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First Move with Julia Chatterley
Airlines Avoid Belarus Airspace after E.U. Sanctions; Tesla Boss Joins the U.S. Alliance Aiming to boost Bitcoin's Sustainability; The IOC tells CNN Cancellation is Off the Table. Aired 9-10a ET
Aired May 25, 2021 - 09:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JULIA CHATTERLEY, CNN BUSINESS ANCHOR, FIRST MOVE: Live from New York, I'm Julia Chatterley. This is FIRST MOVE and here is you need to know.
Belarus bypass. Airlines avoid the nation's airspace after E.U. sanctions.
Musk's miners. The Tesla boss joins the U.S. Alliance aiming to boost Bitcoin's sustainability.
And onwards Olympics. The IOC tells CNN cancellation is "off the table."
It's Tuesday, let's make a move
A warm welcome once again to FIRST MOVE. Great to be with you as always as we talk sustainable Bitcoin mining, bond, James Bond buying and general
inflation defying -- I'm certainly trying -- on Wall Street, there's no denying a buoyant start to the trading week with tech rising almost one and
a half percent on Monday as you can see.
We're looking to add actually premarket with the S&P 500 within touching distance of records once again. We're also making new records on the German
DAX fueled by a post a pandemic peak in business confidence there and lower borrowing costs are helping, too.
I can give you a look. U.S. 10-year yields are at two-week lows. We've got Asia and European interest rates easing along with them, too. Investors
seem to be taking a wait-and-see approach on prices with U.S. Federal Reserve members yesterday reiterating that the current rise is transitory.
I tell you what, though, there's nothing transitory about crypto's choppiness. Bitcoin may be a touch lower today, but it did bounce 20
percent yesterday on tweets from MicroStrategy's CEO, Michael Saylor saying that Elon Musk and the U.S. Bitcoin mining community are committed to
cleaning up crypto specifically Bitcoin so we're talking a centralized approach to a decentralized technology, no irony there at all.
And it is someone called China, remember as well, because they carry out the bulk of the mining to get them on board, too, I'm just saying.
Now speaking of mining, steel prices are two-month lows and iron ore also falling after Beijing's move to curb rising commodity prices, lower
commodity prices are helping ease inflation fears across export rich Asia today. You can see it there.
Look at that, China, advancing almost two and a half percent.
Okay, lots to discuss. Let's get to the drivers.
The European Union cutting aviation links with Belarus and calling for the release of a dissident journalist arrested after authorities forced a
commercial flight to land. On Monday, Roman Protasevich appeared on a pro- government social media video, admitting he was responsible for organizing protests. His supporters say he looks to be under duress.
NATO's Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg called the diverting of the Ryanair flight, a state hijacking.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JENS STOLTENBERG, SECRETARY GENERAL, NATO: The forced landing over passenger flight by Belarus was dangerous and unacceptable. This is a state
hijacking and demonstrates how the regime in Minsk attacks basic democratic rights and cracks down on freedom of expression and independent media.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHATTERLEY: Matthew Chance joins us now. Matthew, an outraged response and actions, I think from the international community, primarily the E.U. at
this stage, but also questions being asked. And it goes to where you are, what role Russia played in this, too.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I mean, the Russian side, they played no role in it whatsoever. In fact, when the
Kremlin have been asked about, you know, the alleged role of any players from here, they've simply sort of batted that suggestion away and referred
it to the various aviation authorities.
I mean, I think the sort of broader role that that Russia plays in is in the sense that it provides an economic backstop to Belarus and to President
Lukashenko, the ruler of that country who has been in power there for the past 27 years, you know, more or less with Moscow's backing.
And so even though there are sanctions against him and his regime right now, along with the condemnation of the way the election was rigged last
year, the presidential election, according to election observers, the crackdown on the protesters, the fact that this civilian airliner has been
forced to land in Minsk and a dissident journalist taken off it with his girlfriend, and imprisoned, you know, and the sanctions that have come from
that already in terms of the banning of European flights across the airspace of Belarus and the banning of Belarusian aircraft into European
airspace, and there is likely to be more sanctions as well, by the way. Those are still under discussion to target individuals who are linked
directly with this latest incident.
CHANCE: The truth is, it's not going to have a great deal of impact, as long as Moscow continues to provide that economic backstop, and we've seen
no sign whatsoever at this stage that Moscow is prepared to, you know, kind of ease that backing of that regime right next door.
CHATTERLEY: And Matthew, we're just showing Charles Michel, the E.U. Council President's tweet from earlier just showing the planes that are
avoiding Belarusian airspace there and you can see it clearly pointed out amid all sorts of yellow aircraft that are doing their best to avoid the
airspace as a result of what we've seen, and this of course, tied to the sanctions.
Matthew, you raise a great point, which is, Russia is a facilitator, I think of the ongoing leadership of President Lukashenko less than a year
after we saw huge protests about his ongoing leadership.
I think for ordinary Belarusians today, they are sort of waking up with the reality that he is ever harder to remove, and he looks incredibly strong in
light of what we've seen in the last few days.
CHANCE: Well, I mean, yes. Perhaps. Yes, I mean, look, I mean, I think, you know, obviously, there'll be people inside Belarus and perhaps it is a
growing number that will look at this situation and go, look, how isolated the country is becoming. Look what's happening to Belarus under the
leadership, I suppose, of Alexander Lukashenko, the President as I say, for the past 27 years.
But because of that point, you know, we just discussed the fact that he is backed up to the hilt by Moscow. There's very little that those dissident
voices inside Belarus can actually do. There's been an effort, of course, there's been mass protests across the country to topple him, but so far,
they've been unsuccessful.
And President Lukashenko has used brutal police tactics to suppress dissent. This latest forcing down of the Ryanair jet was another iteration
of that use of brutal tactics to bring those who are political opponents under his authority or put them in prison, basically.
And so I think, even though the stance of this particular dissident journalist and activist may inspire some people, it may also lead to many
other people in Belarus saying look, you know, it's perhaps not worth the sacrifice. We're not going to be able to change anything, so we'll see how
this pans out.
CHATTERLEY: We shall. Matthew, great to get your perspective. Matthew Chance there for us.
Okay, let's move on. Bitcoin came within touching distance of the $40,000.00 mark overnight after Elon Musk says he met with American crypto
miners about energy use. We've seen a little pullback since then.
Clare Sebastian joins me now. Big business meet on policy and private, announced status of negotiations on Twitter. How very 2020-2021. How are
they going to clean up Bitcoin?
CLARE SEBASTIAN, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: We don't know yet, Julia. All we know is according to Elon Musk's tweet and one from Michael Saylor of
MicroStrategy, who appears to be the brains behind this meeting that they met with some of the CEOs of top mining companies, some big names including
Galaxy Digital run by Mike Novogratz, and they agreed to form the Bitcoin Mining Council.
The idea -- the key idea appears to be to bring more transparency to the energy issue, obviously highly controversial the reason why Elon Musk
reversed course a few weeks ago on the idea of using Bitcoin to buy Teslas, they want to bring more transparency and standardized way of reporting
miners' energy usage. So that is the key issue here.
We don't exactly know how it will work, how people will be accountable, but very controversial within the Bitcoin community today, which prides itself
on being decentralized and having no sort of overarching authority.
I want to read you a comment, really interesting from a key member of the Bitcoin community. He writes an influential newsletter and podcast called
Marty Bent, he said, "As Bitcoiners, should be hyper-vigilant about these types of attacks that start off with what seems to be a benign virtue
signal." He carries on, " ... that can metastasize into a catastrophic cascading capture that renders Bitcoin useless when compared to the fiat
currencies of today, because it is no different."
So he is clearly very worried that this kind of effort to bring some kind of organization perhaps even control to any part of the Bitcoin mechanism
could lead to more regulation -- Julia.
CHATTERLEY: A-ha, and I made that point at the top of the show, centralization of something that was all meant to be decentralized, which
is one point, but as we've discussed on the show, 65 percent approximately of the mining happens outside of -- outside of control of these guys like
the United States in the West, it's about China, and if you can't get those guys to clean up, I'm not sure how this works.
But anyway, is this mining of a matter or an honest effort to make Bitcoin greener, or just more Twitter twitching? You decide.
Let's talk about some of the institutional players in this. Goldman Sachs, of course, yesterday saying Bitcoin is now an asset class on its own; HSBC
begs to differ.
CHATTERLEY: Yes, HSBC coming out in an interview with Reuters and saying that they're not into it as an asset class looking at the volatility, they
say that, you know, those raises very difficult questions about how to value it on a client's balance sheet because of that volatility.
And on the other hand, of course, as you mentioned, we have Goldman Sachs saying it's not often we get to witness the emergence of a new asset class.
Now, Goldman is in the majority here. We really are seeing sort of a drumbeat of more institutions sort of coming on board even ones in the past
have expressed skepticism, Morgan Stanley have started offering it to their wealthiest clients trading options even on the payment side. We have the
likes of Mastercard, looking into incorporating it, PayPal and Venmo already accept it.
So there does seem to be more and more widespread adoption of it even as the debate continues about what it's actually useful for, whether it's an
asset class, whether it has some use as a currency, so interesting that HSBC coming out sort of as an outlier here -- Julia.
CHATTERLEY: HSBC more aligned with China's thinking on this Always be aware of where your HQ is based. I said it, not you.
Clare Sebastian, thank you so much for that, at least for now.
Okay, let's move on to Japan, where officials see no change in U.S. support for the Olympic Games, this despite the U.S. State Department advising its
citizens not to travel. Tokyo they are doing enough to ensure safety, as Selina Wang explains.
SELINA WANG, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The U.S. State Department is warning Americans to avoid travel to Japan because of a surge in COVID-19 cases in
the country. It has issued a level four do-not-travel advisory, the highest cautionary level. The C.D.C. says that even fully vaccinated travelers risk
getting and spreading COVID-19 variants in Japan.
The U.S. Olympic Committee says it is confident that its athletes can still safely compete. Japanese officials are downplaying this advisory saying it
does not impact U.S. support for the Tokyo Games.
But the contrast between what Olympic officials are saying and the reality here on the ground is only growing.
Tokyo and large parts of Japan are still under a state of emergency. Only two percent of the Japanese population is fully vaccinated and the medical
system is under strain. In Osaka, doctors are warning of a medical system collapse, with hospitals running out of bed space and ventilators.
At the same time, Olympic organizers are only portraying complete and absolute confidence that these games will go ahead safely.
I recently spoke with the longest serving member of the International Olympic Committee, Dick Pound, who said he has already bought his ticket to
come to Japan for the Olympic Games. Take a listen to what he told me here.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WANG: Is a cancellation still up possibility?
DICK POUND, MEMBER, INTERNATIONAL OLYMPIC COMMITTEE: None of the folks involved in the planning and the execution of the games is considering
cancellation. That's essentially off the table.
WANG: So how can the IOC guarantee that this is going to be a completely safe bubble?
POUND: Well, nobody can guarantee anything. I mean, let's be reasonable on that, but all the indications, the fact-based indications are that the
bubble can be created and maintained.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WANG: But much of the medical community here in Japan disagrees with that optimism, saying that it is impossible to have a safe bubble with the scale
of the Olympics, and that these games need to be cancelled in order to save lives.
Selina Wang, CNN, Tokyo.
CHATTERLEY: Okay, let me bring you up to speed with some of the other stories making headlines around the world.
The U.S. Secretary of State has pledged support to rebuild Gaza after days of fighting between Israel and Hamas. Earlier, Antony Blinken met with the
Israeli Prime Minister for talks on strengthening a ceasefire. He said both sides of the conflict have lost so much.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANTONY BLINKEN, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: Losses on both sides were profound. Casualties are often reduced to numbers. But behind every number
is an individual human being, a daughter, a son, a father, a mother, a grandparent, a best friend. And as the Talmud teaches: to lose a life is to
lose the whole world, whether that life is Palestinian or Israeli.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHATTERLEY: CNN's Nic Robertson is live in the West Bank where Blinken is also set to meet with the Palestinian Authority, too.
Nic, I think the help rebuilding Gaza perhaps addresses some of the criticism back in the United States from his own party, the Democrats, but
who is most influential in the region in order to perhaps suppress and contain Hamas going forward, too, in order to maintain this ceasefire.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Yes, that points a big topic of conversation, one that Blinken had with Prime Minister Netanyahu
and other Israeli officials, the Foreign Minister as well, Gabi Ashkenazi this morning that was a big concern is a big concern from Israel, it is a
big concern for the United States as well.
What Blinken has also said is that he will rally international support for helping to rebuild Gaza and also this morning, when he was there in
Jerusalem, spoke about he will announce later this afternoon a significant, significant U.S. contribution for helping in that rebuilding.
ROBERTSON: So I think we can look forward to perhaps hearing potentially some figures for the United States about how much they're going to help,
but the message that he will be putting to the Palestinian Authority President here and the Prime Minister will be that he wants them to try to
help shepherd that money safely into the hands and the rebuilding of houses of Palestinians in Gaza.
No easy job because Palestinian Authority officials he meet here don't have the power in Gaza, in the same way that Hamas does. But what the
Palestinian Authority leaders here are going to be looking for from Secretary Blinken is a serious re-engagement for the United States,
remembering they disconnected conversations with the Trump White House -- over the Trump White House's decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital
of Israel, and they really want the United States to focus down the road, put a horizon, start to build politically towards the diplomacy of a two-
That's not going to happen now, but they do want to hear some messaging along those lines from the Secretary of State.
CHATTERLEY: And we will watch for that. Nic, great to have you with us. Nic Robertson there. Thank you.
U.S. President Joe Biden hosting George Floyd's family at the White House today. Floyd died at the hands of Minneapolis, Minnesota police one year
ago. The killing captured on camera and shared broadly sparked worldwide protests against police brutality and efforts by U.S. lawmakers to overhaul
policing in the United States.
Still to come FIRST MOVE, the Seychelles sees a COVID-19 spike despite having one of the world's highest vaccination rates. We speak to the
And life in the fast lane. We also speak to the head of IMAX about the success of the latest "Fast and Furious" film. Plus, what the streaming
wars and battle for content means for them.
Stay with us. That's next.
CHATTERLEY: Welcome back to FIRST MOVE. U.S. stocks remain on track for a second day of gains after an across the board advance on Monday. It was
truly an-everything rally with both tech and economic rebound plays all performing well.
Widely held tech names like Alphabet, Facebook, Microsoft and Tesla, all rows as you can see two percent plus; Square, a big winner, too, rallying
more than five percent on reports that it will soon roll out checking and savings account services, a move that will put it in direct competition
with established banks.
CHATTERLEY: And speaking of banks, the heads of the major U.S. financial institutions will be testifying on Capitol Hill tomorrow and on Thursday,
their first appearance together in years, a wide range of topics to be addressed, including economic inequality, fair lending, and don't forget,
the crypto space, too.
Okay, to Seychelles now and over 70 percent of the population has had at least one vaccine dose. That's one of the highest vaccination rates in the
The rapid rollout allowed the holiday hotspot to reopen for tourists back in March. Unfortunately, since then, it's seen a spike in infections even
in vaccinated patients.
So what's going on? Well, joining us now is Wavel Ramkalawan, he is the President of Seychelles, and he joins us now.
Mr. President, fantastic to have you on the show. Let's talk about your incredible process or progress in vaccinating your citizens. You moved very
quickly to secure doses. Talk to me about where you are now in terms of fully vaccinated people, what percent?
WAVEL RAMKALAWAN, PRESIDENT, SEYCHELLES: Well, thank you. Thank you very much, Julia.
In terms of fully vaccinated, as far as the two doses are concerned, we are at 64 percent, but as far as the first dose is concerned, we were at
hundred percent because we have vaccinated 70 percent of our population, so this is where we stand right now.
CHATTERLEY: And you're using a combination of Sinopharm from China and the AstraZeneca dose or vaccine produced by the Serum Institute of India.
RAMKALAWAN: That's right. We are -- we started off with Sinopharm for those between 18 and 60, and for the over 60s, we administered AstraZeneca
first, but after we -- after we had vaccinated the over 60s, we also offered AstraZeneca to everyone above 18. And this combination has worked
extremely well for us.
CHATTERLEY: And then you opened up to tourism, as I mentioned in the introduction. Clearly tourism, an important part of your economy. It
employs around a third of your workers, I believe, too. Talk to me about the reopening and how concerned we should be perhaps about seeing more
RAMKALAWAN: Well, the reopening was on the 25th of March, and since then, it's been a real success. The economy has taken off once again. We've had
many visitors, but of course not from Europe, which is usually our main market.
We've had secondary markets like Russia, Israel and the UAE. These have been our main -- this is where our main visitors have come from, but I must
say, things were going extremely well until around the eighth of May, we saw a spike in the number of cases. And this of course poses -- well, it
got many people asking questions, even the W.H.O.
But I must say that the numbers have gone down. And for example, I can tell you the curve is way down. And yesterday, we only registered 58 new cases.
So, things have gone down.
But what we also realized was that the majority of people who were contracting the virus had not been vaccinated, and those who had been
vaccinated were what we call asymptomatic positives. So people were tested positive, but they were -- they didn't have any symptoms.
But something else that really -- that has really struck us and in fact, it's proved to us that the two vaccines have really been effective is up to
now, we haven't had a single death -- a single death of anyone who has had the two doses.
And furthermore, we had an old people's home where 86 in-patients who had received only one dose of the AstraZeneca were totally asymptomatic and
they have all recovered. So the vaccine has really saved the Seychelles.
CHATTERLEY: And you raise some very important points here, I think, outside of what you're seeing in Seychelles versus those that have been
vaccinated or not vaccinated around the world.
Is there any reason and some have questioned the efficacy of the Chinese vaccine? Based on what you're seeing, is there any reason to assume that
the assumed efficacy rates of the Chinese vaccine is significantly lower than other vaccines out there?
RAMKALAWAN: No. Julia, I took the AstraZeneca -- no, sorry, I took the Sinopharm. In fact, I was the first person in the Seychelles to receive the
Sinopharm and the first African leader to also receive the Sinopharm.
I would say it's just vaccine politics. It's the West versus China, and the usual politics.
The efficacy of the Sinopharm vaccine is perfect. As I say, it has saved the Seychelles. If the Sinopharm vaccine was not effective, then we would
of course, have had deaths. We would have had more people being hospitalized and suffering, but this has not been the case.
After I took the Sinopharm vaccine, I also did an antibody test after the second dose, and two weeks later, and my antibodies were very high. And up
to now, I haven't contracted any virus. So I would say all vaccines are working.
And furthermore, yes, we've found the South African variant, but our people are doing extremely well and there is -- so I have no reason to doubt the
efficacy of the Sinopharm vaccine, and also the AstraZeneca vaccine.
CHATTERLEY: President Ramkalawan, because you've been so positive about the Chinese vaccine in particular, we'll have to ask you, you did pay for
those vaccine doses. And there are no special privileges given by China in order for the Seychelles to get access to those vaccines.
RAMKALAWAN: Well, in fact, it was not China that donated the vaccines to Seychelles. We got the vaccines from the UAE. This was part of the
friendship. The UAE donated the first batch of vaccines and then later on offered us some more vaccines, and even the AstraZeneca, this was a gift
from India, and now we are also using Sputnik V, and this is a gift from Russia.
We've only had gifts so far. We haven't had to buy a single vaccine. So it's not -- it is not what you're thinking --
CHATTERLEY: No, just checking.
RAMKALAWAN: And --
CHATTERLEY: Diplomacy works, sir.
RAMKALAWAN: Yes, yes, in fact -- in fact, we've been very lucky because Seychelles, when I visited the UAE in December, I talked about the vaccine
because the UAE had already ruled out the Sinopharm vaccine, and that's when we got the vaccine and this allowed us in early January to roll out
our own program.
CHATTERLEY: And it's good to hear. Let me just ask you about economic recovery and how your people are doing and also what the message is to
tourists, those that perhaps have read about spiking cases. We discussed it earlier. You're saying they're coming down now.
What precautions are in place for tourists that want to take a holiday, want to come to Seychelles? Are they going to be safe?
RAMKALAWAN: Well, I can say to everyone, I can look at anyone in the eye and say, come to Seychelles. Seychelles is totally safe. And how do I prove
that? Up to now, we haven't had one case, not even one case of a tourist having to be hospitalized and should they contract the virus or as we know,
sometimes people come with the virus, we have the facilities.
Our health system is not overwhelmed like in many countries, and this is again because we are taking the necessary precautions. We ask tourists to
take -- to wear their masks, to keep the social distancing. Even at the hotels we have special standard operating procedures. So it is safe and
this is why tourists who come to Seychelles and they've been coming in drones and this has helped the country to recover.
RAMKALAWAN: The major hotels are 90 percent -- have a 90 percent occupancy rate. So the Israeli tourists have come to Seychelles and they've been able
to do their PCR tests, the exit PCR tests.
And so Seychelles is absolutely safe. And in fact, I smile sometimes when I hear Seychelles being mentioned in the news because nobody talks about the
Maldives, which is on average getting about 1,500 cases a day.
So Seychelles is safe. All the taxis, transportation and everywhere, the hotels, they have been certified by the health authorities. You can enjoy
your holiday and you will go back home safe.
CHATTERLEY: I got it.
RAMKALAWAN: So Julia, take the next plane, come to Seychelles, and enjoy our -- the warmth of our welcome.
CHATTERLEY: That's the date. I have to say I was mesmerized by the pictures. They look absolutely beautiful. And I wish you all well and
congratulations with the rollout of the vaccine. That's some incredible work.
RAMKALAWAN: Thank you.
CHATTERLEY: Sir, thank you so much. The President of the Seychelles there.
We're back after this. Stay with us.
CHATTERLEY: Welcome back to FIRST MOVE. U.S. markets are up and running this Tuesday and we're adding to Monday's gains, the S&P 500 close to
record highs once again. Stocks are advancing amid strong earnings, strong economic fundamentals and an ongoing reassessment, I think, over how much
fresh stimulus the United States needs to add at this point.
Bond yields are steadying on expectations, too, that President Biden will have to scale back his spending proposals amid congressional resistance.
Less spending, of course means less borrowing which could send bond yields even lower and that would be a big positive for the tech sector stocks in
And from stimulus to streaming, Amazon shares higher as the entertainment world awaits news of a possible purchase of MGM. Jeff Bezos, the Wizard of
Amazon is reportedly set to make a $9 billion bid for the fabled studio behind the "Wizard of Oz." And of course the "James Bond" franchise.
CHATTERLEY: $9 billion is pocket change for deep-pocketed Amazon, but it could help the company in its push for quality streaming content. We'll be
discussing how the streaming wars might impact the cinema space later in the show with the head of IMAX, Richard Gelfond.
For now though, we'll bring it back to one of our top stories and the people of India now facing a triple threat. Another tropical cyclone is
about to make landfall. This one threatening eastern states, just as the country tries to push past the world's worst COVID outbreak.
Fortunately, cases are now falling, but now a medical condition known as black fungus is spreading.
Deloitte has been rallying the private sector to help India. It's part of a collective of 40 American firms sending much needed aid.
Punit Renjen is CEO of Deloitte and he joins us now. Punit, fantastic to have you on the show, and this is an incredible response from the U.S.
I do want to talk about what you're doing. But first, I want to talk about you and Deloitte. I know you have family members in India that fell ill.
You've also got employees of Deloitte in India that we're also unwell, how is everyone doing?
PUNIT RENJEN, CEO, DELOITTE: Julia, thank you for having me. I guess, this is deeply personal for me. I have family in India, my mother that lives in
India, and she did contract COVID. Thankfully, she is now recovering. I have 50,000 professionals that call India home and we had about six percent
of them that contracted COVID, and so we are working to protect them, to support them and this is deeply personal.
CHATTERLEY: I know and thank goodness your mother is recovering. What's the availability of vaccines like talking of protecting your workers there?
RENJEN: I think vaccination ultimately is the challenge that India will need to undertake. But at this point, you started the session by talking
about the aid that is going in, and that is absolutely critical, but what we need to do is stop the crush on the hospital system and stop the panic.
And that's why we announced with the government of Haryana, which is a state -- in Haryana, where I come from, and the Public Health Foundation in
India, as well as the leading Medical Institute in Haryana, an effort that we call Expand the Hospital Ward. And the intent there is try and take care
out to the homes, to the rural areas and provide care to people so that they don't come crushing the hospital system.
I think it's a very innovative approach. We've been at it for about three weeks, and the results are already coming in positive results.
CHATTERLEY: Talk about the successes that you're already seeing, and just so that my viewers understand, I mean, this is pretty incredible from what
I've read. This is assessing patients virtually trying to understand what their requirements are. Do those people actually need to go to a hospital?
Or could they perhaps be given treatment at home? Did they know the best course of treatment?
As you said, you're literally trying to reduce the burden on the physical hospitals and prevent people that perhaps don't need to be there going?
RENJEN: That's exactly right. So in this district, where we conducted the pilot, we found that 94 percent of the patients with COVID can be treated
RENJEN: So there are about 5,500 active cases in the district that, of course, fluctuates. It is coming down, as you said, and there are five
unique things that we did that really combined our innovative. The first is a virtual command and control center, leveraging what existed in the
district, but also creating software so we can monitor what is happening in the district and what is happening with each individual patient.
The second is virtual health. We deputized 200 medical students who call -- and divided them up 25 to 30 patients -- they call them twice a day around
three or four key parameters, 6,500 home health kits that include an oximeter, a thermometer, basic medicine, steamers. We leveraged the ASHA
network, these are a home volunteers in the district, usually women and we leveraged them to take these home kits out to educate individuals and then
we created a COVID hotline. So that's the second area.
The third was a tiered health system. So we set up field hospitals, closer to the villages and to primary care centers so people wouldn't come to the
main hospital unless they needed to.
RENJEN: We rented eight advanced life support ambulances to provide confidence that if somebody got ill, critically ill, they could be
transported to the main hospital.
And then the fourth thing that we've done is created an awareness and education campaign. And then the fifth is to create a playbook so that we
can replicate this across the state.
CHATTERLEY: And that was going to be my next question, just scaling this up, ultimately. I mean, I want to talk about the work that you and some of
the other CEOs have been doing, too, because you recognize the need for oxygen concentrators and we've talked about this a number of times already
on the show over the past few weeks.
And one of the things that's come up is trust, and making sure that whatever supplies that you're providing actually get to where they're
going. How are you ensuring that as a body in an organization?
RENJEN: Well, I'm really proud of my fellow colleagues that have contributed to this effort, and what we tried to do initially was to
address the immediate need, which was oxygen. We have collaborated with a government and the Ministry of Health, and we provide oxygen concentrators,
ventilators, and other equipment to them. They're the ones that actually distributed out to the states based on need.
CHATTERLEY: Yes, and that's incredible. And I have one more question on this, because I know, part of the negotiation between the United States and
India is essential supplies, and it goes back to the question I asked about vaccines. Is there any sense from what you're hearing that perhaps the
United States will allow the supply of essential ingredients for vaccines into India to facilitate the production that's so critical, not only to
India, but also to the rest of the world and, and poorer nations? Are you hearing anything on that?
RENJEN: Well, I'm actually very proud of what the United States government has done, they've stepped up. They have contributed.
They recognize, Julia, that nobody is safe until we are all safe. This is not just an Indian issue, this is an issue for all of us. Because as we
know, if the virus mutates, and there are variants it spreads to the rest of us. I think the United States government is stepping up and will step up
boing forward, so I am actually quite proud of them.
CHATTERLEY: Punit, thank you so much for coming to talk to us today. Thank you for your work, and our hearts are with your family, your employees, and
everyone there who is suffering, fingers crossed, we address it quickly.
RENJEN: Thank you.
CHATTERLEY: Punit Renjen, the CEO of Deloitte. Sir, thank you.
Okay, we're back after this. Stay with us.
CHATTERLEY: Welcome back to FIRST MOVE to news from the big screen and a film that's fast, furious and firing on all cylinders. "F9," the latest in
the "Fast and Furious" saga has racked up the biggest opening weekend for IMAX of the pandemic so far, taking in $14 million across China, the Middle
East, Russia and South Korea.
It's the second biggest opening weekend overall for the firm after "Captain America: Civil War" and the CEO of IMAX, Richard Gelfond joins us now.
Rich, fantastic to have you on the show, always. Is "F9" actually that good? Or is this just people fast and furious about coming back to cinemas?
RICHARD GELFOND, CEO, IMAX: Well, you know, Julia, I always ask: are any of these movies that good or that bad? It's all on the mind of the
CHATTERLEY: That's your job.
GELFOND: And they how to react. Clearly, I mean, a movie -- the movie does $165 million internationally, in only a limited amount of markets. That's
very powerful. So I think it's probably a combination of pent up demand.
You know, this is the first real Hollywood blockbuster that's been released globally since the pandemic started. So it's that demand.
I think it's also -- it's a real Hollywood movie with real stars and real special effects that I think people have been chomping at the bit to do
something like that. And then it's a franchise that people really enjoy. It's been powerful.
So as always, in the movie business, it's a combination of all those things. But you know, you've got to give some credit to Universal, because
they -- no one has really talked about it that much. But they tried a somewhat unusual distribution plan. So usually, they would open up globally
on the same day, but because of the state of the world and the virus, Europe being behind, Asia being ahead, North America being behind, they
tried something pretty novel and daring, which is let's release it in China first, a month early before we're releasing it anywhere else.
And I think it was their attempt to say, look, we've got to open the movie industry at some point. If we just sit around and play the most
conservative game in the world, things are going to sit on our shelves for a while and this one worked, so they deserve a lot of credit.
CHATTERLEY: Yes, just take some risks. How do you think it translates to the U.S. recovery? And how are you or IMAX going to handle the adjustments
to mask guidance, for example for vaccinated individuals? Are you just going to take it on trust?
GELFOND: So, I think first of all, your first question how it translates to the U.S., the U.S. has steadily gotten better and better in box office
and some of the real key markets have opened up.
So New York is a hundred percent open. California -- Los Angeles is about 50 percent, but in mid-June, it goes to a hundred percent. A firm called
NRG did a study in the U.S. and concluded that 73 percent of the people now say they're comfortable going to the movies, up 25 percent since -- 25
points since January, and they expect it to be 80 soon.
So, I think the U.S. is poised to start meeting the other areas of the world where it's safe and people feel safe. With that said, I don't think
it's going to be like a switch. I think it would be more like a faucet.
This weekend in the U.S., there are a few big movies, "Quiet Place 2," from Paramount, "Cruella" from Disney' is coming out, and then you go into the
summer blockbuster season with "Black Widow" and "Suicide Squad" and a number of other films.
So I think it's slowly going to return to some sense of normalcy. But going out on a limb, I think probably the Memorial Day four-day weekend coming up
will be the biggest weekend so far since the pandemic in the United States.
And to the second part of your question, you know, again, IMAX is a technology provider. So, we are housed in other exhibitors' multiplexes. So
I think they'll have their own policies about masks. As you know, the C.D.C. has backed off on that. So I don't know, we'll see. But I do think
this weekend is a true turning point, and will continue to build up, what's happened in the rest of the world will start to happen in North America.
CHATTERLEY: So you will just comply by the broader standards set by wherever the cinema is located.
GELFOND: Yes, the regulatory standards as well as the business partner standards, I mean, we don't have -- we actually don't staff our theaters.
They are staffed by the particular operators. So I think it's going to be up to them to enforce the rules.
CHATTERLEY: And obviously, that ties to your border resilience throughout the pandemic as well.
I have to get your views on content. The Discovery-Time Warner deal, obviously, the parent company of CNN, I should mention that. You think this
is great for content?
GELFOND: I think it's really good for the, for the industry in general. I think both the movie industry and the streaming industry. And I think that
because, you know, to be fair to WarnerMedia, they did a program that was probably appropriate for the pandemic, which was day in day releases of
movies on other platforms, because theaters were closed.
But I think that needs to evolve and change and WarnerMedia has started to do that by saying there's a 45-day window next year.
GELFOND: I think that needs to evolve and change and WarnerMedia has started to do that by saying there's a 45-day window next year. I think the
management team had some issues in how that was presented, and there is some strain issues in Hollywood.
I do think that David Zaslav and the Discovery team and the other people at Warner who are going to remain behind are going to be in a good position to
rebuild those relationships. Warner's is IMAX's like longest lasting studio relationship. And I also have a very strong relationship with David Zaslav.
So for us, I think it should to be very good and I think it is going to be very good for the industry. I think it'll be a little bit of back to the
future where I think Warner is going to retain a lot of the luster that it's built over all these years.
CHATTERLEY: I have about 20 seconds. Bezos potentially buying "Bond," i.e. MGM Studios, what do we think of that?
GELFOND: A slight oversimplification. I think Bezos might buy the TV production side of MGM, "Handmaid's Tale," and a lot of the TV production,
which I think will fit very nicely in with Amazon's distribution business. "Bond" is 50 percent owned by the Broccoli family, and my guess is that
they're not about to abandon the large theatrical releases, which have made that one of the most successful franchises in history streaming on your
CHATTERLEY: It's such a great point.
GELFOND: I just don't think 007 is going to be interested in that.
CHATTERLEY: No one has ever called me simple before, Rich. There is always a first.
GELFOND: I'll try to be better next time.
CHATTERLEY: There you go. Rich Gelfond, thank you so much.
All right, coming up after the break, a lap in a lab. Is it possible for a dog to nose away, to sniff out COVID-19? We will unleash an exciting new
theory, after this.
CHATTERLEY: Welcome back to FIRST MOVE and finally, Pandemic Paw Patrol. Now, we know dogs can detect early signs of things like cancer with their
super sensitive noses, well, now British scientists think they can perhaps spot COVID infection, too.
Now, the theory hasn't been peer reviewed or published in a medical journal as Max Foster reports, it is giving us pause for thought when it comes to
MAX FOSTER, CNN LONDON CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Man's best friend could be a new ally in the fight to contain coronavirus. A new U.K. study says
highly trained dogs in controlled conditions may be able to sniff out and identify COVID-19 infections in humans.
STEVE LINDSAY, DURHAM UNIVERSITY: Our previous work with using dogs show that we were able to detect people with malaria by their scent. So we
thought well at the beginning of the pandemic, let's see whether our dogs could detect people with COVID.
FOSTER (voice over): The results of an early stage study which hasn't yet been peer reviewed, say dogs picked up the scent of COVID-19 on the
clothing of infected people, up to 94 percent of the time and they were even able to detect asymptomatic cases.
FOSTER (voice over): Standard PCR tests are the best for COVID-19, but they can't beat the dogs for the speed of the results. The pups are winning
that by a nose.
LINDSAY: That's really a quite -- a very high level of precision. They can detect people with low viral loads just as readily as they could those
people with high viral loads.
FOSTER (voice over): Six dogs participated in the study. A group of Labradors, Golden Retrievers and Cocker Spaniels trained for six to eight
weeks to recognize the scent of the virus.
Researchers say dogs could one day be used in high-volume areas like airports and concert arenas to screen for infections.
CLAIRE GUEST, FOUNDER, MEDICAL DETECTION DOGS: This can make a huge difference as we start to come out of lockdown and people start to travel
and will hopefully assist in gets us all back to a more normal life.
FOSTER (voice over): But critics say it could be hard for the dogs to match their success in the lab in the real world since some scents in
crowded areas quickly disperse.
There are pilot projects using COVID-19 sniffer dogs in airports underway in Finland, Germany and Chile. A whiff of hope from our four-legged friends
in snuffing out this virus.
Max Foster, CNN.
CHATTERLEY: And that's it for the show. Thank you for watching. Stay with us, please, because "Connect the World" with Becky Anderson is next.