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Mar 15, 2013

Colombia cenbank has space to cut rate, must be careful: Vallejo

BOGOTA, March 15 (Reuters) – Colombia’s central bank has
room to lower its benchmark interest rate but the seven-member
board must also be careful and consider other factors, said one
of the members, Cesar Vallejo.

Colombian policymakers have slashed the benchmark interest
rate by 150 basis points since mid-2012 to its current 3.75
percent, the lowest in the region, as they battle against
weakening manufacturing data and overseas sales.

Mar 14, 2013

Colombian rebels blow up biggest coal exporter’s railway

BOGOTA (Reuters) – Colombia’s FARC rebels blew up the rail line of Colombia’s largest coal exporter, Cerrejon, on Thursday, taking the train out of commission for up to four days but not impeding exports, military and company officials said.

The latest attack comes only days after Cerrejon and its workers signed a wage deal to end a strike that paralyzed exports for a month and cost the Andean nation millions of dollars in lost royalties.

Mar 14, 2013

Colombia’s biggest coal exporter attacked with explosives

BOGOTA, March 14 (Reuters) – Unknown assailants bombed the
rail line of Colombia’s largest coal exporter on Thursday,
knocking 17 wagons off the rails, the Cerrejon coal company

The latest attack comes only days after Cerrejon and its
workers signed a wage deal to end a strike that had paralyzed
exports for a month and cost the government millions of dollars
in lost royalties.

Mar 8, 2013

Colombia’s ELN guerrillas free two Germans hostages

BOGOTA (Reuters) – Colombia’s second-largest guerrilla group, the National Liberation Army (ELN), on Friday freed two German men that the rebels had held since November, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said.

The two were being transferred by helicopter from a remote jungle location to a nearby airport in northeast Norte de Santander province, and handed over to the German embassy and representatives of Colombia’s government, according to the ICRC.

Mar 7, 2013

Coal workers accept 3-yr wage deal offered by Colombia’s Cerrejon

BOGOTA, March 7 (Reuters) – Workers at Colombia’s biggest
coal exporter, Cerrejon, have accepted a three-year salary
offer, paving the way for the signing of a final deal on Friday
to end a month-long strike, union officials said.

Cerrejon’s walkout since Feb. 7 is the last major supply
problem remaining in Colombia, the world’s fourth-largest coal
exporter, after a regulator last week lifted a suspension on No.
2 exporter Drummond Ltd and a ban on nighttime operations at the
main coal railway.

Mar 6, 2013

Fitch revises Colombia outlook to positive, cites resilience

BOGOTA, March 6 (Reuters) – Fitch ratings agency revised
Colombia’s outlook to positive on Wednesday, citing the
country’s increased resilience to external shocks and favorable
debt dynamics, in a move that could pave the way for an upgrade
in the future.

After 10 years crawling back from junk bond status,
Colombia’s strong economy and security advances against leftist
rebels have helped the country pull itself to the lowest rung of
the investment grade ladder given by Wall Street agencies.

Mar 5, 2013

Colombian lawmakers want time limit to reach peace deal

BOGOTA (Reuters) – Colombia’s government and Marxist rebels must sign a peace deal to end five decades of war by July to give Congress time to pass the necessary laws, lawmakers including a senior member of President Juan Manuel Santos’ party said on Tuesday.

Santos is negotiating peace with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, known as FARC, Colombia’s largest and strongest rebel group, and has said he wants a deal by November.

Mar 5, 2013

Colombian truckers end walkout, pressure still on for Santos

BOGOTA, March 5 (Reuters) – Colombian truckers lifted a
three-day walkout on Tuesday that had disrupted exports and
aggravated fuel shortages in some provinces while coffee farmers
continued to block roads.

Protests, strikes and bombings across Colombia’s commodity
sectors have bitten into economic growth and hurt President Juan
Manuel Santos’ popularity, at a time when he is trying to end a
long war and mulls a re-election bid in 2014.

Mar 4, 2013

Colombia’s Cerrejon, striking coal workers close to wage deal

BOGOTA, March 4 (Reuters) – Striking workers and Colombia’s
top coal exporter, Cerrejon, are close to a wage deal to end a
nearly month-old walkout, the company said on Monday.

The work stoppage has meant the loss of a couple million
tonnes of thermal coal from global markets and cost the Andean
country millions of dollars in royalties.

Mar 1, 2013

Colombia ends Drummond suspension, night railway ban

BOGOTA, March 1 (Reuters) – Colombia has lifted a coal
loading suspension on Drummond Ltd, the country’s
second-biggest exporter of the material, as well as a nighttime
ban at the main railway, a government environmental regulator
said on Friday.

The sector has been reeling from a series of problems that
shut down coal exports from the world’s fourth-largest exporter.
The lifting of the suspensions on the rail line and Drummond is
seen as a relief to both producers and end users.

    • About Jack

      "Jack covers commodities, economics and politics in Colombia. He joined Reuters in 2006 and has since worked throughout east Africa including Kenya, Eritrea, Sudan, Somalia and Uganda. He has also done stints in Iraq."
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