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May 15  2013

EXCLUSIVE Mexico revving up to become new Detroit 
Major investments by Japanese and German auto makers highlight rapid growth 

Mexico is the new Detroit. That was the claim made by Spain's El País this week in light of two large investments announced by foreign automakers this week. In early May, both Japanese automaker Honda and German automaker Audi announced investments totaling nearly $2 billion in the country's automobile manufacturing industry, Latin Business Chronicle reports. 


CORRECTION Yesterday's lead item on the Latin Business Index was accidentally superimposed by a story from the previous day. Chile once again was number one in the index, as Latin Business Chronicle reported.



Brazil lures record $1.4 billion bids at first oil auction in five years 
Most sought-after blocks received offers of up to 40 times minimum vales for sale

Brazil's first auction for oil and gas rights in five years raised a record $1.4 billion, alleviating fears that government intervention and growth in new global supplies might crimp enthusiasm for the country's oil sector. Offers for the most sought-after blocks were as much as 40 times the minimum values set for the sale, Reuters reports.



Itaú buys Citigroup Brazilian finance unit
$1.37 billion deal boosts presence in credit card market 

Itaú Unibanco Holding will take over Citigroup's Brazilian consumer finance units for $1.37 billion, as the nation's biggest bank by market value expands more rapidly in the local credit card market. With the purchase, Credicard returns to Itaú, which was Citigroup's partner in the company until 2006. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval, Reuters reports.



France's GDF Suez wins $1.125 billion gas plant in Uruguay
Montevideo LNG regasification facility will also supply Argentina

Uruguay awarded French gas and power group GDF Suez a contract to build a liquefied natural gas regasification plant at an estimated cost of $1.125 billion. The plant in the port of Montevideo will have a processing capacity of up to 10 million cubic meters of LNG per day. It will help diversify energy sources in Uruguay, and supply Argentina, Reuters reports.



Mexico's president has a lot of persuading to do to win oil reform
Enrique Peña Nieto promises biggest shake-up since nationalization in the 1930s

Enrique Peña Nieto, Mexico's reform-minded president, has proposed what could be the biggest shake-up of his country's energy industry since the government nationalized the sector in the 1930s. But when it comes to reforming Pemex and the oil industry, most people would agree he still has a lot of persuading to do, the Financial Times reports.




  • Templeton's Mobius says Brazilian growth to speed up Bloomberg
  • YPF and Chevron chiefs in talks on energy deal in Argentina Dow Jones
  • Cuba prepares corruption trials for foreign businessmen Reuters
  • India's Hero motorcycles launches in Latin America Business Standard
  • Mayan temple in Belize bulldozed to make gravel for road Bloomberg


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