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Chavez Death: Venezuela Mourns, Looks To Funeral And New Election



CARACAS- Though not unexpected, the death of Hugo Chavez after 14 years in power and a nearly two-year battle with cancer, has left Venezeula without a leader. The government announced Wednesday that the funeral for the 58-year-old President was set for Friday, along with one week of public mourning.

The death, officially marked At 4:25pm on Tuesday, was announced (video below) by Vice-President, Nicolas Maduro, who was handpicked by Chávez to succeed him in the event of his passing. Maduro will assume the presidency temporarily until elections are held within 30 days.

El Tiempo notes that Maduro's interim hold on the office violates the Venezuelan constitution, which states that Speaker of the House, currently Diosdado Cabello, should take over.

Former paratrooper Chávez died in the Military hospital in Caracas, where overnight, crowds of supporters held vigil says the BBC. The supporters were chanting “We are all Chávez!”.

InfoBAE reports that Maduro gave a message to the government’s opposition, saying that maintaining peace is crucial during the coming days. He said that the Venezuelan society “is shaken, in pain, crying for their President, mourning a great leader of the country. It’s difficult to meet a human being like Chávez, who gave his life for us. What an immense fight he put up! We will never forget March 5th.”

Hugo Chávez lanzó su carrera política y en 1998, con un 56,2% de los votos, ganó las elecciones #murióChávez twitter.com/NoticiasCaraco…

— Noticias Caracol (@NoticiasCaracol) March 5, 2013

La Vanguardia has a live blog with worldwide reactions and the tributes for El Comandante have been pouring in for the man who assumed power of the country in 1999.

Iranian President, Mahmud Ahmadinejad, said of Chávez: “He was the symbol of all the revolutionaries of the glorious and tragic history of Latin America”. EFE says that Iran has announced a day of mourning for the man that Iran promised “eternal friendship” to in 2012. Vladimir Putin also said that a great friend of Russia had been lost, stating that the relationship between Moscow and Caracas needs to be further strengthened and developed.

Chavez will lie in state for three days in the Military Academy in the capital. The official funeral will take place on Friday, March 8 at 10am local time. Seven days of mourning have been announced says El Nacional.

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Livestream Shopping Is Huge In China — Will It Fly Elsewhere?

Streaming video channels of people shopping has been booming in China, and is beginning to win over customers abroad as a cheap and cheerful way of selling products to millions of consumers glued to the screen.

A A female volunteer promotes spring tea products via on-line live streaming on a pretty mountain surrounded by tea plants.

In Beijing, selling spring tea products via on-line live streaming.

Xinhua / ZUMA
Gwendolyn Ledger

SANTIAGO — TikTok, owned by Chinese tech firm ByteDance, has spent more than $500 million to break into online retailing. The app, best known for its short, comical videos, launched TikTok Shop in August, aiming to sell Chinese products in the U.S. and compete with other Chinese firms like Shein and Temu.

Tik Tok Shop will have three sections, including a live or livestream shopping channel, allowing users to buy while watching influencers promote a product.

This choice was strategic: in the past year, live shopping has become a significant trend in online retailing both in the U.S. and Latin America. While still an evolving technology, in principle, it promises good returns and lower costs.

Chilean Carlos O'Rian Herrera, co-founder of Fira Onlive, an online sales consultancy, told América Economía that live shopping has a much higher catchment rate than standard website retailing. If traditional e-commerce has a rate of one or two purchases per 100 visits to your site, live shopping can hike the ratio to 19%.

Live shopping has thrived in China and the recent purchases of shopping platforms in some Latin American countries suggests firms are taking an interest. In the United States, live shopping generated some $20 billion in sales revenues in 2022, according to consultants McKinsey. This constituted 2% of all online sales, but the firm believes the ratio may become 20% by 2026.

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