DC event spotlights Latin America's 40 top infrastructure projects

Boosted by strong international demand for commodities, Latin America grew by 5.5% in 2004, and is projected to grow at 4.4% in 2005. Exports increased by more than 25% across the region, lead by Chile's 51% growth. The 3rd Annual Leadership Forum presents the strategic infrastructure projects in Latin America that are critical for sustaining this growth...

WASHINGTON, DC, March 4, 2005 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- The 3rd Annual Latin American Leadership Forum, held March 22-23 in at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in the nation's capital, will highlight the top 40 infrastructure projects in Latin America.

Boosted by strong international demand for commodities, Latin America grew by 5.5% in 2004, and is projected to grow at 4.4% in 2005. Exports increased by more than 25% across the region, lead by Chile's 51% growth. The 3rd Annual Leadership Forum presents the strategic infrastructure projects in Latin America that are critical for sustaining this growth.

Projects in 8 Infrastructure Categories: The Leadership Forum focuses on the best projects in eight distinct project categories: oil & gas; ports & logistics; water and sanitation; digital infrastructure, electricity, mining & logistics, urban mass transit, and strategic infrastructure. Projects address bottlenecks to regional growth, and global competitiveness. Key examples: the Port of Itaqui in Brazil (project value: US$200MM), Mexico's new Manzanillo LNG terminal (project value: $1.2 billion), the extension of Chile's successful concession model to a new generation of projects, and 37 other new business opportunities. Leading firms will also present their procurement plans: Petrobras, Pemex, CFE, Eletrobras, Sabesp, and others.

Speakers - A Forum for Leaders: Dr. Jim Goodnight, President and CEO of the SAS Institute, the world's largest privately-held software company, has been confirmed to present the keynote address on the second day of the Forum. He will join critical financial executives and thought-leaders from around the region, including Jose Dirceu, Chief of Staff to the Brazilian Presidency, three Mexican state secretaries for economic development, top officials from the Export-Import Bank of the U.S., OPIC and the White House, and the top concessions officials from Chile. "The design of the Leadership Forum, and the series of events around the Forum, allows participants to create a true infrastructure marketplace - of projects, financing sources, ideas and relationships," says Norman Anderson, President and CEO of CG/LA Infrastructure.
Leadership Awards and Signing Ceremonies: This year three outstanding projects have been selected for Infrastructure Leadership Awards. Jorge Arrizurieta, President of Florida FTAA, will preside over this unique ceremony, recognizing infrastructure projects that have demonstrated exceptional vision, drive, persistence and results. The U.S. Trade & Development Agency will sign four grants at the Leadership Forum, financing new project feasibility studies in Colombia, Jamaica and Brazil.

Forum Sponsors: The SAS Institute Inc. is the Forum's Platinum Sponsor; Gold sponsors include the AON Corporation, Banco do Brasil, Black & Veatch, Cemex, Global Crossing, Lacaz-Martins, MIGA (World Bank Group), Patton Boggs LLP, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Taylor-Dejongh Inc. and Zenteno-Lira Mora. Additional sponsors include ExxonMobil, the Colombian Coffee Federation, and FedexKinkos. The Inter-American Development Bank will host the Forum reception.

For more information about the Leadership Forum, please visit www.latinamericanleadershipforum.com.

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