Latin types have always been more expressive in their gestures than us repressed Brits.

Where our leaders prefer a subtle nudge to get their way, Hugo Chavez - who’s ruled Venezuela since 1999 - prefers a metaphorical shove over a cliff (hopefully ‘metaphorical’ anyway).

Chavez, famed for his rambling diatribes over national TV, used his latest address to give a monster plug to a grape juice drink, Uvita, made by state-run Corpozulia.

He also slammed Coca-Cola and Pepsi for being subversive capitalist influences on his otherwise-idyllic socialist utopia (which, incidentally, relies heavily on imports to feed its people).

Then again, as Coke labours against plummeting volumes in the developed world, a ticking-off from Chavez - who long ago supplanted Castro as America’s least favourite leader - might be just what it needs to get US sales moving.