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December 20, 2013

EXCLUSIVE interview: Germán Efromovich 
The CEO of Synergy Group is this year's Latin Trade BRAVO Award winner

LBC interviewed Germán Efromovich, CEO of Synergy Group and 2013 Latin Trade BRAVO Award winner. Efromovich discusses what makes Colombia-based airline Avianca stand out from other airlines in the region, the impact of Brazil's World Cup, as well as his plans on developing a private equity fund.

Publication lauded President José Mujica's modesty and the recently approved cannabis law

Uruguay was named country of the year by The Economist. The publication cited the country's path-breaking reform on cannabis, which is set to allow authorities focus on on more serious crimes. The publication also applauded President José Mujica's modesty and boldness, who referred to the new cannabis law as an experiment

Cuba to lift car import restrictions
Only government will be authorised to sell vehicles

For the first time in 50 years, the Cuban government will lift restrictions on car imports, as part of President Raúl Castro's plan to gradually liberalize the country's economy. Cuba's council of ministers agreed to allow cars to be imported for sale at market prices. However, one of the restrictions to remain is that only the government will be allowed to sell cars, Deutsche Welle reports.

Standard & Poor's upgrades Mexico on energy overhaul
Reform bolstered country's growth potential and fiscal flexibility in the medium term

Standard & Poor's upgraded Mexico's credit rating to BBB plus with stable outlook, moving the country higher into investment grade. The company based its decision on Mexico's recently approved energy overhaul, opening its doors to private investment. The upgrade is in line with Fitch's BBB plus and Moody's Investors Services's Baa1, Reuters reports. 

Argentina launches trade dispute against Europe at the WTO
South American nation is challenging a 24 percent duty on biodiesel exports

Argentina filed a complaint at the World Trade Organization against the European Union's anti-dumping duties on biodiesel exports, saying the duties are protectionist and would harm its sales worth $1.5 billion each year. Last month, the European Union imposed biodiesel duties on Argentina and Indonesia at an average of 24 percent, MercoPress reports.


Spain's Sacyr wins $550-million highway bid in Peru Reuters

Argentina threatens to seize Edenor and Edesur on blackouts Bloomberg

VivaColombia confirms new Panama and Peru flights CAPA

Odebrecht and Graña y Montero win largest irrigation project in Peru Bloomberg

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