Child mortality in Venezuela: the broader picture

One of the things the Venezuelan government likes to boast the most is how child mortality has gone down since 1999. I am more than happy about that. Still, I wonder: was that not to be expected? I just took the official statistics from the government INE site (2010 is a forecast, I suppose) and plotted them here. In military green you see the Chávez period.
Below you see the reductation rate across the years. From red you se how fast child birth keeps going down.

I let you interpret the numbers. It would be interesting to compare the evolution with other Latin American countries, like I did when we put the Human Development Index in perspective.

Pre-Chávez progress, reduction of child mortality per year
-2.99    -3.09    -3.19    -2.08    -2.12    -2.17    -2.22    -2.27
Chávez's government, reduction of child mortality per year
-3.09    -3.19    -3.3    -3.41    -3.53    -1.94    -1.98    -2.02    -2.06    -2.11    -2.15    -2.2