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LatinNews Daily - 18 February 2019

Main Briefing
On 16 February, the Nicaraguan government led by President Daniel Ortega met a group of private sector representatives along with Cardinal Leopoldo José Brenes Solórzano, Archbishop of Managua, and Bishop Waldemar Stanisław Sommertag, Apostolic Nuncio to Nicaragua...
Andean
On 16 February, three US military transport aircraft carrying humanitarian aid to Venezuela landed in the Colombian border city of Cúcuta...
* Peru’s economy & finance minister (MEF) has announced that in 2018 Peru had one of the highest GDP growth rates in the region...
Brazil
On 16 February, Brazil’s tourism minister, Marcelo Álvaro Antônio, announced the creation of a R$62m (US$16.8m) credit line to stimulate the tourism industry in Brumadinho, Minas Gerais state, following the destruction caused by the collapse of a dam containing mining waste last month.   ..
* Brazil’s central bank (BCB) has released the latest figures from its index of economic activity (IBC-Br), an indication of GDP growth, which put month-on-month growth at 0.21% in December 2018...
Central America & Caribbean
* Ricaurte Vásquez has been appointed as the new Panama Canal administrator by the Panama Canal board of directors...
Mexico
The local authorities in different parts of Mexico reported a series of violent murders over the weekend (16-17 February)...
* The Canadian government has eliminated a controversial 25% tariff on some Mexican steel imports...
Southern Cone
On 17 February, national deputy Rodrigo Goñi, from Uruguay’s centre-right opposition Partido Nacional (PN, Blancos) party, announced that he will file a formal complaint asking organised crime prosecutors to investigate the potential laundering of funds from the Venezuelan government in Uruguay...
* Argentina’s national statistics institute (Indec) has released new figures which show inflation reached 49.3% in January 2019 year-on-year, surpassing the already high 47.6% from January 2017 to January 2018...
Washington Watch
Brazil: From 10-13 February US Navy Admiral Craig Faller, the Commander of the US Southern Command (Southcom), visited the cities of Brasília and Rio de Janeiro where he met with civilian and military leaders to discuss bilateral security cooperation...

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