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LatinNews Daily - 15 January 2019

Main Briefing
Development: On 14 January thousands of people took to the streets across Guatemala to express opposition to President Jimmy Morales and his recent decision to terminate the mandate of the United Nations (UN)-backed International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (Cicig)...
Andean
Development: On 14 January, Peru’s President Martín Vizcarra visited an area in eastern Lima which has faced extensive flooding after the rupture of a sewerage pipeline...
*  Veneuzela's de facto president, Nicolás Maduro, has announced a 300% increase in the minimum wage which comes into effect today (15 January), raising it from BS$4,500 to BS$18,000 (US$20.9 at the official exchange rate)...
Brazil
Development: On 14 January, Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro announced that retired army major Vítor Hugo Almeida, a federal deputy from the president’s Partido Social Liberal (PSL), will be the government leader in the federal chamber of deputies...
* Environment Minister Ricardo Salles has said that Brazil will remain in the 2016 Paris Agreement on climate change “for now”, despite some opposition to the international agreement in government...
Central America & Caribbean
* Costa Rica’s President Carlos Alvarado has announced the launch of a highway decongestion project, as part of plans to improve traffic flow and boost the economy...
Mexico
Development: On 14 January, the authorities in Mexico’s Guanajuato state reported that an oil tanker truck from the state-owned oil firm, Pemex, had been held up and stolen by criminals as it passed through the state...
* According to Mexico’s national statistics agency (Inegi), gross fixed investment (investment in physical assets such as machinery and equipment) was up 0.2% in December 2018 compared with the previous month and 1.8% year-on-year...
Southern Cone
Development: On 14 January, the head of Paraguay’s public works & communications ministry (MOPC), Arnoldo Wiens, announced the suspension of the awarding of ministerial contracts following accusations of irregularities in the process...
* According to a report conducted by Manuel Ferreira, Paraguay’s former finance minister (2012-2013), and published by national daily ABC Color, a lower soybean harvest this year will impact the country’s GDP by 0.8%. According to the report, crops and data collected from certain areas where soybeans are already being harvested show yield losses are between 10% and 12% - a figure which amounts to around 1m tonnes...

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