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Venezuela opposition cancels rally, fearing violence CARACAS: Venezuela's opposition on Friday canceled a march planned for January 23, saying it feared President Hugo Chavez's ruling party would "incite violence" with its own parallel mass demonstration.   Tensions have run high in Venezuela amid uncertainty over the future of Chavez, who missed his own inauguration on January 10 and has not been seen in public since he traveled to Cuba last month for his latest cancer surgery.   A coalition of several opposition parties said a rally would be held in a public park to commemorate the 55th anniversary of the country's democracy on Wednesday, instead of a previously planned march through the capital.   Chavez's United Socialist Party had called for its own demonstration on Wednesday, which marks the anniversary of the end of the rightwing military dictatorship of General Marcos Perez Jimenez in 1958.   The opposition coalition said its decision to call off the march "reaffirms its commitment to peace," adding that ...

Argentina November economic activity up 1.8pc yr/yr BUENOS AIRES: Argentina's economic growth slowed in November, rising 1.8 percent from the same month last year and matching the median forecast in a Reuters poll, government data showed on Friday.   The EMAE economic activity index, a close proxy for gross domesticproduct, rose 0.4 percent in November versus October. In October, the economy grew 3.0 percent year-on-year and 1.1 percent from the prior month.   Copyright Reuters, 2013 ...
Castro sued in Chile over Pinochet-era arms SANTIAGO: A group of retired Chilean military officers sued Cuban President Raul Castro on Friday, accusing him of financing a 1985 arms shipment to opponents of General Augusto Pinochet's dictatorship.   The suit filed with the Santiago Court of Appeals seeks Castro's arrest and trial for allegedly arming a guerrilla movement to try to overthrow the Pinochet regime, which seized power in a 1973 coup.   Castro is due to visit Santiago later this month for a January 27 ...
Canadian among five kidnapped in Colombia: army BOGOTA: Five water facility workers, including a Canadian and two Peruvians, were kidnapped Friday by suspected leftist rebels in northern Colombia, the army said.   Some 20-25 "bandits" from the leftist National Liberation Army (ELN) stormed the facility, which is used to pump water from an aquifer, and made off with the hostages, General Alejandro Navas told reporters.   The ELN has been at war with the Colombian government since 1964, but is smaller and less well-known than the ...
IMF to meet on Argentina problem on Feb. 1 WASHINGTON: Directors of the International Monetary Fund will meet on February 1 to decide if and how to punish Argentina for not supplying accurate economic data, IMF chief Christine Lagarde said Thursday.   But she also said that the IMF currently has a team of experts inside Argentina to prepare a review of the country's financial sector, suggesting the two sides continue to work together despite the data spat.   "We have had a mission on the ground with ...
Mexican ex-president MEXICO CITY: Harvard University's decision to give former Mexican president Felipe Calderon a fellowship has sparked an outcry from activists who say his controversial drug war makes him unfit for the job.   Mexican poet Javier Sicilia and human rights activist Sergio Aguayo sent a letter to the dean of the Kennedy School of Government this week, saying that Calderon "does not fulfill the ethical standards" to work at the institution.   Aguayo and Sicilia, whose son was killed ...
Venezuela VP to give state of nation speech for Chavez CARACAS: Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro is to deliver the annual state of the nation address to lawmakers on Tuesday in place of cancer-stricken President Hugo Chavez, who is convalescing in Cuba.   Maduro, Chavez's chosen political heir, will give the speech in accordance with the constitution, due to Chavez's authorized leave of absence, the first vice president of the National Assembly, Dario Vivas, told Venezuelan radio.   The constitution stipulates that the president "personally" deliver the state of ...


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ICT 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-2.309 bln
Exports $1.957 bln
Imports $4.266 bln
WeeklyDecember 18, 2014
Reserves $14.04 bln