Thursday, August 19, 2004

Petrol a Priority: Reuters reports that Petroleos del Peru “warned on Wednesday that high world oil prices could cripple its refinery operations unless the government stepped in to offset the price surge,” according to company president Alejandro Narvaez. He repeated his calls “to make the fuel sector a high government priority, increase crude inventories, cut fuel taxes and place a levy on companies that export Peruvian crude or risk a shortfall in fuel in Peru.” ALSO: “He also called for a 15% tax on companies that export Peruvian crude because producers had the most to gain from high oil prices.” NOTE: “PetroPeru is expected to refine an average of 79,500 barrels per day this year, rising to 115,000 bpd by 2007.”

Sol at 3.379 per Dollar: Reuters reports that the Peruvian sol “hit its highest level since August 1999, breaking the psychological barrier of 3.40 soles to the U.S. dollar, as the currency reacted to comments from the Central Bank.” Central Bank President Javier Silva Ruete said “he was not worried by the gradual appreciation of the currency against the dollar.” Minister of Economy and Finances Pedro-Pablo Kuczynski also declared that “3.30 soles and below would be ‘a dangerous level’.” CITED: Elio Soto (BBVA Banco Continental). NOTE: “Peru is flush with dollars thanks to an export boom, as strong demand for agricultural goods, metals and textiles boosts the country's $60 billion economy.” ALSO: “Many companies are changing dollars into soles to pay their taxes due in August, boosting the sol, economists say.”

Anglo Gold and Aruntani: Reuters reports that “AngloGold Ashanti has awarded its Rescatada gold project in Peru to local gold miner Aruntani after the world's No. 2 bullion producer decided the project was too small to develop,” according to Aruntani's General Manager Guido del Castillo. It will be a 50-50 joint venture with AngloGold.

ADC Loans $280 Million: Reuters reports that the Andean Development Corp. “signed a $280 million loan to improve Peru's fragile infrastructure and finance social projects in the poor Andean nation. … CAF President Enrique Garcia signed the loan in Peru's government palace flanked by Peruvian President Alejandro Toledo, who said $80 million would be earmarked for education, water and health care projects.”

Puno University Students Protest: The Associated Press has two photographs of students from Puno’s National University of the Altiplano (Universidad Nacional Del Altiplano) “during a protest in front of Peru's Congress in Lima … demanding that the government spend more money on public universities.”

TGP Offers Bonds: Dow Jones reports that Transportadora de Gas del Peru said it will “place two long-term bond issues worth up to a total of $270 million.” NOTE: “TGP has the 33-year downstream concession to distribute natural gas from the Camisea project to Peru's coastal regions.”

Goldmarca Agrees: Goldmarca Limited announced in a press release that they have Extended agreements for the completion of the vital feasibility studies with joint venture partners at Condor Gold in Ecuador and San Nicolas in Peru.

Peru, Chile - Less Firearms: Latinamerica Press reports on a recent report by the Institute for International Studies in Geneva which found that “between 73,000 and 90,000 people are killed each year by firearms in Latin America and the Caribbean.” NOTE: “Chile and Peru are among the countries listed with the lowest number of firearm deaths, with less than one person out of 100,000 inhabitants killed with firearms.”

Olympians: Maryland's Connection profiles Juan Valdivieso who "swam in the 200-meter butterfly on Aug. 16 and will swim the 100-meter butterfly on Aug. 19 on behalf of Peru." NOTE: "The 2 1/2-hour swimming workout sessions, nine or 10 times every week, took up most of his time in the weeks preceding the games. Each workout, he swims 7,000-9,000 meters and he also has three 1-hour lifting sessions every week." Says Valdivieso: "I continue to represent Peru because of my strong ties to the country. I speak Spanish at home with my family,” he said. Also, his grandfather influenced his decision to represent Peru because he played soccer in the 1936 Olympics for Peru."

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