Venezuela faces political infighting and the risk of unrest after the death of Hugo Chavez, whose personal brand of socialism left the region’s biggest oil exporter polarized and among the world’s most violent countries.
The Venezuelan government, citing Hugo Chavez’s health problems, canceled a July 5-6 regional summit just hours after broadcasting images of an apparently fit president in Havana, a move that raised fresh questions about the gravity of the socialist leader’s ailments.
As Jim Yong Kim takes over as president of the World Bank, he will find himself at the helm of a poverty-fighting organization where large, emerging-market members no longer need it to finance much of their development.
Venezuela’s government announced the start of electricity rationing in western Zulia state as well as water rationing in Caracas to reduce demand on the power grid, a day after Ford Motor Co. halted production in Latin America’s largest oil exporter.
World Bank President Robert Zoellick said Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez’s “days are numbered” economically and politically and that the region should prepare to move into a new era of democracy on his eventual exit.
During his first two days as Venezuela’s acting president, Nicolas Maduro didn’t lose a chance to swear his loyalty to Hugo Chavez, whether it was hosting a Chinese delegation or visiting his mentor’s coffin for the seventh time.