TCRLA_Public/190222.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

          Friday, February 22, 2019, Vol. 20, No. 39

                           Headlines



A R G E N T I N A

ARGENTINA: Macri Begins Visit to Vietnam to Boost Trade Ties
ROMBO COMPANIA: Moody's Rates Sr. Unsec. Debt Issuance Ba3


B E R M U D A

SAGICOR FINANCIAL: Fitch Hikes LT IDR to BB-, Outlook Stable


B R A Z I L

BRAZIL: Pres. Seeks $270BB Pension Savings; Congress Has Doubts
BRF: S&P Lowers Global Scale ICR to BB- on Still High Leverage
ELETROPAULO METROPOLITANA: S&P Withdraws BB+ Global Scale LT ICR
ODEBRECHT SA: To Propose Bondholder Losses of Over 70%


C O L O M B I A

COLOMBIA: FARC Rebels Open New Round of Peace Talks in Cuba


H A I T I

HAITI: Opposition Will Resume Protests to Demand Moise Resignation


P U E R T O   R I C O

NFE ATLANTIC: Moody's Assigns B2 CFR & Rates Sr. Sec. Term Loan B2
TOYS R US: Court Approves Assignment of Lease to Ollie's


V E N E Z U E L A

VENEZUELA: Ambassador Denies Japan Recognized Guaido as President
VENEZUELA: Guaido Calls for Demonstrations at Military Bases
VENEZUELA: Guaido, US Military Leader Push Army to Allow Aid

                           - - - - -


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

ARGENTINA: Macri Begins Visit to Vietnam to Boost Trade Ties
------------------------------------------------------------
EFE News reports that the president of Argentina began a two-day
official visit to Vietnam, where he is to meet top officials to
strengthen diplomatic and trade relations between the countries.

Mauricio Macri, who arrived in the Vietnamese capital from the
Indian city of Mumbai, began the day by laying a wreath at the
Monument to National Heroes and Martyrs and another at the Ho Chi
Minh Mausoleum, according to EFE News.

He was then received at the Presidential Palace by Nguyen Phu
Trong, Vietnam's president and general-secretary of the ruling
Communist Party, the report notes.

Macri and Trong are expected to sign several bilateral agreements
before the Argentine leader's meeting with Prime Minister Nguyen
Xuan Phuc and National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan, the
report relays.

The visit will conclude with the opening of a Vietnam-Argentina
business forum in Hanoi, in which around 100 Argentine
businesspersons accompanying Macri on his Asian tour to India,
Vietnam and Abu Dhabi will take part, the report relays.

According to the Argentine government, the meeting will serve to
analyze the possibility of expanding trade links and investment
flows in both directions, especially in the agri-food and
technology sectors, the report notes.

Trade between the two countries has doubled in five years from $1.4
billion in 2013 to $2.9 billion in 2018, making Vietnam Argentina's
largest trading partner in Southeast Asia, the report says.

After the forum ends, Macri will depart for Abu Dhabi, where he
will conclude his Asian tour, the report notes.

EFE News discloses that Macri arrived in Hanoi from India where in
New Delhi, the two countries signed 10 cooperation agreements in
the fields of defense, agriculture and energy.

On the first day of this three-day visit, Macri also joined the
International Solar Alliance led by India, the report says.

Macri and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi discussed progress
made in sectors such as nuclear energy, space, commerce, culture,
tourism, information technology and agrochemicals, and explored new
avenues for cooperation between the two countries, the report
notes.

His visit coincided with the 70th anniversary of the establishment
of diplomatic relations between Argentina and India, the report
relays.

Annual bilateral trade with India has been a relatively low with
the South American nation running a surplus of $1.2 billion, the
report notes.

The report adds that the sale of soybean oil makes up 90 percent of
Argentinian exports to the South Asian economic giant.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Nov. 14, 2018, S&P Global Ratings lowered its long-term foreign
and local currency ratings on Argentina to 'B' from 'B+' and
affirmed its short-term foreign and local currency ratings at 'B'.
S&P said, "We also removed the long-term ratings from CreditWatch,
where we placed them on Aug. 31, 2018, with negative implications.
The outlook on the long-term ratings is stable. At the same time,
we lowered our national scale ratings to 'raAA-' from 'raAA'. We
also lowered our transfer and convertibility assessment to 'B+'
from 'BB-'."

S&P said, "The stable outlook reflects our expectation that the
government will implement difficult fiscal, monetary, and other
measures to stabilize the economy over the coming 18 months,
gradually staunching the deterioration in the sovereign's
financial profile and debt burden, reversing inflation dynamics,
and restoring investor confidence. The combination of lower
government financing needs, declining inflation and interest
rates, and expectations of continuity in key economic policies
after national elections in October 2019 could set the stage for
economic recovery and contain external vulnerability.

Fitch Ratings affirmed on May 8, 2018, 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.

As previously reported by the TCR-LA, Argentina defaulted on some
of its debt late July 30, 2014, after expiration of a 30- grace
period on a US$539 million interest payment.  Earlier that ,
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.

ROMBO COMPANIA: Moody's Rates Sr. Unsec. Debt Issuance Ba3
-----------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Latin America Agente de Calificacion de Riesgo S.A.(MLA)
assigned a Ba3 global local currency senior debt rating and Aa1.ar
national scale local currency debt rating to Rombo Compania
Financiera S.A.'s (Rombo) Class 45 bond issuance, due in 18 months,
for up to ARS 300 million.

The rating outlook is stable.

The following ratings were assigned to Rombo Compania Financiera
S.A.'s expected issuance:

Class 45 up to ARS 300 million:

Ba3 Global Local Currency Debt Rating

Aa1.ar Argentina National Scale Local Currency Debt Rating

RATINGS RATIONALE

Rombo's ratings incorporate the company's b2 baseline credit
assessment (BCA) and Moody's assessment of high probability of
affiliate support from its main parent, RCI Banque (Renault Credit
International Banque S.A.) (RCI) (baa3 BCA/Baa1 positive) in an
event of stress. Moody's support assessment takes into account
Rombo's role as the main financial arm of its ultimate parent
Renault S.A. (Baa3 positive) in Argentina. Rombo is 60% owned by
RCI and 40% owned by BBVA Banco Frances S.A. (unrated), the
Argentine subsidiary of Spain's Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria,
S.A. (A2 stable).

The ratings also consider Argentina's current recessionary
conditions, very high inflation and extraordinarily high interest
rates, which affect the company's operating environment. Other key
risks include Rombo's monoline business profile dedicated to the
financing of Renault vehicles, its modest profitability and its
largely wholesale funding structure, in addition to highly
competitive conditions within the car-financing industry.

Despite deterioration, non-performing loans remained low at just
1.4% of gross loans as of September 2018 thanks to Rombo's focus on
middle and high-income individuals and proper risk management
policies that are aligned to those of its parent. Loan loss
reserves coverage remained sound at 103% of non-performing loans
(NPLs). Moody's expects that Rombo's good loan granularity and
strong collateralization of its portfolio will help mitigate any
further deterioration in its asset quality.

Despite increased funding costs following the spike in Argentina's
benchmark interest rate in mid-2018, Rombo's profitability metrics
have slightly improved with an annualized net income to tangible
assets ratio of 0.8% as of September 2018, from 0.6% in year-end
2017. However, these profitability metrics are weak particularly
considering the highly inflationary environment in Argentina, where
inflation peaked at 47.6% in 2018.

Although the company's capital levels declined materially from
previous years, to 10.7% as of September 2018 from 15.2% in 2016,
mainly as a result of rapid loan growth, it remained adequate to
mitigate rising asset risks. Positively, capital ratios have
stabilized in the last quarters as loan growth has decelerated.

Consistent with other automobile captive finance companies in
Argentina, Rombo's ratings also reflect risks associated with its
weak liquidity position and refinancing risk related to its
liability structure mainly reliant on market funds. Rombo's funding
depends largely on interbank loans, which account for nearly half
its liabilities, and senior bond issuances that represents 30% of
total liabilities. Rombo has access to committed bank lines of
credit, acting as liquidity reserve, in addition to ARS 4,000
million contingent credit line from BBVA Banco Frances S.A. With
interest rates expected to remain high, Rombo's strong dependence
on private institutional and bank funding will continue to be one
of its main credit challenges.

The stable outlook on Rombo's ratings is aligned with the stable
outlook on Government of Argentina's bond rating.

WHAT COULD CHANGE THE RATING UP/DOWN

Rombo is likely to face upward rating pressure if Argentina's
sovereign bond rating is upgraded or the country ceilings rise,
provided it continues to demonstrate sound operating performance
and any deterioration in the company's financial fundamentals is
limited.

While none of the ratings currently face any downward rating
pressure, the ratings would be under strain if there is a
substantial deterioration in the company's asset quality, earnings
or capitalization, or if Argentina's operating environment fails to
stabilize as expected.

The principal methodology used in this rating was Banks published
in August 2018.



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

SAGICOR FINANCIAL: Fitch Hikes LT IDR to BB-, Outlook Stable
------------------------------------------------------------
Fitch Ratings has upgraded Sagicor Financial Corporation Limited's
(SFCL) long-term Issuer Default Rating (IDR) to 'BB-' from 'B'.
Fitch has also upgraded SFCL's senior debt ratings to 'B+' from
'B'/'RR5'. The Rating Outlook is Stable.

Fitch's rating actions follow its recent upgrade of Jamaica's
sovereign ratings (long-term IDR to 'B+' from 'B', country ceiling
to 'BB-' from 'B', Outlook revised to Stable from Positive).
Jamaica's economic risks factor heavily into SFCL's rating due
primarily to the country's significant earnings contribution and
capital relative to the consolidated group. In addition, over half
of SFCL's below investment grade bond portfolio consists of
Jamaican sovereign debt. Based on Fitch's criteria, the upgrade of
Jamaica's country ceiling to 'BB-' means SFCL's long-term IDR, at
its current level, is no longer constrained by transfer and
convertibility risks.

SFCL's ratings also consider the completed restructuring and
exchange of the domestic sovereign debt of Barbados in the fourth
quarter of 2018, which accounts for the bulk of SFCL's exposure to
Barbados' sovereign debt in its investment portfolio. As of Q3
2018, SFCL set aside gross credit loss provisions of $101 million
($43 million net of actuarial offsets), which are within initial
loss expectations and account for credit losses for both the
domestic and external Barbados debt. Fitch does not expect
additional material losses to arise from Barbados' default on its
sovereign debt.

Fitch's rating actions also consider the pending acquisition of
SFCL by Alignvest II Acquisition Corporation (AQY), a special
purpose acquisition company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange,
in a cash and common stock transaction valued at approximately $536
million. Fitch views the AQY transaction as a slight credit
positive for the holding company as it potentially improves
financial flexibility including the company's ability to access the
equity markets.

KEY RATING DRIVERS

Fitch's ratings on SFCL reflect the challenging operating and
economic environments of two of the main insurance subsidiaries
domiciled in Jamaica and Barbados and a growing presence in the
U.S.; very high capital exposure to below-investment-grade
sovereign debt; high financial leverage; and macroeconomic
challenges associated with low interest rates. The ratings also
consider the company's good operating company capitalization,
stable profitability, and positive steps taken by management to
reduce its Barbados exposure and improve financial flexibility.

Fitch considers the capitalization of SFCL's primary insurance
subsidiaries good. Management uses Canadian regulatory capital
standards to help manage capital, and the consolidated MCCSR for
SFCL is strong on an absolute basis at 248% as of Sept. 30, 2018.
Historically, MCCSR at the consolidated SFCL level has remained
relatively stable at around 250% since 2011. The quality of SFCL's
insurance subsidiary capital is lower relative to Canadian or
international peers given a higher Tier 2 capital component. The
company's minimum target MCCSR range at the consolidated level is
175%. Fitch notes, however, SFCL is not subject to the oversight of
Canadian regulators.

The company's good capitalization is partially offset by high
financial leverage. SFCL's financial leverage ratio (FLR) is high
at 40% (adjusted to exclude non-controlling interests from capital)
as of Sept. 30, 2018 but down from a high of 49% as of year-end
2015. The decline in financial leverage over the last three years
was due to the redemption of preferred shares and growth in
shareholder's equity from retained earnings.

SFCL's investment portfolio is concentrated in the sovereign debt
of its countries of operations, including Jamaica and Barbados. As
a result, the company has a significant concentration of
below-investment-grade debt. The concentration of investment
exposure to Barbados and Jamaica's sovereign debt could result in
sharp declines in capitalization ratios in an adverse sovereign
scenario. The company has reported a continued decline in the ratio
of BIG bonds to shareholder's equity to 175% in 2018 from 243% in
2015. The decline was due to lower concentrations of BIG bonds and
an increase in shareholders' equity due to retained earnings.

SFCL's pre-tax operating income has shown a generally stable,
improving trend over the four-year period ending in 2017 with
strong increasing contributions from the company's Jamaica and
Trinidad operations and smaller steady contributions from the U.S.
operations and other Caribbean operations. Over 2018, credit losses
taken as a result of the Barbados debt default negatively impacted
pre-tax operating income. Excluding the effects of foreign currency
retranslation, operating profitability for the consolidated SFCL is
strong and above Fitch's expectations for the current rating.

SFCL is a Bermuda-based financial holding company and leading
provider of insurance products and financial services in the
Caribbean. It also provides insurance products in the U.S. as well
as banking and investment management services in Jamaica. Primary
insurance subsidiaries and the corresponding regions for SFCL
include Sagicor Group Jamaica Ltd. (Jamaica and Cayman Islands),
Sagicor Life Inc. (Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago), and Sagicor
Life USA (U.S.). Aside from these main subsidiaries and regions,
the company also has insurance operations in many of the Eastern
and Dutch Caribbean islands and select Latin American countries.

RATING SENSITIVITIES

Key rating sensitivities that could result in a downgrade include:

  -- Large material additional losses associated with the sovereign
debt restructuring in Barbados;

  -- Perceived deterioration by Fitch of Jamaica's economic
environment that would lead to a downgrade of the sovereign's
country ceiling;

  -- Deterioration in the credit profile of Jamaica leading to a
material downgrade of the Jamaican sovereign that would lower
average credit quality of SFCL's investment portfolio;

  -- Deterioration in key financial metrics, including consolidated
MCCSR falling below 180% and financial leverage exceeding 50% and
ROE below 5% on a sustained basis.

Key rating sensitivities that could result in an upgrade of all the
ratings for Sagicor Financial Corporation Limited include:

  -- A notable upgrade of both the LT IDR and country ceiling of
Jamaica without any offsetting sovereign concerns in Barbados or a
decline in performance of the company;

  -- A shift in country mix, including a significantly greater
percentage of profitability and capital in countries with stronger
industry profile and operating environments;

  -- A decline in investments held in low rated Barbados and
Jamaica sovereign debt.

Fitch has upgraded the following ratings with a Stable Outlook:

Sagicor Financial Corporation

  -- IDR to 'BB-' from 'B'.

Sagicor Finance (2015) Limited

  -- Senior unsecured notes to 'B+' from 'B/'RR5'.




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

BRAZIL: Pres. Seeks $270BB Pension Savings; Congress Has Doubts
---------------------------------------------------------------
Jamie McGeever at Marcela Ayres Reuters report that Brazilian
President Jair Bolsonaro delivered his proposed pension overhaul to
Congress, a plan to save over BRL1 trillion ($270 billion) in a
decade that raised doubts about whether lawmakers would pass a
package of that scale.

The social security bill is the cornerstone of the new president's
effort to close what most economists call an unsustainable public
deficit and boost a weak economic recovery, according to Reuters.

"The creation of a new pension system is fundamental to balance our
country's accounts so the system does not collapse, as already
happened in other countries and in some Brazilian states,"
Bolsonaro said in an address to the nation, the report relays.

The report notes that the government pledged to present changes
soon for military pensions that would increase the savings, a delay
that also raised a red flag among some legislators.

"A reform plan that does not include the military will not move
ahead in Congress," Senator Ciro Nogueira, head of the center-right
Progressive Party, told reporters, the report relays.

The reform proposal's author, Economy Minister Paulo Guedes,
however, said he was "pretty optimistic" a "mature" Brazilian
Congress would approve the bill without too many changes because
they realized it was needed for Brazil to grow, the report
discloses.

The report says that Bolsonaro's savings target of BRL1.072
trillion in a decade is more ambitious than the roughly BRL600
billion of savings proposed by his predecessor Michel Temer, who
gave up on the idea amid public backlash and graft scandals.

Brazilian market reaction to the proposal was mixed, with the stock
market and the real eventually closing lower, the report says.
Financial analysts and investors mostly welcomed the proposals, but
few expected swift approval, the report notes.

Delay and dilution could sour investor confidence and dampen any
positive economic impact, analysts warned, the report discloses.

"One thing is a solid, well thought out and crafted reform
proposal, the other is what will ultimately emanate from Congress.
The risk is that the initial proposal will be significantly watered
down by Congress," wrote Alberto Ramos, head of Latin American
economic research at Goldman Sachs.

Bolsonaro's opponents on the left slammed the plan, saying it would
hurt poor Brazilians, the report says.  Even some of the
president's allies questioned the delay on military pensions, the
report notes.

Final approval is unlikely until the fourth quarter, Ramos told
clients in a note, far later than the government's target of June
or sooner, the report discloses.  Rogerio Marinho, the Economy
Ministry's secretary of social security and labor, also told
reporters approval could be in the second half of the year, the
report relays.

Brazil's social security shortfall widened 7 percent last year to
BRL195.2 billion, the biggest factor by far in Brazil's budget
deficit, the report notes.  The pension deficit including private-
and public-sector employees and military personnel is expected to
top BRL300 billion this year, more than 4 percent of gross domestic
product, the report discloses.

                      Political Challenges

Bolsonaro's stumbles in other matters ahead of the pension reform
roll-out raised questions about his ability to pull off the
ambitious legislative effort, the report says.

The lower chamber voted overwhelmingly to overturn an executive
order on state secrets. It was Bolsonaro's first legislative
defeat, underscoring the resistance he faces in a fragmented
Congress, the report says.

The report discloses that Bolsonaro fired one of his most senior
aides and principal negotiators with Congress, Secretary General
Gustavo Bebianno, amid a scandal involving campaign financing for
some of his party's congressional candidates.

"The big risk is the presidential palace's lack of appetite for
political deal-making.  I am waiting to see how the opposition
takes advantage of the government's weakness," said Jose Francisco
de Lima Goncalves, chief economist at Banco Fator, the report
notes.

Under Bolsonaro's pension proposal, wealthier taxpayers would
contribute more while the minimum retirement age would rise to 62
for women and 65 for men and new individual savings accounts would
give workers "an alternative to the current system," according to a
presentation by the economy minister, the report notes.

The transition to the new rules would take 12 to 14 years,
depending on which transition option individuals choose, the report
relays.

Reuters says that changes to military pensions, which the
government vowed to propose within 30 days, would increase total
savings over 10 years to BRL1.165 trillion.  Pensions for military
police and firefighters would follow the same rules as the armed
forces, the report notes.

Bolsonaro, a former army captain and congressman who got his start
in politics advocating better compensation for troops and police,
told lawmakers he had overcome his previous resistance to pension
reform and hoped they would too, the report discloses.

"Together, we have to admit to ourselves that we were wrong in the
past -- I was wrong in the past -- and we have a rare chance to
guarantee pensions for future generations," he said, the report
adds.

As reported on the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Feb. 11, 2019, S&P Global Ratings affirmed its 'BB-/B' long- and
short-term foreign and local currency sovereign credit ratings on
Brazil. The outlook on the long-term ratings remains stable. At
the same time, S&P affirmed its transfer and convertibility
assessment of 'BB+'. S&P also affirmed its 'brAAA' national scale
rating, and the outlook remains stable.

BRF: S&P Lowers Global Scale ICR to BB- on Still High Leverage
--------------------------------------------------------------
On Feb. 20, 2019, S&P Global Ratings lowered its global scale
issuer credit and issue-level ratings on the Brazil-based meat
producer, BRF S.A., to 'BB-' from 'BB'. S&P also lowered its
national scale issuer credit rating to 'brAA+' from 'brAAA'.

The downgrade reflects BRF's consistently weaker leverage metrics
than those of other 'BB-' rated peers and its lesser ability to
absorb external shocks, which are common in the protein industry,
such as volatile grain prices, external supply and demand
fluctuations, and global trade restrictions.

Despite substantial asset sales, debt refinancing, and gradually
improving operating performance, S&P forecasts BRF's debt to EBITDA
to remain pressured at 4.0x-4.5x at the end of 2019.

In addition, the company remains exposed to the potential
contingent liabilities associated with the "Carne-Fraca"
investigation and to volatile export market conditions, and
increasing competition, which can heighten profit volatility and
further delay improvement in metrics.

In order to contain leverage, BRF has executed several divestment
initiatives in a very short time frame, which highlighted the
company's discipline and commitment to reduce debt. Nonetheless,
the cash proceeds stemming from asset sales, mainly from BRF's
operations in Argentina, EU, and Thailand, were below S&P's
expectation. This, along with the Brazilian real's depreciation
that increased the company's dollar-denominated debt, will keep
debt to EBITDA in the 4.0x-4.5x range for 2019 in S&P's revised
forecast, above its previous expectation of less than 4.0x by
year-end. Expected higher grain prices and doubts over ability to
recover margins at the company's international operations and in
the Halal market amid increasing competition will eat into BRF's
operating performance. The announced asset sales totaled R$2
billion, compared with S&P's expectations of close to R$3.5
billion.

Although S&P believes the company's operating performance is
recovering, the risks from the "Carne-Fraca" investigation have not
yet dissipated, while the company remains very susceptible to
exogenous factors such as further export restrictions, foreign
exchange and grain price volatility, and rising competition.
Therefore, BRF currently doesn't compare favorably to other peers
in the 'BB-' rating category. Operating performance, cash flow
generation, and deleveraging among the latter entities have been
much more consistent in the past quarters.

Despite the weak metrics, BRF was able to manage its liquidity
position, maintaining comfortable cushion through debt refinancing
and raising additional funding through the FIDIC issuance and
working capital improvement. Also, BRF's debt doesn't have any
financial covenants, which reduces liquidity pressures.

S&P expects significant improvements in BRF's margins in 2019 and
2020, reflecting a stronger performance at its international and
Halal operations, and absence of the one-off adverse factors
similar to those that occurred in 2018 (the abrupt export
restrictions to EU and the truck drivers' strike in Brazil).

ELETROPAULO METROPOLITANA: S&P Withdraws BB+ Global Scale LT ICR
----------------------------------------------------------------
S&P Global Ratings withdrew its 'BB+' global scale and 'brAAA'
national scale long-term issuer credit ratings on Eletropaulo
Metropolitana Eletricidade de Sao Paulo S.A. (Eletropaulo) at its
request. The outlook was stable at the time of the withdrawal.

At the time of the withdrawal, the issuer credit ratings on
Eletropaulo reflected S&P's view that its indirect controlling
shareholder, Enel Americas S.A. (BBB/Stable/--), has strong
incentives and capacity to provide timely and sufficient support to
the distributor, and that this support should come even under a
hypothetical sovereign default scenario for Brazil (BB-/Stable/B;
brAAA/Stable/--). Nevertheless, the ratings were limited to two
notches above the foreign currency rating on Brazil.


ODEBRECHT SA: To Propose Bondholder Losses of Over 70%
------------------------------------------------------
Tatiana Bautzer at Reuters reports that Brazilian conglomerate
Odebrecht SA will ask its bondholders to accept losses of more than
70 percent from their bonds' face value as part of a restructuring,
two sources with knowledge of the matter said.

Around $3 billion in outstanding Odebrecht Finance Ltd bonds will
be affected, the sources added, asking for anonymity to disclose
private plans, according to Reuters.

The exact size of the haircut is still undefined, but the person
said it could be between 70 percent and 80 percent of the bonds'
value, the report notes.

The restructuring proposal, which will also include a grace period
for payments and extension of maturities on the bonds, will be
presented by Odebrecht's advisers, U.S. investment bank Moelis & Co
and law firm Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, in a meeting in New
York, the report says.

The report notes that Moelis and Cleary Gottlieb press
representatives did not immediately reply to requests for comment.


In a statement, Odebrecht said it "is keeping constructive talks
with bondholders" and declined to comment further on the specifics
of the restructuring proposal, the report discloses.

The corruption-ensnared conglomerate, best known as a provider of
engineering and infrastructure, decided not to pay $11.5 million in
interest on the 2025 bonds that were due last November, the report
says.

The proposal to bondholders is being drafted as part of a larger
renegotiation of the conglomerate's BRL70 billion ($18.83 billion)
in debt. Odebrecht also wants to extend maturities in its debt with
local banks, a source with knowledge of the matter said last month,
the report notes.

Odebrecht proposed in January that its local creditors in Brazil
take over its sugar and ethanol unit, Atvos Agroindustrial
Participacoes SA, in exchange for reducing the company's BRL12
billion in debt, Reuters reported, the report adds.

                     About Odebrecht SA

Construtora Norberto Odebrecht SA is a Latin American
engineering and construction company fully owned by the
Odebrecht Group, one of the 10 largest Brazilian private groups.
Construtora Norberto is the world's largest builder of
hydroelectric plants, of sanitary and storm sewers, water
treatment and desalination plants, transmission lines and
aqueducts.  The Group's main businesses are heavy engineering
and construction based in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and Braskem
S.A., its chemicals/petrochemicals company, based in Sao Paulo,
Brazil.

As of May 5, 2009, the company continues to carry Standard and
Poor's BB Issuer Credit ratings, and Fitch Rating's BB+ Issuer
Default ratings and BB+ Senior Unsecured Debt ratings.

                        *     *     *

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America on
Dec. 2, 2016, The Wall Street Journal related that Marcelo
Odebrecht, the jailed former head of Brazilian construction giant
Odebrecht SA, agreed to sign a plea-bargain agreement in
connection with Brazil's largest corruption probe ever, according
to a person close to the negotiations.  The move could roil the
nation's political class yet again.  The testimony of the former
industrialist, which is part of the deal, has the potential to
implicate numerous politicians who allegedly took kickbacks from
contractors as part of a years-long graft ring centered on
Brazil's state-run oil company, Petroleo Brasileiro SA, known as
Petrobras, according to The Wall Street Journal.



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

COLOMBIA: FARC Rebels Open New Round of Peace Talks in Cuba
-----------------------------------------------------------
Jeff Franks at Reuters reports that Colombia's Marxist-led FARC
rebels opened their latest round of peace talks with the government
with a proposal to delay elections scheduled for 2014 by a year,
which the government quickly rejected.

The two sides have been meeting in Havana intermittently since
November, trying to end a nearly half century-long conflict in
which at least 100,000 people have died and millions have been
displaced, according to Reuters.

Before entering the talks, FARC lead negotiator Ivan Marquez read a
statement expressing irritation with government pressure to reach a
peace accord quickly and calling for the postponement of elections
to put "the collective interest of peace ahead of any other
circumstance," the report notes.

The report says that President Juan Manuel Santos, who has hinted
he will seek another term in office in 2014, is pushing for the
talks to finish this year, which the rebels frequently have
complained is too fast.

Marquez also called for a national popular assembly "to find a true
solution to the conflict," the report relays.

But government lead negotiator Humberto de la Calle stuck to the
government's line on the need to move along and dismissed both
proposals, the report notes.

"That won't happen," he said.

The FARC, or Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, was founded in
1964 as a communist agrarian reform movement, the report
discloses.

It appeared to achieve some of its key goals with the first accord
of the talks calling for economic and social development of rural
areas and the providing of land to the people living there, the
report adds.

The report discloses that now the rebels and government move on to
another principal goal of the discussions -- turning the FARC from
insurgents into political participants -- which may not be easy as
negotiators attempt to balance the desire for peace with calls for
justice.

Many Colombians feel the rebels should face justice for war
casualties, the use of kidnappings to extort money and involvement
in the illicit drug trade, the latter a charge the group has
denied, the report says.

But criminal charges and jail time for FARC leaders could exclude
them from taking part in the political process, the report relays.

The report notes that the rebels have said they are willing to
"review" any "error" committed during the war, but have ruled out
prosecution by a state they accuse of persecuting and neglecting
its own people.

Mr. De la Calle said the discussions would be about the FARC "as a
whole, not about individual persons or cases" and with the guiding
principle that "ideas, not arms, rule," the report discloses.

Other remaining issues in the talks include the logistics of ending
the conflict, the drug trade, compensation for victims and
implementation of the final accord, the report says.

Santos initiated the peace talks last year in the belief that the
FARC had been so weakened by the government's 10-year, U.S.-backed
offensive against the group that its leaders were ready to
negotiate an end to the fighting, the report notes.

Three previous peace attempts, the last ending in 2002, have
failed, the report relays.

The rebels have been pushed into far corners of the country but can
still attack oil and mining operations vital to Colombia's economic
growth, the report adds.



=========
H A I T I
=========

HAITI: Opposition Will Resume Protests to Demand Moise Resignation
------------------------------------------------------------------
EFE News reports that the Haitian opposition disclosed the
resumption of mobilizations and called for a protest march to
demand the resignation of the country's president, Jovenel Moise,
rejecting a dialogue once again.

" . . . we will march throughout the country to remove Jovenel
Moise from the National Palace, the moment of dialogue has passed,
and the government has nothing to offer. The government's promises
are policies that it will never be able to implement," Andre
Michel, one of the opposition leaders, said at a press conference,
according to EFE News.

"We are going to remove this corrupt power that only wants to put
an end to what remains in the country," added Michel, from the
Democratic and Popular Sector, which groups several opposition
leaders and social organizations, the report notes.

The report discloses that Michel also claimed that the seven
foreigners and one Haitian, arrested this week for illegal
possession of weapons of war, are mercenaries who were in the
country to work for the government and who allegedly had opposition
leaders as targets.

The spokesman for the Democratic and Popular Sector also pointed
out that, according to his information, there are people in the
government who are pressuring the police to release these
mercenaries, the report relays.

The detainees are five Americans, two Serbs and a Haitian who,
according to the police, had several machine guns, pistols,
bulletproof vests, drones and satellite phones in their possession,
among other equipment, the report notes.

Meanwhile, Moise met with former president Jocelerme Privert to try
to initiate a dialogue to get the country out of the serious
economic and political crisis it is currently experiencing, the
report relays.

The report discloses that sources from the National Palace also
reported that the head of state met with businessmen grouped in the
Economic Forum.

In addition, the Haitian government announced that 200,000 jobs
will be created in the short term to help the most vulnerable
sectors, the report notes.

On Feb. 7, coinciding with the second anniversary of Moise's
arrival in the presidency, violent protests began in Haiti, which
lasted throughout the week and caused at least nine deaths, amid a
severe economic crisis that was aggravated this year by a strong
depreciation of the gourde, the official currency, and by failures
in electricity supply due to fuel shortages, the report adds.



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

NFE ATLANTIC: Moody's Assigns B2 CFR & Rates Sr. Sec. Term Loan B2
------------------------------------------------------------------
Moody's Investors Service assigned first time ratings to NFE
Atlantic Holdings LLC (NFEAH), including a B2 Corporate Family
Rating (CFR) and B2-PD Probability of Default Rating. Moody's
assigned B2 ratings to the proposed senior secured guaranteed term
loan and to senior secured guaranteed revolver facility issued by
the company. Moody's also assigned a SGL-3 Speculative Grade
Liquidity Rating. The outlook on all ratings is stable.

NFEAH is an indirect subsidiary of the privately held New Fortress
Energy Holdings LLC as well as New Fortress Energy LLC (NFE), which
was founded in 2014 and completed its initial public offering in
February 2019. The company is developing into a profitable niche
player in the growing US LNG export market. Its unique business
model is underpinned by the existing and planned investment in the
downstream LNG infrastructure, including LNG terminals and
facilities, as well as by long-term LNG supply contracts across the
Caribbean. The company is in the process of building a small scale
inland LNG facility and transportation infrastructure in the US.

During the build out period in 2019-2021, it will meet the
contracted commitments by sourcing LNG on the market.

Assignments:

Issuer: NFE Atlantic Holdings LLC

  - Probability of Default Rating, Assigned B2-PD

  - Speculative Grade Liquidity Rating, Assigned SGL-3

  - Corporate Family Rating, Assigned B2

  - Gtd. Senior Secured Term Loan, Assigned B2 (LGD3)

  - Gtd. Senior Secured Revolving Credit Facility, Assigned B2
(LGD3)

Outlook:

Issuer: NFE Atlantic Holdings LLC

  - Outlook assigned Stable

RATINGS RATIONALE

The B2 CFR reflects NFEAH's limited exposure to volume and
commodity price risks in 2019-2020, as the company benefits from
high share of contracted revenue and earnings under long-term LNG
sales agreements with a number of utilities and private
counterparties in the Caribbean and in the US. The projected ramp
up in EBITDA in 2019-2020 reflects relatively high selling prices
and solid cash margins, secured by the company, as well as a high
level of take-or-pay and minimum volume commitments embedded in the
signed contracts.

The B2 CFR also factors in a high level of execution risk, both on
the timely construction of LNG terminals and other downstream
infrastructure in Jamaica, Puerto Rico and Mexico in 2019, and on
the greenfield project to build the LNG facility in the US in
2019-2021. These risks are in part mitigated via construction
contracts, including the turn-key contract to build the LNG
facility. The B2 CFR assumes that the new LNG facility and all
necessary infrastructure in the US, Jamaica, Puerto Rico and Mexico
will be built on time and on budget, with no additional funding
requirements in 2019-2020.

The B2 CFR anticipates a high pace of growth in operations, as the
company scales up LNG sales and takes up new commitments to invest
in downstream infrastructure. The CFR assumes that the management
team will continue to manage growth and investment commitments in
step with the improvement in earnings and will therefore deliver on
the expectation of a rapid deleveraging. The group's initial
leverage will be very high with Debt/EBITDA around 14x in 2019 and
should decline significantly in 2020 to below 4x on the back of
increasing cash flow from rising utilization of LNG terminals.

NFEAH maintains adequate liquidity, reflected in its SGL-3
speculative grade liquidity rating. During the 2019-2020 building
phase, NFE Atlantic Holdings's operations, financial profile and
ability to service debt, as well as its liquidity position, will be
underpinned by $750 million raised from a term loan B and about
$300 million in equity that the group raised in the initial public
offering. The company will also benefit from $100 million revolver
facility, which will be available shortly after the closing of the
term loan and is expected to be fully undrawn upon its closing. B2
CFR assumes that NFEAH will maintain a sizable cash balance in
2019-2020, comprising all net proceeds from the placement of
capital, that will also support its debt service commitments during
this time.

The stable outlook reflects Moody's expectation that the group will
deliver new facilities in Puerto Rico by mid-2019 and Mexico by the
end of 2019 paving the way for accelerated deleveraging in 2020.

An upgrade of the rating will require good visibility for the
timely completion of the LNG project in the US and a track-record
of successful operation of the group's LNG value chain in the US
and the Caribbean, with growth in earnings and decline in leverage
to below 4x debt/EBITDA and EBITDA/Interest maintained above 4x.

The rating may be downgraded as a result of a slower than expected
ramp up in LNG delivery volumes in Jamaica and Puerto Rico through
2019 or a revision of the existing contractual arrangements leading
to a significant erosion of the group's margins or lower minimum
volumes and take-or-pay commitments by the customers; delayed
construction of the LNG facility in the US or LNG infrastructure;
or a significant cost overrun on any of the projects leading to
weaker liquidity or additional funding requirements. A downgrade of
Jamaica's B3 positive sovereign rating, or a worsening of Puerto
Rico's prospects of emergence from bankruptcy could also lead to
the downgrade of the company's rating.

The senior secured term loan and revolving facility are rated B2 in
accordance with the application of Moody's Loss Given Default
methodology. The loans will benefit from the upstream guarantees
provided by the operating subsidiaries of the company and by the
downstream guarantee provided by NFE.

New Fortress Energy Atlantic Holdings LLC is an energy company
developing a new LNG business model. In 2017, the company reported
total assets of $381 million and generated negative EBITDA of $
21.5 million.

TOYS R US: Court Approves Assignment of Lease to Ollie's
--------------------------------------------------------
Bankruptcy Judge Keith L. Phillips overruled Market Plaza Limited
Partnership's objection to the Propco I Debtors' proposed
assumption and assignment of a lease to Ollie's Bargain Outlet.

Market Plaza claims that assignment of the Toys Lease to Ollie's is
impermissible because the Propco I Debtors cannot provide
adequateassurance of future performance as required by section
365(b)(3) and section 365(f)(2) of the Bankruptcy Code. Market
Plaza asserts that there is an intended tenant mix at the Shopping
Center that caters to the needs of higher-income customers.
According to Market Plaza, the Toys Lease first established this
tenant mix by including lease restrictions forbidding certain types
of tenants.

Market Plaza urges that while the Toys Lease is the first, and most
notable, of its tenant leases to include such restrictions,
additional use and exclusivity provisions in the leases of other
Tenants further establish the intended tenant mix and master plan
for the Shopping Center's development. It contends that an
assignment to Ollie's would contravene these use restrictions and
disrupt the tenant mix, in violation of section 365(b)(3)(D).
Market Plaza also maintains that Ollie's intended use of the
premises would breach use restrictions contained in the Toys Lease
and the leases of other Tenants, in violation of section
365(b)(3)(C).

The Propco I Debtors have responded to the Objection by pointing
out that the Toys Lease predates all the other Tenants' leases and
arguing that they cannot be bound by provisions contained in other
leases to which they did not agree. They add that there is no
language in the Toys Lease regarding an intended tenant mix and no
master agreement for the Shopping Center that would evidence one.
The Propco I Debtors maintain that Market Plaza has not established
that an intended tenant mix exists and, even if the Court were to
find that one does exists, the addition of Ollie's as a tenant
would not disrupt it. Accordingly, the Propco I Debtors dispute the
assertion that section 365(b)(3)(C) and section 365(b)(3)(D)
prohibit the assignment. They also point out that if the assignment
is not approved, they will lose the $300,000 bid by Ollie's for the
Toys Lease because there is no backup bidder.

After a thorough analysis, the Court finds that the Propco I
Debtors have provided adequate assurance of future performance of
the Toys Lease by Ollie's, including the adequate assurances
required under section 365(b)(3)(C) and (D) of the Bankruptcy
Code.

The assignment will significantly benefit the creditors of the
Propco I Debtors. Accordingly, Market Plaza's objection to the
assignment of the Toys Lease to Ollie's is overruled and the
assignment is approved.

A copy of the Court's Memorandum Opinion dated Feb. 11, 2019 is
available at:

    http://bankrupt.com/misc/vaeb18-31429-1183.pdf

                     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 Toysrus.com
and Babiesrus.com.

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
company.

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

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 proceedings.

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 retailers.

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 -- 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.



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

VENEZUELA: Ambassador Denies Japan Recognized Guaido as President
-----------------------------------------------------------------
EFE News reports that Venezuelan Ambassador to Tokyo denied that
the Japanese government has recognized Juan Guaido as the interim
president of Venezuela and stressed that the Asian country was
committed to working with the legitimate government of Nicolas
Maduro.

Seiko Ishikawa's comments follow remarks by Japanese Foreign
Minister Taro Kono, where he had expressed his country's support to
Guaido, according to EFE News.

At a press conference, Ishikawa, however, said that he met with
foreign ministry officials, who clarified that this decision taken
by the government did not imply a recognition of Guaido as the
interim president, the report notes.

He insisted that the Japanese officials whom he met and did not
name, were categorical in affirming that they were well-versed with
the legal implications of this decision and expressed their
willingness to continue working with the government of President
Maduro, the report relays.

"Japan has not joined the countries that have recognized lawmaker
Guaido as interim president," Ishikawa said, despite Kono's
statements that were published by the media, the report discloses.

Kono had also pointed out Japan's call for a free and fair
presidential election as soon as possible in Venezuela, the report
relays.

Since the political crisis erupted in Venezuela, Japan has
expressed concerns about the possible social and humanitarian
impact in the country, the report notes.

In January, it had termed the ongoing political and economic crisis
in Venezuela as deplorable and called for quick and responsible
measures to address it, the report recalls.

"In Venezuela, the deterioration of the economic and social
situation has seriously affected its people's lives and there are
many Venezuelan people who are forced to leave the country.  Such
situation is deplorable," said a statement by Japan's foreign
ministry, the report notes.

Japan has also offered its support to Venezuela's neighbors to help
alleviate the situation of displaced Venezuelans, the report
relays.

The Latin American country has been steeped in a political crisis
after Guaido, opposition leader and president of the National
Assembly, proclaimed himself interim president of the country
beginning of the year, the report notes.

Guaido had cited articles 233, 333 and 350 of the 1999 constitution
as justification and claimed that Maduro -- whom many in the
opposition described as a dictator -- had "usurped" his position by
being sworn in as president, following what he called an
illegitimate election, the report notes.

United States, Brazil, Canada and other Latin American countries
such as Argentina, Colombia and Chile had backed Guaido, the report
says.

Venezuela, an oil-rich country, has been hammered by lower global
oil prices and economic sanctions imposed by the US and has been in
recession for nearly all of Maduro's time in office, who had taken
over after predecessor Hugo Chavez's death in 2013, the report
adds.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America,
S&P Global Ratings in May 2018 removed its long- and short-term
local currency sovereign credit ratings on Venezuela from
CreditWatch with negative implications and affirmed them at
'CCC-/C'. The outlook on the long-term local currency rating is
negative. At the same time, S&P affirmed its 'SD/D' long- and
short-term foreign currency sovereign credit ratings on Venezuela.
S&P's transfer and convertibility assessment remains at 'CC'.

VENEZUELA: Guaido Calls for Demonstrations at Military Bases
------------------------------------------------------------
EFE News reports that self-proclaimed acting president Juan Guaido
said his supporters will mount peaceful demonstrations at military
bases across Venezuela to demand that the armed forces allow the
entry of aid stockpiled in neighboring countries.

"We are going to gather at the barracks in a peaceful, very
powerful way," Mr. Guaido said during a meeting with taxi drivers
in the capital's affluent Chacao area, according to EFE News. "We
will go to each one of these posts to demand humanitarian aid."

President Nicolas Maduro has barred the entry of the supplies,
denouncing the US-led aid initiative as a prelude to military
intervention by Washington, the report relays.

The report relates that Mr. Guaido said volunteers will bring into
Venezuela the aid being gathered in the Colombian border city of
Cucuta, the Brazilian border state of Roraima and the island of
Curacao.

The report relays that Guaido did not say if he will travel to any
of the border points where the opposition plans to try to bring in
the aid, though vowing he would be "in the streets."

"We have said: everyone into the streets again," he told the
gathering in Chacao, the report notes.

The report discloses that the opposition insists that oil-rich
Venezuela is experiencing a humanitarian crisis and has made an
international appeal for donations.

Mr. Maduro, however, said that the donations carry "the venom of
humiliation" and has arranged to have supplies brought in from
allies such as Cuba, China and Russia to address shortages of
medicines and other necessities.

Cucuta is linked to the Venezuelan city of San Cristobal by the
Tienditas, a modern bridge completed in 2016 that has never been
opened to traffic amid ongoing quarrels between Bogota and Caracas
over migration, smuggling and cross-border crime, the report
notes.

As the US shipments began to arrive in Cucuta, the Venezuelan army
parked large vehicles on their side of the Tienditas, which was
already bisected by mental fencing, the report says.

The report relays that Mr. Guaido again urged the military to allow
the entry of the aid and put themselves "on the side of the
constitution."

He said that the opposition would bring in the supplies via both
land and sea, mentioning Puerto Cabello in the coastal state of
Carabobo, the report notes.

The military suspended marine and air traffic between Venezuela and
the neighboring islands of Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao, the report
relays.

The report recounts that Mr. Guaido, the speaker of the
opposition-controlled National Assembly, proclaimed himself interim
president on January 23, a day after US Vice President Mike Pence
encouraged him to take that step and assured him of Washington's
support.

US President Donald Trump quickly recognized Guaido and roughly 50
other countries have followed suit, including Canada, Colombia,
Argentina and Brazil, as well as major European powers France,
Germany, Spain and the UK, the report relays.

Those nations agree with the Venezuelan opposition that Maduro's
May 2018 re-election victory was a sham, the report discloses.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America,
S&P Global Ratings in May 2018 removed its long- and short-term
local currency sovereign credit ratings on Venezuela from
CreditWatch with negative implications and affirmed them at
'CCC-/C'. The outlook on the long-term local currency rating is
negative. At the same time, S&P affirmed its 'SD/D' long- and
short-term foreign currency sovereign credit ratings on Venezuela.
S&P's transfer and convertibility assessment remains at 'CC'.

VENEZUELA: Guaido, US Military Leader Push Army to Allow Aid
------------------------------------------------------------
EFE News reports that Venezuela's self-proclaimed acting president,
Juan Guaido, was joined by the head of the US military's Southern
Command in calling on the Venezuelan armed forces to allow the
entry of humanitarian aid.

Opposition activists will mount "peaceful, very powerful"
demonstrations at military bases across Venezuela to demand that
troops facilitate the delivery of the aid, Mr. Guaido said in
Caracas, according to EFE News.

Meanwhile, in Miami, Adm. Craig Faller took the opportunity of a
joint press conference with Colombian armed forces chief Maj. Gen.
Luis Navarro Jimenez to advise Venezuelan military officers on
their duty, the report notes.

"This message is for the Venezuelan military: In the end, you will
be responsible for your own actions.  Do the right thing.  Save
your people and your country," Mr. Faller said as he welcomed
Navarro to SouthCom headquarters, the report relays.

The report discloses that Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has
barred the entry of the supplies, denouncing the US-led aid
initiative as a prelude to military intervention by Washington.

Asked about the possibility of US military action in Venezuela,
Faller referred to President Donald Trump's statement earlier that
all options would be considered, the report notes.

"The president has been clear and our obligation as professional
military is to be ready," the SouthCom commander said, while
maintaining that Washington's preference is for a diplomatic
solution, the report relays.

The report notes that Diosdado Cabello, widely seen as the No. 2
figure in Venezuela's governing leftist PSUV party, said that
invaders would meet with a fierce reaction.

"We will give them the most terrible response they can imagine," he
told thousands of government supporters in the southern state of
Bolivar.  "Venezuela will continue being free, sovereign and
independent," the report says.

The report recalls that Mr. Guaido, the speaker of the
opposition-controlled National Assembly, proclaimed himself interim
president on Jan. 23, a day after US Vice President Mike Pence
encouraged him to take that step and assured him of Washington's
support.

Mr. Trump quickly recognized Guaido and roughly 50 other countries
have followed suit, including Canada, Colombia, Argentina and
Brazil, as well as major European powers France, Germany, Spain and
the United Kingdom, the report relays.

Those nations agree with the Venezuelan opposition that Maduro's
May 2018 re-election victory was a sham, the report relays.

The report discloses that British billionaire Richard Branson is
staging a concert in Cucuta aimed at raising $100 million in
donations to fund humanitarian assistance in Venezuela.

Latin American musical icons such as Juanes and Mana are scheduled
to perform at the "Venezuela Aid Live" event, which organizers
expect to attract as many as 250,000 people, the report relays.

Soon after Branson disclosed the concert, the Maduro administration
countered by saying it would hold a "Hands Off Venezuela" music
festival, accompanied by an effort to provide food and medical care
to needy Colombians who cross the border to attend, the report
notes.

But Caracas is reported to be having problems finding artists
willing to perform, the report adds.

As reported in the Troubled Company Reporter-Latin America,
S&P Global Ratings in May 2018 removed its long- and short-term
local currency sovereign credit ratings on Venezuela from
CreditWatch with negative implications and affirmed them at
'CCC-/C'. The outlook on the long-term local currency rating is
negative. At the same time, S&P affirmed its 'SD/D' long- and
short-term foreign currency sovereign credit ratings on Venezuela.
S&P's transfer and convertibility assessment remains at 'CC'.


                           *********


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 2019.  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 * * *