Return to Transcripts main page

Connect the World

Leaders to Tackle Climate, Coronavirus and Economy; Threat to Russian Journalists May be Mutating; Taiwan's President Speaks with CNN; Reports: Fuel Industry Misled the Public on Climate Change; Biden Makes Case for Scale-Back $1.7T Economic Plan; Biden: "Nobody Got Everything They Wanted, Including Me". Aired 11a-12p ET

Aired October 28, 2021 - 11:00   ET




ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN, Abu Dhabi. This is "Connect the World" with Becky Anderson.

BECKY ANDERSON, CNN HOST, CONNECT THE WORLD: The group of G20 world leaders is supposed to help ensure global economic stability and sustainability but

as fractures grow between its members, can it still be a force for change? I'm Becky Anderson. Hello and welcome back to "Connect the World".

Leaders from the world's richest economies are making their way to Rome at least some of them are. This weekend is the first in person meeting the G20

since the Coronavirus pandemic started the stakes couldn't be higher U.S. President Joe Biden stopping on Capitol Hill before he leaves for Rome next


The summit will focus on quote people planet and prosperity meaning economic recovery and health after the pandemic and of course the climate

crisis. Well, as nations look at ways they can step up on the climate the world's largest polluter won't be part of that conversation.

Chinese President Xi Jinping is among those not planning to attend in person. So what tangible results can we expect from this G20 meeting?

Leaders may come in with good intentions but CNN's Nic Robertson tells us there can be gaps between what they say and what they do.


NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR (voice over): Rome is ready but some invitees are not. President Putin of Russia to be a no show.

President Xi of China too, Mexico's PM -- can't come to Rome they say because of COVID issues at home. Last year's G20 in Riyadh pandemic

restrictions kept everyone away.

ROBERTSON (on camera): Rome was supposed to be different the first face to face for G20 leaders since Japan hosted the Summit June 2019. But now

rather than a meeting of big rivals, it could be a lot less frosty even so it won't be an easy ride.

ROBERTSON (voice over): COVID topics specifically vaccine and equality along with climate change will dominate. Equality for women and support for

small and medium businesses will also be on the agenda at stake to the reputation for these world leaders' summits for delivering on what they


A year ago G20 leaders promised to use their wealth to help poorer nations get vaccines. Since then, Russia, China, the U.S. and others have shipped

vaccines to developing nations. But summit rhetoric then and since has become detached from ground reality. The UK's Former PM one among many

calling on today's leaders to match words with action.

GORDON BROWN, W.H.O. AMBASADDOR, GLOBAL HEALTH FINANCING: Boris Johnson promised at the G7 that he was going to vaccinate the whole world. But

since then, so little has happened.

ROBERTSON (voice over): The G20 nations have deep pockets accounting for 80 percent of the world's GDP, many facing increasing pressure to give

vaccines to the developing world now, ahead of booster shots at home.

ANTONIO GUTERRES, UNITED NATIONS SECRETARY-GENERAL: It's allowing variants to develop and run wild condemning the world to millions more deaths and

prolonging an economic slowdown that would cost trillions of dollars.

ROBERTSON (voice over): COVID is a hot topic on Rome streets to share his anger with the government's handling of the crisis. Europe's strictest

vaccine to work policy, bringing the pandemic under control and ending economic uncertainty will no doubt help focus leader's minds here.

But absent President Xi and Putin physically at the table, speeding a joined up COVID solution seems a stretch.


ANDERSON: Nic Robertson joining me now from Rome. COVID climate in the cost of averting that crisis and a whole other slew of issues, not least that of

Iran, for example, as we understand the Iranians are now prepared to get back into talks towards the end of November.

There is a busy schedule for those who will attend this meeting in Rome. But those who are not attending are a story that quite frankly is

overshadowing this meeting. Why is it that the Chinese and indeed the Russians -- the Russian President Vladimir Putin have decided to give this

one a pass Nic?


ROBERTSON: Well, they both say that they've got issues back home with -- to do with COVID. You know, Russia is seeing a very big spike in COVID, at the

moment that they're the country is on a sort of a, a stay at home work policy for about a week or so.

So, yes, there are, you know, reasonable grounds for both of these leaders to say, look, we need to manage the situations back at home. But G20 is

followed by COP26 and Glasgow, the climate summit; climate is going to be on the agenda here.

And as you were saying, before, you know, China's a big offender. It's said that it's not going to scale back its coal, you know, coal fired power

stations anytime soon. So they both these countries would come in from a lot of international pressure now, because they're not here. It doesn't

mean that there aren't going to be other tensions around the table.

I mean, President Biden, and President Macron of France, they got a lot to talk about that sub deal that, you know, France had with Australia lost it,

the United States in the UK. And as you say, Iran will be again, one of the sort of side issues here, bilateral trilateral meetings, pull aside

meetings, which, which frankly, have become the big thing at these big summits is what can be achieved bilaterally or with a few others on the

margins Becky.

ANDERSON: G20 group of world leaders, let's remind ourselves and our viewers, what it was set up to do is supposed to help ensure global

economic stability and sustainable growth and given where we are at and as we move out of this pandemic period, or maybe not, as the case may be, you

know, clearly there was a hope that this meeting would be well attended.

You make a very good point, not everybody needs to be there in person, but everybody needs to be at the table as it were. What's the impact of the

Chinese and Russians deciding to opt out?

ROBERTSON: Less comprehensive agreements, less deeper and more frank conversations about why or on what points of cooperation that the leaders

can find. I mean, we know that in advance of the leader summit, you've had the finance ministers, you've had health ministers, and you've had trade


And there are many other meetings that sort of go into essentially put all the ingredients in the pot for the final communique. But it's generally

left to the leader, sometimes the bargain to barter with each other, to pressure each other around the table so you don't get such a comprehensive


Look, the world is a significantly more joined up place, supply chains are going to be an important issue for President Biden, you know, China's going

to see the supply chain issue hit its manufacturing, as much as Europe is going to see Chinese manufacturing and supply chain issues hit their

Christmas stockings, if you will, the Christmas presents for children this year.

It's also joined up and the G20 is supposed to get on top of that it's supposed to say look, where the we hold 80 percent of the world's GDP, we

account for 60 percent of the world's population, we these 20 nations, including the EU, have a responsibility to make sure that the world isn't

even an equitable place.

Because we all these big nations, democratic nations, at least suffer from the effects of migration without a joined up global economic solutions that

Russia and China contribute these bigger issues that underpin the difficulties, political difficulties around the world at the moment for

many leaders, migration being one of them, and don't get solved.

It's only trading the world as a globe, not just for climate but for the economy and having everyone leveled up is one of the terms that Boris

Johnson likes use these days. That's what the G20 is supposed to do. And it hasn't been measuring up in the way that it would like to in the past.

ANDERSON: Yeah, and that global supply chain crisis that you allude to at the very heart of what we are seeing in so many of the developed countries,

which is inflationary pressure, and other countries, of course, around the world grappling with pandemic debt burdens.

So there is no doubt it would be great to see as many people around that table as possible. Look, Joe Biden will be there that's what we're being

told. There is much skepticism as to whether he can quite frankly make good on his promises, promises that he made when he became the U.S. president

not least on his foreign policy file.

It was a summer from hell, wasn't it the messy withdrawal from Afghanistan, the fallout from the alphas deal and others contributing to this sort of

alienation of America's allies. And then of course, he's still got what's going on in the states.


ANDERSON: He needs to get this economic plan sorted with the Democrats before he can get on with anything back at home. What's the perception of

Joe Biden? What's the perception of Washington, as we move towards this meeting and the climate meeting in Glasgow?

ROBERTSON: Particularly among allies, but even, you know, less, less friendly nations like China and Russia. You know, Biden was expected to be,

there was a really high expectation, it was expected to be some kind of antidote for President Trump to get the United States back on track. And

that's how he built himself when he came out to the first big summit the G7 this summer face to face with other leaders.

That was the message that was the agenda. But now he's coming to this the next big round of world leaders summits, essentially having to explain

himself explain how he got it so wrong on the submarine deal with Australia that's really upset France?

How he has got it so wrong on Afghanistan and upset so many allies? And allies, who were worried about where the United States was going under

President Trump, now see President Biden essentially following many of that sort of what they will see as isolationist policies.

But also recognize that he's having such difficult political issues back home, within his own party that will potentially could cause the Democrats,

you know, a second term in the presidency, which could put Republicans possibly even President Trump back in the presidency in a few years-time.

United States, international allies and partners who sit around the table with President Biden here, don't see the United States the same way that

they saw the United States five or six years ago as a continuity as the sort of big standard bearer for democracy and all the issues that the G20

aspires to.

But the United States is in is in itself weakened and has become less reliable. And that's the reality that President Biden is walking into now.

And some of it of his making and that's a greater difficulty for him.

What three years is a long time to run on a presidency still, but this has been high expectations for President Biden, that frankly, haven't been met

and have now turned to disappointment and looking at his troubles at home, wondering what he really can deliver?

ANDERSON: Nic's in Rome, thank you! To discuss Mr. Putin's absence from that meeting, and more, let's bring in CNN's Sam Kiley. So Vladimir Putin

grabbing the headlines for his decision not to pitch up either in Rome or indeed at that climate meeting in Glasgow, it doesn't matter.

SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It doesn't matter domestically, as far as Vladimir Putin is concerned. Indeed, it plays

pretty well. Remember, this keeps getting pointed out -- pointed out to me more than 70 percent of the country think he's doing a good job.

One of the ways he does that is to make sure that he's always center stage, not often the left or right wing of any of these leadership conferences and

his main priority, I think according to many analysts here is an early that he hopes and future bilateral meeting with Joe Biden that would put him

very much on center stage.

And of course, he's using the issue of COVID to stay away from both of those summits, both the COP26 and the G20 which is a problem here. Just

today here in Moscow, there's been a series of restrictions have been imposed a stay away from work regime has been imposed here a couple of days

earlier than the rest of the country again, mandated by Vladimir Putin as they tried to get a grip on COVID Becky.

ANDERSON: How's this all playing out in the Russian media Sam?

KILEY: Well, the Russian media is largely muzzled. It is suffering very deeply from a series of attacks effectively by Putin and his supporter's

right across the board. This has been going on for many years, but I spoke recently to the Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, the Editor of one of the main

opposition newspapers here and he talked in this interview about a pernicious new development. This is how it playing out.


KILEY (voice over): This is an act of defiance. Novaya Gazeta is printed three times a week but all day every day it staff fear that Russia's

government will stop its presses. The newspapers' Editor Dmitry Muratov has won this year's Nobel Peace Prize.

The fight for free speech has already cost six of the papers writers their lives. The Kremlin denies any attacks on journalists. Many other Russians

have died mysteriously in the years since the killing of one of the nation's most celebrated correspondents.


KILEY (on camera): It's been 15 years since Anna Politkovskaya who was a scourge of the Putin Administration was murdered. But now it seems the

threat against journalists is mutating.

KILEY (voice over): An old school summons to the papers daily planning meeting, held under the threat of new legislation that has designated more

than 80 publications and individuals, so called foreign agents who must declare their foreign funding.

DMITRY MURATOV, NOBEL PEACE PRIZE WINNER: While in the 1990s and the early 2000s, journalists were killed by hired assassins. Now it is a policy of

soft strangling that is happening with the help of the foreign agent's law. When a media outlet is declared undesirable, or it has to declare oneself a

Public Enemy, which means it effectively stops you operating. Many journalists now have to leave Russia.

KILEY (voice over): He even raises the issue with Russia's president.

MURATOV: For many, this status undoubtedly means they are an enemy of the motherland.

VLADIMIR PUTIN, RUSSIAN PRESIDENT: This law does not ban anyone from having one's own opinion on an issue. It is about receiving financial aid from


KILEY (voice over): Designated a foreign agent TV Rain, a holdout independent channel has to put this red warning sign up ahead of every

segment and every tweet.

TIKHON DZYADKO, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, TV RAIN: We're being called traitors, we're being called salons agents. We are agents of our viewers.

KILEY (voice over): Police rates like this the home of the editor of the new site, the insider has become routine. And now the publication has been

labeled a foreign agent. He's now in exile, and he fears being abducted or worse.

ROMAN DOBROKHOTOV, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, THE INSIDER: Everybody understands that this has been the toughest times for Russian journalism since Soviet Union

even since actually starting zero.

KILEY (on camera): Now Putin, as I said, is popular in this country, but he's making sure that any kind of unpopularity that might be out there gets

as little publicity as possible. And as many of people who analyze his behavior here in the Kremlin say he's playing a very, very long game,



ANDERSON: Sam Kiley is in Russia, he is in Moscow. President Putin then knots going to G20 nor is the Chinese president China's tensions with

Taiwan, though likely to be on the agenda, certainly for Washington, ahead on this show.


WILL RIPLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Is Taiwan safer today than it was when you became president in 2016?

TSAI ING-WEN, TAIWAN PRESIDENT: If it's a threat from China, is increasing every day.


ANDERSON: CNN's Will Ripley sits down with Taiwan's president for an exclusive interview.



ANDERSON: Well we've been talking G20, which of course is kicking off in just two days' time this weekend's meeting in Rome is the first time that

the G20 is in person since the COVID pandemic.

Were high on the list of course, tensions between Taiwan and China, the Chinese government, reiterating his long standing opposition to any

official and military contacts between the U.S. and Taiwan.

China's foreign ministry spokesman accusing the U.S. of destabilizing the region by and I quote here, "Flexing its muscles in the Taiwan Strait". All

those cutting remarks come after Taiwan's president spoke to CNN exclusively in Taipei.

In our first international TV interview and almost two years she said, rising tensions between Beijing and Taipei bring, "The most challenging

time for the people of Taiwan".

Well, this comes as Beijing steps up its military pressure over the democratic island just off China's southeast coast. Will Ripley joining me

now live for more on what was your exclusive interview with the President and what she had to say, Will?

RIPLEY: She had a lot to say. You know, it was really an eye opening experience to spend a couple of days with President Tsai Ing-Wen, a lawyer

a scholar who kind of fell into politics, and has a very pragmatic and precise approach to the way that she deals with this situation.

And yet, even someone who so carefully measures and controls every single word. She did not mince words, when she talks about the danger and the

threat that Taiwan is facing, facing right now.


RIPLEY (voice over): At this temple in Taipei, prayer and politics go hand in hand for Taiwan President Tsai Ing-Wen.

TSAI ING-WEN, TAIWAN PRESIDENT: Normally when I go to the temple, there are 100s of people there, well; I will shake hands with each one of them.

RIPLEY (on camera): People are remarkably happy at ease.

ING-WEN: You have to give them a sense that there's somebody there to take care of them.

RIPLEY (voice over): Elected in 2016 Tsai Ing-Wen won reelection by a landslide last year on a promise to keep people safe from what she calls a

growing threat across the Taiwan Strait.

RIPLEY (on camera): Is Taiwan safer today than it was when you became president in 2016?

ING-WEN: If it's a threat from China, is increasing every day.

RIPLEY (voice over): The Mainland's massive military 2 million strong more powerful than ever, China flew 150 war planes near Taiwan in just five days

this month.

This democracy of more than 23 million governs separately from the Mainland for more than 70 years since the end of China's Civil War, still seen as a

breakaway province in the eyes of Beijing's communist rulers who have never controlled the island.

China has pressured most of the world to sever formal diplomatic ties with Taipei. Chinese President Xi Jinping says reunification is only a matter of


RIPLEY (on camera): Are you interested in speaking with President Xi? Would you like to have more communication with him?

ING-WEN: But more communication will be helpful. So that would reduce misunderstanding, given our differences, differences in terms of our

political systems. We can sit down and talk about our differences and try to make arrangement so that we'll be able to co-exist peacefully.

RIPLEY (on camera): Your predecessor, as you know, did meet with President Xi. Why do you think that things? The communication has really gone south

since 2016?

ING-WEN: Well, I think the situation has changed a lot and China's plan towards the region is very different.

RIPLEY (voice over): That plan includes war threats over Taiwan, clashes with Japan and the East China Sea and militarizing manmade islands in the

South China Sea, posing a direct challenge to seven decades of U.S. military supremacy in the Indo Pacific.

In response, the U.S. ramped up arms sales to Taiwan, selling the island $5 billion in weapons last year. President Tsai confirms exclusively to CNN

U.S. support goes beyond selling weapons.

RIPLEY (on camera): Does that support include sending some U.S. service members to help train Taiwanese troops?

ING-WEN: Well, yes, we have a wide range of cooperation with the U.S. airing at increasing our defense capability.

RIPLEY (on camera): How many U.S. service members are deployed in Taiwan right now?

ING-WEN: Not as many as people saw.

RIPLEY (voice over): Defense Department records show the number of U.S. troops in Taiwan increased from 10 in 2018 to 32 earlier this year. The

State Department asked for more Marines to safeguard the unofficial U.S. Embassy in Taipei.


RIPLEY (voice over): Any U.S. military presence in Taiwan, big or small is perceived by Beijing as an act of aggression. State media says when reports

surfaced earlier this month of U.S. marines training Taiwanese troops, China released this video, a training exercise targeting Taiwan

independence and interference by external forces, like the U.S., a warning for President Joe Biden, who vowed to defend Taiwan at this CNN Town hall

last week.

RIPLEY (on camera): So are you saying that that the United States would come to Taiwan's defense, yes or no attack?

JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: Yes, we have a commitment to do that.

RIPLEY (voice over): The White House later walked back Biden's comments. They seem to contradict the long standing U.S. policy of strategic

ambiguity, leaving U.S. military involvement in Taiwan, an open question.

ING-WEN: People have different interpretation of what President Biden has said.

RIPLEY (on camera): Do you have faith that the United States would defend Taiwan if the Mainland were to try to move on Taiwan?

ING-WEN: I do have faith and given the long term relationship that we have the U.S. and also the support the people of the U.S. as well as the

Congress and the administration has been very helpful.

RIPLEY (voice over): Taiwan's defense minister says China could launch a full scale war by 2025. He says military tensions are the worst in more

than 40 years.

ING-WEN: We have to expedite our military reform so that we have the ability to defend ourselves and given the size of Taiwan compared to the

size of the PRC developing a symmetric capability is the key for us.

RIPLEY (on camera): How prepared is Taiwan today?

ING-WEN: We are trying to make us stronger in every aspect and increase our military capability and our international support.

RIPLEY (voice over): Support bolstered her says by Taiwan's critical importance to the global supply chain. The island is a world leader in

semiconductors. Taiwan was Asia's fastest growing economy last year. A fact President Tsai proudly points out over lunch.

ING-WEN: This is one of my favorite foods.

RIPLEY (voice over): Despite everything, she appears calm and confident.

RIPLEY (on camera): You talked about how really the situation is so complex now.

ING-WEN: That it is very complex. This is probably the most challenging time for people of Taiwan.

RIPLEY (on camera): You read the outside headlines, the most dangerous place on earth.

ING-WEN: We read these reports as a reminder to us as to what so the threats that were under and we have to get ourselves better prepared, but

we're not panic. We're not anxious because I have gone through so many difficulties in the past.

RIPLEY (voice over): She says Taiwan's future must be decided by its people, the people who've worked hard over the last 70 years to build the

world's only Chinese speaking democracy, a democracy under growing threat.


RIPLEY: And that is why President Tsai says this island needs to train them need to be prepared. She's the first Taiwanese president in more than 40

years to confirm the presence of U.S. military trainers on this island. Her defense minister later confirmed it as well, when he was speaking to

Taiwan's parliament, although he made it clear that they're not based here.

In his words, they're just here as part of a kind of cooperation between United States and Taiwan, which bought $5 billion in weapons from the U.S.

last year, as that report just mentioned, Becky, and there are other arms purchases happening this year.

So they're getting lots of weapons, they're getting training and they're trying to prepare themselves as best they can.

But it is an if you think about it pretty overwhelming task when you're outspent 15 times by a neighbor, about 100 miles away with one and a half

billion people and 2 million in the army. And a whole lot of missiles pointed right here at Taipei right now that could arrive in a matter of

minutes if a conflict would break out.

ANDERSON: Really good way to put it betters myself. That was terrific access, which provided us really good analysis and insight into exactly

what is going on at the heart of what is such an important story. Will, always a pleasure. Thank you very much indeed. We're taking a short break

back after this.



ANDERSON: Well, in a short time, President Joe Biden will board Air Force One bound for the G20 summit in Rome before that hit that though and before

he heads out. He does plan to address the American people about his economic agenda and the path forward for the spending.

Bill has been pushing Congress to pass and we are waiting for Joe Biden to speak. These are live pictures, he will speak here. And when he does, we

will bring that to you. When that's done, it's a busy day for him today.

It's off to Italy, where some diplomats say he will be at a disadvantage, because so few of his ambassadors has actually been confirmed. There are

dozens awaiting confirmation being held up by two Republicans. It's a situation not helped by those Republicans holding up these nominations

after the G20.

Though he will head to Glasgow, Scotland for this year's COP26 Climate Summit will climate change is at the top of the agenda in the U.S.

Congress. So they're not only because there are parts of the climate clean bill that have been watered down likely in this in this bill that he's

trying to get pushed through.

But specifically, today whether the fossil fuel industry misled the public about the climate crisis as a whole the heads of six major fuel companies

and trade groups are taking questions today about whether they put profits over a climate solution.

And this comes after reports that the fossil fuel industry created confusion and cast doubt on the science behind climate change my colleague,

Rene Marsh with the details.


RENE MARSH, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Increased floods and flames. Scientists linked to climate change have caused death and destruction

nationwide. But lawmakers say the fossil fuel industry has misled the public on the energy sectors role for decades.

In one leaked 1998 memo this one from the oil industry's most powerful lobby the American Petroleum Institute, it lays out a multimillion dollar

communications plan for the industry. It states, "Victory will be achieved when average citizens understand uncertainties in climate science".

CAROLYN MALONEY, CHAIRWOMAN, HOUSE OVERSIGHT AND REFORM COMMITTEE: They spent billions of dollars lobbying or trying to stop any meaningful change

in Congress, which they were successful at doing and really putting out false information very similar to the tobacco companies.

MARSH (voice over): In this 1978 internal memo Exxon scientist James Black wrote, present thinking holds that man has a time window of five to 10

years before the need for hard decisions regarding changes in energy strategies might become critical.

Despite the warning more than two decades later Exxon took out this full page New York Times ad titled Unsettled Science which argued little is

known about the effect of climate change positive or negative.


MARSH (voice over): Documents also show the energy industry heavily funded contrarian scientists like really soon and junk science theories like this.

WILLIE SOON, ASTROPHYSICIST & CLIMATE CHANGE DENIER: For polar bears, I think essentially, you do want to watch out for ice too much ice is really

bad for polar bears.

MARSH (voice over): More recently, this July an Exxon lobbyist was caught on a secret recording, admitting the company had used shadow groups to

fight early climate science efforts.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's nothing illegal about that.

MARSH (voice over): Exxon CEO Darren Woods responded to the footage by saying the comments "In no way represent the company's position on climate

policy and its commitment to carbon pricing".

GEOFFREY SUPRAN, RESEARCH FELLOW, HARVARD UNIVERSITY: This is a labyrinth of people and money connecting fossil fuel company's trade associations,

think tanks and PR firms, all feeding into an echo chamber of climate denying media, blogs and politicians.

MARSH (voice over): The fossil fuel industry's messaging has evolved to include social media. The industry is using Facebook to target Americans

with messaging based on their demographics and interest.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We know there's an urgent need to tackle climate change.

MARSH (voice over): Some users could see ads similar to this one from shell that touts their net zero plans by 2050 and this one from BP promoting

methane regulation. Meanwhile, the American Petroleum Institute a trade association, funded in part by Shell and BP uses Facebook's advertising to

target conservatives in key states such as Arizona with anti-climate policy ads.

That's according to influence map, a nonprofit independent think tank that is analyzed corporate spending and Facebook ads.

SUPRAN: So this sort of speaking out of both sides of their mouths is a contemporary and ongoing means by which fossil fuel companies divide the

public and politicized the politics of global warming.


ANDERSON: Well, that was Rene Marsh reporting for you and do count on CNN to get you any updates from that congressional hearing, keeping one eye on

that another eye on what is going on at the White House.

Joe Biden is set to address the American people on his economic plan before he heads to Rome for the G20. And he will do that there. And when he does,

we will bring that to you. Let's get you up to speed and some of the other stories that are on our radar right now.

And Sudan's army chief and coup leader, who you see here, has appointed a transitional Foreign Minister Mariam Al-Sadiq, gave his first meeting today

in Khartoum to ambassadors from different countries. And that comes a day after seven international envoys met with Sudan's Prime Minister at his


Abdalla Hamdok reportedly is under guard there after he and his wife were released from custody on Wednesday. The envoys say he is in good health

they are calling for full restoration of his liberty. Speaking to CNN just a short time ago the President of the World Bank explain why the bank has

frozen funding to Sudan, have a listen.


DAVID MALPASS, WORLD BANK PRESIDENT: Unfortunately, Sudan's taken a giant step away from the transition that they were doing they were transitioning

from, from a dictatorship to a civilian led government. So I'm deeply concerned about the developments of this week.


ANDERSON: David Malpass, the World Bank President there in Sudan just a month or so ago. Israel's defense ministry is push forward plans to build a

further 3000 new homes for Jewish settlers in the West Bank. And that follows another announcement of 1300 new units. The U.S. State Department

says it "strongly opposes the expansion of settlements and views further building as damaging to peace prospects between Israelis and Palestinians".

Well, following weeks of negotiations, Lebanon has finally finalized a deal to get electricity from Jordan that is according at least to the Jordanian

energy ministry. Gas will be delivered through a pipeline that runs through Syria despite U.S. sanctions against the Syrian government.

Lebanon state electricity company has been supplying as little as two hours of power a day since July because of severe fuel shortages there. -- with

"Connect the World", I'm Becky Anderson. It is 39 minutes past seven. From this our broadcasting hub in Abu Dhabi coming up meet the company looking

to eliminate plastic from food packaging, that after this.



ANDERSON: Well, this week is part of our "Call to Earth" initiative, we visit London based startup, Notpla the company which stands for not plastic

is attempting to reduce our dependency, particularly on single use plastics with a revolutionary new biodegradable material, have a look at this.


PIERRE PASLIER, CO-FOUNDER AND CO-CEO, NOTPLA: The Burmese plastic is that it's indestructible. It's a material that will stay around for hundreds of

years. So it's really, really performant. But we use it for the wrong reasons. We use it in places where we throw away something after just five

minutes of use. And that's really this problem we're trying to solve.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: According to the U.N., every year 300 million tons of plastic waste is generated.


ANDERSON: Alright, let's get you to Washington where Joe Biden is about to address the American public on his economic plan. Let's listen to him.

BIDEN: I'm pleased to announce that after, after months of tough and thoughtful negotiations, I think we have an historic, I know we have a

historic economic framework. It's a framework that will create millions of jobs, grow the economy, invest in our nation, and our people turn the

climate crisis into an opportunity to put us on a path not only to compete, but to win the economic competition for the 21st century against China and

every other major country in the world.

Its fiscally responsible, it's fully paid for. 17 Nobel Prize winners in economics have said it will lower the inflationary pressures on the

economy. And over the next 10 years, it will not add to the deficit at all. It will react to reduce the deficit according to economist.

I want to thank my colleagues in the Congress for the leadership. We spent hours and hours and hours over months and months working on this. No one

got everything they wanted, including me. But that's what compromise is.

That's consensus. And that's what I ran on. I've long said compromise and consensus are the only way to get big things done in a democracy, important

things done for the country. I know it's hard. I know how deeply people feel about the things that they fight for.

But this framework includes historic investments in our nation and in our people. Any single arm of this framework would fundamentally viewed -- be

viewed as a fundamental change in America. Taken together, they're truly consequential. I'll have more to say after I returned from the critical

meetings in Europe this week. But for now let me lay out a few points.


BIDEN: First, we face and I've no I apologize for saying this, again, we face, we face an inflection point as a nation. For most of the 20th

century, we lead the world by a significant margin because we invest it in our people, not only in our roads and our highways and our bridges, but in

our people and our families.

We didn't just build an interstate highway system; we build a highway to the sky. We invest it to win the space race and we won. We're also among

the first to provide access to free education for all Americans beginning back in the late 1800s.

That decision alone to invest in our children and their families was a major part of why we're able to lead the world for much of the 20th

century. But somewhere along the way, we stopped investing in ourselves investing in our people.

America is still the largest economy in the world. We still own the most productive workers and most innovative minds in the world. But we risk

losing our edges a nation, our infrastructure used to be rated the best in the world.

Today according to the World Economic Forum, we ranked 13th in the world, we used to lead the world in educational achievement. Now the organization

for Economic Cooperation and Development ranks America 35th out of the 37 major countries, when it comes to investing in early childhood education

and care.

We know how our children's start impact significantly and how they'll finish. We can't be competitive in the 21st century global economy if we

continue this slide. That's why I've said all along, we need to build America from the bottom up in the middle out, not from the top down with

the trickledown economics that's always failed us.

I can't think of a single time when the middle class has done well that the wealthy haven't done very well. They can many times including now when the

wealthiest super wealthy do very well, and the middle class don't do well.

That's why I propose the investments Congress is now considering in two critical pieces of legislation. Positions I ran on as president, positions

I announced one I laid out in a joint session of Congress what my economic agenda was, these are not about left versus right.

Or moderate versus progressive, or anything else that pits Americans against one another. This is about competitiveness versus complacency.

Competitiveness versus complacency is about expanding opportunity, not opportunity to deny, it's about leading the world.

Or letting the world passes by. Today, with my Democratic colleagues, we have a framework for my build back better initiative. And here's how it

will fundamentally change the lives of millions of people for the better.

Millions of you are in the so called sandwich generation, who feel financially squeezed by raising a child and caring for an aging parent.

About 820,000 seniors in America and people with disabilities have applied for Medicaid. And they're on a waiting list right now, to get home care.

They need some help, not have to be put -- they're not being kicked out of their homes. But they need a little help getting around having their meals

made occasionally for them. They don't want to put them in nursing homes, not because of the cost but because it's a matter of dignity.

They want to stay in their homes. But it's hard. You're just looking for an answer. So your parents can keep living independently with dignity. For

millions of families in America, this issue is the most important issue they're facing is personal.

So here's what we're going to do. We're going to expand services for seniors. So families can get help from well-trained well pay professionals

to help them take care of their parents at home, to cook meal for them, to get the groceries for them.

To help them get around, to help them live in their own home with the dignity they deserve to be afforded. Quite frankly what we found is that

this is more popular as popular as anything else we're proposing because the American people understand the need to matter of dignity and pride for

our parents.

30 years ago, we ranked number seven among the advanced economies in the world as a share of women working. Now we are today ranked 23rd, 23rd,

Seven to 23. Once again our competitors are investing and we're standing still.


BIDEN: Today there are nearly 2 million women in America not working today simply because they can't afford childcare can't afford childcare. Typical

family spends about $11,000 -- on childcare, some states it's 14,500 a year per child.

We're going to make sure, nearly all families earning less than $300,000 a year will pay no more than 7 percent of their income for childcare. And for

a family making $100,000 year that will save them more than $5,000 in childcare.

This is a fundamental game changer for families and for our economy. As more parents, especially women can get back to work and work in the

workforce. I'm looking at a lot of significant press people in front of me. A lot of them are working, working mothers in order to cost. I remember

when I got to the Senate; I lost my wife and daughter in an accident, my two boys.

I started commuting 250 miles a day. Because I had my mom and my dad, my brother and my sister helped me take care of my kids because I couldn't

afford childcare and I was getting a serious salary $42,000 a year.

We've also extended historic middle class tax cut, that's what I call a middle tax, tax cut for parents. That is the expanded Child Tax Credit

repast to the American rescue plan. What that means is for folks at home, they're getting $300 a month for every child under the age of six, $250 for

every child under the age of 80.

We're extending that. The money is already a life changer for so many working families. The sub cut child poverty in half this year, according to

experts. That's not all it does. It changes the whole dynamic for working parents.

In the past if you paid taxes and had a good income, you could deduct under the tax code $2,000 per child from the taxes you owe. But how many families

do you know, cashier waiters, health care workers, who never got the benefit of the full tax break because they didn't have that much to deduct.

And it wasn't refundable. So either came off your tax bill, or you didn't get full credit. Why should if somebody making $500,000 a year or 150,000

or $200,000 a year get to write it off their taxes. And the people who need the help even more, they don't have that much tax to pay.

They don't get the benefit; they have the same cost of raising their children. 80 percent of those left out were working parents who just didn't

make enough money. That's why the American rescue plan we didn't just expand the amount of the middle class tax cut.

We also made it refundable. This framework will make it primarily refundable. Making sure the families who need it get a full credit for it

in addition to those who already getting full credit. They're going to make sure that every three and four year old child in America go to high quality

preschool as part of the legislation I just brought up to the Congress.

Studies show that when we put three and four years old in school, school not take your school, we increase by up to 47 percent the chance that that

child no matter what their background will be able to earn a college degree.

If my wife chills in the back here, we always says any country's out educates us is going to outcompete us. We can finally take us from 12 years

to 14 years of universal education in America.

We also make investments in higher education by increasing Pell grants to help students from lower income families attend community colleges and four

year schools. And we invest in historically black universities, colleges, universities, HBCUs; minority serving institutions and tribal colleges to

make sure every young student has a shot at a good paying job in the future.

This framework extends tax credits to lower premium for folks on a -- who are in the Affordable Care Act for another three years. From 4 million

folks in the 12 states that haven't expanded Medicaid, all the rest have.

This framework will enable you to get affordable coverage and Medicare will now cover the cost of hearing aids and hearing checkups. This framework

also makes the most significant investment to deal with the climate crisis ever, ever happened. Beyond any other advanced nation in the World.


BIDEN: Over a billion metric tons of emission reductions, at least 10 times bigger on climate than any bill that has ever passed before, and enough to

position us for a 50 to 52 percent emission reductions by the year 2030.

And we'll do it in ways that grow the domestic industries create good paying union jobs, address long standing environmental injustice as well.

Tax Credits help people do things like weatherize their homes, so they use less energy, install solar panels and develop clean energy products that

help business produce more clean energy.

And when paired with the bipartisan infrastructure bill will truly transform this nation. Historic investments in passenger rail I know

everybody says oh, Biden's a rail guy. That's true. But passenger rail and freight rail and public transit, it's going to make hundreds of thousands

take hundreds of thousands of vehicles off the road, saving millions of barrels of oil.

Everybody knows all the studies show if you can get from point A to point B on electric rail. You won't drive your car, but take the rail service. We

also learned that in most major cities in America, minority populations, the jobs that used to have in town, they're now out of town.

Roughly 60 percent of the folks they don't have vehicles, so they need to have a means to get out of town to their jobs to be on time. That's what

this will do that like it did for Detroit. 95 percent of the 840,000 school buses in America run on diesel.

Every day more than 25 million children and thousands of bus drivers breathe polluted air on the way to and from school from the diesel exhaust.

We're going to replace thousands of these with electric school buses that have big batteries underneath.

And they are good for the climate. I went down to one of the manufacturing facilities saw them got one drive, they do not expend any -- they not to

expend any pollution into the air, will build out the first ever national network of 500,000 electric vehicle charging stations all across the


So when you buy an electric vehicle and you get credit for buying, you buy electric vehicle, you go all the way across America and a single tank of

gas figuratively speaking, it's not gas, you plug it in 500,000 of them.

These stations along the way, we're going to get off the sidelines on manufacturing solar panels and wind farms and electric vehicles with

targeted manufacturing credits. You manufacturer you get credit for doing it.

These will help grow the supply chains and communities too often left behind and will reward countries for paying good wages, for companies I

should say for good wages, and for sourcing the materials from here in the United States.

That means tens of millions of panels and turbines, doubling the number of electric vehicles we have on the road within just three years, we'll be

able to sell and export these products and technologies to the rest of the world and creating thousands more jobs because we are once again going to

be the innovators.

We will also make historic investments environmental cleanup and remediation. That means putting people to work in good paying jobs a

prevailing wage, capping hundreds of thousands, hundreds of thousands of abandoned wells and gas wells, oil and gas wells that need to be kept

because they are leaky things that hurt the air, putting a stop to the methane leaks and pipelines protecting the health of our communities.

It's a big deal and will build up our resilience for the next super storm drought, wildfires and hurricanes that represent a blinking Code Red for

America and the world. Last year alone, these types of extreme weather events you've all been covering and you've all witnessed and you've some of

you been caught in the middle of, have caused $99 billion in damage in the United States within the last year, $99 billion.

We're not spending any money to deal with this, is costing us significantly. I met in Pittsburgh; I met an IBEW electrical worker who

climbs up in those power lines and miller storm to try to put transformers and to keep the lights on storm --.

He calls himself 100 percent union guy. His job is dangerous as he said, and I quote "I don't want my kids growing up in a world where the threat of

climate change hangs over their heads". Folks, we all had that obligation.