Saturday, September 25, 2004

‘Free AGuzman’: The Associated Press reports that a Peruvian judge is reviewing a petition for release from prison for Shining Path founder Abimael Guzman. His lawyer, Manuel Fajardo "argues his rights to due process were violated." NOTE: Eight other guerrillas were also listed on the petition. All are represented by Fajardo. ALSO: Bansgladesh’s Daily Star reports that "the Solidarity Committee to Defend the Life of Comrade Gonzalo staged a demonstration in Dhaka yesterday, calling for release of Gonzalo, the chairman of the Communist Party of Peru. People all over the world must foil the conspiracy to kill Gonzalo, the committee leaders said at a rally at Muktangan. The committee organised the rally to mark 12th anniversary of Gonzalo's historic speech. The leaders said the speech of Gonzalo, which he delivered after his arrest in 1992, served as a guidance for the people of Peru and other parts of the world in regard to the campaign against imperialism. The government of Peru has been staging a farce in the name of trial of Gonzalo, they said. Committee members Foyez Ahmed, Shahidullah and Prof Anu Ahmed spoke at the rally."

Fujimori’s Millions Skimmed? A wire story in Big News Network reports that former President Alberto Fujimori "skimmed more than $167 million from the federal budget," according to a government commission. NOTE: "The money allegedly came from military and police pensions during a 10-year period ending in 2000."

Race in Peru: The Miami Herald offers a short excerpt from the Inter-American Dialogue's 2004 Race Report. "The Program of Support for Indigenous Peoples and Blacks of Honduras is another example of government efforts to promote equality. A similar mechanism was established in Peru. However, these governmental agencies do not have the legal authority or resources to effectively combat or monitor racial discrimination." NOTE: "Some countries with significant Afro-descendant populations such as Panama and Venezuela, have failed to advance policies addressed at racial discrimination. In places such as Costa Rica and Peru, bills have been presented to national congresses but have not yet been voted on." See Also: ‘Race & Peru’ in August 1’s Peruvia.

Crediting Peruvians: Pacific News Service runs a story titled, ‘Globalization Transforming How Poor Peruvians Shop and Live’ where "businesses are slowly learning that the poor in Latin America have real purchasing power. In Peru, that means shopping malls and fitness centers are the new face of low-income communities. While credit card debt looms, older cultural traditions hang on." The first-person reporting includes participation in "a spinning class at Planet Fitness in the lower middle-class neighborhood of San Miguel." NOTE: "Poor Peruvians are deluged by an unprecedented wave of tens of thousands of credit card offers with which to fuel the purchasing of middle class dreams. The advertised interest rate is 2 to 5%, but because it's compounded monthly, the actual annual rate is a stunning 27 to 80%."

No Jobs: Reuters reports that "jobless recoveries threaten Latin American leaders" and focuses first on Chile,then on Mexico and finishes with Peru. "In Peru, employment has improved somewhat in the past few months, but not at the rate it could with the economy set to grow up to 5% this year. A boom in mining -- which generates half of the country's exports -- has not helped since the mines employ only 1% of the country's work force." NOTE: "Toledo raised a lot of expectations with the employment issue. Reducing unemployment is a slow process, and if it drags out it will continue harming Toledo," according to Juan Carlos Odar Zagaceta (Banco de Credito).

Budget Deficit: Reuters reports that "Peru posted a budget deficit of 313 million soles ($93.4 million) in August, compared with a deficit of 378 million soles in August last year," according to the Central Bank in their weekly report. NOTE: "Toledo's government is aiming for a 2004 budget deficit of 1.4% of gross domestic product after a deficit of 1.9% of GDP in 2003. The 2003 budget deficit was 3.762 billion soles. ALSO: The Central Bank of Peru released the full deficit statistics.

China and Peru: China’s People’s Daily reports that First Vice-President Natale Amprimo Pla met with China's top legislator, Wu Bangguo, chairman of the National People's Congress Standing Committee who declared that "China and Peru should expand cooperation and lift trade relations to a new level." Said Wu, "the two countries with complimentary needs have maintained goodmomentum in trade relations" who expressed "his appreciation for Peru's support on the issues of Taiwan, Tibet, and human rights. NOTE: "Amprimo reiterated Peru would continue to adhere to one-China policy."

Southern Peru’s Costs: Dow Jones interviews Southern Peru Copper Corp.’s Chief Executive Oscar Gonzalez Rocha who declared that "costs have risen by at least 10% so far this year on the back of Peru's strengthening currency and other factors." He also declared that "rising fees for maritime shipping, fuels and oils, and for other inputs have also increased costs" for the company.

Atacocha Troubles, cont.: Dow Jones reports that zinc-lead miner Compañia Minera Atacocha "could eventually close its operations in Peru's mineral-rich Pasco region due to community problems. Atacocha has made its concern public and the need to paralyze its operations if they do not have confirmation on the part of the community," according to the Minister of Energy and Mines Jaime Quijandria on RPP radio. NOTE: "Meanwhile, local press reported that 2,000 miners from the company marched to Cerro de Pasco on Thursday to demand that regional authorities intercede to resolve the conflict."ALSO: "The company, a medium-sized miner that started in 1936, in June placed $10 million in five-year corporate bonds on the local market." See Also: ‘Atacocha Troubles’ in September 23’s Peruvia.

Bank Tax, cont.: Dow Jones reports that Peru's highest court, the Constitutional Tribunal, said "that in general the contested financial services transactions tax, or ITF, doesn't violate the nation's constitution." NOTE: The court did say, however, "that in certain circumstances judges can declare the ITF inapplicable, when the tax is determined to be confiscatory. The tribunal also said in a statement that it had declared unconstitutional one article of the law that opened bank accounts to the tax agency, Sunat." ALSO: "Even the International Monetary Fund has weighed in, urging Peru ‘to work towards eliminating or revising the ITF as soon as possible to minimize the risks of financial disintermediation and negative effects on investments, growth, and the collection of other taxes’." CITED: Deputy Finance Minister Fernando Zavala Lombardi; Leopoldo Scheelje Martin (Confederación Nacional de Instituciones Empresariales Privadas de Empresarios del Perú, CONFIEP); and Consultants Macroconsult.

Interviewing Newmont: Denver’s Rocky Mountain News interviews Wayne Murdy, Chairman and CEO of Newmont Mining who "defends Newmont's work in Peru, Indonesia." Murdy says "Newmont's status as the world's biggest gold producer is the reason for recent attacks against the company" and the ‘coordinated’ attacks, mostly backed by environmental groups, would not affect the company's balance sheet or production in the short term." According to Murdy, "the issue in Peru, I'd say, is a legitimate concern of the people in Cajamarca. We have said all along that we would conduct studies and there would be a full environmental impact statement and communication with the community." ALSO: "Murdy said Newmont would ‘go very slow’ in Cerro Quilish, which contains 3.7 million ounces, or about one-eighth, of Yanacocha's 32 million ounces of gold reserve. In any case, the mine was supposed to come online only in late 2007 or early 2008. The company is on track to produce 7 million ounces of gold this year." CITED: Payal Sampat (Earthworks); and Caesar Bryan (Gabelli Asset Management) who repeated that "it's no good if a mining company doesn't have the support of the local population."

Rice Down: The AgReport states that "Peru's rice harvest is expected to end up at just 1.2 million metric tons (MT), down 25% from last year. However, the reduction in the size of the crop is not as large as initially expected because of planting in new areas, reports the U.S. agricultural attache here. The government worked hard to expand production in the oriental slopes of the Andes, especially in the department of San Martin, resulting in a 35% increase in the area."

Selling Gold: The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Aussie Allied Gold "hopes to sell [assets] to a Peruvian group, Minera Colibri, for an ambitious $5 million."

Swallowing the Evidence: India’s Only Punjab reports that Marleny Villa "swallowed the equivalent of £450 in cash to avoid being robbed by a gang." While travelling on a bus travelling to Tacna, ... a gang boarded the bus. The Terra Noticias Populares says the 35-year-old rolled all the notes up individually and swallowed them one by one. After the robbery Villa was taken to the nearby town of Cocachacra to have her stomach pumped. A police spokesperson said: "She is one brave, crazy person, but fortunately it turned out well and she will still have the money’."



Restaurant Reviews: The Seattle Post-Intelligencer reviews El Chalán which offers "a purple punch punctuated with bits of floating fruit. The non-alcoholic beverage, called chicha morada, tastes of cloves and is made from purple corn." It’s not the first time the paper has reviewed the restaurant this year. Deleware’s Milford Chronicle reviews Peruvian Chicken Rotisserie which Dan Perez and Orlando Vargas recently opened. "The restaurant took Best of Delaware 2004 honors in the Best New Rebirth category."

Doing Good In Peru: Massachusetts’ Easton Journal reports on the return of a group of high school student back from "a month-long immersion trip this summer to Peru." NOTE: The trip was organized by Britain's World Challenge Expeditions. ALSO: "‘I have fond memories of Roberta at the bus station in Quillabamba showing the Peruvian children her digital camera,’ [recalls one particpant]. ‘She would take their pictures and then show them the image on the screen. They were amazed. Even their parents were amused’."


Friday, September 24, 2004

Later Today: Mental Health, Banking Health, and Judge José-Carlos Mariátegui

AToledo At OAS: The Associated Press reports that President Toledo was the only head of state from "a major South American country" to attend the ceremonies around former Costa Rican President Miguel Angel Rodriguez becoming the new Secretary General of the Organization of American States. NOTE: There were "11 hemispheric heads of state and government, the largest such gathering at the OAS since the signing of the Panama Canal treaties in 1977." They were from the Caribbean and Central America. The Associated Press also has photographs of the event.

AFujimori/AToledo Respond: Agence France Press and the Miami Herald (last item) repeat earlier reports that Alberto Fujimori, in an interview from Tokyo, said that he will not be forced to return to Peru to stand trial -- as President Alejandro Toledo wants -- but rather will return on his own schedule. Xinhua News reports that Peru will file a new request for Japan to extradite Alberto Fujimori. "The extradition request was ratified Thursday by Peruvian Foreign Minister Manuel Rodriguez, said Toledo. NOTE: "According to Rodriguez, a new extradition petition against Fujimori will be filed on charges that Fujimori made an irregular payment of US$15 million to Vladimiro Montesinos." See Also: ‘AFujimori Responds’ in yesterday’s Peruvia.

Retiring Shifts, cont.: Dow Jones reports that Alan Garcia "criticized the cabinet's proposals now before Congress aimed at overhauling the nation's pension system. This week, the legislature started a second round of debate on modifications to the heavily subsidized state pension plan known as Law 20530, or the cedula viva." Said Garcia, "We consider that for the moment the bill that the executive branch sent doesn't satisfy the desire to improve pensions for those who receive the least, and doesn't give guarantees there will be annual increases, however small." NOTE: "About 295,000 pensioners are eligible under Law 20530, which ties payments to the salary of the person currently holding the post. The pension also passes to a spouse and subsequently to any unmarried daughter." ALSO: Deputy Finance Minister Fernando Zavala said on CPN radio that, "We believe that if the pension reform is approved in Congress we will in the future have a more viable system and be able to make adjustments for those who receive the least." See Also: ‘Retiring Shifts’ in yesterday’s Peruvia.

Art in NYork: The New York Times reviews and a press release announces The Colonial Andes: Tapestries and Silverwork, 1530-1830, "a sumptuous, groundbreaking exhibition at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art that opens next week." NOTE: "The Spanish influence on Incan crafts began with the books, prints, domestic objects and textiles imported from Spain by the conquerors. It continued with instruction from priests and from European artists and artisans (including Flemish weavers and German silversmiths), as well as with commissions from wealthy colonists. And it was further complicated by the influx of Chinese objects, textiles and even artisans that began when Spain opened sea routes to Asia. By the early 1600's, the Spanish had re-established workshops like those overseen by the Incas (although conditions were much harsher). By late in the century, what scholars now call the Andean Baroque was in full swing." ALSO: The Colonial Andes "is the first in-depth combined examination of the silverwork and textiles that were the fruit of this development. It was organized by Elena Phipps, a textiles conservator at the Met, and Johanna Hecht, an associate curator in its department of European sculpture and decorative arts, in consultation with Cristina Esteras Martín, a specialist in Spanish colonial silver. It presents about 150 examples of tapestry and silverwork from public and private collections on four continents, many of which have never been exhibited before, much less together." NOTE: "Their display is enhanced by a selection of queros, the handsome wood beakers (whose richly colored designs are inlaid, not just painted on) from which the Incans drank maize beer for pleasure and ritually to seal agreements, and by large paintings, almost all depicting objects similar to those in the show." NOTE: "Weaving, having preceded ceramics in the Andes cultures by about 1,000 years (usually it was the other way around), enjoyed an unequaled centrality." See Also: The accompanying catalog of the exhibit; and an article related to the exhibit in the Met Museum’s Met Objectives.

Art in Wash DC: The Washington Post notes that a new exhibit, "New Images: Peru Century XXI," will be at the Art Muesum of the Americas at the Organization of American States from Septembe 27 through October 8.

Saving Penguins: The Associated Press has a photograph of Peruvian biologist Lyda Lizette Bermudez Larrazabal feeding a baby Humboldt penguin in Lima’s Hauchipa Zoo (otherwise known as Centro Ecologico Recreacional Huachipa). "The private zoo is trying to boost the population of the endangered birds, which are native to the coast of southern Peru and northern Chile. The penguins are threatened by coastal dwellers, who eat them, and fishermen, who see them as competitors and kill them off." See Also: A series of photographs of the Huachipa Zoo.

Newmont’s Troubles, cont.: LatinAmerica Press reports from Cerro Quilish, "a mountain that Latin America’s top gold producer estimates has 3.7 million ounces of gold but that residents of Peru’s northern Cajamarca region say harbors a key underground water reserve [which] has been converted into the Achilles heel of a long-standing relationship of mistrust between the miner and the community, observers say." And the New York Times reports on Newmont Mining’s work in Indonesia reporting that "the Indonesian police had detained six of its officials after questioning them about accusations of pollution from a company mine in northern Indonesia." It concludes that "the detentions represent another setback for the company, which has also been accused of causing pollution at a major mine in Yanacocha, Cajamarca." See Also: ‘Newmont’s Troubles’ in September 21’s Peruvia.

More Mining: Canadian Shield Resources announced in a press release that that they "retained First Associates Investments Inc. to act as the Sponsor for the Company in connection with the Company's proposed acquisition of 44.7% in Compania Minera Poderosa, a private Peruvian mining company that operates the Poderosa Mine in Northern Peru.

GGutierrez Honored: Florida’s Barry University awarded Gustavo Gutierrez the Yves Congar Award for Theological Excellence which "recognizes the contributions of contemporary theologians working, writing, and teaching, as did Cardinal Yves Congar, OP (1904-1995), in light of tradition and moving the tradition forward in meeting the challenges of the late Twentieth and early Twenty-first centuries." Gutierrez is the John Cardinal O’Hara Professor of Theology, University of Notre Dame (USA) and is a professor at the Universite Catholique de Lyon (France).

LHorna In Davis: Reuters has photographs of Luis Horna, "Peru's top singles player" as he "trains for his team's Davis Cup encounter against Brazil in Brasilia in the Americas Zone Group I playoff from September 24-26.

Which Century? The University of Arizona’s Daily Wildcat suggests that "in eighth and ninth century Peru, a special type of bullfighting was practiced. The matadors fought the bulls on horseback, and the best fighters were women. The women matadors were known as capeadoñas. Juanita Brena, a well-known capeadoña of the 19th century, had a distinctive fighting style: She pursued the bull at full tilt riding sidesaddle."

Tattoo Festival: Reuters has photographs of the 1st International Tattoo and Corporal Art Convention taking place in Lima. "More than 40 tattoo studios from Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, France, Peru, Spain and the USA participated in the first event of this type."


Thursday, September 23, 2004

UPDATE: AFujimori Responds; Sulliden Explorations; New Andes Book
Print Today's Peruvia Here

AFujimori Responds: The Associated Press and the Voice of America reports that former Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori "has scoffed" at President Toledo's demand at the United Nations that Japan extradite him to stand trial on corruption and murder-related charges." He called Toledo's call "a stunt that showed the weakness of the government's case against him." NOTE: The AP quotes from Fujimori's recorded statement to Radioprogramas declaring that Toledo "put on a show for this international forum because [he] can't substantiate an extradition request based solely on suppositions and secondhand testimony." ALSO: "Mr. Fujimori repeated his denials of wrongdoing. He said he is not a murderer, but rather a president who defeated two guerrilla groups during his 10-year term."

Toledo At United Nations, cont.: The United Nations released President Toledo's 5-page speech given at the General Assembly on Monday. Agence France Press, the Associated Press, Japan Today (using the AFP), and Kyodo News Agency all focus on Toledo declaring that Peru "would take Japan to an international tribunal if it does not answer a request to extradite former Peruvian leader Alberto Fujimori." NOTE: The AFP offers Toledo's comments during his press conference "on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly," saying that "Peru has presented already the judicial documents for extradition, and we don't have a clear answer." ALSO: The Japan Today story has a message board at the bottom of the article that includes: "Hey, the US granted asylum (in August) to a Chechen terrorist (yeah, i know America has this "war against terrorism" deal going on). And England played very nice thank-you with Pinochet, who falls into the Fujimori category." "Well Toledo is just as bad or worses than Fujimori ... even Mrs Toledo is under country arrest as her foundation 'CONAPA' and other missing and misappropriated monies are investigated" "Alan Garcia gets filmed kicking marching protestors, and peru's ambassator to spain .. Signor Olivera gives the public 'the finger' and other obscene signs .. heck .. most people in peru actually want Fujimori back as president ... " "Millons of us, indentured, truly desmuelados so call "indians" . The real 5 centuries old victims of "civilization ", progress, catholic church and democracy......... WE DO RESPECT and recognize Mr. Fujimori 's many factual, positive deeds." See Also: 'Toledo at UN' in yesterday's Peruvia.

Toledo Criticizes, cont.: The Washington Times reviews and comments on Toledo's talk at George Washington University in Washington DC and "where he warned that democracy in Latin America is threatened by poverty and ignorance — even in his country, one of the fastest-growing nations in the hemisphere." The paper's 'correspondent' Marion Baillot uses dated poll data to suggest that Toledo's "popularity has plummeted to about 8%" even though the president's talk included polls doubling that number. See Also: 'Toledo Criticizes' and 'Polling Toledo' in yesterday's Peruvia.

Peru and Chile, cont.: Xinhua Net reports from Santiago that "the Chilean Foreign Ministry on Wednesday applauded the meeting between Chilean President Ricardo Lagos and his Peruvian counterpart Alejandro Toledo [at the United Nations in New York] as a sign of improved bilateral relations." NOTE: "The meeting was a result of the efforts by their foreign ministers following a border dispute between the two countries in recent months. During the meeting, Lagos told Toledo that he would take part in the South American summit in the Peruvian city of Cusco in November. After their meeting, Toledo expressed the will of Peru to reacha free trade agreement with Chile. The Chilean Foreign Ministry also quoted Lagos as saying that Toledo will soon visit Chile to regularize bilateral relations. Earlier this month, Peru threatened to resort to the International Court of Justice in The Hague should Chile fail to solve [a maritime] dispute within 60 days through a direct diplomatic approach. See Also: 'Peru and Chile' in yesterday's Peruvia.

War of the Pacific, History: The Guardian reports that "the so-called War of the Pacific, in 1879, involving Chile, Bolivia and Peru should really have been called the Battle of the Birdshit. It was about saltpetre or nitrate and guano, that built up in vast quantities on what was the Bolivian coast. For a while, cheap fertilisers such as guano subsidised the agricultural explosion of the 19th century."

The Beginning of the Andes: The Times Literary Supplement reviews 'Devil in the Moutain: A Search for the Origin of the Andes' by Simon Lamb who writes that "the image of the Andes as a slowly changing, almost living entity begins to form in the mind, a behemoth heaving upwards and distorting itself while cutting off the courses of rivers and warping down the floors of mighty lakes". Richard A. Fortey, a Natural History Museum of London paleontologist, reviews the book and admires a geologist’s attempt to understand mountains, in "an enticing blend of personal adventure and scientific explanation."

Retiring Shifts: BNAmericas reports that Juan José Marthans León, head of Peru's banking and insurance regulator (Superintendente de Banca y Seguros) said that they are "evaluating new rules that would allow pension fund administrators to operate under a multifund system as soon as possible." NOTE: "The regulator has been planning to implement a multifund system for some time, under which affiliates would be able to choose among three pension funds with varying risk and return levels." CITED: Vice-president of the Peruvian AFP [Pension Fund Administrators ] Association, Alfonso De Los Heros Pérez-Albela who "recently expressed doubt that the multifund system would be ready before the end of the year as planned, stating that AFP investment options are too limited by the 10.5% foreign investment limit to sustain a multifund system." See Also: This March 2004 interview with Marthans in Caretas.

Atacocha Troubles: Reuters reports that Pasco-based Compañía Minera Atacocha, Peru's No. 5 zinc and No. 2 lead producer, "will have to close its mine by the end of the year if it fails to persuade locals to let it go ahead with a tailings dam," according to Juan José Herrera Tavara, its CEO. NOTE: Said Herrera, "tomorrow our union is holding a peaceful march to get the support of the local government. Without a permit, we won''t ... be able to continue operations." ALSO: "The company got 700 locals to sign a permit in April ceding it 69 acres to expand its tailings dam, but new local leaders had a change of heart in July and backtracked, saying the plant was too close to the town. Local officials also note that residents have high blood lead levels." NOTE: "The Pasco regional government tried to mediate earlier this week but locals did not turn up for the meeting. Guillermo Olivera Matos, vice president of the Pasco region, said another meeting was planned for Saturday. 'Let''s hope they show up. We want to resolve the problem now,' he said."

EAyllón on USA Tour: Denver's Westword (second item) notes Eva Ayllón tour arrives on Sunday at the Seawell Ballroom. (She plays Toronto and Quebec between now and then.) NOTE: "The music of Peru isn't all Andean pan pipes and guitar-derived charangos, and it doesn't always dress in alpaca. ... Afro-Peruvian music is [Peru's] true sound. Americans would do themselves a favor by delving into Ayllón's upbeat festejo and seminal landó rhythms." The ticket distributor seems to be Los Cabos II, the bar/venue where she played last year.

Kola Real in Mexico: Reuters notes that Mexican "Coca-Cola Femsa, the world's No. 2 Coke bottler with operations in nine countries, is seeing its dominant share of its main Mexican market erode as competition heats up from Pepsi and smaller rivals." NOTE: "Partly from price wars, KOF is losing market share to Pepsi bottlers such as U.S.-based Pepsi Bottling Group, its main soft drinks rival in Mexico, as well as to small bottlers, like Peru-based Kola Real."

Working in Llipllec: Pittsburgh's Post-Gazette reports that "Jeff Barrett, a High School junior, and his mother, Claire Barrett, spent part of their summer helping to build a three-room elementary school in Peru. Four-fifths of the little more than 100 villagers in the tiny mountainous village of Llipllec worked on the project, which was overseen by a group of University of Pittsburgh graduate students. Llipllec is in the central portion of this South American country." NOTE: The expedition was set up by a social organization called Pro Peru, which got the villagers' mayor to sign a contract pledging cooperation." Editorial Note: Please email Peruvia if you know where Llipllec is.

Shopping In Miraflores: The Massachussetts Littleton Independent relates an opinion piece "on a recent trip to Peru, I had occasion to check out the local shops in Miraflores, an 'antiquing' section of Lima. I always find it fascinating to see what other parts of the world are selling in their antique stores." NOTE: "One day during our vacation we went out early, hoping to find some local shops open. No luck before 10 a.m. We found a store with large windows and lots of goodies of interest in sight. We rang the bell to no avail. Next a taxi driver walking by and trying to be helpful rang the bell of the store to see if he could get a response." NOTE: "Our guide Raul Varela Anselmi was kind enough to accompany us to the store and act as our interpreter. Large South American hand carved and painted wooden statues of saints called Santos greeted incoming customers. The almost life size Santos were breathtaking."

Stanford Connections: The Stanford University's Daily report on jetsetting alumni and includes this: "“We had the chance to meet the president of Peru, a Stanford alumnus, during one of the trips I took to South America,” said Rick. “When I lead Stanford tours, I find myself meeting people that I would not otherwise have the chance to meet.”

Euro-Scoreres: The Guardian headlines Nobby Solano in an article: 'Villa's Solano gives free lesson to Rangers.' The Deutsche Press Agency and ESPN report on Peruvian striker Jose Guerrero who "scored both goals for Bayern, whose Bundesliga team qualified on Tuesday with a laboured 3-2 win over amateurs VfL Osnabrueck."

Papitas! The Miami Herald offers a piece on Peruvian potatoes, and suggests that "in isolated farming communities high in the Peruvian Andes, a single farmer may plant as many as 100 varieties of potatoes on his small plot of land (chacra) to safeguard his crop against disease through diversity." NOTE: "Take a potato named puma maki. As its Quechua name indicates, this black-skinned beauty with cream flesh has an uncanny resemblance to a puma's paw." ALSO: For Peruvian cooks, the benchmark of quality remains a mealy potato (papa harinosa) with a white or preferably yellow flesh that will hold well during cooking. Oddly, it's easier to find purple or blue potatoes in Miami or New York than in Lima." The article includes a recipe for Peruvian purple potato and calabaza salad.


Wednesday, September 22, 2004

UPDATE: Toledo at UN; Peruvian University Sold; and More Mining
Print Today's Peruvia Here

Toledo At United Nations: Xinhua Net reports on President Toledo’s talk at opening of the 59th session of the United Nations General Assembly where he called for an enlarged UN Security Council and declared, "The present situation takes place in a crisis of multilateralism, in a context where no isolated power can assure global governance." NOTE: Toledo stated that United Nations’ “decisions must also produce a broader democratic legitimacy and be realistic and pragmatic so that its effectiveness is assured in the maintenance of peace and international security." Separately, the Voice of America reported that in his UN speech, Toledo demanded that Japan extradite the “fugitive ex-President, Alberto Fujimori." NOTE: “Lima submitted a 700-page extradition request to Tokyo last year, but Japanese officials last month asked Peru for more details on its demand.” PHOTOS: Agence France Press, Reuters and the Associated Press all have photos of Toledo at the UN podium; Reuters has him in the Great Hall; the Associated Press has photographs of AToledo, EKarp and KAnnan as well as Toledo/Annan shots.

Toledo at DC Museum: Bloomberg, the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the USA government's Washington File all report that President Toledo was a main speaker at the opening of the National Museum of the American Indian. Quotes by Toledo are cited in Bloomberg ("It has come time to put a human face on globalization and recognize the need for the mutual respect of our cultural diversities") and the New York Times (the museum is a "profound symbol of reconciliation.") The Washington File (followed by PolitInfo) has more detail, reporting that Toledo said "Peru is committed to creating a sustainable development model that integrates native people into its economy [and that] policies that promote the inclusion of indigenous people into the world's economies will allow governments to 'put a human face' on globalization." Most articles mention that he was present because he was "Peru's first popularly elected indigenous leader." The Baltimore Sun called Toledo "a member of the Quechua tribe." The San Diego Union Tribune adds that “the crowd gave [Toledo] a standing ovation.” The Knight Ridder papers report that Toledo “delivered the day's most pointed plea for fighting the structural problems of poverty.” They over-reach however suggesting the Incas had democracy when they note that he's "the first Peruvian Indian elected to lead that country in 500 years.” See Also: 'Toledo in USA' in yesterday's Peruvia and 'Toledo in DC' in Sept. 20's Peruvia. The Associated Press and Reuters have photos of Toledo near the US Capitol, in a hug by Peruvian Naz Turpo, with EKarp and the Smithsonian president, and with USA Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell. The Associated Press has other Peru-related photographs of the ceremonies including Juan Quispe Huatta, Quechua Indian break dancers (Damian dela Cruz and Sebastian Paitan) among other Quechuas.

Toledo Criticizes: Dow Jones and the Miami Herald report that Latin American leaders "united to criticize globalization for failing to bridge the gap between the rich and the poor, and urged global lenders like the International Monetary Fund to allow them to spend more on social projects and infrastructure." The Miami Herald cites Brazil's Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and Argentina's Néstor Kirchner speaking to the United Nations and says that "a similar call came from Peru's president, Alejandro Toledo. 'How much poverty for how much longer can Latin American democracies resist?' he asked a gathering at George Washington University. Toledo said leaders should 'entertain the possibility' of doing a swap between foreign debt and investment in education'." Dow Jones notes Lula's talk at the UN and then focuses on Toledo's remarks, made after accepting an award from George Washington University: "People will not wait 20 more years for better lives. We need to find innovative ways to invest more ... If we don't do that, democratic governability in the region is at risk." Toledo explained his low polling declaring, "I have paid a high political price to reach this point of economic growth." Toledo joked that his latest standing in the polls are up 100% to around 15%. Reuters has photographs of Toledo at George Washington University.

Polling Toledo: Canada's Centre for Public Opinion and Democracy relates the new Universidad de Lima poll which shows "14.9% of respondents in the cities of Lima and Callao approve of Toledo’s performance, a 0.3% drop since August." Methodology: "Interviews to 428 adults residents of Lima and Callao, conducted on Sept. 4 and Sept. 5, 2004. Margin of error is 4.8%." In Spanish: See the Universidad de Lima poll here.

Peru and Chile: ISI Emerging Markets reports that President Toledo and his Chilean counterpart, Ricardo Lagos, "announced Monday that Chile and Peru will soon take the first steps to begin working on a bilateral free trade agreement" as they met during their visit to the United Nations in New York. NOTE: "Toledo added that Chile and Peru complement each other and share common interests as regards accessing US, European and Asian markets." ALSO: "According to Lagos, Chile and Peru currently share an Economic Complementation Agreement (ECA), an accord which prevents double taxation and a third which protects investors." NOTE: "Currently trade between Chile and Peru totals US$1 billion annually. Chile's investment in Peru reach US$700 million each year."

Peru vs. Chile? Jane's Defence Weekly reports that earlier this month, the Peruvian National Police "received the first of 24 upgraded Bell UH-1HP Huey II helicopters provided by the US government. The remainder will be provided by 2007." Separately: Jane's also reported that "the Chilean Army and Air Force are considering the joint acquisition of up to eight refurbished Boeing CH-47 Chinook heavy-lift helicopters, sources in Santiago told JDW. The helicopters are to be acquired under a plan to bolster the rotary-wing capabilities of both services with a single aircraft type."

Currency Worries: Reuters reports that "Peru's Central Bank is struggling to brake the sol currency's rise against the dollar, despite record purchases of the greenback this year, and analysts said the official inflation goal of 3.5% could be in jeopardy." NOTE: "The sol was trading on Tuesday around 3.35 to the dollar -- levels not seen for more than five years." ALSO: "Peru's economy is awash in dollars because of an export boom and that has pushed the sol higher. CITED: Former central bank president Jorge Chavez declared, "There's an existential crisis on the central bank's board. They don't know where to go because sometimes they are concerned with sticking to the inflation target and others they are trying to put a floor on the currency." Chavez now leads Maximixe. Also Cited: Claudia Cooper (Banco de Credito) said "central bank dollar purchases would not be considered bad if they were temporary and not too expensive in terms of high interest rates on its certificates auctions" and Oscar M. Jasaui Sabat (Duff & Phelps) said, "We're having too much export success and the central bank can't change the law of gravity." See Also: Jasaui's 'Clasificacion de Riesgo' presentation here.

Peruvian University Sold: Laureate Education announced in a press release they purchased an 80% interest in Universidad Peruana de Ciencias Aplicadas (UPC), an accredited university with two Lima campuses. NOTE: “Founded in 1994, the university offers undergraduate and graduate programs in Business, Engineering, Law, Communications, and Architecture to approximately 4,500 students.” CITED: William Dennis, President of Latin America Operations for Laureate, declared that "Peru's public university system faces challenges similar to those of other growing countries where the demand for higher education far exceeds available capacity. In Peru's public higher education system, only 17% of university applicants are accepted.” ALSO: In 2003, "UPC generated revenues of $24.1 million driven by enrollment of more than 5,000 students.”

Shell Finished in Peru: Dow Jones, the New York Times and a Shell press release report on the assets sales by Royal Dutch/Shell group. "The company's decision to sell some Latin American downstream businesses, including its retail business in Peru, for example, 'suggests to us the first possible moves in a staged withdrawal from Latin American downstream activities,' according to Merrill Lynch," in the New York Times. See Also: 'Shell to Sell Peruvian Assets' in July 1's Peruvia.

CPizarro is Back: Reuters and a wire story in the Los Angeles Times report that "Claudio Pizarro, the Peruvian striker playing his second match following a long recovery from a cracked skull in July, had two goals for Bayern Munich." The Associated Press has a few celebratory photographs.

Dining in Maryland: The Baltimore Sun reviews the fourth Chicken Rico restaurant, "recently expanded from three D.C.-area locations to a fourth in Highlandtown, sets a high standard for the genre." NOTE: "Chicken Rico has a sunny atmosphere, enhanced by tapestries depicting life and landscapes in Peru." ALSO: "An ample side order of plantains would make a full-course vegetarian meal. The coleslaw, alas, was unspectacular."

On and On: The Korean Central News Agency offers news on Peru. Their complete story is as follows: "The Peruvian Group for the Study of Kimilsungism issued an information bulletin on September 3 on the occasion of the 56th birthday of the DPRK. It contains articles titled "Songun policy and Democratic People's Republic of Korea", "DPRK, a dignified member of the Non-alignment," "Happy Youth Day," "DPRK-Russia friendship growing stronger" and "Bush, tyrant and dictator" and so on."


Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Print Today's Peruvia Here.

Toledo in USA: The Financial Times reports on President Alejandro Toledo's arrival in New York and his meeting with President George W. Bush "to accelerate negotiations on a free trade agreement." FT's interview yesterday with Toledo reveals that the Peruvian government is "aiming to sign the agreement by January" and that "Toledo added that he was personally involved in negotiating the agreement, which he said would go forward regardless of the result of the US presidential election." NOTE: "Mr Toledo wants to use the trade agreement to make Peru less dependent on its gold, silver, copper and natural gas, and to buffer the economy against the price fluctuation of natural resources. His hope is to find a larger market for textiles and farm products such as lemons, asparagus and mangoes." BUT: "This is a daunting task for a country as small as Peru, given competition from China, which is putting pressure on Mexico's larger and long-established textile industry. ... 'We're trying to learn from Mexico's mistakes,' declared Toledo."

Fujimori on BBC: The BBC reports that Alberto Fujimori participated in one of their on-line forums (in Spanish on BBC Mundo) where he declared that "he plans to run for the presidency in 2006." (The UPI follows up on the BBC's story.) Said Fujimori, "the opportunity to return to Peru will come. I have decided to come back to Peru and run in the next general elections in 2006." NOTE: "He declined to reveal how he planned to override the ban on public office."

Newmont's Troubles, cont.: BNAmericas, World Mining Equipment, and Oxfam America (in a press release) review developments with Newmont's Cerro Quilish gold deposit in Cajamarca and report on Thursday's resolution by the Ministry of Energy and Mines "declaring the Cerro Quilish exploration permit issued July 16 this year to be 'without effect'." (See 'Newmont's Troubles' on Sept. 17 and Sept. 18 in Peruvia.) BNAmericas reports that Newmont "supports the Peruvian government's decision to set aside the permit held by its Yanacocha gold mine to explore the Cerro Quilish deposit." According to Newmont spokesperson Doug Hock, "Given the circumstances, it was the right decision. Our focus was on a peaceful solution to the situation." ALSO: "Hock said Yanacocha's legal rights to Cerro Quilish were still in place but that future development would depend on the results of the third party study on the impact Cerro Quilish may have on local water sources." WME notes that Newmont and Peruvian Compañia de Minas Buenaventura "have operated the mine without incident for well over a decade as first gold was poured in 1993." Oxfam states that "Peruvian communities were victorious when Peru's government agreed to in effect, cancel the Denver-based Newmont Mining Corporation's permit for further exploration of Mount Quilish." According to Keith Slack, Oxfam America's Senior Policy Advisor for Extractive Industries, "These events confirm that mining exploration should not happen until trust with local communities has been established and community consent obtained." He added, "We are not opposed to mining investment in Peru. We do support reform of the global mining industry so that it demonstrates greater respect for the human rights of communities affected by mining operations."

Algeria Wants In On Camisea: Reuters reports that Sonatrach, Algeria's state energy group, "wants to join in developing a gas block near Peru's giant Camisea field for export to North America," according to Minister of Energy and Mines Chakib Khelil. NOTE: "Khelil said Algeria, one of the world's leading liquefied natural gas (LNG) exporters, was waiting for negotiations to conclude between U.S. energy group Hunt Oil and the Peruvian government on Block 56." NOTE: Sonatrach is a partner in the Camisea project. See Also: Khelil's visit to Peru in 'Camisea Spigot Turned On' in August 7's Peruvia.

Madre de Dios is a 'Hotbed': BNAmericas reports that it is the Madre de Dios department in southern Peru that is the new "exploration hotbed."

LBozzo's Troubles: Variety reports that Peru's district Attorney Martin Retamozzo "formally filed charges against Laura Bozzo on Sept. 14, requesting a seven-year prison sentence and $4.5 million in fines." Bozzo is a "host of U.S. Spanish-lingo web Telemundo's yakker 'Laura'." ALSO: Bozzo rejected the charges. "I have evidence showing that I never received a penny. This entire case is political and I am going to respond politically. I have lost all faith in my country's judicial system." NOTE: "She declared the set of her TV show in Lima's Monitor Studios as her home and has been living there --- and taping her show --- under house arrest for 26 months." See Also: 'LBozzo Accused' in August 24 and 'Peruvia Editorial on LBozzo' in August 9's Peruvia.

Modern Peruvian Slavery: New York Newsday builds on its reporting from July on the 59 Peruvian men, women, and children "who federal authorities say were held in virtual captivity by three of their compatriots" and places it in a national context with current legislation, government programs and advocacy groups. Today's article is headlined: "Modern-day slavery; Peruvian smuggling case puts national spotlight on industry that authorities say exploits immigrants." NOTE: "Their case is one of the largest human trafficking rings uncovered in the United States, according to federal authorities." CITED: Carmen Maquilon (Catholic Charities); and John Miller, director of the State Department's Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, who said the Peruvian case "is huge." (Only Newsday has done any reporting on this story.) ALSO: "Today, [the Peruvians] are living on their own in houses and apartments on Long Island, adjusting to a new life of freedom." NOTE: Peruvians Mariluz Zavala, her husband José Ibañez, and their daughter, Evelyn Ibañez all still "deny they were operating a trafficking ring." See Also: 'Peruvians Abusing Peruvians' in July 10 and July 6's Peruvia.

LAN Succeeds: The Investor's Business Daily reviews Lan Airlines, a bright star in the troubled airline industry. " It's reeled off four straight quarters of triple-digit earnings growth and double-digit sales growth." NOTE: "The performance of its operations in Peru and Ecuador are key, analysts say, because those countries are a big part of Lan's expansion strategy. [According to Stephen Trent of CitiGroup/Smith Barney], "They are a centerpiece of the company's gradual transformation from simply being a Chilean carrier to being a pan-South American carrier." ALSO: "The more immediate challenge for Lan is how to deal with ongoing conflicts with Peru's government. In June, a judge ordered Lan Peru to stop flying after complaints from local carriers that Lan Peru doesn't meet Peruvian ownership requirements. Aero Continente blames Lan for getting it blacklisted by lobbying officials in Washington, D.C. Lan denies the charge. It also continues to fly in Peru, despite the judge's ruling." See Also: 'AeroContinente Banned' in April 23's Peruvia.

EAyllón On USA Tour: While the Indiana University student newspaper reviews last night's perfromance, the Chicago Sun-Times reviews Eva Ayllón arrival for a concert with an article comparing her to Susana Baca. "We play the same music, but I have a different style. When people see me, they'll understand," said Ayllón. NOTE: Says Ayllón of the early 1990s, "David Byrne went to Peru to search through various labels' archives to select songs from black Peruvians, and that's how I became part of the project" that became The Soul of Black Peru," recalled Ayllón. "But then Byrne came back to Peru to audition artists from [the cd] for his label. He saw all of them, except Ayllón, who was on tour. (The article is titled, 'Not Byrned Up.') ALSO: "I am so popular in Peru, I never had the opportunity to make a more extensive campaign in the United States." On the cajon: "I am happy that they even use it in rock now," she said. "I will be even happier if they realize that it is Peruvian." CITED: Juan Morillo, the disc's co-producer, who was Peru Negro's manager for their tour earlier this year. NOTE: "When she moves to the United States later this year, her fan base should definitely increase. 'I promised that I would never leave Peru, but love won the battle,' she said, laughing. 'So I am moving at age 48, with my two kids, and now I will have more opportunities to present music to rest of the world'." Her husband is "a Peruvian-American Jersey guy." She plays at a Chicago-area Borders at noon today; toight at Park West. Her new album is Eva! Leyenda Peruana. See her tour schedule on her web site.

SBaca and TLibertad on New CD: Putumayo Records announces in a press release their new CD, 'Women of Latin America' which includes Peruvians Susana Baca and Tania Libertad among others. The corresponding tour does not include either artist but you can listen to Baca's Caras Lindas and Libertad's Anda Mareado. Libertad has several concert dates on her web site.

Incas Closed Place Down: Australia's ABC Science Online reports that "Incan pilgrims smashed and burned their own temple, and a tower containing a golden statue of a king, rather than letting them fall into Spanish hands," according to Professors Ian Farrington (Australian National University) and Nohenir Julinho Zapata Rodríguez (National University de San Antonio Abad del Cusco), working in Pambokancha, 30 kilometres from Cusco. "[The Incas] literally closed the placed down. It's the find of a century," said Farrington.

Russians Know Inca Kola: The Moscow Times reports on the rise of 'Russian Cola' with the advertising cola, "Our cola for our people!" NOTE:"Russia is not the first country to take the archetypal American soft drink and give it a vernacular flavoring. Inca Kola became a successful local brand in Peru, and was subsequently bought up by Coca-Cola."

GoalKeeper In GA: Georgia State University reports that Paulo Gutierrez, a sophomore from Peru, and the Georgia State goalkeeper "was named Atlantic Sun Defensive Player-of-the-Week, as announced by the conference office on Monday."

Terrorism in Music: Texas station KXAN interviews musician Sam Baker who recounts (and sings) of a trip he made to Peru in 1986. Baker says: "In '86 I was on a train and the train was, the car, the passenger car that I was in was blown up by, by terrorists, by, that's called the Shining Path in Peru, in Cuzco. And the people I sat with, it was a German boy and his mother and father, they all three were killed as were seven, six others. And I think several others died after that." Baker sings: "Sittin' on the train to Machu Picchu, passenger car explodes; there's not enough time to say good-bye; there's not enough time to know what's gone wrong. God have mercy, I believe my heart has failed; smoke rises through a hole in the roof; the dead say, 'Fare thee well.'"


Monday, September 20, 2004

UPDATED: Saving MPicchu, The Russia Connection, & a Football Summary

Toledo In DC: President Toledo will participate in the inauguration ceremonies of the USA National Museum of the American Indian tomorrow in Washington DC. (See 'Toledo in DC' in September 13's Peruvia.) On Tuesday, he will also be speaking at George Washington University where he will be presented with the University's President's Medal. The Washington DC-based Council of Hemispheric Affairs 'welcomes' President Toledo to Washington in a press release, written by Gabriel Espinosa Gonzalez, that lists several criticisms including a suggestion that the Toledo government has a "continued deference to the international lending agencies;" an accusation that Toledo has "shamelessly took advantage of your indigenous ethnicity;" "your uncontested incompetence;" "you have mortally wounded your presidency and Peru;" "You lied about your intentions, ... and most everything you touted during your 2001 campaign." Also Cited: Olmedo Auris Melgar (CGTP, SUTEP, and Patria Roja); and Apoyo Opinion y Mercado, CPI and Datum's latest polls ("Your popularity stood at a miniscule 14% while your disapproval rate has hovered around 85%"). NOTE: The piece denounces "the continued unjust imprisonment of American ex-college student Lori Berenson." NOTE: This opinion piece also redefines cholo in its barrage of criticism. "He looked Peruvians straight in the eye and told them that he identified with their plight because as a cholo (a colloquial term for native Peruvians)." ALSO: COHA does offer some praise when Toledo "implemented a series of decentralization programs that would grant each region semi-autonomous control over its finances. The Council on Hemispheric Affairs views this as a positive step, but ..."

Saving MPicchu: The USA State Department's Washington File reports on the World Bank's recent loan to Peru "to help the Peruvian government's efforts to improve management of tourism in Machu Picchu and to preserve the site's status as a World Heritage Site." NOTE: "The World Bank said the loan will also be used to help re-settle 60 Machu Picchu families whose homes are highly vulnerable to landslides." CITED: Patricia Harrison, the State Department's assistant secretary of state for educational and cultural affairs. See Also: 'Saving MPicchu' in September 16's Peruvia.

Films In NYC: Juan Alejandro Ramirez's Porter (Sólo un cargador, 2003), a 20-minute short will be shown before another feature film on Thursday, Saturday, and next Wednesday (see schedule here) at the Latin Beat 2004, sponsored by the Film Society of New York City's Lincoln Center. Porter is "a heartbreakingly beautiful meditation about the life, hopes and dreams of a fictional Peruvian porter named Chuqui Orozco. The film is a series of visually stunning scenes primarily taken from the streets in Cuzco and the footpaths through the Andes Mountains to Machu Picchu. Also Showing: Francisco Lombardi's 'What the Eye Doesn't See' (Ojos Que No Ven, 2003), will be shown tomorrow and Wednesday (see schedule here).

The Russia Connection: Russia's Novosti reports that "the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry is hosting a Russian-Peruvian forum on trade and capital investment. The event is part of a Moscow sojourn program of Peru's export promotion commission delegation."

Cuzco - My Kind of Town: The Telegraph interviews John Hemming, a founder of Survivor International, on his love affair with a certain Andean city. "I first saw Cuzco in 1960 and fell hopelessly for this strange city. I have twice lived there for a while, and go back whenever I possibly can. Cuzco never forgets that it was the capital of the mighty Inca empire." He offers tips on his favourite pub and where to stay if you are rich or not-so-rich.

Latin American Systems: The Los Angeles Times offers an opinion piece by Abraham Lowenthal titled "It's A New World and Latin America is on the Map." He concludes, "Washington should not be confused: Latin American nations are potential partners in pursuit of genuinely shared international interests. They can't be taken for granted, but they can be significant allies in a world in which the U.S. needs more support. "

Football Summary: Reuters (final item) reports that "Sporting Cristal beat Alianza Atletico 2-0 with first-half goals from Jorge Soto and Argentine striker Luis Bonnet to go to the top of the championship's second stage. Alianza Atletico dropped to second while Deportivo Wanka went third, beating Atletico Universidad 2-1 in a match where the referee controversially added 10 minutes of injury time. First-stage winners Alianza Lima hit the woodwork three times and missed a penalty, which defender Jose Soto fired over the crossbar, in a 0-0 draw against Estudiantes de Medicina."

Enabled: Virginia's Roanoke Times profiles Sharon Myers who has been dubbed [in Cuzco] the "Goodmother of the Disabled" where the "Cuzco Coraje, the wheelchair basketball association Myers started there, has grown from five to 150 members. The town has cut out street curbs to make it easier to maneuver wheelchairs and crutches because of Myers' recommendation." ALSO: "I'm not disabled unless my environment makes me disabled," explained Myers, who was paralyzed by polio at the age of 3." NOTE: "Sharon is probably making one of the first donations - at least the first one that I know of - of sports chairs to the people of Peru," said Jose Antonio Isola de Lavalle. ALSO: "Her itinerary will include being the guest of honor at the Sports Day in San Isidro."

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