News Currents

UNITED STATES

At a May 18 meeting in Oak Brook, Ill., the chiefs of the Big Three US automakers and their five Japanese counterparts agreed to work to find ways to sell more American cars in Japan and get Japanese manufacturers to buy more US-made parts.... The financial condition of the banking industry appears to be brightening. The FDIC's estimate for 200 bank failures this year probably is too high, said Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation chairman William Taylor, the nation's top bank regulator. But Taylor said

it is too early to say that the banking industry is firmly back on the road to health.... State-run car insurance policy systems should be revamped and a single national plan adopted and financed mainly through a 50-cents-per-gallon gasoline tax, the National Insurance Consumer Organization said May 18. The pay-at-the-pump scheme would end most insurance sales and underwriting costs, cover all consumers, and provide incentives to conserve fuel. LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN

Haitians are fleeing their country in record numbers, US authorities said May 18. The Organization of American States (OAS) on May 17 tightened the economic embargo imposed following the coup against Aristide.... US Rep. Charles Rangel (D) of New York was scheduled to meet May 19 with Haitian leaders to reaffirm the US commitment to the re-establishment of democracy, an aide said.... Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori May 18 defended his suspension of Peru's constitutional order at a meeting of the OAS and promised a hemispheric forum to swiftly start on a path back to democracy. Diplomats unanimously approved a resolution that recognized his proposal but fell short of endorsing his plans.

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