Peru: Morning News Roundup – Wednesday February 6

Peru’s gas exporting project gets World Bank loan

Peru’s liquefied natural gas exporting project will receive a $300 million loan from the international finance corporation of the World Bank as the Andean country lines up billion of dollars in investment, officials said on Tuesday. The total cost of Peru’s LNG project, which will be supplied by the Camisea field of southern Peru, is roughly $3.8 billion and would be the largest foreign direct investment in the history of Peru. Environmental organizations have fought to block projects using gas from Camisea. Peru wants to develop natural gas as part of a broader plan to gain energy self-sufficiency. Earlier this year, the Peruvian government elevated proven gas reserves in the country to about 15 trillion cubic feet (tcf). (Reuters – click here to read complete article)

Mota to Develop Real Estate Projects in Peru, Jornal Reports

Mota-Engil SGPS SA, a Portuguese construction company, plans to expand into real estate projects in Peru, Jornal de Negocios reported, citing Arnaldo Figueiredo, head of the company’s construction and engineering unit. Mota-Engil wants its Peruvian unit, called Translei, to grow beyond public works and mining infrastructure projects, the Portuguese newspaper said. The company estimates it will invest $3.2 million to build a luxury residential building in Lima, Jornal said. (Bloomberg – click here to read article by Joao Lima)

BBVA Bets on Stronger Sol

Peru’s sol will likely continue appreciating in 2008, according to BBVA, which sees the currency appreciating to PEN2.90 this month and to PEN2.85 by the end of March. “Offshore investors will need to remain at the short end of the local bond curve or with “old “ central bank CDs, while local investors will have access to “new” central bank CDs, based on recent regulation,” notes the shop. BBVA’s recommendations on local Peruvian debt include a 1-year forward sol position starting December 10 2007, which it says has an effective return of. 2.72%. A long Peru 2037 trade recommendation has an expected dollar return of 0.38%. (Latin Finance)

ENVIRONMENT-PERU: "For Sale" Signs in Amazon Jungle

The Peruvian Congress plans this week to debate a draft law pushed by the government that would authorise the sale of vast tracts of deforested, uncultivated land in the Amazon jungle to private companies that invest in "reforestation" efforts. But critics say there is no land registry showing which natural areas could be sold off without hurting the region’s rich biodiversity or affecting local residents who do not hold formal title to their land. The proposed modification of the "law for the promotion of private investment in reforestation and agroforestry", which was to be discussed last week, was postponed on the pretext that the chair of the Agriculture Committee, ruling party lawmaker Franklin Sánchez, was not present. But the underlying reason was that some legislators who support President Alan García are dubious about voting for the amended law, because of the criticism it has drawn from experts, opposition parties, and social organisations, like organised campesinos (small farmers) in the northeastern province of Loreto. (IPS – click here to read complete article by Milagros Salazar)

‘Peru Days’ to aid quake victims

On Aug. 15, 2007, a powerful earthquake killed more than 500 people in the region just south of Lima, Peru. Today, the Kellogg Center for International Studies will start auctioning the work of internationally acclaimed Peruvian photographer Guillermo Rivas to benefit the victims of the tragedy. In exhibition at the Great Hall of the Hesburgh Center for International Studies since Jan. 28, Rivas’ photographs focus on the colorful Feast of the Virgin of Candelaria, which is going on now in the Andean town of Puno, near Lake Titicaca. The artist’s daughter, senior Andrea Rivas Dreyfuss, obtained his permission to organize the exhibit and auction the prints. The display and the silent auction – which starts today and ends Feb. 13 – are part of Peru Days, a celebration of the country’s culture put on by the Kellogg Institute and a group of Peruvian students. (The Observer – click here to read complete article by Dennis Slater)

Peru’s ‘tennis miracle’ looks possible

Of all the newcomer nations to this year’s Davis Cup by BNP Paribas World Group, Peru is the one likely to engender greatest passion. Not only does it have a home tie – unlike other promoted nations such as Serbia, Korea and Great Britain – but its present team is captained by a figure from its past who symbolises the last time the country had a presence on the global tennis map. During his playing career, Jaime Yzaga, now Peru’s captain, was something of a party boy on the mens’ tennis scene. Gifted with a unique talent but minimum height, the small Peruvian was the owner of a delicious one-handed backhand, and every single inch of his 5ft 7in (1.70m) frame was full of tennis. But that didn’t stop him enjoying life on the tour. (Davis Cup – click here to read complete article)