Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Toledo in Spain, cont.: Reuters reports on President Toledo's press conference upon departing Spain where he declared that "I am leaving with both my pockets full: one with optimism and hope for the future and the other with concrete results," after having negotiated "deals on debt relief, taxation and immigration." NOTE: This was the first state visit by a Peruvian president to Madrid in 60 years. ALSO: "Madrid agreed to write off 22 million euros ($27.10 million) of Peru's debt on condition the money would be spent on public infrastructure. ... Spain is [Peru's] largest foreign investor."

Trade And Health: The United Nations reports that as the United States and Peru negotiate a bilateral trade pact, Paul Hunt, the UN Commission on Human Rights’ Special Rapporteur on the right to physical and mental health, said "too many Peruvians already die from treatable diseases and other medical conditions." NOTE: "The trade agreement must improve – not further impede – access to essential medicines, especially for those living in poverty,” he said in a statement yesterday after returning from an official visit to Peru. ALSO: "The Special Rapporteur was on Mission to Peru from 6 to 15 June 2004 and will issue a report of his mission in the autumn of 2004." SEE ALSO: Hunt's statement

AeroContinente Still Flying: Reuters reports that Aero Continente "is confident it will get new insurance when its current policy runs out on July 10, despite its assets being embargoed under a U.S. ban," according to airline spokesman German Arata. NOTE: "Aero Continente cannot continue to operate without insurance." CITED: Minister of Transportation Jose Ortiz who commented on the Arequipa judge's stance on Lan Peru: "Here we have a judicial action ... that might seem strange or not, but the fact is that it has happened at an inopportune time."

Peruvians Abusing Peruvians: New York Newsday continues its investigation yesterday and today on the 69 Peruvians who were caught up in the smuggling ring in Long Island. Yesterday's piece suggested that these 69 did not travel the same route most Peruvian immigrants use. "More routinely, the workers pay a smuggler to transport them and then establish independent lives once they arrive, finding work and housing on their own to pay off passage debts as high as $20,000. Or, they come on a student or tourist visa, and stay after the visa expires." The article details some of the alternate routes. Today's piece includes a graph showing the 7,000 miles one of the 69 took which cost him $7,000. José Ibañez, Mariluz Zavala and their daughter, Evelyn Ibañez, the Peruvians accused of masterminding the affair, have suggested that "they are the victims -- maligned by their tenants' false accusations of slavery." ALSO: "Authorities did not explain the security breach at the U.S. Embassy in Peru that enabled Zavala or Ibañez, 42, to illegally obtain such [visas]."

Social/Economic Unrest: Pravda reports on the Peruvian and Bolivian governments which "have been under constant pressure from their impoverished people. In addition, indigenous peoples' uprisings confront unpopular leaders." It offers a review of Ilave and Ayacucho. ALSO: "The 20th century natives combine ancient methods with modern demands to obtain what they want and resist unfair plans imposed by the multinational credit organization. This is something the Westernized national authorities cannot understand, leading to virtual break down of communication between both sides."

- Coffee Exports Halted: Reuters reports that "up to 35% of Peru's coffee exports are departing two weeks late because of a rise in shipping costs and a shortage of space on boats," according to Ricardo Huancaruna (Perales Huancaruna - Perhusa) who declared that "Since May, shippers have doubled their costs for each container to US$1,600, and not all the coffee is getting onto its designated shipments." NOTE: "Perhusa, whose sales make up 20 to 25 per cent of Peru's annual coffee exports, sends between 700,000 and one million bags abroad every year."

- Exporters Dialogue with Unions: The United Press International reports that the Association of Exporters of Peru are "asking union organizers of a strike later in the month to make plans to minimize the strike's impact on exports." The Numbers: "Last May, exporters said that Peru exported $712 million for the month, 76 percent of it by sea, and $351 million from the port of Callao. Of the 38 ports in Peru, only 13 are involved in external trade, chief among them, after Callao, are Ilo, Chimbote, Paita, Iquitos and Salaverry."

- Backus Wins: Dow Jones reports that Union de Cervecerias Peruanas Backus & Johnston "has won a victory in a legal battle involving Brazil's Companhia de Bebidas das Americas." Among the obstacles: the beer bottle exchange system. NOTE: "AmBev has accused Backus of trying to thwart its entry by barring it from manufacturing the 620 milliliter beer bottles widely used in Peru. More than 85% of beer is consumed from those large bottles, which are exchanged when empty for full bottles."

Mining Auction Delayed: Dow Jones and Reuters reports that "Peru has delayed the auction of its world-class Las Bambas copper deposit by more than a month to Aug. 31 pending congressional study of a royalties law," according to ProInversion. NOTE: "The delay was at the request of the companies interested. The auction -- which has already been delayed several times and which the government had said it would not postpone again -- was set for July 23." Separately, the Economist and the Financial Times serve up bleak essays on what should be a rosier outlook. The Financial Timess editorializes on the 'myopic populism' of Latin America where commodity-rich countries had a windfall last year which "contributed to the region's first current account surplus in half a century." NOTE: "The logic [of the market] is compelling but it seems be eluding many politicians - especially in four countries of the troubled Andean region where populist anti- business sentiment is widespread." FT suggests that "in Peru, congressmen have succeeded in stifling investor interest in a big new copper deposit by introducing a crude and poorly thought out royalties scheme that takes no account of the price cycle. ... To take advantage of higher prices it may be sensible to impose windfall taxes, although these will need to be more carefully thought out than those announced recently in Peru." Bloomberg reports on "Chile's government proposal yesterday to congress a 3% charge to boost proceeds from some of the world's richest copper deposits."

- Inca Pacific announced in a press release the "restructuring of [their] obligations to place its Magistral copper-molybdenum deposit into production." NOTE: On January 8, 2001, Ancash Cobre S.A. became the 100% owner of the Magistral property subject only to a net profits royalty in favor of the Government of Peru and the obligation to place the property into production within five years."

- Southwestern Resources Corp. announced in a press release that "ongoing surface exploration at the Antay Porphyry Copper Project has resulted in expanding the area extent of the Sayta Porphyry."

- Plexmar Resources announced in a press release that " it has recently completed its ground geophysics program on its' gold and silver Cascajal Project" in La Libertad in the Yanacocha-Pierina gold belt.

- Wealth Minerals announced in a press release that "it has entered into an agreement with a private Peruvian company to acquire the Amata Project" in Arequipa.

- Candente Resource announced in a press release that they have begun "diamond drilling on its wholly-owned Alto Dorado property located in Northern Peru. A total of 3,000 meters ("m") (9840 feet) of core drilling is currently planned for the Alto Dorado property and is expected to be carried out in two phases. The same drill will be used to carry out an additional 3,000 m of core drilling on Candente's wholly-owned Canariaco Copper project.

De Soto's Philippine Connection: The Manila Inquirer reports that "President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has Peruvian economist Hernando de Soto tapped as one of her economic advisers. Presidential spokesperson Ignacio Bunye said Ms Arroyo got De Soto as a consultant because he was an authority on asset management and an exponent for the full use of idle assets." ALSO: "Bunye said he was not sure how much De Soto would be paid but noted that most consultants of the President were giving their service free of charge."

Pilot on the Fifty: Connecticut's Hartford Courant (registration: peruvia/peruvia) reports on the issuance of the new $50 bill and states: "The bills were redesigned to make counterfeiting more difficult. But let's face it: Other countries have beautiful currency." Peru's currency has included "a doomed airplane pilot Jose Abelardo Quinoñtes Gonzales (sic), who sacrificed himself during a battle against Ecuador in 1941."

Is Apple of Peru Dangerous? SeedQuest (a agricultural site) reviews the "apple of Peru known for its beautiful purple flowers and its ability to repel insects. In agricultural fields, however, it shows a different face — a nasty, invasive one — and it could become the next weed nightmare for field and vegetable crops in Ohio and other areas of the United States." NOTE: "A native of the Andes region in South America, apple of Peru belongs to the same family, Solanaceae, as tomatoes, peppers and potatoes."

Peru & Cuba: Cuba's Adelante reports that "International solidarity continues to expand around the case of the five Cuban political prisoners being held in the US for actions in the fight against terrorism. The Peruvian Committee in Solidarity with the Five issued a statement in which the jurists of that nation have committed themselves to fighting for the five Cuban political prisoners arrested in the US for penetrating anti-Cuba terrorist groups in South Florida.

- LHorna Defeated: Reuters reports on Luis Horna's defeat by Fernando Gonzalez (Chile) 6-3 6-2 at the Swedish Open ATP tournament. Tennis magazine says Horna was trounced."

- Surfer Village reports that Gabriel Villaran is participating at the ASP World Qualifying Series in South Africa.

COPA News:
- Columbia vs. Venezuela 6:15 pm
- Peru vs. Bolivia 8:30 pm

- ESPN has a good scoring sheet posted and FIFA runs a UNICEF piece on children and soccer.

General Review: The Los Angeles Times, the Miami Herald, and New York Times, with the LATimes being the best of the bunch. The NYTimes piece reports that "the United States had been invited along with Mexico, but United States soccer officials decided that preparations for the next round of World Cup qualifying and the Major League Soccer season took priority." CITED: Pablo Ramirez (Univision) who "will be calling early-round matches from a studio in Miami before traveling to Peru for the latter stages of the tournament." The LATimes says that "Euro 2004 was a memorable tournament," and Copa America "will have to go far to match it." The article includes Mexico Coach Ricardo Lavolpe's complaints about the wind (see yesterday's Peruvia), Argentina and Mexico's "full-strength teams" and Paraguay's "under-23 team." The papers cite anti-government protests, a planned general strike and a squabble that could ground a majority of domestic air travel. The MHerald oddly turns tabloid and uses a Reuters piece on "eight witch doctors" who called on the spirits to bring luck to the 12 teams in the Copa America" citing "lead shaman Juan Osco." The shaman get several related photographs. ALSO: "While Lima is a modern city in many ways, rural customs such as shamanic rituals have been brought to the capital by millions of Andean and Amazon Indians, who migrated from the impoverished provinces in search of better lives." At least the Herald quotes the man-in-the-street, one Alberto Ramirez who casts aspersions on the whole witch doctor analysis. The BBC and Sky Sport offer perfuntory kick-offs to the tournament. FIFA offers "the winding road from Peru to Germany."

Security At Copa: The Associated Press reports that "some 36,500 police will provide security for Copa America." DETAILS: "The security force is split up, with 16,000 police guarding seven stadiums and the remaining 20,500 officers protecting hotels, airports and strategic public areas," according to police General Felix Murazo.

Photos Around Copa: The Northern Report offers a photo essay on Chiclayo receiving the interational players and the Associated Press has several non-football photographs.

The Biz of Soccer: Bloomberg reports that the Copa "will boost the number of tourists to a record 1 million in 2004" who will "spend about $80 million during the three-week contest." CITED: Janet Perez the reception desk manager of Grand Hotel Chiclayo and economist Jorge Luis Rodriguez (Centura SAB). Separately, Univision releases yet one more press release.

- Peru going for "a draw." (Associated Press)

- Argentina's coach (Reuters), two retired coaches travel on same plane (Reuters).

- Brazil's injuries (Reuters) and photographs from Melgar Stadium in Arequipa; Brazil's goalies (Associated Press);

- Chile's team arrives in Arequipa in these Associated Press photographs.

- Costa Rica's odds (Read-A-Bet)

- Ecuador's match with Argentina (Associatd Press)

- Mexico's coach (Reuters); Mexico's chances (Houston Chronicle)

- Uruguay has a Reuters article and several photographs of their team in Chiclayo.

Copa in Asia: The VietNam News Agency notes that "Ha Noi Radio and Television will broadcast live the football championship of South America - Copa America 2004 - which is scheduled to be held in Peru from July 7-26 (Ha Noi time)."

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