Brazil offers up to $8.7B in tax breaks, credit

BRASILIA, Brazil (AP) -- Brazil's government is offering tax breaks and business credit lines of up to $8.7 billion annually to buffer Latin America's largest economy from the global meltdown.

Central Bank President Henrique Meirelles says Brazil will loan up to $4.3 billion of its $207 billion in foreign reserves to banks, which would loan money to Brazilian companies struggling to pay dollar-denominated debt.

Officials announced the measures Thursday after Brazilian business executives met with President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva to complain about high taxes and frozen credit.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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