Monday, February 09, 2004

AToledo: Still Unpopular: The Associated Press returns to Pachacutec with a story that begins and ends with a wo/man on the street story on AToledo's unpopularity. Drew Benson's piece includes names like Beatriz Merino, Cesar Almeyda, Valentin Paniagua, and Rafael Rey Rey who says, "This government is not viable in the shape it's in." Rey "just introduced a constitutional amendment that would allow a sitting president to curtail his term and call early elections." Also included: weekends at a fancy beach resort and $150 bottles of Johnny Walker Blue Label Scotch whisky." NOTE: The Associated Press also offers accompanying photos of women who can't make economic ends meet, presumably as a result of Toledo's failed programs. This one shows two older, female Toledo hecklers.
In addition, the AP also puts up photos of AToledo "tr[ying]to put on a traditional hat in Junin," among other photos.

Toxic Clouds: The Associated Press reports from La Oroya on cloud pollution "containing toxic lead, sulfur dioxide, cadmium and arsenic" coming from a smelter owned by St. Louis-based Doe Run Company. Recent health statistics show that "average lead levels ... were 2.5 times above W.H.O limits." (See "La Oroya Cannot Wait" report.) Congressman Hildebrando Tapia Samaniego wants Congress to "send a high-level commission to come up with a solution." The Doe Run Company does not dispute there is a serious environmental problem but says "it will take time to fix a problem that it blames on previous owners, including state-owned Centromin, which ran the 81-year-old smelter from 1974 until Doe Run bought it in 1997."

Humboldt Penguins: The St. Louis Post & Dispatch focuses on a zoological effort to save Peru's Humboldt penguins. "The survival of a rare South American penguin depends in part on piles of seabird droppings that the St. Louis Zoo is trying to help conserve." This project, endorsed by the Peruvian government, has a penguin rookery at the Zona Reservada Punta San Juan de Marcona.

Peruvian Onions Burned: A front-page story in today's Washington Post includes Peruvian onion exports. (The story has been bouncing inside an Associated Press story for some time.) The article's focus is on pests, onion thrips which apparently, "hitched rides to the United States in loads of onions from Peru, where the same kind of thrips live. Already, the new pest has been found in storehouses of Peruvian onions, and drastic measures are being considered, such as fumigating the leftover onions or burning giant piles of them." The article even suggests how Peruvian exports arrived: Those Peruvian onions "wouldn't be here today if a man from Peru hadn't visited years ago. 'Daddy gave him some seeds.' "

Macro/Micro Econ:
- Dow Jones and Bloomberg on metals production including gold and copper.
- Canadian Press and BNAmericas report on Pan American Silver Corp. purchasing the Morococha silver mine for $35 million US.
- BNAmericas on El Pacifico-Peruano Suiza.

Temple of Doom: The Temple of Doom – Ritual Sacrifice in Ancient Peru is being presented in New Zealands' Otago Museum according to a press release. This is a collaboration of the Larco Museum with the support of the Peruvian National Institute of Culture.

For Valentine's Day: Florida's Sun-Sentinel offers this for Valentines: TV network Telefutura is "featuring a weeklong special dedicated to infidelity." Hosted by Peruvian TV personality Mónica Zevallos, the show includes segments like: 'Si me engañas, te mato' (If you cheat, I'll kill you) and, 'Tuve una aventura, pero quiero volver' (I had an affair, but now I want you back). 2pm, weekdays on Miami's WAMI-Ch.69.

No Nationalizations! The Miami Herald's Andres Oppenheimer doesn't believe there is an oncoming wave of nationalizations despite several cited examples including: "In Peru, violent protests in Arequipa forced the government of President Alejandro Toledo to scrap plans for the $167 million sale of two regional companies, Egasa and Egesur, to a Belgian company in June 2002. Protesters feared higher utility prices and layoffs."

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