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  • BRASILIA, March 26- Brazilian authorities on Thursday said they uncovered a tax fraud scheme at the Finance Ministry's tax appeals board that may have cost taxpayers up to 19 billion reais. The news came in the midst of a multibillion-dollar corruption scandal at state oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA, or Petrobras, that has rattled Brazil's political...

  • BUENOS AIRES, March 26- Argentina's waterlogged soy lands will get much-needed sun over the 10 days ahead, firming soils and allowing growers to drive harvesting combines into fields turned to mud by heavy early-March storms, meteorologists said on Thursday. Areas hardest hit by floods are in central-west Santa Fe and central-east Cordoba provinces.

  • Former head of Petrobras testifies in Brazilian Congress Thursday, 26 Mar 2015 | 12:14 PM ET

    SAO PAULO— The former head of Brazil's state-run oil giant Petrobras, told a parliamentary investigative committee Thursday that she and other executives were taken by surprise by the 2014 probe that has revealed a kickback scheme believed to be the largest uncovered in the country's history. "I never knew of any bribes at Petrobras," Maria das Gracas Foster...

  • SAWETO, Peru— Illegal logging persists unabated in this remote Amazon community where four indigenous leaders who resisted it were slain in September, and the lingering fear remains palpable. "It has neither the mandate nor the desire to start protecting the community," American philanthropist Alexander Soros told reporters last week after visiting Saweto...

  • SANTIAGO, March 25- Torrential downpours in the north of Chile, the world's biggest copper producer, have forced companies to suspend operations at several of the area's major mines, putting an estimated 1.5 million tonnes of capacity of the red metal on hold. World No. 1 copper miner Codelco suspended mining operations at its Chuquicamata, Ministro Hales,...

  • Argentina criticizes Citibank for bond payment agreement Wednesday, 25 Mar 2015 | 6:15 PM ET

    BUENOS AIRES, Argentina— Argentina's minister of economy is criticizing Citibank's agreement with a New York court that will allow the bank to process bond payments for the South American country while it exits the custodial business. U.S. District Court Judge Thomas Griesa had ordered Citibank to stop processing Argentine bond payments, leading...

  • SANTIAGO, March 25- The world's number-one copper miner Codelco has suspended all mining operations in the north of Chile due to the state of roads and mine access following heavy rains in the area, the state-run firm told Reuters on Wednesday. Codelco said mining operations at Chuquicamata, Ministro Hales, Radomiro Tomic, Gabriela Mistral, and Salvador had all...

  • BUENOS AIRES, March 25- Argentine growers have harvested about 5 percent of this year's soy, with high yields in the central farm belt compensating for flood damage in northern fields and keeping the country on track for a record crop, analysts said on Wednesday. Strong soybean demand from China and global demand for soymeal livestock feed has kept a floor under...

  • BOGOTA, Colombia— A vibrant stream of giant murals greets people heading in from Bogota's main airport or walking down the cobblestone streets of colonial downtown. Bogota Mayor Gustavo Petro responded by decriminalizing graffiti painting and even offered several public buildings as canvases. Bogota's laissez-faire attitude toward graffiti contrasts...

  • CARACAS, Venezuela— Venezuela is launching a probe into large offshore bank deposits amid a spate of reports that at least $2 billion was siphoned off by corrupt, top-level officials at state-run oil company PDVSA. Chief prosecutor Luisa Ortega Diaz's announcement Tuesday was the socialist government's first response to the determination this month by the...

  • SAO PAULO, March 24- The Obama administration has again invited Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff for a state visit to Washington, a diplomatic breakthrough that both sides hope will lead over time to greater trade between the two biggest economies in the Americas. The dust-up led one former top aide to President Barack Obama to describe Brazil and the United...

  • DIARY-Emerging Markets Economic Events to April 6 Monday, 23 Mar 2015 | 8:02 PM ET

    MAKATI CITY, Philippines- Asian Development Bank to release Asian Development Outlook Report 2015- 0130 GMT. MANILA- Philippines Investment Forum 2015. Philippines President Benigno S Aquino III, Philippines Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima and Philippines Central Bank Amando M Tetangco Jr are the key speakers. PRAGUE- Czech Republic Finance Minister...

  • NEW YORK, March 23- IRB Brasil RE plans to grow more aggressively in Latin America and Africa as part of an expansion that may require Brazil's largest reinsurer to seek an initial public offering or tap an outside partner before 2018, Chief Executive Officer Leonardo Paixão said on Monday. In Brazil, infrastructure projects from factories to shipbuilding...

  • Brazil court accepts charges in corruption case Monday, 23 Mar 2015 | 5:17 PM ET

    RIO DE JANEIRO— A Brazilian judge on Monday accepted federal prosecutors' corruption charges against the treasurer of the ruling Workers' Party in connection to a sprawling graft scheme at state-run oil company Petrobras. Federal magistrate Sergio Moro, in the southern state of Parana, said in an email that party treasurer Joao Vaccari Neto was among 27 people...

  • BOGOTA, Colombia— The new labeling of the world's most-popular weed killer as a likely cause of cancer is raising more questions for an aerial spraying program in Colombia that is the cornerstone of the U.S.-backed war on drugs. The International Agency for Research on Cancer, a French-based research arm of the World Health Organization, has reclassified the...

  • Brazil judge accepts charges against 11 companies Saturday, 21 Mar 2015 | 3:27 PM ET

    Among the companies charged are Germany's Siemens, CAF of Spain, Mitsui of Japan, Bombardier of Canada and Alstom of France. Brazil's antitrust agency, the Administrative Council for Economic Defense has said that the companies used several anticompetitive strategies, such as the prearrangement of offers tendered in bidding processes.

  • 2016 athletes' village set to become luxury housing Saturday, 21 Mar 2015 | 2:10 AM ET

    RIO DE JANEIRO— Developers brag that the athletes' village for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics will rival a five-star resort. "All of the visitors here, the ex-athletes and athletes who know many villages, say this village is amazing," said Mauricio Cruz Lopes, the chief executive officer of Ilha Pura, in an interview with The Associated Press. Cruz, who called this the...

  • SAO PAULO— Brazil's attorney general said Friday he will ask Congress to approve a series of anti-graft measures to combat the "plague that is corruption." Rodrigo Janot made the proposal just two days after President Dilma Rousseff announced similar measures in the wake of last weekend's massive rallies calling for her impeachment and protesting rampant...

  • BUENOS AIRES, Argentina— Argentine President Cristina Fernandez says the country will oblige Citibank to pay bondholders despite a New York federal court ruling forbidding the bank to do so. During a speech Friday, Fernandez said the government would protect the rights of bondholders and force the bank's Argentine subsidiary to make the payments in...

  • BUENOS AIRES, March 20- Argentine farmers have stockpiled more than twice as much soy this year than last, defying a government desperate to increase export tax revenue needed to finance rising state spending ahead of the October presidential election. Growers say the increase in soybean reserves, to 7.4 million tonnes from 3.4 million, comes from a 12- percent...