TCRLA_Public/180801.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

            Wednesday, August 1, 2018, Vol. 19, No. 151


                            Headlines



A R G E N T I N A

CUOTAS CENCOSUD I: Moody's Rates Class C Debt Caa3


C H I L E

CHILE: Taxi Drivers Protest Government's Plan to Regulate Uber
CORPGROUP BANKING: Moody's Withdraws B2 LT Issuer Ratings


D O M I N I C A N   R E P U B L I C

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Industries Must Embrace the Stock Market


G R E N D A

GRENADA: 2017 Account Deficit Up by 3 1/2 Percentage Points of GDP


J A M A I C A

JAMAICA: TAJ Records Increase in Property Tax Collections


P U E R T O    R I C O

PICOTEO DE TAPAS: Taps Harold Maldonado as Bankruptcy Attorney
STAR READY MIX: Taps Luis R. Carrasquillo as Financial Consultant


T R I N I D A D  &  T O B A G O

MACARRI STEEL: In Bid to Reopen ArcelorMittal Plant


X X X X X X X X

* LATAM: Risks to Growth Up Owing to Trade Tensions


                            - - - - -


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


CUOTAS CENCOSUD I: Moody's Rates Class C Debt Caa3
--------------------------------------------------
Moody's Latin America Agente de Calificacion de Riesgo (Moody's)
has rated Fideicomiso Financiero Cuotas Cencosud Serie I. This
transaction will be issued by TMF Trust Company (Argentina) S.A.
acting solely in its capacity as issuer and trustee.

This credit rating is subject to the fulfillment of contingencies
that are highly likely to be completed, such as finalization of
documents and issuance of the securities. This credit rating is
based on certain information that may change prior to the
fulfillment of such contingencies, including market conditions,
financial projections, transaction structure, terms and conditions
of the issuance, characteristics of the underlying assets or
receivables, allocation of cash flows and of losses, performance
triggers, transaction counterparties and other information
included in the transaction documentation. Any pertinent change in
such information or additional information could result in a
change of these credit ratings.

The full rating action for the "Fideicomiso Financiero Cuotas
Cencosud Serie I" deal is as follows:

  - ARS 420,971,850 in Class A Floating Rate Debt Securities
(VDFA), rated Aaa.ar (sf) (Argentine National Scale) and Ba2 (sf)
(Global Scale)

  - ARS 5,397,075 in Class B Floating Rate Debt Securities (VDFB),
rated B1.ar (sf) (Argentine National Scale) and Caa2 (sf) (Global
Scale)

  - ARS 21,318,446 in Class C Floating Rate Debt Securities
(VDFC), rated Caa1.ar (sf) (Argentine National Scale) and Caa3
(sf) (Global Scale)

  - ARS 944,887 in Certificates (CP), rated Ca.ar (sf) (Argentine
National Scale) and Ca (sf) (Global Scale)

RATINGS RATIONALE

The rated securities are payable from the cash flow derived from
the trust assets, which includes an amortizing pool of
approximately 222,416 eligible purchases in credit card
installments denominated in Argentine pesos and originated by
Cencosud Argentina S.A. ("Cencosud Argentina"), the local
subsidiary of Cencosud S.A. ("Cencosud" Baa3, Negative). Cencosud
is among Latin America's largest retailers, with presence in
Chile, Argentina, Peru, Colombia and Brazil. Only installments
payable after July 1, 2018 will be assigned to the trust.

The assigned installments pertain to credit cards issued by
Cencosud Argentina. Cencosud credit cardholders can make purchases
in affiliated stores and split the payments in several monthly
installments bearing no interest. The monthly installments are
detailed in the cardholder's monthly credit card statements. Not
all installments due under a given credit card will be assigned to
the trust; a given credit card account may also have other
installments that do not serve as collateral for this transaction.

In this transaction, the minimum payment level of Cardholder's
credit card monthly statement will always include 100% of any
installments assigned to the trust. Therefore, the trust will
receive the expected cash flows without any delays as long as the
cardholder is considered a performing obligor.

A reserve fund covering two times the next interest accrual of the
VDFA and VDFB will be funded using collections received on the
pool.

Moody's based the analysis on the following factors: (i) the
strong credit profile of Cencosud and Cencosud Argentina and their
position as key players in the retail sector of Argentina and the
region; (ii) the relatively short expected life of the notes; and
(iii) the strong performance of Cencosud's portfolio.
TRANSACTION STRUCTURE

The VDFA will bear a floating interest rate (BADLAR plus 150 bps).
The VDFA's interest rate will never be higher than 35.0% or lower
than 27.0%. The VDFB will bear a floating interest rate (BADLAR
plus 250 bps). The VDFB's interest rate will never be higher than
36.0% or lower than 28.0%. The VDFC will bear a floating interest
rate (BADLAR plus 350 bps). The VDFC's interest rate will never be
higher than 37.0% or lower than 29.0%.

Overall credit enhancement is comprised of: (i) subordination; ii)
overcollateralization and iii) expense reserve accounts. The
transaction has initial subordination levels of 22.0% for the
VDFA, 21.0% for the VDFB and 17.1% for the VDFC, calculated over
the pool's undiscounted principal balance.

Finally, the transaction has an estimated 29.6% of negative annual
excess spread, before considering losses, taxes or prepayments and
calculated at the interest rate cap for the notes. As mentioned,
the assigned monthly installments do not bear interest. Available
credit enhancement and a relatively short average life of 7 months
for Class A largely mitigate this risk.

The principal methodology used in these ratings was "Moody's
Approach to Rating Consumer Loan-Backed ABS" published in
September 2015.

Factors that would lead to an upgrade or downgrade of the ratings:

Factors that may lead to a downgrade of the ratings include an
increase in delinquency levels beyond the level Moody's assumed
when rating this transaction. Although Moody's analyzed the
historical performance data of previous transactions and similar
receivables originated by Cencosud Argentina, the actual
performance of the securitized pool may be affected, among other
factors, by the level of economic activity, high inflation rates
compared with nominal salaries increases and the unemployment rate
in Argentina.

Another key factor that could lead to a rating downgrade would be
the deterioration of the sponsor's credit profile affecting its
capacity and ability to perform its servicer's duties.

Factors that may lead to an upgrade of the ratings include the
building of credit enhancement over time due to the turbo
sequential payment structure, when compared with the level of
projected losses in the securitized pool.

Loss and Cash Flow Analysis:

Moody's considered the credit enhancement provided in this
transaction through the initial subordination levels for each
rated class, as well as the historical performance of Cencosud
Argentina's portfolio and previous securitizations. In addition,
Moody's considered factors common to consumer loans and credit
card receivables securitizations such as delinquencies, payment
rates and losses; as well as specific factors related to the
Argentine market, such as the probability of an increase in losses
if there are changes in the macroeconomic scenario in Argentina.

Moody's analyzed the historical performance data of previous
transactions and the dynamic credit card portfolio of Cencosud
Argentina, ranging from October 2015 to May 2018.

In assigning the rating to this transaction, Moody's assumed a
lognormal distribution of losses for the securitized pool with a
mean of 8.55% with a coefficient of variation of 50%, and a
recovery rate of 30%.

The rating agency also analyzed the payment levels in the seller's
overall credit card dynamic portfolio, identifying a payment rate
(monthly payment / monthly balance) averaging 68.6% during the
last twelve months as of May 2018.

To determine the rating assigned to the notes, Moody's has used an
expected loss methodology that reflects the probability of default
times the severity of the loss expected for each security. In
order to allocate losses to each Class in accordance with their
priority of payment and relative size, Moody's has used a cash-
flow model (ABSCORE) that reproduces many deal-specific
characteristics. Weighting each loss scenario's severity result
with its probability of occurrence, the model has calculated the
expected loss level for each security as well as the expected
average life. Moody's model then compares the quantitative values
to the Moody's Idealized Expected Loss table for each tranche.

Servicer default was modeled by simulating the default of Cencosud
Argentina as the servicer consistent with an internal assessment
of Cencosud Argentina's credit quality.

The model results showed 0.5% expected loss for the VDFA, 10.7%
for the VDFB, 21.3% for the VDFC and 37.0% for the CP.

Stress Scenarios:

Parameter Sensitivities provide a quantitative, model-indicated
calculation of the number of notches that a Moody's-rated
structured finance security may vary if certain input parameters
used in the initial rating process differed. The analysis assumes
that the deal has not aged. It is not intended to measure how the
rating of the security might migrate over time, but rather, how
the initial rating of the security might differ as certain key
parameters vary.

Parameter sensitivities for this transaction have been calculated
in the following manner: Moody's tested scenarios derived from the
combination of mean loss: 8.55% (base case), 10.55% (base case
+2.0%), 12.55% (base case +4%), 14.55% (base case +6.0%) and a
recovery rate of 30% (base case), 20% (base case -10%) and 10%
(base case -20%). The 8.55% /30% represents the base case
assumptions used in the initial rating process. At the time the
rating was assigned, the model output indicated that the VDFB
would have achieved a Caa3 (sf) and the VDFC would have achieved a
Ca (sf) global rating model output if mean loss was as high as
10.55% and the recovery rate remained the same at 30%. Under the
same assumptions, the VDFA and the CP would have remained
unchanged.


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


CHILE: Taxi Drivers Protest Government's Plan to Regulate Uber
--------------------------------------------------------------
http://noticias.alianzanews.com/309_hispanic-
world/5557237_chilean-taxi-drivers-protest-government-s-plan-to-
regulate-uber.html
(rousel/revise)

EFE News reports that hundreds of taxi drivers protested with
their vehicles in downtown Santiago against the government's plan
to regulate ride-hailing firms like Uber and Cabify.

The caravan of taxis, which had the authorization of the
authorities to stage the demonstration, traversed several
kilometers through downtown Santiago, including a stretch along
the Alameda, the capital's main avenue, and passed in front of La
Moneda Palace, the seat of the Chilean executive branch, according
to EFE News.

Many vehicles were adorned with black and yellow balloons and
flags, the same colors of typical cabs in Chile, and bore signs
against Uber and Cabify, which the drivers consider to be illegal
services, the report notes.

The report relays that the protest obliged the police to cut
traffic along several streets but there were no reported incidents
or violent situations.

Luis Reyes, the president of the Confenetach taxi drivers national
union, said in remarks to Radio Cooperativa that the union
rejected the bill the government presented on July 20 to regulate
the functioning of the transportation services, the report
discloses.

"We don't like this project . . . it was very improvised what
(Transport Minister Gloria Hutt) sent to Parliament, the report
relays.  "We did not even have the possibility to make a joint
analysis of that project," the union chief added.

The government's bill says that drivers of services like Uber and
Cabify will have to have professional chauffer's licenses and must
not have criminal records for sexual or drug-related crimes, the
report notes.

In addition, they will have to register their services as
transportation businesses and pay taxes, the report says.

The report discloses that taxi drivers claim that Uber and Cabify
create unfair competition and are demanding that the bill limit
the number of vehicles that can provide such transport services.

Ms. Hutt urged the drivers to express their dissatisfaction
verbally but not with demonstrations, the report adds.


CORPGROUP BANKING: Moody's Withdraws B2 LT Issuer Ratings
---------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service has withdrawn all ratings assigned to
CorpGroup Banking S.A., including the long-term global local and
foreign currency issuer ratings of B2, as well as the foreign
currency debt rating of the holding company's USD500 million
global senior notes due March 15, 2023 rating of B2. Before the
withdrawal, the outlook on the ratings was negative.

The following ratings were withdrawn:

Issuer: CorpGroup Banking S.A.

Long-term global local currency issuer rating, previously B2,
negative

Long-term foreign currency issuer rating, previously B2, negative

Long-term foreign currency senior unsecured debt rating,
previously B2, negative

Outlook Actions:

Outlook, Changed to Rating Withdrawn from Negative

RATINGS RATIONALE

Moody's has decided to withdraw the ratings because it believes it
has insufficient or otherwise inadequate information to support
the maintenance of the ratings.

Moody's expects that dividends from Itau CorpBanca, in which
CorpGroup Banking has a 26.92% stake, will continue to be
insufficient to cover CorpGroup Banking's debt service
obligations. As CorpGroup Banking has very limited other recurring
earnings, it will remain dependent on extraordinary sources of
income from its shareholders, about which there is limited public
information available.


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


DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Industries Must Embrace the Stock Market
------------------------------------------------------------
Dominican Today reports that Dominican Industries Association
(AIRD) President Campos De Moya said the country's industrial
sector needs access to competitive financing to develop.

He noted, however, that progress has been made, citing a set of
challenges that need surmounting in response to a new era in
country's desired industrialization, according to Dominican Today.

Speaking before the AIRD breakfast titled "Challenges pending to
reach the new financial instruments," Mr. De Moya, said productive
sectors should take advantage of the growth of the securities
market and consider offering shares, without fearing the loss of
control or the transparency in its transactions, the report notes.

"Entrepreneurs must take into account that the stock market
facilitates access to cheaper, profitable and recurrent financing
for regional or local expansion plans, aligning the incentives of
workers with the wellbeing of companies through shares," the
report quoted Mr. De Moya as saying.

He added that the stock market also guarantees the permanence and
independence of family businesses, helping to improve a
generational transition, the report notes.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
July 19, 2018, Fitch Ratings assigned a 'BB-' rating to
Dominican Republic's USD1.3 billion bonds, maturing July 2028. The
notes have a coupon of 6%.  Proceeds from the issuance will be
used for general purposes of the government, including the partial
financing of the 2018 budget.


===========
G R E N D A
===========


GRENADA: 2017 Account Deficit Up by 3 1/2 Percentage Points of GDP
------------------------------------------------------------------
On July 13, 2018, the Executive Board of the International
Monetary Fund (IMF) concluded the Article IV consultation with
Grenada.

The Grenadian economy grew by an estimated 4 1/2 percent in 2017,
driven by strong activity in construction, tourism, and education
sectors. Weather-related weakness in agriculture has, however,
been a headwind. Unemployment fell from 28 percent in 2016 to 23.6
percent in 2017. Inflation is low, falling below 1 percent,
supported by the peg to the US dollar. The 2017 current account
deficit increased by 3 1/2 percentage points of GDP to 6 3/4
percent of GDP, reflecting rapid import growth. The fiscal
situation improved further in 2017, with the government
overperforming the targets of the Fiscal Responsibility Law (FRL).
The primary surplus increased to 53 1/4 percent of GDP while
public debt fell below 71 percent of GDP at end-2017 from 82
percent of GDP in 2016.

In 2018 and 2019, the economy is projected to grow by 3 1/2
percent benefiting from supportive global economic conditions and
continued strength in construction and tourism. Thereafter, growth
is expected to ease to the long-term potential rate of 23/4
percent. Inflation is expected to edge up in 2018 reflecting
recent global energy price increases, but stabilize at 2 percent
in the medium term. The primary fiscal surplus is expected to
remain high in the near term, supporting rapid debt reduction.
Once the public debt ratio falls below 55 percent of GDP
(projected for 2020), the fiscal surpluses and the pace of debt
reduction are expected to moderate. The external current account
deficit is projected to increase to 7 1/2 percent of GDP in 2018
mostly from recent increases in energy costs, but would decline
thereafter as the construction-related imports and energy prices
are expected to ease.

                  Executive Board Assessment

Executive Directors commended the authorities for implementing
sound policies leading to a strong economic and fiscal performance
and sustained debt reduction. While the outlook remains positive,
Directors stressed that continued policy resolve and public
support for reforms are critical to restoring debt sustainability,
improving medium-term growth prospects, and strengthening the
financial sector.

Directors welcomed the continued fiscal adjustment in compliance
with the framework of the Fiscal Responsibility Law (FRL), which
has supported policy credibility. They noted that while there is
scope to improve the FRL's operational aspects, more substantive
changes to the framework should be approached as part of a
comprehensive plan that balances debt reduction with the need to
create fiscal space for high-quality infrastructure spending.
Directors welcomed the authorities' intention to implement the
recent initiatives on pensions and health care in a way that is
consistent with the FRL's targets.

Directors encouraged the authorities to support the FRL through
continued reforms to improve public financial management,
expenditure efficiency, and fiscal transparency. They saw scope to
further strengthen social assistance programs to protect the most
vulnerable and to strengthen the productivity of state-owned
enterprises. Directors emphasized the need to continue tax
administration reforms and resolve remaining bilateral arrears.
They welcomed advances in fiscal transparency, including the
establishment of the Fiscal Responsibility Oversight Committee,
and encouraged further progress in this area.

Directors welcomed indications of a strengthened banking system
and considered that banks are better poised to contribute to
private sector investment and growth. They noted the rapid
increase in lending by credit unions and called for strengthening
the supervision of the sector by the local regulator to reduce
potential financial stability risks. Going forward, they
encouraged the authorities to support steps taken at the ECCU
level toward a regional approach to regulation and supervision of
the non-bank financial sector. Directors emphasized the importance
of complying with AML/CFT regulations, including enforcement of
the due diligence process of the Citizenship-by-investment
program, noting that this was critical for Grenada's continued
access to stable cross-border payments.

Directors underscored the importance of implementing structural
reforms to boost potential growth, noting Grenada's susceptibility
to natural disasters in addition to structural weaknesses such as
high unemployment and the external competitiveness gap. They
emphasized the need for measures to improve the business
environment and labor market, address weaknesses in the
implementation of public infrastructure spending, and reduce skill
mismatches. Directors also encouraged the authorities to continue
building on their efforts to strengthen resilience to natural
disasters.


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


JAMAICA: TAJ Records Increase in Property Tax Collections
---------------------------------------------------------
RJR News reports that Tax Administration Jamaica (TAJ) is
reporting an increase in property tax collections for the first
quarter of the current fiscal year.

Commissioner General of TAJ, Ainsley Powell, says for the April to
June period just over 3.7 billion dollars was paid by property
owners, according to RJR News.

The report notes that three-point-six billion dollars was
collected during the same period last year.

Tax Administration Jamaica says it is implementing several
strategies to increase property-tax collections, the report
relays.

The report discloses that Mr. Powell says 17 programs were
developed covering registration, filing and payment compliance,
audit as well as taxpayer service and education.

The property tax collection target for this fiscal year is 10
billion dollars, the report relays.

Last year, property-tax collection came in at about 88 per cent of
the overall 9.6-billion target, the report adds.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Feb. 5, 2018, Fitch Ratings affirmed Jamaica's Long-Term
Foreign-Currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at 'B' and has
revised the Rating Outlook to Positive from Stable.


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


PICOTEO DE TAPAS: Taps Harold Maldonado as Bankruptcy Attorney
--------------------------------------------------------------
Picoteo De Tapas Inc. seeks approval from the U.S. Bankruptcy
Court for the District of Puerto Rico to hire Harold Frye
Maldonado, Esq., as its legal counsel.

Mr. Maldonado will advise the Debtor regarding its duties under
the Bankruptcy Code and will provide other legal services related
to its Chapter 11 case.

The Debtor will pay the attorney an hourly fee of $150.  Mr.
Maldonado received a retainer in the sum of $9,283 from the
Debtor.

Mr. Maldonado can be reached through:

     Harold A. Frye Maldonado, Esq.
     P.O. Box 366973
     San Juan, PR 00936
     Telephone:  787-668-3022
     Fax: (800) 204-0744
     Email: frye.maldonado@gmail.com

                    About Picoteo De Tapas Inc.

Picoteo De Tapas Inc. is a corporation organized under the laws of
Puerto Rico engaged in the restaurant business.

Picoteo De Tapas sought protection under Chapter 11 of the
Bankruptcy Code (Bankr. D. P.R. Case No. 18-04092) on July 19,
2018.  In the petition signed by Irvin V. Polanco Viera,
president, the Debtor disclosed $1,556,309 in assets and $409,539
in liabilities.


STAR READY MIX: Taps Luis R. Carrasquillo as Financial Consultant
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Star Ready Mix, Inc. seeks approval from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court
for the District of Puerto Rico to hire CPA Luis R. Carrasquillo &
Co., P.S.C., as its financial consultant.

The firm will assist the Debtor in the financial restructuring of
its affairs by providing advice on strategic planning and the
preparation of a plan of reorganization, and by participating in
negotiations with creditors.

The firm's hourly rates range from $45 to $175.

Luis Carrasquillo, principal of the firm, disclosed in a court
filing that he and other members of the firm are "disinterested"
as defined in section 101(14) of the Bankruptcy Code.

Carrasquillo can be reached through:

     Luis R. Carrasquillo
     CPA Luis R. Carrasquillo & Co., P.S.C.
     28th Street, #TI-26
     Turabo Gardens Avenue
     Caguas, PR 00725
     Phone: 787-746-4555 / 787-746-4556
     Fax: 787-746-4564

                     About Star Ready Mix Inc.

Star Ready Mix, Inc., is a fee simple owner of commercial
properties located in Cidra and Gurabo, Puerto Rico, having a
total appraised value of $3.72 million.  The commercial properties
consist of buildings for office, storage, laboratory and
operations.

Star Ready Mix sought protection under Chapter 11 of the
Bankruptcy Code (Bankr. D.P.R. Case No. 18-04185) on July 24,
2018.  It previously sought bankruptcy protection on May 23, 2011
(Bankr. D.P.R. Case No. 11-04254).  In the petition signed by
Victor M. Diaz Morales, president of the Board of Directors, the
Debtor disclosed $4,360,208 in assets and $6,915,084 in
liabilities.


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


MACARRI STEEL: In Bid to Reopen ArcelorMittal Plant
---------------------------------------------------
Trinidad Express reports that a steel company that is registered
in the British Virgin Islands is in talks to submit a bid that
could lead to the reopening of the ArcelorMittal plant on the
Point Lisas Industrial Estate.

The company, called Macarri Steel Holdings, met with the Steel
Workers Union of Trinidad and Tobago (SWUTT) and the Couva/Point
Lisas Chamber of Commerce (CPCC), according to Trinidad Express.

The report notes that coming out of that meeting, the CPCC issued
a statement in which it called on the company's liquidator to
reopen the bidding to allow Macarri Steel to make a bid.

"Based on what we learnt today about what Macarri Steel has in
mind for the revival of steel production in Trinidad and Tobago,
including the employment at peak of 5,000 employees starting with
those who lost their jobs with the closure of the plant, and what
that means to our community and business prospects, we strongly
urge the liquidator, Christopher Kelshall, to reopen the bidding
to include Macarri's bid," CPCC said in a statement obtained by
the news agency.


===============
X X X X X X X X
===============


* LATAM: Risks to Growth Up Owing to Trade Tensions
---------------------------------------------------
Central bank governors, finance ministers, and banking
superintendents of Central America, Panama, and the Dominican
Republic, and IMF officials met in Tegucigalpa on July 26-27 to
review the regional economic outlook and discuss reforms to remove
obstacles and create opportunities for suitable growth. The
Constitutional President of Honduras, Juan Orlando Hernandez and
the Deputy Managing Director of the IMF Mitsuhiro Furusawa
inaugurated the conference.

At the conclusion of the conference, the following statement was
released by the Director of the Western Hemisphere Department of
the IMF, Alejandro Werner; the President of the Central American
Monetary Council, Olivier Castro; Representative of the President
Pro Tempore of the Central American Council of Finance Ministers,
Nelson Fuentes; the President of the Central American Council of
Financial Sector Superintendents, Jose Alejandro ArÇvalo; and the
Governor of Central Bank of Honduras and host of the conference,
Wilfredo Cerrato:

"Global growth is projected to remain robust at 3.9 percent in
2018 and 2019, but risks to the outlook are mounting particularly
owing to trade tensions. Conditions for global demand and finance
have become somewhat more restrictive. The upturn in global demand
is not as strong as expected in all countries, which has increased
downside risks to the region's external demand. At the same time,
global financial conditions, while still accommodative overall,
are gradually tightening. Financial market pressures have been
particularly pronounced in countries with weaker domestic economic
fundamentals, or because of uncertainty about politics and policy.

"In Central America, Panama and the Dominican Republic (CAPDR),
robust U.S. growth and higher remittances associated with the
uncertainty about future U.S. migration policies continue to
underpin a strong growth performance in 2018. Fiscal deficits have
declined in some cases, but debt is high and rising in several
CAPDR countries. Participants agreed that financial sector buffers
are sound, but risks from dollarization and de-risking persist.
The region's efforts should focus on containing excess credit
growth, currency and maturity mismatches, and supporting healthy
bank balance sheets. Participants also agreed that, as the US
monetary policy stance normalizes, the monetary stances in CAPDR
countries need to be recalibrated, unless domestic conditions
require otherwise, to avoid that they become too supportive. In
addition, participants agreed to continue promoting exchange rate
flexibility as oil prices increase to protect external buffers.
For some countries, there is a need to continue the transition
towards full-fledged inflation targeting.

"Participants concurred that over the last few decades, the CAPDR
region has experienced sustained economic transformation. This was
supported by deeper regional integration and participation in the
global economy. Growth performance, however, has been uneven, and
overall insufficient to achieve sustained growth convergence with
advanced economies. This performance clearly reflects in part the
ability of some countries to innovate and adapt, by shifting
resources into higher-value-added sectors such as electronics,
medical equipment, and logistics and transportation services. At
the same time, there are several structural and macroeconomic
impediments facing CAPDR. Productivity, education, financial, and
infrastructure gaps are a drag on growth and foreign investments.

"In this context, and drawing on the most recent research,
participants acknowledged that a substantial reshaping of the
regional growth policy agenda needs to be put on the table. In
addition to shifting resources towards more creative exports or
the export of tradable services (tourism, health, and wellness
services), transforming the region into an attractive destination
for talent should be at the center stage of any growth agenda.
This of course will require stronger institutions, more efficient,
robust and integrated infrastructure, safer living conditions,
greener development, and conservation of natural and cultural
capital. Participants also agreed that in order to make any growth
strategy feasible, policy makers need to tackle excessive income
disparities in each country through efficient social protection
systems (i.e., pensions and health), and universal access to basic
services.

"Participants acknowledged the role of emerging technologies
(fintech) in the overall efficiency of the financial system,
including in the areas of payments, financing, investments and
insurance. These technologies are creating opportunities as well
as challenges -- for consumers, service providers, and regulators
alike. The experience of Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, and
Mexico -- the top five fintech markets in Latin America --
illustrates how developments in fintech are already helping bridge
the financial gap, through low-cost digital solutions which
benefit small and medium enterprises, and significant improvements
to financial inclusion in the region. Participants, however, noted
that some aspects of these technologies pose some risks to the
stability and integrity of the financial system, especially where
they operate outside of the purview of financial regulation and
supervision.

"Managing the impact of climate change is a defining global
challenge of this century, inseparable from another one-reducing
poverty. Climate change is set to have a significant impact on
many countries, including in the CAPDR region, where preparedness
to deal with the consequences are under development. Participants
underscored that macroeconomic policies will need to be calibrated
to accommodate more frequent weather-related shocks, but, even
more importantly, managing the impact of climate change is a
development challenge. This means building policy space to respond
to shocks, and to upgrade infrastructure to enhance economic
resilience, and risk-informed land-use planning, which is made
difficult by the uncertainty regarding the climate in the future.

"Participants expressed appreciation for the support provided by
the IMF in the organization of the event, and stressed the
importance of the policy dialogue between the region and the IMF.
Participants thanked the Honduran authorities for their
hospitality and support for the success of the conference."


                            ***********


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.
Send announcements to conferences@bankrupt.com


                            ***********


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 * * *