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QUEST MEANS BUSINESS

From G-8 to G-20; Iran Prez Reiterates Peaceful Nuke Program; Jargon Busting 'Exit Strategy'

Aired September 25, 2009 - 14:00:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


RICHARD QUEST, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: The more the merrier, goodbye Group of Eight, hello G-20.

From rescue strategy to exit strategy. Tonight we jargon-bust our way out of the economic wilderness.

And we add a bit of polish to the show, I discover the secret to shining in the "World at Work."

It may be Friday, but we still mean business.

Good evening. The saying goes: "Many hands make light work." In this case, the opposite may be true. The G-20 will eclipse G-8. And on tonight's program, we are live in Pittsburgh. We're talking to the number two at the International Monetary Fund, and we will explain this phrase that everyone is now using, what do we mean by "exit strategy"?

A new world economic order for today's changing world, leaders at the G-20 summit in Pittsburgh are expected to announce plans to reshape the world economy. Until now, rich nations, North America, Europe, and Russia, have been able to dominate the debate on what's good for the global economy. That could be changing. More developing nations are given a voice at the top table. Maggie Lake is in Pittsburgh, and Maggie Lake joins us now.

Maggie, the communique is leaking like a sieve, and the gist of what we're hearing is G-20 supplants G-8, and rebalancing of the world economies. What are you hearing?

MAGGIE LAKE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, that is similar, Richard, although we should say those are still drafts. We've really got to wait until the final to sort of see what the language is. And as we know, sometimes that language makes a difference. But clearly this is a more inclusive group, and its scope of what it's focusing on is much broader and longer term. A lot of people were worried coming into it that that would -- that focus on global imbalances was going to overshadow attempts to get some concrete changes to the financial regulatory system. It appears that actually might be the case.

But listen, you've covered loads of these, so have I. And there is always soaring rhetoric about big changes happening. But in the end, I caught up with Jeffrey Sachs, who was here in the hallways as well, from the Earth Institute. He is a frequent guest on this show, and a big economic thinker. And I asked him very frankly, give me a reality check. Are changes really underfoot? Here's what he said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JEFFREY SACHS, EARTH INSTITUTE: Some rebalancing is starting. The fact that this group, which represents about 85 percent of the world economy, is talking about serious rebalancing, is a good thing. It has been -- it's long overdue.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LAKE: So there you go, Richard. He did go on to say it's just talk and there is still a lot of hard work to be done. But he was encouraged in the way things are moving. He would like to see some concrete proposals. But it was an important start.

QUEST: It seems to me that we have now got two very clear views or very clear tracks going. There is the short-term issues. For instance, bank bonuses, regulatory reform, the financial stability board, and then you've got these macro-credential issues of rebalancing. I mean, just saying it -- any news, are we still expecting anything on this exit strategy of when people believe it's necessary?

LAKE: Yes. One of the things that seems to be emerging from what we've heard is that there will be language that continues to vow to keep those emergency liquidity measures, that stimulus in place until a full global recovery is under way. So there is not going to be any talk of exit strategies. They wanted to stay away from that so as to not be premature. It's more than a few areas there seems to be consensus, but we don't expect to see anything about bonus caps. It's not going to make some in Europe happy.

We don't expect to see a lot of strong language on actual changes to financial regulation. They definitely seem to be emphasizing this bigger picture. We do think, though, there will be a little bit of language about bank compensation being tied to longer-term value, targets, as opposed to rewarding short-term excessive risk. But then, you know, what does that really mean?

QUEST: Maggie Lake, who is in Pittsburgh. Have a good weekend, and we'll speak to you on Monday when we get to grips with the communique. Maggie is in New York.

And later in this program, well, you hear us talk again and again and again about this idea of balancing the economies and exit strategies, particularly exit strategies, we'll jargon-bust that for you before the end of the program.

So how do you build a more balanced global economy? This is how you do it. Because this is what it looks like at the moment. This is the G-8 as it is currently composed: Canada, the United States, countries within Europe, and, of course, Russia. Now it looks quite generous in terms of its geographical spread, but it isn't very effective in terms of the economic implications. So add in the BRIC countries, and you end up with Brazil coming in, China, you end up with India, and of course, Russia, which is already there.

Now we are starting to get a bit of a better idea. But take the BRIC countries, add the G-8, and then put in a few others. For example, Argentina, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Indonesia. And you start -- this is what the G-20 looks like. The big winner in all of this was down here, Australia. Australia had very much wanted to get a seat at the major table of global economic discussion. And, of course, it -- you may -- if you added all of that up, you would find there was only 19 countries. What is the 20th in the G-20? The European countries. The Europeans have managed to snarf another seat at the table in their own right.

So G-20 -- oh, it's gone. G-20 takes over from G-8. And everyone asks what does it all mean? Is the rebalancing of the global economy something of significance? At one level, this new move is to be welcomed. It gives geographical, economic spread. But as I told and spoke to John Lipsky, the number two at the IMF, it could also be a recipe for a talking shop.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JOHN LIPSKY, FIRST DEPUTY MANAGING DIRECTOR , INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND: Well, that's potentially going to be a challenge. But it has been obvious, given the economic and financial developments of the last few years, that it's simply not possible to take meaningful decisions about the financial system, about the economy, without including the large and dynamic emerging economies.

Now we saw last -- over the past year, for example, the London summit, that it has been possible to take decisive and even unprecedented action in the context of the G-20. Now the challenge going forward will be to sustain that effective environment and make the G-20 a useful venue. There are some specific decisions coming out of this Pittsburgh summit that are designed to produce that result.

QUEST: Do you believe that the IMF is going to be the main coordinating body for the exit strategy to put together? Because obviously everyone agrees it will have to happen, and somebody has to coordinate and cooperate.

LIPSKY: Richard, I think one of the real insights coming out of the Pittsburgh summit is that the challenges going forward are really much broader than something you'd call exit strategies. It has really got to be a positive agenda of producing balanced growth, of producing structural reforms, of keeping markets open, not just exit strategies and...

(END VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST: Let's leave John Lipsky discussing the G-20 and go to the United Nations. President Ahmadinejad is speaking. We have translation. You need to hear what he says.

MAHMOUD AHMADINEJAD, IRANIAN PRESIDENT (through translator): ... wherever it happens, we are opposed to occupation wherever we are, we are opposed to placing food and medicine embargoes on the people of Gaza who are actually besieged living in their own homes, in their own homeland they do not have water or medicine or food. Children are dying as a result. What exactly should that be the case now?

The reason why we keep talking about this, I have to say, is that the American and U.S. press asks a lot about this. So when you ask me, I have to explain it. If you stop asking, I don't need to explain it either.

QUESTION (through translator): Mr. (INAUDIBLE), from the Iranian (INAUDIBLE). In the name of God the compassionate, the merciful, Mr. President, based on the bitter experience of the five-plus-one group talks with Iran, do you think that in this new round of talks, they are seeking to resolve the problems before us? Or are they really trying to get concessions out of Iran?

AHMADINEJAD (through translator): Well, as you said, we do have a bitter experience of our talks with three European countries in the past. In the five-plus-one, there was only one talk held, last year. Now the bitter memory is there, but we have had talks, we are in favor of talks. And we hope that...

(AUDIO GAP)

AHMADINEJAD (through translator): The proposed package that we have offered for the talks is a very transparent package. We have said explicitly that Iran's nuclear issue belongs to the IAEA, where it will be examined. And our proposed package in (INAUDIBLE) relating to the possibility to qualitatively resolving all (ph) issues, and we, as Iran, added a final proposal to it as well. That when it comes to the -- there are needs, our Tehran reactor needs a fuel that is (INAUDIBLE) to do -- we have 20 percent. And we've said that any of the states that are prepared to sell it, the fuel to us, we are prepared to buy it.

And we've also said that our nuclear experts are ready to speak with the nuclear experts from the other side, and to hold talks with them.

I think that we have a nice set of agenda items on the table to speak about, and I think if the will is there and -- the will to cooperate, everyone will have an opportunity to work with one another.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) ... about 10 days ago, what kind of (OFF-MIKE) will you have (OFF-MIKE)? And what kind of role do you expect for the (OFF-MIKE) new government (OFF-MIKE) case?

AHMADINEJAD (through translator): Well, Japan is an important country. Japanese people are an ancient, old civilization and culture. We think that the Asian-centered or Asia-centric policy declared by the new government is in the right direction. It's a move in the right direction, because Asia has many capacities. It is the center of their culture and civilization. In many respects it includes very big and important countries, and a developed and united Asia will benefit everyone. And we are ready to help carry out this correct policy.

QUESTION (through translator): Reuters, hello. My question is, when will the IAEA be allowed by Iran to visit the new facility and how hopeful are you that the Geneva talks will open the way for this. AHMADINEJAD (through translator): You were supposed to ask one question.

QUESTION (through translator): Well, I've come a long way.

(AUDIO GAP)

AHMADINEJAD (through translator): ... it has rules and (INAUDIBLE), and everything will move according to the agreement. We don't have inspections of the facilities, and we have no concerns. However, when it comes to talks, we are really (INAUDIBLE) somewhere, we really need every effort to ensure that (INAUDIBLE) did this morning would have demanded a really strong reaction, but we showed restraint, decided to refrain from reacting sharply to what has happened this morning, because we really want that fundamental changes will start happening and we will ensure the changes will happen.

And we think that the world does not have the capacity for tensions and flashes (INAUDIBLE) hand-in-hand and manage world affairs well, as well as we can.

QUESTION: Hello, Mr. President, and thank you. I'd like to ask you about something the U.S. ambassador to the IAEA declared just a couple of weeks back, saying that he believes Iran now has what he calls a possible breakout capacity, in essence, if you choose to, you could have a rapid (INAUDIBLE) nuclear weapon. Is that in fact the case?

AHMADINEJAD (through translator): Well, the U.S. ambassador is free to declare his opinions. I cannot comment on the opinions of the U.S. ambassador in the agency. But I would advise that he take a look at issues not based on speculations. This is the same thing that was raised by Mr. Obama. We agree with him. You cannot move ahead with speculations and doubts and rumors about (INAUDIBLE), because it just simply doesn't help build understanding.

Our position with respect to the nuclear weapon is quite clear, we have a very clear position on the subject. We believe that nuclear weapons are against humanity and they are inhumane. And that anyone who pursues nuclear weapons or possesses a stockpile of nuclear weapons, for that matter, is retarded politically, because this bomb belongs to the last century, not this new century. A really (INAUDIBLE) is ineffective in regulating world affairs. The atomic bomb was unable to save the Soviet Union from collapsing or assisting the U.S. forces in Iraq or Afghanistan.

It wasn't even able to assist the Zionist regime to win the war in either Gaza or Lebanon. So then if that's the case, what use does it have except that it is the most massively destructive, criminal weapon out there, these nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons. And so fundamentally we're opposed to them, and therefore in our proposed package we have advised that a full nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons disarmament should be carried out.

We've invited everyone to build a powerful international system in order to complete the disarmament of these weapons.

QUESTION (through translator): Hello, Mr. President. Now a video conference for the (INAUDIBLE) is being held in the next few months. What is your expectation of this conference? And do you think that it will help attain a nuclear-free zone in the Middle East? us or superiority or racism should be put aside by some, and then sure.

(AUDIO GAP)

AHMADINEJAD (through translator): ... to expectations. One that full disarmament takes place around the world. So the writing should basically say that, the nuclear problem must be rooted out. It was once experienced in World War II, hundreds of thousands of innocent people were killed in Japan. And that really dark spot is still in the hearts of humanity. Now this must be broken. The NPT must be revised in such a matter that it is so strong that the bombs -- the possibility of developing new weapons and this dishonesty (ph) listing one.

Secondly, it must pave the way for the possibility of all nations to have access to clean and environmentally-friendly nuclear energy for peaceful purposes. These are also clear (INAUDIBLE) to go hand-in-hand. And this is our expectation of that review process of NPT. That it must be written in such a manner that it does not exclude any government from it, any government that is a member of this planet, must accept these two principles for disarmament and the prevention of the proliferation or production of any new such bombs.

And secondly, the recognition that others have the right, everyone has the right...

QUEST: President Ahmadinejad of Iran speaking there. The news conference being brought to us via broadband, which explains that -- some of the jolts and jerks within it. But at least we were able to hear what the president had to say. He was -- a lot of talking about the new enrichment facilities, saying that Iran hadn't broken any rules and that it had informed the IAEA within 18 months of it becoming operational.

On the wider issue of nuclear weapons, he continued to maintain the line that we have heard before nuclear weapons, he said, against humanity. And there was nothing terribly different about anything on that side of it. But you heard it first, and you heard it only on CNN.

This is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS. I'll be back in just a moment.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: Welcome back. QUEST MEANS BUSINESS. And we are looking at the U.S. market. A down day, not terribly down, but a little bit down around the mouth considering it is a Friday.

Susan Lisovicz at the New York Stock Exchange, looking a bit down in the mouth yourself there. Ah, there's a smile, a Friday smile to cheer us up. Why are we down? It's only 15 points, but is there any particular reason?

SUSAN LISOVICZ, CNN FINANCIAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think there is this sudden revelation on Wall Street, Richard, which I know you would be saying "I told you so," that things aren't quite as blissful as the stock market may have indicated since early March. I really think that sentiment was noticeably changed on Thursday with existing home sales, which was a big drop. We saw a big drop. New home sales, much smaller part of the market showed a marginal increase, but less than the Street expected. And another item today, durable goods or big ticket items, so a fairly sizable drop. And so you're seeing the markets churn a little bit.

As we get closer to October, I might add, which brings its own special kind of baggage.

QUEST: Not only that, but of course, we'll have the Q-25 (ph), and we'll be back to apples in the Q-25. Susan Lisovicz in New York, we'll keep it brief. The market is just down 15 points. Take Susan away.

Let's look at the European markets. We have gold that is now under $1,000 an ounce, it just fell by about $6 to $10. We have oil that's under $68 a barrel. And this is the way the main European markets closed, the gain or loss on the week. The Xetra DAX was down 2.25 -- no, 2.15, 2 1/8 in the old fractions and percentage points on the week. Industrials lost. Banks were also down by and large.

The dollar and the euro played tic-tack-toe all week. The dollar has sort of slipped back a bit today. The euro still is the strong currency against all comers, particularly against sterling. Sterling had a bit of a play against the pound.

The Paris CAC 40 was down 2.3 percent. Again, all of the same factors that were influencing it. And join me, please, over here for the London FTSE where we saw the FTSE down, where banks were down, mines were down, not a terribly bad week for pharmaceuticals. But as you can see, all in all, not better, things were off somewhat.

So this week we introduced you to our new idea, the "World at Work." We've been looking at how people go about ordinary jobs in some very un- ordinary ways. In the good old days, men took time out of busy schedules to keep their shoes spotless. Today the age-old tradition of shoe-shining lives on as part of the "World at Work" series. I went to find Britain's first shopping arcade, and learn not just how to clean your shoes, but how to give them a good roaring polish.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST: A fine pair of shoes, you agree. I've just had them re-soled. So now they need to be polished.

ROMI TOPI, SHOE SHINE OPERATOR: Looked after.

QUEST: But I want a nice -- nice...

TOPI: Nice shine.

QUEST: A shine that you can see your face in.

TOPI: First of all, I'm going to use saddle soap, just to clean the leather perfect, and also to soften up the leather.

It's a shame there is not many like me out there. But I do like to see people with shiny shoes.

I'm using some leather dye here just to blacken the ages (ph).

This is a cream, it's like a moisturizer for the leather.

QUEST: So far we've put saddle soap, moisturizer, a bit of that around the side, and no sign of any polish on the shoe itself yet.

TOPI: It's coming.

(LAUGHTER)

TOPI: Polish itself has a lot of grease (INAUDIBLE) which helps the leather and maintain it. So you just apply the polish nice and soft with a small brush, try to avoid the laces. I've got some lovely brushes here. It's horsehair. And horsehair is the best for polishing shoes.

The main trick is to use the right amount of polish. A little bit on the brushes, and then nice and smooth.

QUEST: Is this really the trick of getting a decent shine?

TOPI: Yes. It's the most important.

Now when the trousers come down, you don't want them to be dirty underneath. So I just make sure I clean all of the sides.

QUEST: What is it about what the service you're providing that you enjoy?

TOPI: I mainly love shoes. I love shoes. And I like to see many shoes. When I shine shoes, I just feel proud that, you know, someone else feels happy about walking down the street with shiny shoes.

QUEST: My mother always said you can tell a lot about someone by the state of their shoes. Today my disposition is rather good thanks to this man and his "World at Work."

(END VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST: And I think you'll agree, these would grace any ambassador's cocktail party or perhaps a G-20 summit. The "World at Work," where we take you to meet the people doing unusual jobs in an unusual way.

When we come back, exit strategies and the Australian federal treasurer, from the G-20, Wayne Swan joins us. QUEST MEANS BUSINESS, getting to grips.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: Welcome back. It is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS, I'm Richard Quest. This is CNN. One phrase you're going to hear a great deal is "exit strategy." They're talking about it at the G-20 in Pittsburgh. If you go down to the woods today, well, you're sure of a big surprise, because in our effort to explain to you what exit strategy really means, we sent Jim Boulden deep into the undergrowth. It was the only place to send him on a jargon-busting mission: "exit strategy."

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JIM BOULDEN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It sounds simple enough, after all, we all know what the exit is, it's the way out, the way we leave.

(on camera): It's the way we get away...

(voice-over): ... sometimes from danger.

In this current economic crisis, it means pretty much the same thing. It's about seeing the woods through the trees, picking the best path out when you've lost your way.

(on camera): But how we exit this recession with the least amount of trouble is causing some very difficult problems.

(voice-over): Governments and central cankers have spent the past several months trying to light a fire under the global economy. By cutting interest rates and borrowing billions, they have done the economic equivalent of pouring petrol on the dying embers of the economy -- trying to spark it back to life.

They have even used the dynamite of effectively printing millions -- so-called quantitative easing -- to really stoke things up. It is work that is starting to pay off. There are signs that the economy is responding.

(on camera): There is fear that with so much fuel fanning the flames, eventually, things could get out of hand and all that money in the system will eventually bring back the black smoke of inflation. And that's something investors definitely don't want to see.

(voice-over): By the time the flames even look like they're getting out of control, it will be too late.

(on camera): So, central bankers have been busy preparing their plans to control all of this combustible material without either killing the fire or letting it get out of control.

(voice-over): It tells investors we know what we're doing, we have a plan, this is the way we are going to dispose of the excess money in the system. The exit strategy -- it's a safe way to ensure that we prevent an inflationary disaster while dealing with the present recessionary one.

(on camera): Hello?

Is anybody there?

I need an exit strategy.

(voice-over): Jim Boulden, CNN, somewhere in the south of England.

QUEST: You know Jim Boulden. He'd never use real dollar bills. Those weren't bundles of real money he was burning. He's far too mean for that.

The G20 Summit has come to an end or is ending. We're going to get the communique any time now.

One of the people in Pittsburgh, the Australian treasurer, Wayne Swan, has been attending the summit in Pittsburgh. He says now is not the time for central banks to even think of removing economic stimulus -- the so- called exit strategy.

Minister, first of all, many thanks for joining us here at CNN on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS. We do appreciate that.

Now we -- now we've just had a jargon buster. We know what exit strategy means.

When do you believe it will be the right time to -- to implement a strategy?

WAYNE SWAN, AUSTRALIAN TREASURER: Well, Richard, ministers here believe very firmly that now is not the time to withdraw fiscal stimulus, that the outlook is still fragile. It's not a time for complacency, but we have had a lengthy discussion over a long period of time about putting in place a framework to exit at some time in the future, when conditions are appropriate.

But what's been so historic about this meeting here today is that the G20 has been confirmed as the premier body for global economic decision- making. And that is, indeed, historic.

QUEST: Let's talk about that, because this is something that Prime Minister Rudd and yourself -- this was a key wish, demand, whatever you want. This has been a goal of Australia, to get the G20 as being the primary body.

But isn't 20 countries simply too big, Minister?

SWAN: Well, it's certainly historic for Australia, because this will be the first time in our history that we have had a seat at the top economic decision-making table, in terms of global economic affairs. But, no, it's not too big, because what the G20 does is bring together the developed world with the developing world. And it brings, really, the structures here into the 21st century. Because we've had an example, through the global recession, of how interconnected we all are. But up until now, many of the developing countries across the globe have not been part of that decision-making process.

And I'm in Pittsburgh at the moment. The big power company here is majority owned by Australian investors. What happens here matters in Australia just as much as it matters in Brazil or China, and, to some extent, vice versa.

That's why we needed to update the economic architecture of the globe and that's why the decision here is so historic.

QUEST: And yet, if we also look at the other part of the communique, we understand you're talking about rebalancing the global economy. Now that is a phenomenally good idea in the sense of the spenders and the savings giving and taking a bit. But you're not in favor of -- you're in favor of monitoring this, but you're not in favor of punishment or any form of penalties is countries don't live up to commitments.

SWAN: Well, it's early days, yet, Richard. We've got to put in place the fine work, because, as you're aware, as we go forward from here, the global economy is not going to be driven by the American consumer. There will have to be, over time, a rebalancing in the economy. And finance ministers will work very hard on that fine work as we go through the years ahead, through the G20 process.

And, indeed, we will be in Britain in November, talking about more of the detail here. But it's a very important decision for the G20 to decide to look not only at exit strategies for the future, but also to have a good, discussion about what the drivers of global growth will be as we go through the years ahead. And that involves a lot of -- a lot of discussion about some very important economic issues.

QUEST: G20 -- and I would be the first to take my hat off, if I was wearing one, to the fact that the G20 process in -- in -- in Washington, in London, (INAUDIBLE) level, has been a tremendous success. But it has been a success, Minister, borne out of crisis. A G20 operating in more normal economic circumstances, as capital -- has capitalist countries and communist countries and potential disagreements.

SWAN: Well, certainly we will have to prove the value of the G20 as we go forward from here. There's no doubt it's been very successful in dealing with the immediate crisis.

But, really, there are some long-term challenges here, where the developed world and the developing world needs to come together as one and to put forward a framework for the future. That's what's so good about today.

But I'll take your point. We will have to prove our worth as we move through the years ahead.

QUEST: Minister, many thanks, indeed.

Good to see you, as always.

Job well done in -- in Pittsburgh and thank you for taking time tonight.

Dwayne Swan joining me there live from Pittsburgh with some interesting thoughts on the new process. (INAUDIBLE) we're all going to have to learn which countries are in the G20. I can usually get to about 17 or 18 and I forget the last two or three. And no, I'm not going to tell you which two or three I always forget.

I must get a new bell.

I'll be back in just a moment.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: It might be a Friday, but it's a very busy day.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is responding to questions about a new nuclear enrichment facility in his country. President Ahmadinejad is speaking right now in New York. These pictures coming via broadband.

He said the facility won't be operational for nearly two years. The IAEA has been notified, in accordance with the rules, so there are no violations. Western leaders on the G20 condemned Iran for the new nuclear site.

And one other note to bring you from what he said, although he's been asked about whether or not Iran has enough fissionable material for a bomb, he has, so far, dodged or declined to answer that particular question.

On this program on Monday, we'll be talking to Jean-Claude Trichet, the president of the European Central Bank. He'll be joining us to talk about, obviously, (INAUDIBLE) related strategy and the like. It will be a busy program.

The weather forecast this Friday evening in Europe and around the world.

Guillermo is at the World Weather Center.

GUILLERMO ARDUINO, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Richard, tell me what you wish for for this weekend.

QUEST: Sun, beautiful blue skies or a (INAUDIBLE) day, that feeling that, you know, the seasons have changed, but (INAUDIBLE).

ARDUINO: You've got it. We'll see on Monday if I was right or not.

Let me tell you what's going on here -- nothing. That's great, great news in here, especially in London. We see some clouds here and there into England, to the north, but London looks fine. And we're going to see that. That's going to prevail. Look at the forecast -- Saturday and Sunday, 22. Chilly in the morning, but come on, you -- you -- the breaks, you know, are very strong and you know what cold weather is like. This is not cold -- 9 degrees in the morning.

It's going to be brisk. It's going to be, what it was you said, when it's nippy -- well, less than nippy. It's going to be more comfortable. And then 22 on Monday and we see crisp -- that's the word I was looking for -- almost crisp, because it's the first cold day of the season. Nine degrees is not bad.

Crisp would be, what, 20 degrees?

So I'm not going to take any complaints.

Also, Richard, in the south, things are getting better. This low is finally moving away. It's moving to the east so the rain is going to move away from Tunisia, where we got a lot of rain. Sicily is in better shape. Yesterday, last night I said Calabria is going to be better and it is. Now it's a turn for Greece and Croatia here, coastal parts in the Adriatic Sea. There's going to be storms. We're going to be seeing, also, rain, of course, and some winds.

Then the windy conditions in the north are much better, so conditions are not really bad. And the Balkan Peninsula, it's now the time to get some clouds over there.

But temperature wise, first the east. It's going to cool down a little bit, just a tad. We were talking, what, like 29 before. Now it's going down to 25.

In London, 21; Paris, 22; Paris is going to be good, too; colder in Glasgow, with 16 only. Maybe some foggy conditions come back to Heathrow, but then it's going to clear when the sun comes out. And Dublin looking fine. Brussels looking OK. Copenhagen maybe with some rain showers and windy conditions, but nothing -- I mean nothing -- look at degrees. This is like Richard's traffic light, well, we have no problems at airports.

And, finally, a twofold story here. In Vietnam, a lot of rain this weekend, unfortunately, and we have a tropical cyclone here over the Philippines. That is likely to go into Vietnam, as well. So we see some problems ahead. I'll let you know.

Richard, have a nice weekend.

QUEST: And to you.

Thank you for that.

A brisk, clean weekend for us all.

Many thanks to you.

Guillermo at the World Weather Center.

And that's QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.

I'm Richard Quest.

We've had a good week of programs, but, frankly, if you weren't there, it wouldn't mean a thing. Thank you for your time and company.

Whatever you're up to in the hours ahead, I do hope it's profitable.

"MARKETPLACE MIDDLE EAST" is next.

Good afternoon.

END

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