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SundayJanuary 15, 2012

Latino Daily News: Bringing You the Latest Hispanic Current Events and News Stories 24/7

To reflect the dynamic interests of our audience, Latino Daily News is an online daily news source and virtual cultural center for and about Latinos. We offer the latest news headlines, as well as innovative and insightful Hispanic current events stories, photos, videos, and commentaries from a Latino perspective, 24/7.

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Just In:  Jon Huntsman Expected to Withdraw from Republican Presidential Race, Endorse Romney

Just In:  Jon Huntsman Expected to Withdraw from Republican Presidential Race, Endorse Romney

Photo: Jon Huntsman to Step Down

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Former Utah Governor and Republican presidential contender Jon Huntsman is expected to announce he is withdrawing from the race sometime tomorrow.

Several credible news sources are reporting that he will withdraw and at the same time throw his support behind Mitt Romney.  Both Huntsman and Romney are in South Carolina in preparation for that state’s debate tomorrow in Myrtle Beach and for the primary on January 21, 2012 .

Huntsman had been trailing in all polls and in certain polls only obtained a 1% to 2% following.  Most recently he placed third in the New Hampshire primary, one of his better showings.

Like Romney, Huntsman is a Mormon and former governor.  Huntsman is also a former ambassador to China appointed by President Obama, a position he received a lot of criticism for accepting.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Spain’s Prado Museum to Now be Open 7 Days a Week

Spain’s Prado Museum to Now be Open 7 Days a Week

Photo: Spain Prado Now Open 7 Days

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Spain’s Prado Museum marks the start of a new era on Monday, when it will begin opening seven days a week and on Good Friday, allowing visitors to enjoy its world famous collection an additional 53 days a year and making it the European museum with the most operating hours at 3,542 annually.

The museum will now be closed only on Christmas Day, New Year’s Day and May 1 in an effort to generate more revenue and reduce its dependence on public funds.

Museum officials hope the additional revenues will make up for funding cuts in the 2010-2013 Austerity Plan implemented by the government, allowing the Prado to cover 60 percent of its budget with its own resources, up between 10 percent and 15 percent from the prior period.

The Prado Museum has embarked on a number of major projects since Miguel Zugaza took its reins 10 years ago.

The museum completed an ambitious expansion and modernization project in October 2007, when the new galleries designed by Rafael Moneo were inaugurated.

The Prado is joining a select group of great international museums, including Britain’s Tate Modern and British Museum, the Netherlands’ Rijksmuseum and Van Gogh Museum, and Washington’s National Gallery of Art, that are open every day.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Guatemala Inaugurates New President - Gen. Otto Perez Molina

Guatemala Inaugurates New President - Gen. Otto Perez Molina

Photo: New Guatemala President Gen. Otto Perez Molina

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Retired Gen. Otto Perez Molina was sworn in as the new president of Guatemala for a period of four years (2012-2016) before nine heads of state and representatives of some 98 international delegations.

Congressional speaker Gudy Rivera, a friend of Perez Molina and a fellow Patriotic Party member, administered the oath of office to the new president, who at the ceremony was accompanied by his wife, Rosa Leal de Perez, and his vice president, Roxana Baldetti.

Perez Molina, winner of the November presidential elections representing the right-wing Patriotic Party, or PP, founded in 2000, after concluding a 30-year career in the army, replaced social democrat Alvaro Colom, who concluded Saturday the 4-year term for which he was elected in 2007.

The nation’s new first lady, Rosa Leal de Perez, held a copy of the Political Constitution of Guatemala, on which Perez Molina swore loyalty and fulfillment of his duties as president.

“In the name of the Congress of the Republic and the people of Guatemala, legally, legitimately and solemnly I bestow on you possession of the post of president of the Republic of Guatemala for the 2012-2016 constitutional term,” Rivera said.

After the inauguration, Rivera placed the presidential sash on the new head of state, the final touch accrediting Perez Molina as president of the republic, and handed him the military staff with which he received the rank of commander general of the army.

The new president, who has vowed to crack down on the criminal groups terrorizing this Central American country and relieve the poverty afflicting more than half of its 14.7 million inhabitants, wore a dark suit, white shirt and a light blue tie, all by Italian fashion designer Salvatore Ferragamo.

Meanwhile Baldetti, the first woman to become vice president of Guatemala, was dressed in a black Chanel suit with white accents, a pearl necklace and matching earrings.

Attending the inaugural ceremony, held at a sports center on the south side of the Guatemalan capital, were Presidents Laura Chinchilla of Costa Rica, Michel Martelly of Haiti, Mauricio Funes of El Salvador and Porfirio Lobo of Honduras.

Other heads of state on hand were Colombia’s Juan Manuel Santos, Felipe Calderon of Mexico, the Nicaraguan Daniel Ortega and Desire Delano Bouterse from Surinam, as well as the prime minister of Georgia, Mijail Saakashvil, and Prince Felipe de Borbon, heir to the Spanish crown.

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J Lo and Marc Anthony United to Launch “¡Q’Viva! The Chosen”

J Lo and Marc Anthony United to Launch “¡Q’Viva! The Chosen”

Photo: J Lo and Marc Anthony for Q Viva Launch

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At a Television Critics Association Breakfast hosted by UNIVISION in Pasadena, California, journalists got a sneak preview of the “¡Q’Viva! The Chosen” program, which will debut in the United States on January 28 at 7:00 p.m. (EST) on the Univision network. The program will be produced in English, Spanish, and Portuguese and broadcast in 21 countries through leading networks, including Televisa in Mexico and Caracol TV in Colombia, among others.

Attendees viewed a short film documenting trips that Jennifer Lopez, Marc Anthony, and Jamie King made throughout the Americas over the past several months—from remote villages to major cities—to assemble a multi-national cast that will celebrate Latin music, artistry and dance.

“¡Q’Viva! is a tapestry of the beauty, diversity and cultural richness of Latin America and the Caribbean, and I congratulate all of ¡Q’Viva!’s producers for their vision,” said Luis Moreno, President of the Inter-american Development Bank. “To Jennifer, Marc, and Jamie we give our special thanks and let me say—that you are now officially Cultural Ambassadors for Latin America and the Caribbean.”

The Bank collaborated with the producers of “¡Q’Viva! The Chosen” by supporting the talent search in Latin America and the Caribbean through its youth network, cultural institutions, and other organizations tied to IDB-backed cultural projects. More than 500 candidates from 14 countries participated in the auditions.

Former husband and wife, J Lo and Marc Anthony attended the launch together six months after their split, even sitting together to talk to a critics panel. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

Latinas the Main Victims of Cervical Cancer in California

Latinas the Main Victims of Cervical Cancer in California

Photo: Cervical Cancer and Latinas

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Enjoy this story by Maria Luisa Arredonod for New America Media.

For more than six years, Lilia Fuentes did not get a Pap test. Lilia, whose name has been changed, didn’t think it was necessary since she always felt healthy.

Then, at the beginning of 2010, she went to see a doctor after she started to bleed profusely. The test results were devastating: she had advanced cervical cancer. From that moment on, her life took a 180-degree turn.

The independent and hard-working woman who cleaned houses in San Jose, Calif., had to undergo intensive treatment that left her bedridden. To prevent the cancer from spreading, her uterus and ovaries were removed and she started chemotherapy and radiation. She spent entire days in the hospital, completely isolated.

“Neither her sister, nor her two kids—a 22-year-old daughter and a 19-year-old son—could see her,” recalls Claudia Colindres, who works for the non-profit organization Latinas Contra el Cáncer (Latinas Against Cancer), which offers support for those who suffer from the disease, as well as their families.
Colindres says that despite doctors’ best efforts, the cancer not only did not diminish it became more aggressive.

“She lost a lot of weight and they decided to refer her to a home care program for terminal patients,” she says. “I visited her and the last time I went, I knew I would never see her again. Her skin was yellow and she looked very skinny, very tired.

Lilia died two weeks later, on July 4, 2011.

The family, according to Colindres, is still so upset they refuse to even talk about Lilia, who was 58 years old at the time of her death, originally from Mexico and a single mother.

“At her funeral, the one who looked the most depressed was her sister, who had never lived apart from her. After Lilia died, the family broke up. Her daughter went to live with a friend and her son stayed with his aunt because he was going to school.”

Colindres says that the family is finding it hard to cope with Lilia’s death. They feel guilty for not pressuring her to get tested on time and take better care of her health.

To make matters worse, Colindres adds, they lost the house that Lilia had bought making many sacrifices because they could no longer make the payments.

“Lilia’s mom, who lives in Mexico, cries a lot because she can’t see her again and can’t even visit her grave because they cremated her here and her ashes remain here,” she says.

Lilia’s story illustrates the tremendous emotional, social and economic impact the death of a middle-aged woman has on a family from a preventable disease.

“In general, (these women) are the cornerstones of their homes, the ones who give unity and strength to the nuclear family,” says Alejandra Casillas, an internist at the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program at the University of California in Los Angeles (UCLA).

Although this type of cancer affects all ethnic groups, Latinas are diagnosed with this disease twice as often as Caucasians. They also have the highest mortality rate in California, according to Casillas.

This is because, among other reasons, many Latinas lack health insurance. It is also due to cultural reasons.

“Latinas don’t take charge of their health; they don’t value the importance of staying healthy to support their families,” Casillas observes.

Cervical cancer is the second-most common cancer worldwide and is responsible for 250,000 deaths a year, of which 4,000 are recorded in the United States.

In California, nearly 1,400 women are diagnosed with this cancer and 400 of them die each year. The deaths are needless because cervical cancer is a preventable disease. It can be easily detected through a relatively simple, low-cost test and can be prevented by a vaccine.

Read more at New America Media →

Immigration Deports El Salvadoran Wanted for Murder, Making it 260th Removal of Foreign Fugitive

A man from El Salvador, who was wanted for murder in his home country, was deported and turned over to El Salvador officials on Jan. 6 by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) officers.

Miguel Velis-Cruz, 23, was transferred to the custody of El Salvador law enforcement authorities by ICE ERO officers. Velis-Cruz is wanted in his native country for aggravated homicide. Velis-Cruz’s repatriation to El Salvador follows his Nov. 9 arrest on administrative immigration violations. He was arrested in Hebbronville, Texas, by agents with U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Border Patrol after entering the United States without being inspected.

After he was turned over to ICE, ICE ERO officers checked law enforcement databases and discovered an outstanding INTERPOL arrest warrant for murder against Velis-Cruz.

“Returning this murder suspect is a direct result of our close collaboration with our law enforcement partners in El Salvador,” said Steve Boll, field office director for ERO in Houston. “ICE will continue to use our immigration enforcement authorities to promote public safety.”

Since Oct. 1, 2009, ICE ERO has removed about 260 foreign fugitives from the United States who were being sought in their native countries for serious crimes, including kidnapping, rape and murder. ICE ERO worked with ICE’s Office of International Affairs, foreign consular offices in the United States, and INTERPOL to identify foreign fugitives illegally present in the country.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Angelina Jolie Asks Pedro Almodovar for Job During Golden Globes Event? (VIDEO)

Angelina Jolie Asks Pedro Almodovar for Job During Golden Globes Event? (VIDEO)

Photo: Jolie Ask Director Almodovar for Job?

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Actress Angelina Jolie managed to get a promise from Spanish director Pedro Almodovar during an event in Los Angeles for directors competing for the Golden Globe for best foreign language film that he would include her in one of his future projects.

Jolie interrupted an interview she was doing at the entrance of Hollywood’s Egyptian Theatre to ask Almodovar, who was arriving, for a role in one of his future films.

“When are you going to give me a part? Someday?” Jolie asked the director of “Hable con ella” (2002).

“Don’t worry, you’re young,” a surprised Almodovar replied.

“But you promise that someday?” Jolie said.

“Yes, absolutely. This is a commitment in front of the cameras,” Almodovar said, reminding the actress that they met in Los Angeles when she had just finished “Girl, Interrupted” (1999) and he had released “Todo sobre mi madre” (1999).

Jolie and Almodovar won Oscars for those films, with the American actress garnering the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress and the Spanish director winning the Oscar for best foreign film.

“I love her,” Almodovar said later, adding that he was working on a project set in New York that could be filmed in the United States in English if “the right script” can be found.


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SNL’S ‘Ricky Gervais’ Tells Audience to Check Selena Gomez’ Immigration Papers (VIDEO)

SNL’S ‘Ricky Gervais’ Tells Audience to Check Selena Gomez’ Immigration Papers (VIDEO)

Photo: Jason Sudeikis as Ricky Gervais

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Last night’s Saturday Night Live parodies Ricky Gervais as tonight’s host of The Golden Globes.  SNL’s Gervais was played by Jason Sudeikis and showed what the wild Gervais might say while hosting.

Comments included honoring the true “Golden Globes” Sofia Vergara’s boobs and snickering about Selena Gomez’ immigration status, asking the audience to check out her green card.

Check it out:

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Chile:  Top Latin American Country on 2012 Index of Economic Freedom

Chile:  Top Latin American Country on 2012 Index of Economic Freedom

Photo: Sebastian Pinera, President of Chile

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Chile is the only Latin American country to make the top 10 in the 2012 Index of Economic Freedom, coming in 7th place. 

For over a decade The Heritage Foundation, in partnership with The Wall Street Journal has tracked the march of economic freedom around the world with the influential Index of Economic Freedom. Since 1995, the Index has brought economist Adam Smith’s theories about liberty, prosperity and economic freedom to life by creating 10 benchmarks that gauge the economic success of 184 countries around the world.

This year Hong Kong came in first place followed by Singapore and the United States came in 10th place. 

Chile garnered a top stop above other Latin American countries making its economy the 7th freest in the world.  Its score reflect the country’s improved property rights, freedom from corruption, and monetary freedom.  The Index also notes that Chile continues to be a global leader in economic freedom and its adherence to prudent public finance management practices which have kept budget deficits under control.

The next Latin America country to get a nod from the Index was Uruguay coming in 29th place, El Salvador in 41th, Peru 42nd, 44th for Costa Rica, 45th Colombia, and Mexico came in 54th place.

While the economies of Ecuador (156th), Argentina (158th), Venezuela (174th) and Cuba (177th) came in at the bottom with all of them being recognized as ‘repressed’ economies.

Read more by HS News Staff →

REPORT:  Martin Luther King’s Dream of Racial Equality Not Happening

REPORT:  Martin Luther King’s Dream of Racial Equality Not Happening

Photo: MLK Day Report/Latinos

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The last thirty years of public policy have not produced significant progress toward Dr. Martin Luther King’s dream of racial equality.

According to the Census Bureau, people of color will collectively make up the majority of the population in 2042, thirty years from now. If the country continues along the path that it has been on for the last thirty years, the racial economic divide will remain in 2042 and, in many regards, will be considerably worse. This is the core message of United for a Fair Economy’s (UFE) ninth annual MLK Day report, State of the Dream 2012: The Emerging Majority, released today.

The report examines trends across a variety of indicators including income, wealth, education, employment, health and incarceration. It finds that when the U.S. becomes a minority-majority country, the racial economic divide will remain disastrously large and will threaten the stability of the entire economy.

“The early 1980s marked a turning point in U.S. politics. Reagan sparked a ‘me-first’ ideological revolution in Washington, D.C. and beyond,” says Brian Miller, Executive Director of UFE and a co-author of the report. “The policies since have done little for economic progress for people of color, which should raise great concern as these demographic shifts occur. Without a sea-change in public policy, racial inequality will devastate our economy as people of color become the population majority.”

In 2010, Blacks and Latinos earned 57 cents to every dollar of White median family income. Persistent wealth inequality continues to entrench the racial economic divide. Near the height of the housing bubble in 2007, White net worth was five times greater than Black net worth and 3.5 times that of Latino net worth. The Black-White income divide will be only slightly reduced by 2042 if we do not change course, while the Latino income and wealth gaps and the Black wealth divide will all expand. 

If current trends continue, in 2042, median Black family income will be 61 cents to every dollar of White median family income. Latinos, who account for the majority of population growth, will continue to experience a decline in economic security, earning only 45 cents for every dollar of income earned by the median White family. In addition, Black poverty will be nearly twice as high as White poverty, and poverty among Latinos will be more than 2.5 times greater than that of Whites.

The report argues that the racial economic divide is the legacy of centuries of White supremacy practiced as national policy. “As a nation, we honor Martin Luther King Jr. with a holiday, but we tolerate the perpetuation of racial inequality that he dedicated his life to fighting,” says co-author Tim Sullivan. “The growing share of the non-White population presents an opportunity for Blacks and Latinos to build political power. In this era of extraordinary economic inequality, the fate of the vast majority of the White population is more connected with the economic interests of Blacks and Latinos than with the ruling political elite.”

The report proposes policy solutions to significantly reduce the racial divide. Foreclosure relief, federal aid to states and targeted job creation programs are needed to both combat the economic slump and to reduce racial economic disparities. Longer-term strategies including equity initiatives, wealth-building programs, increasing taxes on the rich, strengthening safety net programs, ending the war on drugs, and humane immigration reform are needed in order to substantially reduce racial inequality.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Gisele Bundchen Highlights Energy Poverty in Kenya, While Hubby Tom Brady Defeats Tebow

Gisele Bundchen Highlights Energy Poverty in Kenya, While Hubby Tom Brady Defeats Tebow

Photo: UN Goodwil Ambassador Gisele Bundchen

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While Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bundchen is working as a UN Advocate her hubby Patriot quarterback Tom Brady gave a sounding defeat to Tim Tebow’s Denver Bronco’s last night in a 45-10 blowout game.

While Tebow’s Broncos go home, the Patriots and Brady, with Gisele cheering him on, will move into the AFC championship game next week - all looking forward to a Super Bowl slot. 

Meanwhile, Supermodel and United Nations Goodwill Ambassador Bundchen has visited Kenya to experience firsthand the reality of energy poverty and to see how lives are being transformed in the East African country by making sustainable energy accessible to those not connected to the national grid.

It’s unjust if people do not have access to electricity. Energy for all is achievable. Just two per cent of global investment is needed,” she added, speaking a week before the global launch of the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All.

She visited Kibera, East Africa’s largest slum, to see biogas centres where human waste is used to produce power and Kisumu in the west, where she took part in collecting firewood and learned about fuel-efficient stoves. She also travelled to the Mount Kenya region in central Kenya, where a micro hydro-electric power station is supplying electricity to over 2,000 households.

“We don’t hear about this and yet the solutions are so simple,” said Ms. Bundchen, who has recently been named the ‘world’s greenest celebrity.’

Read more by HS News Staff →

Dominican Reports 5-Year, $500 Million Investment to Combat Cholera is Paying Off

Dominican Reports 5-Year, $500 Million Investment to Combat Cholera is Paying Off

Photo: Dominican Republic Fighting Cholera

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Following up on a government announcement that US$500 million would be spent to rid the country of cholera in the next five years, Listin Diario reports that during a visit made to specialized cholera centers early this week there were practically no patients.

The number of patients has been reduced to two or three on average with diarrhea, an indication that the disease is under control in the Dominican Republic. The reporter says that the health centers continue following strict monitoring of diarrhea cases to avoid a possible new outbreak.

A leading center, with capacity for 27 beds located at the Luis Eduardo Aybar Public Hospital had only one patient. Another new unit built at the Francisco Moscoso Puello Hospital had two patients being rehydrated, when its capacity is for 10 patients. At the Children’s Hospital San Lorenzo in Los Mina, there were no patients, and of the eight treated yesterday all had been sent home. Physician Pablo Wagner of the Los Mina hospital says that no cholera cases have been reported at the hospital for some time now.

Read more by HS News Staff →

CHECK OUT Madrid’s Transformation of a Highway into an Amazing Park (VIDEO)

Check out how Madrid’s city planners transformed a concrete highway into a 3,000 acre green space filled with 33,000 trees, drinking fountains and one of the city’s largest bike paths.  The Madrid Rio project took almost five years to complete but well worth it for green open space lovers. 

The impressive new park runs along the banks of the Manzanares River and offers a wide selection of sports, recreational facilities for the whole family and 63 drinking fountains to enjoy. The recovery traffic bridges into pedestrian walkways is one of the most amazing aspects of this urban renewal undertaking.

 


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Mexican Singer & Actress Sandra Echeverria New Face of Neutrogena

Mexican Singer & Actress Sandra Echeverria New Face of Neutrogena

Photo: Sandra Echeverria for Neutrogena

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Neutrogena, a worldwide leader in clinically proven, dermatologist-recommended skincare and cosmetics, announced today that leading Mexican actress and recording artist Sandra Echeverria has signed on as its newest U.S. Brand Ambassador.  One of today’s leading Latin stars joins fellow beauty icons Miranda Cosgrove, Jennifer Garner, Vanessa Hudgens, Diane Lane, Hayden Panettiere, Emma Roberts and Gabrielle Union as the latest member of the Neutrogena family.

The internationally recognized actress, singer and songwriter recently starred in the record breaking telenovela La Fuerza del Destino (Destiny’s Strength) which aired on the Univision Network.  She’s also participated in various top-rated telenovelas, airing in hundreds of countries.

Echeverria can next be seen in Will Ferrell’s new film Casa de mi Padre (My Father’s Home).  She also completed shooting Savages, an Oliver Stone film—starring John Travolta, Blake Lively, Uma Thurman and Benicio Del Toro—in which she plays Salma Hayek’s daughter.

Additionally, the young, beautiful and equally talented Echeverria released her first single, the title song from her hit telenovela “La Fuerza Del Destino” is a duet with Marc Anthony and can be heard on the radio and is quickly rising up the charts in the U.S., Mexico and Latin America.

“We’re excited to have an international talent like Sandra join our family to help further bring to life our 2012 multicultural initiatives,” said Susan Sweet, General Manager, Neutrogena.  “She is an inspirational role model to so many women and a fan of so many of Neutrogena’s products.  Sandra exemplifies the Neutrogena spirit and we are thrilled to have her join our family of Ambassadors.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Residental Mortgage Lending in Latin America Gets Boost from International Lenders

Residental Mortgage Lending in Latin America Gets Boost from International Lenders

Photo: La Hipotecaria Latin America

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La Hipotecaria will get a financial package of approximately $20 million from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) to boost residential mortgage financing to low- and middle-income individuals in El Salvador, Panama and Colombia.

The IDB financing comprises a senior, secured and revolving credit line for up to $15 million for the company’s units in the three countries and local currency partial credit guarantees to be issued in Colombia for up to 9.5 billion pesos (equivalent to $5 million). Depending on market conditions, the company may raise an additional $10 million through the IDB loan syndication program.

The financial package provided by the IDB will pave the way for La Hipotecaria to expand its mortgage portfolio while maintaining an adequate balance sheet position, according to Marisela Alvarenga, the IDB project team leader. It will also allow the company to better tap local capital markets to fund its lending, particularly in Colombia where it has recently started operations. La Hipotecaria is expected to finance purchases of as many as 2,400 additional houses annually in the three countries.

La Hipotecaria is a leading mortgage lender in Panama and El Salvador and started operating in Colombia last year. The company is a pioneer in the creation of investment-grade mortgage-backed securities offered through local and international markets to local and international institutional investors, while retaining servicing rights on all originated mortgage loans.

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SundayJanuary 15, 2012