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Protester releases mice at Brazil graft hearing BRASÍLIA: A hearing into a massive graft scandal at Brazil's state oil firm Petrobras was interrupted Thursday when a protester unleashed a mischief of mice on proceedings, sparking chaos at Congress. Several mice were released by an unknown suspect in the middle of the hearing, interrupting a statement by ruling Workers Party treasurer Joao Vaccari Neto. The small brown rodents created brief chaos among journalists and politicians attending the hearing as they scampered across the floor. Security removed the person responsible for planting the mice, as onlookers said the hearing was being turned into a "circus." The suspect was not named.One lawmaker pointed his finger at a colleague and insisted he be reprimanded. "What happened must not go unpunished," said Jorge Sola, accusing opposition lawmaker Waldir Soares de Oliveira of the Social Democracy Party. "This must be recorded in the minutes," Sola added.De Oliveira denied any involvement. Security officers removed ...

Mexican navy rescues 14 Cubans at sea MEXICO CITY: The Mexican navy rescued 14 Cubans travelling in a barely seaworthy boat off the coast of the Yucatan peninsula, the navy said on Tuesday.The migrants were spotted on Monday by a navy aircraft and later taken to shore aboard a navy ship and handed over to immigration authorities. One of them was a minor.On March 20 the navy reported a similar rescue of 15 Cubans off the coast of the resort city of ...
Venezuela formally charges Caracas mayor CARACAS: Prosecutors in Venezuela formally charged Caracas mayor and opposition politician Antonio Ledezma on Tuesday with staging a US-funded attempted coup against President Nicolas Maduro.The charge comes as Maduro -- an elected socialist -- heads to a regional leaders' summit in Panama Friday at which Obama is to meet with Maduro's key political ally Cuban President Raul Castro."The Prosecutors' Office on Tuesday formally charged Caracas mayor and opposition member Antonio Ledezma, who was arrested February ...
Brazil could freeze up to $25.5bn in spending BRASILIA: The Brazilian government could freeze up to 80 billion reais ($25.56 billion) in planned spending this year to reach its fiscal savings target, a government official said on Tuesday. A stagnant economy and dwindling tax revenues have complicated President Dilma Rousseff's efforts to balance the government's accounts and avoid losing Brazil's investment grade rating. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the government was aiming for a freeze of 60 billion reais, ...
UN panel cuts Latin America 2015 growth forecast to 1pc SANTIAGO: Latin America's economies will grow just one percent this year, hit by a weakening global outlook, a UN commission forecast Tuesday, slashing its previous projection of 2.2 percent.The forecast comes after the region's economies grew an estimated 1.1 percent in 2014, their lowest level in five years, according to the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC).In December, when ECLAC released the regional growth figure for 2014, it predicted a better year ...
Brazil to send police back into Rio slum after boy's death RIO DE JANEIRO: Brazil will send more officers back into a Rio de Janeiro slum amid public outcry over a 10-year-old boy killed during a police shootout, officials said Sunday.Police say Eduardo de Jesus Ferreira died during a shootout between officers and drug traffickers, but his family insists he was killed by police.Tensions have been high since the killing and police fired tear gas Friday to break up a protest over the boy's death. The ...
Fuel storage tank fire near Brazil's Santos port enters 4th day RIO DE JANEIRO: A fire at a fuel storage facility near Brazil's largest port Santos entered its fourth day on Sunday as 110 firefighters worked to stop the flames from spreading further, the local fire department said.Six fuel tanks run by Ultracargo, owned by Brazil's Grupo Ultra, were hit since the blaze started on Thursday morning, sending a column of thick black smoke into the air. Three of them were still burning on Sunday, the ...


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Banking Review 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-2.378 bln
Exports $2.016 bln
Imports $4.394 bln
WeeklyJuly 23, 2015
Reserves $18.677 bln