teachers' unions, as well as Elba
Esther Gordillo, the former powerful head of the country's largest
teachers union who was convicted of corruption during Mr. Pena
Nieto's term, the report notes.  She has said the case was
politically motivated, the report says.

WSJ relays that part of Morena's ascent is based on the
territorial, grass-roots work that the PRI dominated decades ago.
The PRI's candidate for president, Jose Antonio Meade, represents
the radical shift taken by PRI leaders in recent decades, the
report notes.  Mr. Meade, a U.S.-trained former finance, foreign
and social development minister under PRI and PAN administrations,
isn't a formal member of the party and lacks the local activism of
many veterans who emerged from the party base, the report says.

Many PRI leaders and legislators have defected to Morena and more
are expected to do so in coming months, analysts say, the report
discloses.  Such defections will be key for a new party lacking
experienced political cadres, the report notes.  Morena will have
to fill thousands of legislative and positions in federal and
local governments in coming months, the report adds.

MEXICO: President-Elect Meets With Business Leaders
EFE News reports that Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said that
"mutual trust" was achieved during his meeting with the Business
Coordinating Council (CCE), which would allow the new government
"to transform the country" in "harmony."

"There is an atmosphere of mutual trust.  We trust the business
sector and they have expressed trust in the new government, which
will carry out actions to transform the country," the president-
elect said during a press conference after his two-and-a-half-hour
meeting with the CCE, according to EFE News.

Lopez Obrador, who won the election with a clear majority, said
that the meeting was "very cordial" and "very respectful," the
report notes.

"Agreeing on the need to carry out real change and a
transformation of the country, the businessmen have assumed a very
responsible attitude," he said, the report relays.

Lopez Obrador, who has been branded as a left-wing populist by his
detractors, said that he would "not impose anything," even though
his party, the National Regeneration Movement (MORENA), and its
allies won a majority in both houses of Congress, the report

The report says that the president-elect praised the head of the
CCE, Juan Pablo Castanon, whom he portrayed as "a business leader
with civic and social foresight."

Mr. Castanon also hailed the meeting, saying that a social program
was discussed that would help young people gain work experience as
apprentices in private businesses, the report discloses.

The president-elect said he would launch two social programs once
in office, one to provide scholarships for young people, and the
other to increase pensions for senior citizens, which would
require a $7.66-billion investment, the report says.

Lopez Obrador said that the scholarship program, which would help
2.6 million youths continue their studies or gain work experience
as apprentices, would cost $5.6 billion per year, the report

As for the plan to expand and increase pensions for senior
citizens, the president-elect said that the program would require
just over $2 billion per year, the report relays.

According to Lopez Obrador, the two programs would be paid for by
reducing the high salaries and other benefits of top government
officials, avoiding the need to increase taxes or raise the debt,
the report adds.

P U E R T O    R I C O

TOYS R US: Singing Machine Writes Off Bad Debt Due to Bankruptcy
The Singing Machine Company, Inc. ("Singing Machine" or the
"Company") (otcqx:SMDM) -- the North American leader in consumer
karaoke products -- on June 28 announced its financial results for
its full fiscal year ended March 31, 2018.

Full Fiscal 2018 Highlights:

   -- Net sales for the fiscal year increased by 15% to $60.8
   -- The Company wrote off $3.1 million bad debt expense due to
the Toys 'R' Us bankruptcy and liquidation.
   -- Gross profit of $15.7 million.
   -- Income from operations $1.0 million for the fiscal year.
   -- Positive net income of $0.15 million.
   -- Reduced $1.2 million of related-party debt during the fiscal

Singing Machine reports net sales of approximately $60.8 million
for the March 31, 2018 fiscal year-end period, compared to
approximately $52.9 million in the prior year.  The increase in
net sales is primarily due to an increase in hardware sales to the
Company's top North American retailers, new distribution into a
brand new national mass market electronics retailer, strong demand
online for karaoke products, and expanded international growth in
the United Kingdom.

Gross profit margin decreased slightly by 0.3% from 26.1% to
25.8%.  Due to the increase in net sales, gross profit increased
to $15.7 million compared to $13.8 million in the prior year.

Total operating expenses increased from $10.9 million in the prior
year to approximately $14.7 million for Fiscal 2018.  A majority
of the increase was due to the bankruptcy of Toys 'R' Us who
announced Chapter 7 liquidation in April 2018.  The Company wrote
off $3.1 million, which represents its total exposure to the Toys
'R' Us bankruptcy.

As a result of the above, income from operations decreased to $1.0
million from $3.0 million in the prior year.  The Company reported
an income tax provision of $0.54 million which included a one-time
valuation adjustment to its deferred tax assets of approximately
$0.33 million due to the newly signed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.  The
Company still retains approximately $0.9 million in deferred tax
assets going forward.

Despite writing off $3.1 million from the Toys 'R' Us bankruptcy,
the Company still reported positive net income for the year of
$0.15 million.

Management Commentary:

Gary Atkinson, Singing Machine CEO commented, "We're pleased with
the 15% top line sales growth we posted for Fiscal 2018.  It marks
five consecutive years of annual growth.  Unfortunately, due to
the Toys 'R' Us bankruptcy and liquidation, we took a $3.1 million
bad debt charge which represents the full exposure related to the
bankruptcy.  We do not anticipate taking any future bad debt
write-downs associated with Toys 'R' Us in coming quarters.
Despite the bad debt write off, we still remained profitable for
the year which reflects tremendously on our position in the market
and the popularity of karaoke."

Bernardo Melo, Vice President of Sales, commented, "Given the
liquidation of Toys 'R' Us, we are taking aggressive steps to
increase our presence at other major retail channels.  The demand
for in-home karaoke remains strong and we expect other retailers
to soak up the demand.  Outside North America, we're well
positioned to become the global leader in home karaoke as we
expand our efforts to grow internationally.  During this year,
we've signed aboard numerous new distributors around the world in
territories like Australia, Central America, South America, Japan,
and Mexico and are actively looking to add more."

Earnings Call Information:

The Company will host a conference call today, Thursday, June 28,
beginning at 10:00 am Eastern time to discuss these results and
answer questions.  If you would like to participate on the call,
please dial (877) 876-9177 and use conference ID: SMDM.

An audio rebroadcast of the call will be available later in the
day after the earnings call and can be heard at:

                     About The Singing Machine

Based in the U.S., Singing Machine(R) -- is the North American leader in
consumer karaoke products.  The first to provide karaoke systems
for home entertainment in the United States, the Company sells its
products worldwide through major mass merchandisers and on-line
retailers.  It offers the industry's widest line of at-home
karaoke entertainment products, which allow consumers to find a
machine that suits their needs and skill level.  As the most
recognized brand in karaoke, Singing Machine products incorporate
the latest technology for singing practice, music listening,
entertainment and social sharing.  The Singing Machine provides
consumers the best warranties in the industry and access to over
13,000 songs for streaming and download. Singing Machine products
are sold through most major retailers in North America and

                      About Toys R Us, Inc.

Toys "R" Us, Inc., was an American toy and juvenile-products
retailer founded in 1948 and headquartered in Wayne, New Jersey,
in the New York City metropolitan area.  Merchandise was 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 was 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
U.S. 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, were 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.  Consensus Advisory Services LLC and
Consensus Securities LLC, serve as sale process investment banker.
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.

                   Liquidation of U.S. Stores

Toys "R" Us, Inc., on March 15, 2018, filed with the U.S.
Bankruptcy Court a motion seeking Bankruptcy Court approval to
start 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.

                         Propco I Debtors

Toys "R" Us Property Company I, LLC and its subsidiaries own fee
and leasehold interests in more than 300 properties in the United
States.  The Debtors lease the properties on a triple-net basis
under a master lease to Toys-Delaware, the operating entity for
all of TRU's North American businesses, which operates the
majority of the properties as Toys "R" Us stores, Babies "R" Us
stores or side-by-side stores, or subleases them to alternative

Toys "R" Us Property was founded in 2005 and is headquartered in
Wayne, New Jersey.  Toys 'R' Us Property operates as a subsidiary
of Toys "R" Us Inc.

Company LLC, MAP Real Estate LLC, TRU 2005 RE I LLC, TRU 2005 RE
II Trust, and Wayne Real Estate Company LLC (collectively, "Propco
I Debtors") sought protection under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy
Code (Bankr. E.D. Va. Lead Case No. 18-31429) on March 20, 2018.
The Propco I Debtors sought and obtained procedural consolidation
and joint administration of their Chapter 11 cases, separate from
the Toys "R" Us Debtors' Chapter 11 cases.

The Propco I Debtors estimated assets of $500 million to $1
billion and liabilities of $500 million to $1 billion.

Judge Keith L. Phillips presides over the Propco I Debtors' cases.

The Propco I Debtors hired Klehr Harrison Harvey Branzburg, LLP;
and Crowley, Liberatore, Ryan & Brogan, P.C., as co-counsel.  The
Debtors also tapped Kutak Rock LLP.  They hired Goldin Associates,
LLC, as financial advisors.

T R I N I D A D  &  T O B A G O

CARIBBEAN AIRLINES: Accused of Failing to Conduct Security Checks
RJR News reports that Caribbean Airlines Limited has come under
fire from the Joint Select Committee on State Enterprises in
Trinidad for failing to conduct background security checks on all
senior managers before hiring them.

But the management of the airline insisted that it does proper
security checks of prospective employees, in keeping with its
normal employment requirements, according to RJR News.

At a news conference, the Committee members took CAL to task for
breaching its recruitment policy, and recommended that the airline
restart the process for all positions which were filled without
conducting background security checks on applicants, the report

But in its statement, CAL said all staff are subject to security
checks before being hired, the report relays.

CAL said the airline industry is highly regulated, and as a long
standing member of the International Air Transport Association
(IATA) Caribbean Airlines adheres to a rigorous system of checks
and balances, and has complied with its own internal policy on
security checks, the report relays.

It said more intensive security checks are conducted for support
staff who are required to access the airport, aircraft or airside
facilities or as other regulations may require, the report notes.

Further security checks are also done for pilots and flight
attendants, the report discloses.

CAL explained that successfully completing required security
checks is a condition of the airlines' employment agreement, the
report says.

It added that staff who do not require airport or airside access
in the course of their duties go through the normal employment
vetting process, the report relates.

Caribbean Airlines Limited --
-- provides passenger airline services in the Caribbean, South
America, and North America.  The company also offers freighter
services for perishables, fish and seafood, live animals, human
remains, and dangerous goods.  In addition, it operates a duty
free store in Trinidad.  Caribbean Airlines Limited was founded in
2006 and is based in Piarco, Trinidad and Tobago.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
November 2, 2015, RJR News said that Michael DiLollo, Chief
Executive Officer of Caribbean Airlines Limited has quit after
just 17 months on the job. The 48-year-old Canadian national,
citing personal reasons, resigned with immediate effect.  His
resignation was accepted by the airline's board of directors. Mr.
DiLollo was appointed Caribbean Airlines CEO in May 2014,
following the sudden resignation of Robert Corbie in September

In early February 2015, Larry Howai, then Finance Minister, told
Parliament that unaudited accounts for 2014 showed the airline
made a loss of US$60 million, inclusive of its Air Jamaica
operations, and the airline planned to break even by 2017.
Mr. Howai told the Parliament that a five-year strategic plan had
been completed and was in the process of being approved for

In an interview with the Trinidad & Tobago Guardian in early
November 2015, Mr. DiLollo said CAL did not need a bailout just
yet. Mr. DiLollo said the airline had benefited from extremely
patient shareholders for years and he believed the airline was
strategically positioned to break even in three years.


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

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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,
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