Despite initial concerns that Asia's financial downturn could spill over into other emerging markets, the crisis has had no impact on the creditworthiness of Latin America, according to rating agencies.

"If anything, sovereign ratings in Latin America have continued to improve, at least in some countries like Argentina and Mexico, while Chile has remained consistently strong," said Manuel Lasaga, president of Strategic Information Analysis Inc., a Miami consulting firm that compiles sovereign ratings for banks.

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